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quicksand, mumbling, and 3 day Cruises

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This is a multi-purpose post. I'm researching three things for my wip.


1. Do any of you have personal stories about quicksand or quick mud?


2. Would a kid go to speech therapy for mumbling (not stuttering)?


3. How hard would it be for parents to keep in communication with a kid -- if they were on a 3 Day Cruise?
Where could parents go where cell phone use is sketchy -- and turn around is impossible. Said parents are on their honeymoon -- the mom of one character and the dad of another have just married.


Thank you.
#1 - February 21, 2014, 06:30 AM
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For the cruise part - you could probably go to the FAQ section of a cruise line website and see -- such as Princess or Carnival.

#2 - February 21, 2014, 06:38 AM

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Okay. I was wondering if anyone had personal experience with communication on a cruise line. Thanks.
#3 - February 21, 2014, 06:39 AM
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I would guess that mumbling wouldn't get you into speech therapy. (Actually, I'm not even sure if stuttering would.) We've had a couple kids tested to get in, and one of them didn't and one of them was recommended but they really really really were resistant to actually getting him in. (This was across multiple school systems in multiple states, so it isn't just a one-time thing.) He had stuttering issues as well as major issues with the letter R, but it was only R therapy that he was recommended for. With all of the major paperwork and required meetings with parents and various required teachers, it's a huge hassle. (Meanwhile, we just wanted them to stop making us sign papers and attend meetings and just teach our kid to say R. Please!!) Quite a few times, we've had teachers notice, and then the kid didn't pass (or fail, more like) the test--even though he CLEARLY needed the therapy. Once they even rigged it a bit to make sure he failed, and that was what finally got him in. So...if it's just mumbling, I doubt it.

As to cruise ships, I am pretty sure that you can send communications out. I want to say that a friend of mine who was on one of those disastrous Carnival cruises was posting on FB throughout it. But I have not been personally on a cruise, so my memory of that might not be accurate. (And maybe it depends on where you are--along the coast of Alaska could be quite different from just around the Caribbean.)
#4 - February 21, 2014, 07:26 AM

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As far as cruises, if they're going into international waters, it might be difficult to keep casual communications, say by cell phone, unless they have an international plan. I was on one a couple years ago to Mexico and while most of us brought our phones, we kept them on airplane mode so that we wouldn't rack up roaming charges.
#5 - February 21, 2014, 07:41 AM

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thanks -- that's useful.  I need the parents to be hard to reach, so that they don't know what's going on at home -- or at least it takes a while -- -something cataclysmic and news worthy happens while they are away.

Good to know about the mumbling, that's what I thought.

#6 - February 21, 2014, 08:40 AM
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Lill, I asked a speech therapist about the mumbling. She is in California, so her answer might not apply to other states.

She said she could qualify a student for speech therapy if the mumbling was preventing access to his academic cirriculum. Academic cirriculum includes things like oral presentations in front of the class. Establishing social relationships is also part of the academic cirriculum.

I don't know if this is the kind of quick mud story you're looking for, but I had an experience when I was 8 or 9. There was an unpaved road near our house. I walked down it to see a friend and my right leg fell into a mud hole that had looked no different from the rest of the road. So there I was, left leg bent with the shoe on solid ground, right leg covered in mud to my hip and unable to  feel the bottom of the hole. I tried all kinds of maneuvers but couldn't gain an inch. The mud wasn't exactly pulling me, but it wouldn't let me go. Fortunately, my dad saw me from our house and came to the rescue.
#7 - February 21, 2014, 09:16 AM
« Last Edit: February 21, 2014, 09:47 AM by sydney-oneill »

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Thanks, Sydney .. and yes, that's a pretty perfect mud story -- going for something similar... so it helps to have first person anecdotes.
#8 - February 21, 2014, 03:31 PM
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Yes, I agree about the cruise ships. Cell phone use is very expensive, so we did not use ours either when we cruised the Caribbean. If your story is set in the US, very few cruises are as short as three days because you can barely get anywhere. Many cruises leave from the Florida area, some from California and some from Seattle if you're headed to Alaska. Could you send the parents on a slightly longer cruise? If so, you'd have a lot more options to send them further away :fireworks
#9 - February 21, 2014, 04:28 PM
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Does it have to be a cruise? There are now many places in remote parts that even use the fact that there's no cellphone reception as a plus (see http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/26/technology-free-vacation_n_1707478.html). And remote parts tend to be places that aren't quick/easy to get out of?


I'm sure my mum has a real-life quicksand story... I'll have to ask her the details, though. Will post again when I've talked to her!


Sydney, I just love this line: The mud wasn't exactly pulling me, but it wouldn't let me go.[/size] [/size][size=78%]I have this visual of mud with hands, clinging to your leg, saying, "Please don't leave me!" Funny. Although I'm sure it wasn't at the time![/size]
#10 - February 21, 2014, 04:48 PM

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Thanks. It can't be much over a 3 day cruise -- the entire story takes place within five days. The story is set in GA, so getting to FL to take the cruise is no big deal. Franzilla, I'll check out those other things.

The parents need to be somewhere where they can't turn back, and where contact with the outside world is spotty. The events back home grow from local crisis to well -- international news -- and the dad/step-dad needs to be mostly clueless. The children are 11/12 years old and being cared for by a relative --- so there's not a real need to keep checking in with the kids.

The Caribbean sounds good. I've been browsing 3 day cruises.

You guys are great!
#11 - February 21, 2014, 07:18 PM
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Seconding the cell phone experience on cruise ships. In international waters it's expensive to use your phone, so we turned ours off and just called in once very other day to check on our little one. It was easier to email in case of emergencies.
Also, when we were camping in Yosemite for Valentine's Day last year, we had NO service for anything. We had to leave the park to make a phone call to check on our toddler.

With regard to mumbling, we have a little boy at our school who was just exited from speech, but he mumbles to hide his (now resolved) speech issue. When I first met him, I couldn't tell he had a speech impairment because he mumbled so much. But in Texas, just mumbling won't qualify you for services unless it is combined with some other issue.
#12 - February 22, 2014, 07:12 PM
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I agree with everyone on the cell phones on cruise ships from previous experience on a Caribbean trip. You can call out, but it's pretty expensive. What I did was call my parents (I was eighteen), every other day on my phone and turned off the cell the rest of the time. So they couldn't contact me at all. I don't know what it's like now with texting though. Would the same fees apply?


There are also computers that you can pay to use, but then they might accidentally see something on the homepage. Especially if it's something huge and international.


Also, you might want to check on how long a cruise ship would take to go to the Caribbean from the port. The shortest cruise trip from New Orleans (where I left from) to the Cozumel was four days. Florida may be shorter though. I think trips to the Bahamas are generally shorter, too.
#13 - February 24, 2014, 10:49 AM

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