Columbia, SC (WLTX) -Five days after an engine fire turned their vacations into a nightmare, the passengers of the Carnival Triumph are back on dry land, including an Irmo couple.
Kendal and Trey Love left the kids at home with the grandparents for the trip of a lifetime to celebrate their birthdays together. The couple went on a cruise to Mexico on the Carnival Triumph.
"We thought that was the risky part of the trip getting to Mexico," said Trey Love.
The trip went as planned until they were on their way back home.
"The alarm went off at 5 o'clock in the morning," said Love.
The couple along with four thousand others found out that there was a fire in the engine room.
"It was a rude awakening that morning."
That fire left the massive ship paralyzed. No power or sanitation, just a ship sitting idle in the middle of the ocean.
"Other than the obvious conditions it was kind of a nice part of the cruise, we enjoyed sleeping outside thinking it was kind of an extra romantic extra couple nights but I guess the gravity of it didn't set in."
The romantic rendezvous turned into something you have to see to believe. The lack of power meant no air conditioning and rotting food.
People slept outside on the deck, they had to eat onion and cucumber sandwiches and use the bathroom in bags because the toilets wouldn't flush.
"Normally you sit room service outside your door, this was a little different," said Kendal. "One day you were told it would flush the next day it wouldn't people were just trying to find a public toilet that would work."
One day turned into, two and then three. Five days total on the ocean without power. The Coast Guard flew food to the boat and those with medical conditions were air lifted.
It was a first time cruise experience that left trey willing to wait, until he rushes to get on a boat again.
"I think we will watch some love boat re-runs first but that is as close as we will get for a little while but we will see, I won't rule it out," said Trey.
The couple returned to Mobile, Alabama late Thursday night and arrived in Columbia Friday afternoon. They say words can't express how happy they were to see their children.
"Excitement and relief, my heart was kind of pounding just waiting to see them and being able to hug them so that was awesome," said Trey.
"It puts everything in perspective and makes you appreciate them when you get back to them," said Kendal.
The couple says each person on the ship received a full refund, an additional $500 per person and a discount on another trip.