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Chattyaholic
02-08-2001, 01:16 PM
Four nights at Disneyworld was the beginning of our 25th anniversary trip, to be topped off by a 7-night cruise on the Disney Magic. We are both 43 years old and still "kids at heart."

We began our trip by spending the night of the 8th with friends in Grand Rapids. Had a very nice dinner at Red Lobster, and enjoyed our evening together. Tuesday morning, the 9th, we checked in with Delta at the airport about 9 a.m. Our flight to Cincinnati was supposed to leave at 10:35 but was delayed, for unknown reasons, until 11:10 so that made us have to literally run to get our connecting flight to Orlando. Whew!! We were among the last half-dozen or so people to board, had a hard time finding space to put our carry-ons but finally did. Kirk had a window seat on the first flight so he could play with his GPS (global positioning system that I got him for Christmas) but didn't get a window seat on the second one. The young guy who sat there never said a word, looked glum the entire time and actually slept most of the flight. What a waste of a window seat! My husband could have enjoyed his seat, and next time we will request a window seat for each flight. Both flights were great and we got to Orlando about 2:15 p.m. and collected our luggage. We were surprised it all made it since we had so little time between flights!! We took Mears transportation and stopped at several resorts before finally getting to ours, the Contemporary, about 4:00. We were rather surprised no one came out to help us with our luggage. There were several hotel employees just standing by the door, chatting, but none came to help. So we lugged our bags into the hotel and stopped at the guest services desk to check in. We had our paperwork (we were taking the 7-day Magic cruise on Saturday) completed, and handed that, along with our birth certificates to the woman checking us in. It went quickly, and we had our "Key to the World" cards and she said our luggage should be in our room when we went up. We looked at her and said, "no, our luggage is right behind us." She was surprised no one had helped us, and immediately called for someone to help us take our luggage to our room. We had room #4537 on the 9th floor which had two queen size beds, a couch and table, reading chair and ottoman, beautiful split bathroom (sink and shower in the first room, and sink and toilet in the smaller one) and it was all really colorfully decorated in blue and yellow walls, orange/black/purple carpet. The lamps were rather strange looking. Is this what they call art deco? I immediately walked over to the sliding glass door, pulled back the curtain, opened the door and stepped out onto the balcony. We had a GORGEOUS view of the Magic Kingdom, including Cinderella's Castle and Space Mountain. Directly across the water from us was the Grand Floridian resort. We freshened up a bit and went down to the food court for a quick bite to eat (burger basket for Kirk, and grilled chicken basket for me) plus we bought the refillable souvenir mugs for $8.99 each and we were able to refill them with soda, coffee, hot chocolate and frozen slush the entire time we were there. The food court is open 24 hours, so it was really convenient, anytime we wanted something to drink. We did feel we got our money's worth from them, as I think a single small Coke was $1.50, and no refill allowed. So, if you drink soda or coffee they are definitely worth the price. About 5:00 we went down to the guest services desk and paid $10 each to get a ticket for E-Ride night. After the Magic Kingdom closes at 7 p.m. for everyone else, anyone from the resorts who has purchased an E-Ride ticket can stay until 10 p.m. and continue enjoying the major rides and attractions. So, after we purchased our tickets we hopped on the monorail (it comes right through the hotel, on the 4th floor) and headed over to the Magic Kingdom. Once there, we stopped a Town Hall to exchange the tickets for wrist bands. Before the park closed we were able to ride It's a Small World, the Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh, and Peter Pan's Flight. As we were coming out of Peter Pan's Flight the fireworks were starting, they were really beautiful to watch. Then from 7 - 10 p.m. we rode Haunted Mansion 2X, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad 4X (once he let us stay right on to ride immediately again), Alien Encounter, The Timekeeper, Space Mountain, and Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin 2X (I got 202,500 points the first time). We also rode Pirates of the Caribbean, which normally wasn't one of the rides open after closing but Country Bear Jamboree was closed so they opened Pirates, and since it was kind of out-of-the-way not many people seemed to know it was even open. When we rode it, we were the only ones on!! It seemed strange! In our opinion, E-Ride night is great. It was not crowded at all and we were able to walk right on everything. We would definitely do it again! Walking out of the park we stopped a moment at Cinderella's Castle. It was so beautiful with the full moon behind it and the reflection of the castle in the water. We just looked at each other, smiled and said "yes, we're finally here!" After the park closed at 10 we hopped back onto the monorail and went back to our hotel. When we got to our room we discovered an anniversary card (personalized) with a picture of the castle at night and fireworks, a Disneyworld book, and a miniature "Mickey Mouse 2000" snowglobe wrapped with ribbons on the table, how nice! We sure didn't expect that! We went down to the food court for drink refills in our mugs, and Mickey ice cream bars. Then went back up and enjoyed the beautiful view from our balcony! :D

WDW '73, '79, '98
WDW Contemporary 1/01
7-night Disney cruise 1/01
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snuggles
02-08-2001, 01:42 PM
What a wonderful way to celebrate your 25th anniversary! I'm so glad you got your connecting flight and made it to Disney w/o any problems. Looking forward to reading all about your trip.

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Marla Hellwig
02-19-2001, 11:07 AM
I know the view that you have. On last trip we were in 4446 almost under your room. I love sitting on the balcony in my jammies just gazing at the castle. Thanks for posting!

Belle1962
02-20-2001, 08:43 AM
Congrats on 25. Sounds like a great way to celebrate.