Twilight of the Gods: 747s Begin Final Exits From U.S. Fleets

747 SP
Photo Credit: Christian Volpati

United has set the date to retire their last 747s. Delta is close behind. It is not an exaggeration to say it is the end of an end of an era. The 747 was a monument to classic American aviation design and construction. The spacious frame allowed designers to gave rise to lasting changes in what was possible in passenger travel. the aircraft became an icon of popular culture and fiction. It became the flagship aircraft of a nation. Variations studied the stars and the atmosphere. One carried the first airborne laser weapon system. It's extended body carried whole fuselages of new airliners-some of which will ironically be why the type is retired. And the 747s status as a powerful cargo hauler is unmatched.

Read more: Twilight of the Gods: 747s Begin Final Exits From U.S. Fleets

Live Chat - Saturday and Sunday 4 p.m. EST

Live cruise chat, on now until our fingers wear-out! Q&A, cruise news, ship watching! 

Can't be there today?  Join us every weekend for live chat as we watch the ships depart Port Everglades online!  Ask questions, talk the latest cruise news and more!

The Shooting at Fort Lauderdale Airport.

Headline News - UPDATED 4:45 p.m. PM EST

At approximately 2:25 EST a passenger from an arriving flight from Canada emerged from a bathroom at the baggage claim area of Terminal 2.  In his possession was a gun he had stowed in checked baggage.  He shot and killed five as well as wounding nine others.  He was taken into custody by Broward County Sheriffs shortly afterward.

Fort Lauderdale airport is presently shut-down and passengers are being screened at various locations.  Aircraft awaiting news on when the airport will reopen are being directed by the tower to contact a phone number but not given direction on if or when they can depart.  Arrivals are being diverted back to their points of origination in some cases or to nearby airports.

Departures of ships from Port Miami and Port Everglades were delayed.  The Caribbean Princess and Nieuw Amsterdam were in-port at Port Everglades.  The Enchantment of the Seas, Carnival Victory, Norwiegan Sky, MSC Divina, Navigator of the Seas and Insignia are docked at Port Miami.  Enhanced security is in effect at both ports.

A hotline for information about Friends & Family at #FLL is available: 866-435-9355 or 954-831-4000. For additional information:  As of 8:45, passengers with personal automobiles were being allowed to leave the airport, passengers without were being bussed to Terminal 4 for pickup.  As of Saturday evening Terminal 2 remained closed to operations but passengers were being channeled through other terminals.  Anybody attempting to fly into our out of the airport was encouraged to arrive early and call ahead to their airlines.  

Near 10 p.m. the Caribbean Princess and Nieuw Amsterdam began their departures.  

The assaluant was a U.S. Army veteran whose family says was suffering from mental issues before the incident

Setting Sail

Carnival Aficionados Baseline 02

As I begin this journey of writing this cruise blog, let me start by saying a cruise is totally what you make it. You can have an amazing time with action and adventure. Or you can have one of the most disruptive infringements upon your most precious time. Possibly ruin the trip you so deserve to take.

There are many activities, excursions and sites to chose from. There is something for everyone of all ages to do. It's all up to you! Now imagine a blank canvas, where you are the artist. After you examine what colors you have to work with you begin the creation of your masterpiece. You get to tell an artistic view of what you see, hear, taste or smell. This is the way I would suggest that you pursue a cruise! The entire trip is your canvas and the hues you use, would be your adventures.

Take for instance you decide to visit a few broadway shows let's paint a few strokes of yellow, then add a comedy show add some purple stokes. Next imagine all the free food available from all over the world 24 hours each day, that color could be green representing eat as many times as you like. Then you may decide to add karaoke or watch karaoke let's paint that red from the excitement. Of course if you want to just relax, absorb the sunshine and drift off into the beautiful sky's tranquility that color could be stokes of light blue. What if you just glazed at the depths of the sea full of dolphins or whales this could be dark blue. Or maybe you had a conversation or took a picture with the Captain add a few strokes of white. See how easy it would be to create a picture of beauty.

That's just getting started. We have not mentioned swimming, hot tubs, zip lining, beaches, exotic beverages, water slides, the casino, dancing, movie nite, a few formal dinners, scuba diving, parasailing and more.

Finally you take a few pictures to commemorate your trip, and your canvas is now complete. That's what cruising is all about creating beautiful memories full of vibrancy, laughter and adventures. It's all what you make it.

So I suggest that you do it all, see it all, taste it all and turn your experiences into a beautiful canvas to express it all and then start planning your next cruise right away! See you at the next port! ~Karen

Introducing Carnival Aficionados, Hosted by Karen Ward!

Carnival Aficionados

A year ago I had the pleasure of meeting Karen Ward, a savvy and veteran cruiser aboard the ships of Carnival Cruise Line.  It did not take long to realize she does not simply enjoying taking a cruise but makes each one a total experience.  For years now, she has hosted her entire family of 35 on an annual cruise, handling every detail of the planning all the way down to scavenger hunts aboard ship.  Now I'm excited to introduce Karen Ward as our blogger for Carnival Aficionados!  The latest feature on our cruise community, you can follow her adventures at sea and more at!  Join me in welcoming Karen and support the Carnival Aficionados blog by joining us today!

Share us everywhere!

Follow us with your favorite social media!

Share a Review!

Reviews on Cruise Aficionados