Dear Carnival Cruise Line,

I recently returned from my second cruise on one of your ships (The Carnival Victory)–a five-day voyage around Cuba with stops in Jamaica and Grand Cayman. The experience, in combination with my childhood fantasy of being a Cruise Director (like the majority of females my age and thanks to Julie McCoy on ABC’s “The Love Boat”), made me more determined than ever to work on a cruise ship.

But what would I do?

I put lots of thought into that very question and will elaborate on it once I explain how perfect my qualifications are for your company. My skills are as follows:

1. I am friendly. I smile all the time. In fact, someone asked me on Sunday if I ever stop smiling. The answer? Not too often. Every Carnival Cruise Line team member I ran across was friendly, so I’d fit right in.

2. I am FUN. You don’t call your ships “The Fun Ships” for nothing, but even I know that the features on the ship are only part of it. It takes a Fun team to get the party going and keep it moving. Fun is my middle name. (Okay, it isn’t REALLY but I might be willing to change it if you ask me nicely.)

3. I am a planner. Ask anyone who knows me. I always have a plan. I make plans to plan. As I recall, Julie McCoy was always carrying a clipboard. That in itself is the prop of a planner. I HAVE SEVERAL CLIPBOARDS. I didn’t see Goose–the IN-REAL-LIFE-AND-NOT-A-TV-CHARACTER Cruise Director on the Carnival Victory–carrying around a clipboard but I DID take note of the crazy amount of planned activities on each day’s “Fun Times” sheet and I know he was behind that. He’s got a clipboard somewhere, I’m sure of it.

4. I can rock a line dance like nobody’s business. I have extensive experience with the “Cha Cha Slide” (it originated in Chicago, you know), the “Cupid Shuffle”, the “Macarena”, and the classic “Electric Slide”. Last week I worked on perfecting my “Wobble”. In the interest of full disclosure, I’m not opposed to breaking out into the “Y.M.C.A.” if necessary. Most importantly, I pick up new routines like a boss. I believe this is due to my long history taking aerobics classes and, more recently, Zumba. I can learn a new line dance and turn right around to teach it to others in a matter of minutes. While smiling. THAT is a skill you need on your team.

Trust me, these four skills are only the tip of the iceberg. (Yes, I mentioned “iceberg” in a letter to a cruise line. It was an accident.) (Get it? IT WAS AN ACCIDENT.) I have many more skills up my sleeve but I thought I’d go ahead and describe what job I can do for you.

Though I always wanted to be a Cruise Director, my trip got me thinking more along the lines of how good I’d be as a member of the Entertainment Team in general.

After I spent lots of time observing the members of the awesome Entertainment Team on the Victory, it occurred to me that I am old enough–BARELY, mind you–to be the mother of most, if not all, of them. That’s not to say I don’t have the energy of a person in her twenties: I do indeed. As I contemplated a possible future with the Entertainment Team I decided that you might be better served if I create my own position, which is something I’ve done many times before.

Keep reading; you’ll love this. Honest.

The Carnival Victory was not lacking in Fun. It was everywhere. Literally. It did not go unnoticed by my family that Carnival inserts the word “Fun” wherever possible, like the best kind of self-fulfilling prophecy. That said, I did see a few teeny, tiny moments on the ship during which people weren’t having Fun, and I think I can fill that gap in my new position, FUNshine Distributor.

I, as Carnival Cruise Line’s first FUNshine Distributor, would wander around the ship, seeking out those teeny, tiny moments that might need an injection of FUN. Just a couple of examples:

1. I would hang out in the casino, giving a quick squeeze of the shoulder to those who lose a few bucks at the tables, whispering, “It’s alright, Tiger. You’ll get ’em next time.”
2. I would stand near the elevators on the Lido deck, ready to toss glitter over the heads of all small children who claim not to be ready to end their day. “Have some magic sleepy dust,” I’d say. “We’ll have more fun tomorrow!”
3. I would walk up and down the lines at the lunch buffet, leading the passengers in happy lunchtime songs, to make the time go by faster.

I mean, imagine the possibilities.

Of course, I’d drop everything and speed-walk to the Lido when the ship’s DJ drops the beats for the line dances, because we can ALWAYS use an extra Wobbler, you know?

So what do you think, Carnival? I’m ready to begin distributing FUNshine. Just say the word.

In fact, I could go at a moment’s notice: my bags are still packed from last week’s trip. Oops.

I guess I’ll just wait to unpack until I hear from you, JUST IN CASE.

The Carnival Victory


  • Liz

    Dang, forget Carnival, I’ll hire you as MY FUNshine Distributor 🙂 Or, at the very least, be your agent (I think you’re onto something, ova here!), seriously.

  • tracey

    Oh man. I laughed out loud because this is SO SPOT ON. She would totally toss that glitter and give that shoulder squeeze. SHE WOULD. She could even secure a long list of FUN guest entertainers (cough~me~cough) who would keep her energy flowing and renewed. Say, a two week stint per person? We would keep her dances fresh and laughter loud.

    And we could help replenish the glitter.

  • Momo Fali

    What are you doing? Trying to put me in the hospital, I take it. I hope they don’t ask for a recommendation from your current employer, BECAUSE YOU’RE NOT GETTING ONE! 😉

    • Melisa Wells

      haha, no worries. I value my marriage to Jim, and I value you, my friend. You’re stuck with me. 🙂

  • Rebecca {Foodie with Family}

    Dear Carnival,

    I am writing this letter to serve as a personal reference for Melisa Wells. I can verify that I know her personally and that she is indeed -as she claimed- fun. She is fun embodied. Something she may not have mentioned to you is that she can have all the fun without ever turning her back on someone. I can’t think of a single person more qualified to serve as your FunShine Director than Melisa Wells. And if you should happen to hand out complimentary cruises to her friends, well, so much the better.


    • Melisa Wells

      Um, noooo…Cruise Directors work their booties off ALL DAY LONG. Much harder job than it looks. At least if I become a FUNshine Distributor I can do the Cha Cha Slide now and then… 😉

  • Sylvia Joy Witcoff

    You would do an outstanding job, but I can’t see you away from home for 6 months at a time that is what they do I think.
    Grandma W

  • Amanda O.

    I’d hire you as a FUNshine Director any day! There’s just one slight problem…I don’t own a cruise ship. 🙁 Ha! But when I do, I’m looking you up!