View Full Version : The Many Adventures of Chelley (Part 11 of 11)

11-26-2000, 09:42 PM
"There's no place like home, but do we really want to be there?"

Thursday, 23 November 2000

Our last day! BOO!!!!!

We were supposed to eat breakfast at Hollywood and Vine at MGM, but--being the wild and crazy person that I've become--I changed the plans AGAIN! Wow! Big deal for me!

We ate in the room, and I packed. I was a little concerned about how we were going to get everything crammed in suitcases, but I am an expert at cramming, so everything worked out fine! :)

We asked the bellman to store our luggage, and we headed over to Epcot. I had a feeling that the Thanksgiving Day crowd at MK might be horrible, but Epcot was not crowded at all while we were there. We were pleasantly surprised. We entered the International Gateway soon after 11:00 and just enjoyed one last stroll around the World Showcase Lagoon. We stopped and browsed here and there. We ate some popcorn at the American Adventure, and my daughter participated in the Thanksgiving crafts.

We strolled all the way around the lagoon, eventually making the full circle and visiting the Millennium Village one last time. Before we left the park, we ran into Jafar and Winnie the Pooh (what an ODD combination) near the International Gateway.

We had PS for 3:00 at Spoodles, so we headed toward the Epcot resorts. We stopped at the Beach Club and at the Yacht Club to admire the Christmas decorations before heading to the BoardWalk.

At Spoodles, we had a smoked duck, Camembert, and cranberry flatbread that was delicious. My husband and my daughter chose the traditional Thanksgiving meal of turkey, etc. I chose shrimp and scallops with a mushroom and goat cheese risotto and a cream sauce seasoned with leeks and sherry. I'm sure the pilgrims would have preferred my choice.

We headed back to the Swan, waited for the town car (which arrived on the dot), and headed to the airport. We discovered at check-in that our seats had been reassigned and that I was placed about ten rows ahead of my husband and child! He got to listen to her chatter for two hours. I read magazines!

Our flight from Orlando to Memphis was uneventful. We did have a new level of bad plane food: a sandwich of unidentifiable origin, a bag of Fritos, and an apple. (I kid you not.)

I knew that I was no longer in Fantasyland when I deplaned and ran into a maintenance worker at the airport. "Good evening," I said, "And happy Thanksgiving!" "What's so good about it?" he snapped. Then, I went into a restroom where a woman was digging through the trash.

Here's where things got really bad. When we arrived in Memphis around 7:40, we were surprised that none of the shops or restaurants were open.

When we arrived at our gate, we learned that our flight was overbooked. I was more than willing to accept the airline's offer to put us up for the night and to give us each $400 in travel vouchers. (Visions of future Disney trips dancing in my head!) However, my husband was in "going home mode" and refused to consider the offer.

Things got worse when we were told that our plane was not there, so our flight had been listed as "indefinite." I had a bad feeling that I was going to be spending the night in the Memphis airport!

As the evening dragged on, someone from the airline offered us "apology packets"--which included a 6-minute phone card and a $10 voucher for the Perkins restaurant, which, apparently was the only place open in the whole dang airport. Imagine my husband's surprise (and the other passengers who had been sent as the representatives from their families) when he learned that this place had no hot food and no meals of any sort! The following options were available: bags of potato chips, sodas, muffins, cookies, and pie.

The group at gate A-11 became a tight-knit family on this unusual Thanksgiving night! One man kept saying, "Hey! We need to eat some meat!" Another man (obviously a genius) chimed in with the following comments about pork: "Pork meat is some good eating. And nothin' goes to waste! You can even use the feet." It was late, and I was tired, but I wasn't so tired that I didn't wish 100 times that I had a tape recorder!

I do have great video footage of some brilliant repartee:
Me: "So, what did you have for Thanksgiving dinner?"
Passenger A: "A burger in the Detroit airport and a brick-like sandwich on the plane."
Passenger B: "Lays potato chips, cookies, and apple crumb cake in the Memphis airport."
And on and on!

We had quite an assortment of humanity in that gate area: two high school cheerleaders who had begun the day by participating in the Macy's parade and who were desperate to get home because they had to catch a bus at 8:00 A. M. to go to a playoff game, a family from Las Vegas trying to make it to Louisiana for Thanksgiving dinner, three different groups of people who had been to WDW.

We then learned that a plane had arrived, but we didn't have a crew. A pilot finally appeared on the scene--but refused to fly that "pitiful, broken plane", as he described it.

Meanwhile, the weather was getting worse and worse. I kept thinking that if God were sending us signs, surely we should recognize them!

We were finally allowed to board a plane after midnight (hours and hours behind schedule). The pilot warned us that we were in for a very rough flight, but we finally landed safely in Louisiana. We drove home from the airport and arrived around 3:00 A. M. Truly a Thanksgiving to remember!


Post-trip Comments

We had a great trip, but ten days might be too long. (Ack! Don't tell my husband I said that.)

We really didn't stress ourselves out by trying to do everything at the parks. We spent a lot of time relaxing at the parks and changing our itinerary to fit our moods.

I really enjoyed meeting some fellow DIS pals.

I'm going back in February--and I can't wait! Be warned: It will be a Chicken Girl birthday extravaganza!


11-27-2000, 05:17 AM
I enjoyed these a lot.

(Envisioning the effect of an ocean of lime green ribbons at MLA.)



11-27-2000, 05:39 AM
Really enjoyed your trip reports!! Maybe we will see you in Feb!! (we are going for x-mas weekend next) then we go for a longer trip in Feb, the May! THen we probably will not go again till sept!! Dont just love to plan these vacations??

11-27-2000, 05:41 AM
Dear Chelley, I feel so bad that your trip ended on such a sour note. Glad that you all made it safely home. Your trip reports have been so entertaining and informative, I wanted them to go on forever!! You really know how to tell a story. We are leaving in 11 days to go to the YC for 7 days & then on to a 2 brd at the VWL for 4 days. We are all so excited, DH, DS,DDIL,2DG'S and me the disneyest one of all!! I too have a big Passporter filled with all the stuff I had planned over the last few months(like we don't go to DW at least 2x a year) so you can say that I am a little obsessed also. I told everyone that we must go to Spoodles for breakfast and I have made quite a # of P.S. at different places. Did you go to Tubbies at the Dolphin? at all to eat just wondering how it was there? Our big problem is whether or not to rent a car, as we usually take a car service to DW. In May of this year we only paid $45. one way for the six of us. I can get the rental pretty reasonable at member services at the DVC as we are members but its getting too close to the departure date so I have to decide rather quickly. Any sugesstions? Anyway glad you had a great time and thanks for your wonderful reports, they were helpful and entaining at the same time. See you in the world sometime I hope!! Marianne :cool: :) :cool: ;)

11-27-2000, 06:03 AM
Emmalyn, I think that lime green ribbons would liven up the MLA a great deal!

Tnkrbell, we're going in February and in July (and that's as far in advance as I'm capable of planning!).

Marianne, I know that a town car service is convenient, and we used Tiffany Town Car several times with no problems. However, I must admit that I'm seriously considering renting a car next time--just to be able to go where I want WHEN I want, and not when Disney transportation is running.


11-27-2000, 06:09 AM
Fabulous job on the trip reports. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them. I like your writing style. Sounds like you had a wonderful vacation.

You brought back some memories of our trip. We also rented a surrey bike. We had four adults and three children on one bike. The hills were murder. I think we almost ran over a few people. It was great fun. :D

11-27-2000, 06:48 AM
Thanks for the great trip report. I am reading it at work, so my comments have to be short.

What floor were your room at the Swan?
Were they in the main building or a wing?

Any dreams of going next Dec. maybe from Dec 6 to the 17?

My twins would just get along great with Chicken girl. I have WHiny girl and bratty girl! They are actually quite good, but evey once in a while!!!!!!

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<font color=green>Next visit Dec. 2001 to the Swan</font>

11-27-2000, 06:55 AM
Thanks, ejigs! I appreciate your compliments.

Glo, our first room at the Swan was in a wing; we were on the seventh floor in the corner under one of the giant shells. Our second room was in the main building, on the ninth floor, also a corner room. Don't I wish I could go next December! Alas, I'm afraid I'll be expected to be teaching during those dates.


11-27-2000, 08:17 AM
Great reports!

What did your daughter think of the pirate cruise? I just discovered it and made the mistake of reading the description to my son...who has been a pirate for halloween for 2 years running. Was it worth the time and money?

11-27-2000, 08:19 AM
She loved the Pirates' Cruise and has mentioned it OFTEN. She came back with a bag full of "treasure."


11-27-2000, 11:22 AM
Another fully satisfying trip report feast. Yum. Thanks so much for all your work in preparing the holiday meal. Looking forward to the February one!

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1985 - WDW off-site condo/suite
1990 - Tokyo Disneyland
1995 - WDW; Marriott World Center
2000 - WDW; Holiday Inn Family Suites

11-27-2000, 04:23 PM
Thank you!

February is a girls-only trip! My husband is staying at home--much to his delight and relief!

However, since my friend and her daughter will be traveling with us, we might actually have Chicken Girl #1 (the original) and Chicken Girl #2! YIKES!


11-27-2000, 06:10 PM
Chelley - I've really enjoyed reading each and every one of your 11 trip reports. I'm glad to hear that someone else admits to less than perfect behaviour in her offspring, even at WDW. I had to laugh because on occasion we sound just like that family that sat in front of you at Fantasmic. Sometimes playing "trivia" with 7yo DS, with thorough coverage of astronomy and natural sciences, is the only way to keep the moaning, whining, and fidgeting at bay when there's a long wait. Some people think we're forcing him to acquire vast amounts of more or less usless knowledge, but it's his idea, I promise.

Looking forward to your February report!


Tiger Fan
11-27-2000, 07:55 PM
Chelley - loved your reports - thanks for posting. As I've stated before your little "chicken girl" sounds an awful lot like my darling 3 year old daughter, I especially enjoy hearing about her antics. Thanks for sharing.



11-28-2000, 05:39 AM
My family really enjoyed your trip reports, we laughed so hard especially about the one where your mild mannered DH wanted to do that cartwheel thing to Chicken girl. I can so relate! My DS is now 16 but he is a Disney vetern, been there 20 times and going 3 times in 2001. We have felt that way sometimes too when he was young! We are leaving for 2 weeks in 16 more days with 17 of our family and friends! We will be staying at CSR. My DH even enjoyed your reports! My DH and I are going by ourselves in Feb. The 8th through the 14th. We will be at the BC. When will you be there? We would love to meet some fellow DIS'ERs. We are going to a meeting in Dec. to meet some people from these boards. Counting the days down until our trip!

11-28-2000, 06:30 AM
It appears that Chicken Girl is not alone!

I'm also glad to learn that my family is not the only one at WDW having "moments to remember"!

We're going back the last week of February.


11-28-2000, 10:48 AM
Wow Chelley, what a report! I laughed, I cried, I ate my lunch...hehehehe

You can spin quite a tale. Your posts were a scream and it's frightening how similar you and your husband are to myself and mine. Very funny indeed - thanks so much for sharing; I'm completely pumped up for our trip now.

Maybe we'll see you around the world in Feb!

11-28-2000, 11:40 AM
Thanks! Counting the days till February.


11-28-2000, 01:57 PM
Hi Chelley,
I have really enjoyed reading your reports. It
sounds like you had a great time. Thanks for
taking the time to post.


11-28-2000, 02:34 PM
What a memorable Thanksgiving. :eek:

Thanks for sharing your tale with us.

Lisa :)

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11-28-2000, 09:29 PM
I'm laughing so hard! H just called up to find out what the problem was.

Then he realized I was on the DIS!

Neither of us should be up this late. He's getting ready to do a prenentation that someone else was suppose to do while we were in WDW and he is not happy.

Tomorrow is my NH day in RI, but I thought I'd sort of stay up just in case I could help him.

Anyhow, I'm just picturing you and family in the Memphis Airport. You with video in tow! Then wasn't it the prop jet back to your area?

Way too funny - not really though. I'd have the heebee jeebies!

Well I need to go round up someone and get to bed - but thanks for that last laugh.

11-29-2000, 02:23 AM
Thanks for the great reports.

Sorry to hear of your delays on your return flight. I hate sitting in airports waiting, they are so boring. We once sat in Miami for 16 hours waiting for our flight home.

Mamu http://www.wdwinfo.com/sites/family/wavey.GIF

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11-29-2000, 01:47 PM
Thank you for taking the time to write such enjoyable trip reports. It is a pleasure to read reports that are so well written. Susan

11-29-2000, 03:26 PM
dt, I hope I didn't get you in trouble!

Thanks, mamu and Susan! I LOVE to talk, so the Trip Reports board is a good place for me.


11-29-2000, 05:25 PM
I am leaving for the SWan in 13 DAYS!!! I haven't been on the boards for about a week and it was so great to come back to your report. I can hardly wait to go. I haven't been to WDW for about 6 years, my DH has never been there and it's our anniversary. Thanks for helping to keep me excited and amused. :)

85 off site
86 Howard Johnson- marketplace
87 Lake Buena Vista
88 Poly
89 CBR
90 CBR
91 CBR
91 CBR
92 CBR
93 BC
94 BC
DEC. 2000 SWAN!!!!!!

11-29-2000, 05:44 PM
Chelley...your reports are great! And did you just have to say to your husband just once..see we could have had our airfare for next time! He sounds like my DH!!! Going in May by chance? Thanks again!

11-29-2000, 06:54 PM
Heck, I mentioned it SEVERAL times!

Going in February, going in July, wishing for May!


11-30-2000, 01:29 PM
I have been reading these boards for about a month and I just have to say that you write the absolute best trip reports I have ever seen! They are so funny and well expressed. Thank you so much for sharing and building to my excitement for our trip in Feb!

11-30-2000, 08:56 PM
Hi Chelley: I really enjoyed reading your trip reports. You were there the same time as me and my DH, but we left for home on the Tuesday, Nov 21. I wish now that we'd gone back to see the decorations at the WL. We did our resort touring on the afternoon of our arrival--Tues. Nov. 14. The tree at the Grand Floridian was gorgeous though. I did go back there and listened to the pianist and the jazz band while sipping a Strawberry Dacquiri in the lobby. It sure was cold on the Monday, wasn't it! We wore shorts to MGM(thinking it would warm up) and just about froze--should have gone back to our room at DXL and got warmer clothes. I've still got to write my trip report, but reading yours has reminded me of things I might have otherwise forgotten. Great job! :)



off-site '86,'87
DXL July 00
DXL November 00
DXL 200?

11-30-2000, 09:05 PM
Thank you, lulubelle! Warning: Chicken Girl and I will be back in February. Beware! Ha ha!

TimNDansMom, yes it was cold Thanksgiving week. On the Tuesday before T'giving, when the Chelley and SwanDolphin families went to Epcot, it was REALLY cold. I wore a wool coat! The SwanDolphin family had gloves and hats--better prepared than my family!

12-02-2000, 08:25 PM
Just realized that this topic has "flames" beside it! Didn't realize that it was "hot"! Too funny. :)

01-17-2001, 10:33 AM
Enjoyed reading all your reports!

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02-10-2001, 09:52 PM
I just finished reading your trip reports. I have truly enjoyed them. You are so funny.
I'll have to search back now to read some of your other trip reports.

Hope you have another wonderful trip this month!


02-11-2001, 12:02 PM
I appreciate your note. I'm a "Jeremy's aunt", by the way! :)

Just popped over to the trip reports board and was shocked to find this thread on page one. Thought it was long forgotten by now!

I'm getting so excited because I'll be back an WDW in two weeks. HOORAY!

Counting the days now . . .

02-11-2001, 12:06 PM
My family went out to dinner last night in a town about 30 miles away from where we live.

You will NEVER guess who we saw in the restaurant! Give up?

We saw some people who were stuck at the Memphis airport with us for hours and hours on Thanksgiving--when we were trying to get home from WDW. It was like a family reunion or something as that family and my family reminisced last night! Hahaha! We kept saying, "Who could ever forget spending Thanksgiving in the Memphis airport?" :)

Marla Hellwig
02-22-2001, 05:48 AM
I would rather be sitting in an airport trying to get home rather than getting to WDW. A fun filled Disney trip was had by all. Thanks for posting!