Dec. 28th, 2011

Cruises

Dec. 28th, 2011 12:26 am
mellicious: pink manicure (Mel - snow)
I had to go around a big traffic jam yesterday on the way to work, caused by cruise ships. Apparently the City of Galveston knows how to handle the traffic caused by one ship offloading and reloading passengers. It's when there's more than one that they start having trouble. And both of the ones that were there were really big ships, which probably makes a difference as well. Until lately, the main ship that did cruises out of Galveston was the Carnival Ecstasy, which is a considerably smaller ship. Cruises out of Galveston are a booming business (mostly because if you live in the Midwest you can generally fly to Houston a lot cheaper than you can fly to Miami), so the Ecstasy has apparently been assigned elsewhere, and now we have the Carnival Triumph and the Carnival Magic, both of which are very much larger. They never come in on the same day, though, so the ones there yesterday were the Magic and then the Mariner of the Seas, which I'm pretty sure is a Royal Caribbean ship. It's been around about once a week lately as well. (It's a very pretty ship, I think - its design is much more interesting than the Carnival ships.)

My life kind of revolves around boats these days, a bit. I can sure tell you a lot more about tankers and tugboats than I could six months ago, believe me. Although my dad was a commercial fisherman for a long time so I guess I've probably always known more about boats than the average person, whether I wanted to or not. The funny thing is that I don't even like being on boats all that much - I'm either sort of claustrophobic or maybe it's that I'm a bit of a control freak in my way, and it bothers me that when you're on a boat you're out of control, unless you're the pilot, and you can't just get off any time you please. I've never been on a cruise and I don't much have any desire to - I would go if my friends were going, maybe, or something like that. Other than that, well, Rob's not interested either so I probably won't. It's a good thing for Carnival et al. that everybody's not like me.



(Also, speaking of Cruises of a different kind, we went to see the Mission: Impossible movie tonight. I am not Mr. Cruise's biggest fan, by any means, but it was pretty good.)

mellicious: pink manicure (WoW - shiny)

I know some of you are not interested in hearing about games. Sorry about that. I find the differences between games rather endlessly fascinating, which I guess is obvious from the amount I talk about it, isn't it?


In addition to the real-life crafts I'm involved in, which are complicated enough, I seem to accidentally be playing two games right now which have very elaborate crafting systems. First there's Glitch, which has fairly detailed, realistic food recipes for the most part - with some goofy exceptions like the way you make all spices out of allspice, and you make fruit with a fruit-changing machine (out of cherries). I've been playing Glitch for, what, three months now, and so I've got that system mostly down. Not completely, because there are a lot of different crafts and there's a few I haven't really ventured into much, but mostly.

Now there's SWTOR, in which your companions do the crafting for you, technically - but you have to tell them what to do, for the most part. You can actually send them off to do "missions" on their own. You can read the description before you send them but you don't get to hear about what happens after they leave - they just come back with stuff for you, or not. (Them coming back with nothing is fairly rare, so far, but it's happened once or twice.) My Sith warrior, which is my most advanced character, has two companions now, and a ship. (A very nice ship, actually!) The 2nd companion came with the ship, and is a droid. (He says lots of comically servile things, C-3PO style, which I can't remember enough of to quote right now.)

Anyway, in SWTOR you have three "professions" - a crafting one, a gathering one, and a third one that I think is called "missions" or something, although actually the gathering one also has missions of its own. So my crew trained to be an Artificer, which so far involves making hilts for lightsabers, and also the color crystals which make the "body" of the saber turn different colors. Then my gathering one is Archaeology, which involves gathering crystals and various kinds of artifacts, and the third one is Treasure-Hunting, interestingly enough. (All Indiana Jones - similar to Archaeology, but not quite the same!) Some missions are to come back with lockboxes which might have money in them or other stuff, some are for different items which you can give to your companions as gifts, others are for gems. See what I mean about complicated? Oh, and also, sometimes she comes back with gift "fragments" which you can take to a "curator" who is supposed to be able to combine them. Col actually got sort of mad at me while I was wandering all over Fleet HQ - which is HUGE - trying to find this curator person. It turned out that they're really just sort of a vendor - you go to them with the proper number of fragments and they offer you a choice of several different gifts you can buy with your fragments. It really is kind of a crazy system.

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