Nov 11, 2010 8:31 PM by Danielle Lerner
More than 4,500 passengers and crew are back on land after spending days at sea aboard a crippled Carnival cruise liner.
A Morro Bay man who was on board the "Carnival Splendor" is sharing his experience with KSBY News.
Tug boats pulled the disabled cruise liner into port in San Diego Thursday, four days after an engine room fire cut power to the ship.
It was supposed to seven days of relaxation, a getaway to the Mexican Riviera to mark the Morro Bay couple's three-year wedding anniversary.
Taylor Shickel spoke with KSBY News as the ship was preparing to dock in San Diego and he made it clear this was no dream vacation.
"The first couple days were really bad because the toilets wouldn't flush so there were no bathrooms and no running water," said Shickel.
There was also no air conditioning and no electricity.
"People sleeping on the dining room tables and all kinds of stuff like that," Shickel said.
His fellow passengers shared similar horror stories when they finally touched land in San Diego Thursday.
"The lines were like two hours to feed everybody and by the time you got there there were just piece of bread," said Ken King.
"The food ran out, it started smelling like rotten milk and the toilets started backing up, it was horrible," said Marquis Horace.
Still some passengers said crewmembers did all they could to keep them comfortable and happy.
Edward Koryta says this will not keep him from vacationing at sea.
"I enjoyed it," he laughed. "I went to relax and that's exactly what I did."
As for Shickel and his wife Holly, don't expect to see them cruising any time soon.
"They said they'd give us all free cruises but who the hell wants to cruise after this?" said Shickel.
Carnival has also made arrangements to help passengers get home.
Some will be bussed back to Long Beach, others will get on planes and fly back home.
Carnival hopes to have the ship repaired in San Diego and returned to Long Beach by Monday.
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