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LockShockBarrel 09-17-2012 12:08 AM

How Do I Flush This? Squared! *update 1-5*
Well howdy there folks. I'm 3 days removed from the world *le sigh* and figured I could work a little more magic out by starting my trip report.

Let's start at the very beginning, as Ms Andrews says it's a very good place to start. This is trip #11 for me, but my very first solo! It came about out of nowhere really. I kept seeing commercials for free dining but said "No, you can't afford 5 nights, 6 days" or whatever they said it was. Then lo and behold, the April Mousesavers newsletter arrives in my email saying I could stay less than the TV told me. The TV lies! So off to the Disney website I scampered, and started putting in dates to see what I could come up with. Now before anyone brings it up, I know free dining isn't really free with the rack rates and all that jazz. I'm sure had I felt like really putting a lot of effort into it I could have found a room only discount or even gone through a friend of mine and rented DVC points from her. The thing is I ended up booking this trip literally 45 minutes after I got the idea. Basically it was a right time, right place situation.

So suddenly I found myself booked for 3 nights at Pop (my 3rd time staying here) with park hoppers and upgraded into the Basic Dining Plan. I booked for one person figuring I'd find someone else willing to tag along and I'd just add them at a later point. Well...time was going by and no one was interested/could afford/thought they could tolerate me talking about Disney for the next 5 months. Then I realized I could go alone, and why not? I could get things done faster, do what I wanted when I wanted, and anyone else be darned! Honestly I was a bit apprehensive at first. Would I be bored, would I be lonely? Could I really still feel the magic without sharing it with anyone else? The Adults and Solos board helped me out there, I had no idea so many people did solo trips. Here I was thinking I'd be that weird chick in lines alone.

I had my original dining plans made 4 hours after I booked the trip and quickly learned the perverse joys of changing my reservations. After doing a little math and realizing to do what I really wanted I'd be left paying OOP for some meals, I decided to go whole hog and upgraded again into Deluxe dining! (Value hotel + Deluxe dining= you can obviously see where my priorites are!) I'll be doing a separate dining report which I'll link into this.

So onto the good stuff. After a bit of research and realizing that I'd be in the world for the first MNSSHP (EEE!!) My plans evolved into this:
Sept 10th-
Flight from Buffalo 8am, landing in MCO at 10:31.
Lunch at Paradiso 37, then shopping in DTD
Onto HS because they had EMH, and 50's Prime Time for dinner.

Sept 11th-
Breakfast at Captains Grill at the Yacht Club
Animal Kingdom in the late morning/afternoon
Onto Magic Kingdom, lunch at Casey's Corner, then meander til dinner at Narcoossee's at Grand Floridian then on MNSSHP

Sept 12th-
Breakfast at Grand Floridian Cafe, then Epcot for the whole day! Lunch was TBD, then Coral Reef for dinner.

Sept 13th-
Breakfast at Whispering Canyon Cafe, then one final trip to Magic Kingdom

So my friends, sit back, relax, and ponder what on earth the title of this trip could mean. I'll be back with more soon.

jabead 09-18-2012 11:45 PM

I'm here! popcorn::

LockShockBarrel 09-19-2012 10:27 AM

Well I got one! Anyone else want to tag along?

Yelloweaver 09-19-2012 01:29 PM

I'll tag along :)

LockShockBarrel 09-20-2012 12:39 AM

Are we there yet?!?!?!?!? and how I whined like a 4 year old
[SIZE="3"][COLOR="purple"]So for my whopping 2 followers I guess I should continue my story, eh?

We hop skip and jump to the morning of my flight! The morning was fairly uneventful at home, things felt like they were going too smoothly. Most of the packing had been done the night before and I have to say I love the suitcase I got from Target! Best 68 bucks I ever spent! It's colossal and peacock blue. I thought I might be pushing it with everything I wanted to put in but really I could gotten at least another 7 days worth of stuff in it, and I was overpacking as it was. I did manage to forget screenwipes for my Nook, an extra set of contacts and my eyeshadow primer (tragic right?)

Off to Buffalo airport I went. Our airport is essentially idiot proof, its shaped like a very lazy V, where the arms of it were just too tired to stay standing. I was assigned to gate 14 but I hadn't even been there 5 minutes when someone said we were moved to Gate 22. I puttered down there with everyone else and looking around I thought "Man this flight is going to be pretty empty! Maybe I'll get 2 seats to myself!!' Well it turns out the rest of my flightmates were hanging out back at the other gate. This was my first time flying Airtran, and I'd say they're my new favorite airline if it wasn't for the baggage fees and seat choosing fees. It could be my imagination but I felt like the seats were bigger or at least the seatbelts were longer, compared to my usual choice of Southwest. People got settled pretty quickly and we took off on time (8 am)For the amount of children on the flight, I was very impressed that no one had a major freakout. I heard a little fussing with the air pressure changes but no one screamed, no one begged Mommy for anything.. Maybe that's the new norm but it was great compared to other flights I've had with a lot of kids.

Lo and behold we landed like 20 minutes early. By this point I'm nearly bouncing my seat, mentally willing everyone to beat it off the plane so I could get going! I had stuff to do darn it and these people were blocking me! This time I had opted to grab my own baggage and hoofed it to the baggage claim.

Backstory: My last trip we had a ton of turbulence and I learned the hard way that the back row of the plane sucks. My breakfast decided to make a special one time only encore and Southwest had somehow forgotten the goodie bags in the backs of the seats. So here I am, holding my breakfast in my hand while out of the corner of my eye another passenger is waving a bag at me. It was a little too late at that point but I appreciate the thought. My shirt and pants were a bit worse for wear and since my carryon was already full I hadn't brought a chance of clothes. Here I was thinking I could get back to the resort and it wouldn't be long before I got my bag, right? Wrong. It didn't get to the room til something like 5 or 6 hours after and by that point I felt disgusting. This time I wasn't leaving it to chance, plus I had motion sickness pills with me :upsidedow

A family who had ridden fancy people class were standing next to me at baggage claim and apparently were deeply offended that a plebeian's luggage came out on the belt first so the mom had the nerve to call my awesome suitcase ugly, because you know...that was going to make her stuff come faster. :dance3: Does anyone else feel like they always end up 8 miles from the Magical Express counters? Because that seems to happen to me every time. On and on and on...just keep swimming, just keep swimming. Finally I got to the desks. My line (Pop Century) was shared with Art of Animation and Caribbean Beach according to the signs on the cattle gates. I think we only waited 10 minutes or so for the bus to show up and everyone loaded quickly. I ended up sitting next to another Disboarder! (My first Dis meet ever!) Unfortunately I can't remember what their username was, the wife I took it was the primary poster. They were traveling with their young son and I believe mother, also staying at Pop. The wife had food allergies and had planned on writing a report how that all went with dining so if this is you, it was great meeting you!

Our first stop was Art of Animation. I have to say it looks pretty awesome from the outside! I had hoped to talk a walk over and see what it was like but as you'll find out that didn't end up happening. It's very colorful and festive, definitely something kids will dig. This was where I was whining to myself that I had an ADR to get to and why couldn't Pop have been first. My inner self had turned into a 4 year old. Luckily it was pretty short lived as we made the all of 4 minute drive to Pop! It was something around noon at this point

Out of the values, Pop has the most appeal to me. I like the theme even though some people say compared to the other resorts its too in your face. I have to say my last trip I stayed at OKW and I find them both appealing in different ways. When I announced this little jaunt to my friend whose a DVC member she asked why I didn't rent points from her again. It just didn't make sense this trip since I was really only using the room as a place to sleep shower and change, basically home base. Had I stayed any longer I would have definitely been back at OKW, I love how laid back it is. Still though, I can relax at Pop no problem.

There was a bit of a line for check in, but I was right behind my new friend from the bus so it went by quickly. We both lamented how we didn't use online check in but it wasn't a huge travesty and we didn't wait more than 10-15 minutes to get to the desk. The CM who checked me in was very friendly, a trend that would continue through my trip. I hadn't requested anything when I made the reservation, but she asked if there was something specific I wanted as far as my room. The only thing I really wanted was ground floor. I'm not really sure why but it's a preference of mine. What I should have requested was a bit closer to the main building. I ended up in 50's building, room 2121 (easy to remember though!) My room was ready so off I went...and went...and went. I felt like I should have trained for a 5k or something beforehand! What a walk that was. And every time I returned to the room, I felt like Forrest Gump crossing the country over and over. The morning walk to the bus never felt as bad as the walk back.

I glanced at the clock when I got into the room, and saw it was 12:15 and here I was with a 12:55 ADR as Paradiso 37 so I had to get going! I threw my suitcase on the bed and ripped (Ok carefully unzipped..) it open and basically was in the room long enough to roll up my pant legs, throw on a different shirt and take some of the junk out of my carry on which would be acting as my park bag and I was off. I made it back to the bus stop at 12:37. I knew because I had this nifty carabener watch my mom found at the dollar store. It was perfect because if it got beat up a bit it wasn't a huge deal and I wouldn't have to constantly take out my phone to check the time. Yeah I could have gotten a big girl watch but who wants the tan lines! The bus came for DTD not 5 minutes later and I was off.

Paradiso 37, where vanilla is a seasonal flavor -

Next: You call these Corndogs!?

LockShockBarrel 09-25-2012 04:37 PM

You call these Corndogs?! and my short jaunt through DTD
I guess I'll keep going. But really guys, there's like 300 some odd views on this and no one can show a little more interest (save for my 2 followers?) Am I really that boring?

Well anyway, like I said in the beginning, I'll be doing seperate dining reports and linking them into this so to really hear the details about my experience at Paradiso 37 you'll have to stay tuned. For the quick evaluation I'll say that I was very excited about trying it, but it was short lived. I can see this much more as an afterwork hang out place or "let's just grab a few drinks" type of thing but I wouldn't ever make a reservation here again. Not horrible, but there's definitely better things out there. I linked in the previous post but here it is again for anyone that missed it.

ASIDE: You'll notice these pop up here and there, with just basic observations that aren't really part of my report so much as things I just happened to think. At lunch I saw 2 fashion fauxpas I just can't help but share them with you and plead that you don't repeat them. A woman came into Paradiso 37 with what I assume is her boyfriend. He was current looking, she looked like she'd beamed straight out of 1987. Tight black dress but not expensive looking, large gold costume jewelry, and the hair...oh the hair. I can't tell if she used rollers or a curling iron but it was curled then teased to an inch of its life, then the top layer was combed straight and acted like a cage over the curls. The whole thing had so much hairspray on it that it never moved. This whole thing was topped off with a thin gold headband right at the front of her head with the say first inch of the cage pushed flat which only served to make the whole cage effect weirder. There was no way this woman was more than 35 years old. I was looking around for the time machine because I just couldn't figure it out. The second thing which I've seen several times before was just as jarring but in a different way. A girl probably my age (26) was very tan, but then her face was so caked with bronzer that it was metallic and 4 shades darker than the rest of her body. I have no problem with light bronzer but good lord it's not meant to be a foundation! You shouldn't reflect like with your whole face! Oy!

After lunch I had some shopping to accomplish. My original plan was to start at the Marketplace, then have lunch, then take the boat from Pleasure Island to a hotel then grab a bus. It didn't happen with running late from Pop. So instead after lunch I just meandered down to the start of Marketplace and boomeranged back to PI.

My list from folks at home were a Mike Wazowski mug, and golfballs. If the balls couldn't be found, then Tahitian vanilla soap from Basin. I also had to get a Mickey head rice krispie with chocolate ears. The mug was very easily found, I ended up seeing it like 20 times over the course of this trip but I figured I should get it out of the way first since I didn't want to carry it around, lest something happen to it. I actually purchased it in the little store with all the kitchen stuff but I've never noticed what this place is actually called. I know it has dried spices and whatnot and that's about the best description I can give you! The CM who cashed me out was super nice, and after I said the mug had to make it back to NY that she'd pack it up nice and snug in a box for me then send it on to Pop for me. After that I poked around the christmas store then Trend-D. I think I found my new favorite store in this place. SO MUCH CUTE STUFF!! Man if I had not been budget conscious, it could have been bad. I also have learned to keep in mind that I rarely wear anything that screams Disney at home, at least as far as Tshirts and whatnot go. I ended up with a really nifty pair of earrings of which I shall post a pic later (photobucket is being snarky)

Since that store flows right into Team Mickey, I figured I'd grab the balls :rotfl2: there. In the past I've always gotten a sleeve of 3 golfballs, with characters printed on them. This time all I saw was tubs with these balls in them, like an a la carte thing. The only sleeve I found was one of 3 but they only had the Disney "D" on them. So I figured "Oh there's tons of these things here! I'm sure I can find them elsewhere!" :rolleyes1 And off I went.

Next on my list was Basin, and I have to say I really like the remodel. It's not drastically different but the new central sink is lovely. I was on a mission here and had planned on stocking up on the glycerin soaps which are my new found love. I knew I wanted another Pirate one (caramel vanilla) and thought I'd end up with 3 or 4 others. Somehow I'd forgotten quite how expensive that place is. Maybe because my typical purchase is usually bathbombs. I love those blasted things but my tub at home is too small to really use them, hence I have a small collection of them from my past 3 trips. I was sorely tempted by the new minibombs though. They're about the size of a medium gumball, like what you'd get out of a vending machine. Someone said, or it could have been a sign, they were great for footbaths! Then I thought, "Alyssa, calm have 6 giant ones at home that are going to waste. Just crack those up and you don't have to spend new money on these little ones!" but there's always a part of me that is like "NEW...SHINY..WANT" I managed to resist and instead got 2 soaps, my Pirate love and one called Ocean Mist (mostly clear with a starfish in the middle, and it's not a rectangle like the others, flat bottom with a rounded top) I saw the Tahitian vanilla but thought "OH well I'm getting the golfballs that I'm SURE I'll find elsewhere, I don't need to get this!" Again :rolleyes1.

I continued on my way into the giant Disney store and puttered around there but I just couldn't bring myself to pay what they want for things. The older I get the more I find myself drawn to practical things vs my old typical souveniors like plushies or things that just look pretty. I mean sure those Halloween Minnie ear headbands with the sequins were adorable but I just don't them at home. Ugh, growing up sucks. So empty handed I made my way past the lego store and took pictures of the new sculptures (will add later) and then back to Pleasure Island to catch the boat.

On my way I popped into the Irish store by Raglan Road, thinking maybe I could find something small for a friend's new baby. What a racket that place is! $24 for a onesie? Are you kidding me? Needless to say I didn't spend much time there and just continued on my way to the dock. When I got there one of the CMs that stays at the dock (are they captains? I'm not sure) asked where I was going and gave me quite the funny look when I said I didn't care. He couldn't understand why I didn't want to take a bus to a hotel then another bus to Hollywood Studios. I just like taking the boats, which would becoming an ongoing theme for me this trip. In the meantime I chatted with the 2 ladies behind me, who were seemingly surprised and impressed I would take a solo trip. Soon after the first boat that came was for OKW which was fine with me. I was a little sad to go back there though, as it was where I stayed my last trip. Once I saw it from the boat I had major "homesickness" for it. I was sorely tempted to walk around for a bit but Hollywood Studios was calling my name! Since it was the closest I went to the Hospitality House bus stop and waited no more than 10 minutes for a bus to HS. Finally I'd get to be in a real park!!

Next: 60 minutes? I believe you mean 7.

LockShockBarrel 10-07-2012 09:46 PM

60 minutes? I believe you mean 7
So I was finally at a Disney Park. Usually I don't feel "home" until I hit Epcot, and it's typically my first park choice. This trip it just didn't make sense with how my days were flowing and EMH to do Epcot first. I've never made HS my first park before and while of course it still has the Disney feeling, I wouldn't recommend it for a first timer's first day.

I got through bag check and the turnstiles quickly. I have to ask, does anyone else feel like it always looks busier at the turnstiles than it really is? Somewhere in my little brain I know it's just because it's the first crowd you hit and it's basically a bottleneck but I always have this little flash of panic when I hit them. Once past them though, that park was EMPTY!! It was fabulous!! I knew that FPs for Toy Story Mania would likely be gone and there was no way I was leaving that park without riding so I figured I'd suffer through the standby line and what would be would be.

Hurriedly and a bit afraid of what I'd find I hotfooted it to TSM and was correct that all the FPs were gone for the day, but the posted wait time of 60 minutes seemed doable so I hopped right in it. Then I walked...and walked...and walked...I didn't actually hit the end of the line til just before the 3d glasses pick up! I had this little plastic carabiner watch so I glanced at it when I got in the line, then again when I boarded the ride. The grand total? 7 minutes! At 4:30 ish in the afternoon!! :faint: They weren't even pulling out singles, the line was that short! Frankly I was dumbfounded. I have no idea if it had been down earlier in the day and therefore the queue was empty or quite what was going on but I didn't mind! I rode alone and managed to score a Beaver (I have no idea what the actually equates to number wise) After I got off TSM I turned around to see what the posted wait was and it had 25 minutes up, so I of course went right back in! I didn't even turn in my glasses because, hey, I don't like to be wasteful. This wait was slightly more accurate, I ended up waiting 15 minutes and was pulled into the magical right hand line. But really, 2 rides on one of the 2 hardest rides to get on in under an hour. ::yes:: It's true. I couldn't believe it.

There was a light rain when I got out the second time, and I just meandered down to One Man's Dream. I really think this should be required viewing for all Disney guests. It's so well done and to listen to parts of Walt's story in his own words, it's amazing. I'm not a super sentimental person, really only about certain things...but for the time in history that Walt came up with everything he did, how can you not be inspired by that?

The rain, if you could really call it that, had stopped by the time I got out and I grabbed a pop while I decided what to do next. I figured it was silly to cross the park more than I had to, and knowing the things I wanted to do were on the extreme ends of the park, I figured I could save Tower of Terror and RocknRoller Coaster for the EMH. Since I was right in front of it, I went on the requisite Great Movie Ride. I really think this ride depends on your guide because sometimes its pretty good but when it's bad it's awful. The guide for my ride kept taking these odd William Shatner like pauses in her spiel. It was like...

"Here's a great film. Casa...blanca." "Oh its....a little creepy in here.'' "The Great....Wizard of....Oz." It was very jarring to listen to. I stiill haven't managed to get the cowboy scene (Someday....) but while going through the gangster scene I did see a hidden Mickey I'd never noticed before. It was this guy I don't usually make it a point to look for HMs so this was a neat find while just looking around. Our gangster was a young girl and while I appreciate the whole thing is cheesy and ridiculous, I really wish they didn't do such a horrible gangster accent. I could barely understand her. Hurt came out "Hoit". It's not something the ruins the ride necessarily but it seems like no one even bothers paying attention to what's going on with it. I don't know it's out of sheer boredom or if people can't understand what's being said so they just tune out.

With GMR out of the way I walked over to Star Tours. It was down for refurb the last time I was there so this was the first time I got to see the new films. Well technically "film" as I only rode it once. I don't recall what the wait time was (I didn't write it down) but I didn't wait more than 10 minutes. We got to visit the Wookie planet. The effects are really nice but the ride seemed a little rougher than I remembered and I just wasn't up for doing it again.

After that it was time to play the music, the time to light the lights. It was time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet show tonight, do do do do. I don't care how old that show gets, I still love it. I got there pretty early so I waited 10 or so minutes to get into the theater. In the mean time there was a family with 2 little girls right behind me so I figured maybe I could start giving out some glow bracelets. I had read so many times how people got the tubes of glow bracelets cheap (I got mine at Target. $1- 15 bracelets) and how they'd give them out during waits or at parades to nice kids and how great it was. I asked these girls (with parental approval) their favorite muppets. I heard "PIGGY!!!" from the older sister and the little one looked around a bit and finally points to the tvs and goes "That one" Apparently Sam Eagle has a lot of clout with the 4 year old set. :joker: I let them pick their colors and the mom kept them for later when it got darker. Both girls thanked me without being told which I love (good job Mom and Dad!) and the mom goes "I'm really surprised, the little one is usually super shy. I can't believe she talked to you right away!" That was nice to hear.

By this point it was around 7 and I had a 8:10 ADR at 50's Prime Time. Not knowing what was going on around the park with wait times, I decided to catch up on my journaling and sat right by Echo Lake. The finalists for AI were performing and I could hear it from where I was so it ended up being a nice little break. It gave me time to go through receipts and just chill as it had already been a long day and I wasn't anywhere near done yet. I decided to head to 50's PT and check in anyway and sit in the lounge and people watch if necessary. Maybe 10 minutes after I had come end I was seated (7:45pm) Now it was time to see what kind of antics I was in for!

Next up: No Toys at the Table!! and What's a cheesemonger?

pattyw 10-07-2012 11:09 PM

Hey neighbor- looking forward to your TR! I would've went with you!!:lmao: I have considered a solo trip- but I think my family might disown me !! It must be so peaceful!:)

LockShockBarrel 10-08-2012 12:51 AM

It was pretty peaceful. September might be my new favorite time to go because if I waited more than 15-20 minutes for anything I was getting mad. It spoils you lol. A lot of people were boggled that I went alone but then were like "then again, of all people you'll probably like it"

BelleLulu 10-09-2012 06:58 PM

I'm subbing as a new DISer, just because I like your sense of humor! :cool1:

BelleLulu 10-09-2012 07:08 PM

"I'm SURE I'll find elsewhere, I don't need to get this!" Again."

Why do I get the feeling that this is going to come in to play again later! LOL

LockShockBarrel 10-10-2012 02:11 PM

Haha I do have a bit of a twisted sense of humor sometimes. Sarcasm and smarty pants (I usually use another term here but I can't on this boards) are languages I'm fluent in.

ladybug0506 10-10-2012 03:06 PM

I'm really enjoying your TR so far - can't wait to read more! I too am a huge fan of the Muppets 3D. We'll be there in Dec and I'm hoping my DS will love it as well :)

LockShockBarrel 10-10-2012 03:13 PM

HS EHM and the night I outstared a Tower of Terror CM
For No toys at the table! and What's a cheese monger, here's the link

After dinner I knew I had to get over towards the big ticket thrill a minute please don't puke on me rides. My stomach however said "yeah no, we're not riding those yet. You don't want to be "that person" do you? I didn't think so."

So instead I walked past Voyage of the Little Mermaid and saw a 5 minute wait and figured why not? I don't know why I bother though, the only scene I like is the Under the Sea number with all the glowy puppets. The rest is disjointed and outdated and I always get a bit annoyed with Ariel putting her own spin on her songs. I don't want to hear their interpretation of the song, I want to hear what I heard in the movie and every time I see that show little miss sassy fins decides to put in weird pauses or something and I find it really distracting. Sure it's a minor issue and for all I know they're told do it but it just grinds my gears. I figured it would be a good way to pass a little time and relax so in I went. The park was pretty empty at this point and there was only 2 other families waiting for the show when I got there. It slowly filled up so we actually waited about 15 minutes for the show to start. By this point it was 9:45 and I was curious to see if after the show there'd be more or less people in the park. The show was pretty much what I expected and Ariel didn't fail me. This particular one would take long pauses in her singing then say the rest of the line quickly to catch up with the music. She kind of reminded me of the guide I had during GMR!

After my journey under the outdated sea I went over to the "good" end of the park. Can I just say whoever came up with the layout of HS should be smacked upside the head. It makes no sense whatsoever!! Why didn't they look at the setup of MK and Epcot and go "Hm, this works!!" You don't fix what isn't broken (Figment anyone?) Now the great debate, RnRC or Tot! Paper or plastic? Cash or charge? Red pill or blue pill? I saw RnRC had a 30 minute wait and said "Oh people are probably still in line from regular park hours, let's see what ToT has up." For years I've heard that Tot will never have a wait under 13 minutes. Well that's a dirty dirty lie, the wait was posted at 10 minutes.

I wasn't really looking at the time at this point but I know it wasn't even ten minutes to get to the boarding area. The CM in my area was really trying to play it up, creepily standing behind people until they noticed and staring people down. Little did he know I routinely stare my kitten down (she thinks she's the boss and I'm trying to teach her that's not the case. She's very good at staring contests) He stared and slowly walked towards me, I stared right back and once he got close I popped my eyebrows like Groucho Marx and smirked at him. As he turned around he was biting his lip trying not to smile. I WIN!! MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! I mean...I win. :cheer2: The couple I sat next to and I chatted a little and we were trying to figure out if they ramp things up at night or for EMH, or maybe we just got a good cycle because we had a ton of drops and looked out the window 3 or 4 times. It was AWESOMEEEE! After disboarding I saw the wait was still 10 minutes so I decided another ride was absolutely in order. Again it was walk on. This time however, the most entertaining part of the ride (aside from a ton of great drops) was the guy in front of me. He was with his 2 little girls and the whole ride "up" he was "Oh god....oh god....oh lord...." Once the drops started, "OH GOD!!! OH LORDD!!! NO NO NO AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH GODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH" The whole elevator was laughing. This man was so fantastically dramatic you just couldn't help but get a kick out of it. Frankly I was behind him and had a really hard time resisting the urge to grab his shoulders on the way up because I think he would have lost it.

After ToT, the only logical thing to do next was RnRC. This was the longest wait I had all day. It had 45 minutes posted and waited about 30. I have a hard time with this ride now, I'm not sure if it was because I was in the back but my poor ears bounced so much off the shoulder harness it was brutal. This is one of those rides that I don't understand why people feel the need to stand right up by the "recording studio". I easily made it right up by the door and was the first person into the loading area. I didn't push or step on any toes to do it because I've seen people consider this cutting, but if I have a clear path to the door, I'm going to take it you know?

It was getting late and this day was just so long on so little sleep I knew I wouldn't make it til the end of EMH. On a whim I decided to slowly make my way back to TSM just to see what the line was like. They had 50 posted and on my earlier experiences I figured it wouldn't be too bad. The real wait ended up being about 20 minutes and I was pulled into the magical right hand line again. 3 rides on TSM in a day? I consider that a huge success and I figured it would be a good idea to end my day there.

Luckily there wasn't much of a line to get back to Pop and I made it back to the room by just after midnight. I took a shower and unpacked a little and I think I was asleep by 1:30 at the latest. What a day!

Next up- Breakfast lovey? and That's some fancy french toast.

LockShockBarrel 11-03-2012 12:50 AM

Breakfast Lovey? and how I learned to blend in
Since I haven't received any requests to continue this, I wasn't really in a big hurry to update (I know, I sound so boohoo right?) But for the sake of finishing something through, here I am.

Where were we? Oh yes.. Even though at this point I was running on about 2 hours sleep in 36 hours, you'd think I would have slept like a rock. No so. I didn't sleep badly but I did wake up briefly at two points in the night which is unusual for me. I had the alarm set for 8 and woke right up for it. I had one of those great days that those of us with curly hair treasure, waking up and having your hair NOT look awful! I decided to go with it and was out of the room by 8:30am. I asked about a cab at the concierge desk and was directed outside (I usually order a cab the night before but since I got back so late I figured they wouldn't have anyone to call). There was a cab waiting and then I was off to the Yacht Club for breakfast at Captains Grille.

Here's the link to the dining review!

For reference, the cab ride only cost $10.20 without tip. I don't think I ever realized quite how close the Epcot resorts were to Pop.

I'd been in the Beach Club on the last trip and I think it's beautiful, but now that I've been in both Yacht and Beach I definitely prefer Beach as far as looks. Being greeted by the Bell Captain is nice and all but I kept looking around thinking I'd see Thurston Howell and hear him say "Breakfast Lovey?" There was virtually no one in the lobby and I found the restaurant easily.

After breakfast I sat in the lobby for a few minutes and called home. I find the lobbies in the nicer hotels definitely have a different vibe to them, you don't feel odd just hanging out there. I've never felt that way at Pop though, it's just too hectic. After my phone call I took a bus to Animal Kingdom!

Animal Kingdom can be pretty mixed for me. Depending where I am I feel great, surrounded by themeing and I don't notice the crowds. Other times it just feel so hot and crowded and ridiculous that I lose interest. On this day (the 11th) it didn't seem too crowded. I immediately made my way back to Kilimanjaro Safari, knowing it was still fairly early in the day and I didn't want the line to build up anymore than it already had. I'll add here that AK is the only park I don't bother with FPs in. There's something about it that makes backtracking to areas seem so bothersome. KS has a wait time of 30 minutes posted and I found that to be pretty accurate. Being alone though, I noticed how few people plan ahead. Feel free to flame away at this. As people were taking pictures of stuff from inside the queue, or at the point where you have to leave your stroller, I was easily able to blend in and work my way past about 5 families. IMO, if you stop for more than a few seconds, I reserve the right to move around you. I didn't push or shove, I didn't make a big stink about it, I basically just kept walking ahead. Definitely not something I'd recommend for anything other than solos and it really didn't cut a lot of time off my wait but it made me feel like it did.

I was in the second row of the truck on the far left side, and ahead of me was a CM with some kind of checklist. I could see over her shoulder a bit and it had all the animals listed on it and some other stuff I didn't really get a good look at. If I would have be any nosier she would have noticed but I didn't feel comfortable asking what the deal was. That's odd for me though, usually I'm a chatterbox. I wasn't a big fan of my ride this time. The driver came across as friendly, and he was informative but he had no sense of timing! Really I'm not sure if it was just him or if he was told to hurry things along but 90 of my pictures were crap because he'd only stop the truck long enough to say "Oh hey here's an elephant" and then he'd be on the move again. I had my camera out and ready but there was no time to get a shot lined up before he'd start driving again. It was very frustrating, any other time we'd been given a lot more time to look around and take pictures.

Afterwards I walked through the trail and listened to some yokel tell his kids how vicious gorillas are and that they'll eat you if they get a chance. Really dude, have you never seen Tarzan?! :lmao: I kept refering to him as Clayton in my head. This was another point where being alone felt odd, in that I walked quickly through the trail where normally I linger a bit.

Next on the list was Asia, and as I was walking past I saw that Flights of Wonder only had a 5 minute wait. Any other time I've gone past the show was either in progress or had just finished, and I'd go "enh it's just birds, I'm not interested in waiting." I have to say, it's a very cute show. Definitely cool to see the different birds even though I was still afraid of getting pooped on. I would still say I wouldn't wait more than 15 minutes for it to start, I'm glad I finally got a chance to see it and would recommend it if you wanted a place to sit and see something or if it had a short wait.

Since I was in Asia, the next thing must be obvious right? Time for...BETTY THE DISCO YETI!! :rolleyes1 I love that EE has a single rider line and I literally walked on to it with a 45 minute posted wait. I rode with a little girl who had never been before. She was all smiles til we started trucking up the hill and she turns with absolute terror in her eyes and says "..This doesn't go upside down does it?!" I assured her it didn't but I don't think she believed me. I know it would probably take a long time but I do so wish they'd fix the yeti. It's such a cool effect when it works and yeah the ride is still fun without it but it's so much cooler with it!

I kept going around the horn and ended up at Finding Nemo the Musical next. I considered this a priority. Festival of the Lion King is amazing, it's just that I've seen it several times. There's something about the cast of Nemo that just delights me. There's a particular Marlin and Dory that just embody the characters so well they make the whole show. Voyage of the Little Mermaid could take some lessons from this! But now rumor has it VOTLM is on it's way out so those lessons will probably never be learned.

At this point I was really waffling about going back and taking a nap in my room. With the Halloween party that night, I knew I'd stay there til it was over and I wasn't sure I'd be able to make it. Sitting at Nemo recharged my battery a bit but I was definitely dragging at this point. In meandering to the front of the park and considering what I had left that I planned on doing I actually chose Dinosaur over ITTBAB. Maybe just because I was standing in front of it :rotfl2:. I think it had a 20 minute wait posted but it wasn't anywhere near that. I walked right through into the preshow room and since people weren't filling in all available space, I went and stood by the exit door. There was no one ahead of us when we got to the boarding area, they'd just been loaded onto the vehicles. I ended up in the front row far right. At that time, I'd recently read that all the bumps and whatnot you feel are actually created by the vehicle, not the track and I did actually notice it this ride. It's a great effect that if you're not looking for you'd never realize. What I did notice on the other hand... This will probably come across mean and if you happen to be the parents of these kids I'm sorry but dear lord...

Behind me was a mom and dad, and 2 sons that were easily about 12 and about 15 years old. I understand that some people don't like thrill rides or dark rides...and that's fine. But hearing these boys scream and literally sob through the whole thing, clinging to each other for dear life was a bit odd to me. They didn't appear to have an issues (and please don't start that argument here), if anything they appeared to have either been lied to about what the ride was or perhaps they were very sheltered kids but the approx 5 and 8 year olds in the row behind these kids even seemed confused by it. The mom of these boys kept saying "It's ok my's ok" which reinforces my sheltered theory but either way, it was very...dramatic.

**At this point I guess I should say I don't mean to come across so judgmental but I think for no other reason than that I was alone, I paid more attention to other people.**

After Dinosaur I just couldn't bring myself to waste the time going back to the hotel to take a nap and figured that I'd probably be too keyed up to fall asleep anyway. I made my way back out to the buses and took one to the TTC and then the Monorail to MK. It was time to get my Halloween on!!!

Up next: The only time you can find a completely empty bathroom at Disney.

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