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Old 04-23-2006, 07:41 PM   #1
hucifer
The tag that was here was staler than 3 yr old bread crumbs
The Van Halen song "Running with the Devil" was about my parakeet!
Smell anything? It's just my sauerkraut
 
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Post Hucifer and Dan's flipping huge trip report *Last 3 days/Epilogue! 10/9, pgs 36-38*

Well, here it is. Over 6 months late, but hey, I've been busy and stuff. Also, you will notice (or will notice after the second installment) that I am writing this bad boy all in one thread. But be warned! This puppy is at least double the length as my previous trip report.
----------------

Day 1. The Mishaps of Little Miss Organized

Two years after our first visit to the World, DH Dan and I needed to return. The first trip was amazing, memorable, magical, hysterical, you name it…it was Dan’s first time to WDW and boy did he have a lot to absorb. Like last time, Dan leaves 100% of this trip’s planning to me, and will have little idea about our 10-day itinerary. But can it live up to the time we had on our first trip? Can there still be surprises and laughs and mishaps? Will Dan ever get to experience Blizzard Beach?

------------------

Part 1. Pal Mickey’s return home

4:30 am. Alarm buzzes. Eh, I’ve been waking up every ten minutes anyway…it’s hard to sleep when you’re going to Disney World. I stayed up until almost 11pm to pack. I am one excited little girl.

6:30 am. The garage door closes behind us. I am having that feeling like I am forgetting something again…ah forget it. I know I always feel like this when we’re leaving for vacation. I create packing list spreadsheets, for pete’s sake. I went over it at least seven times last night and this morning. I’m sure I have everything. Well, more than everything. I am an official Overpackers Anonymous cardholder.

8:05 am. We arrive at the airport. Plenty of time to spare. Dan goes outside for one last cigarette.

9:13 am. Take our seats in the airplane. We have exit row seats (poor man’s first class). The airplane pulls away from the gate on time. This morning is going very smoothly!

In the air, I pull out our trusty Pal Mickey (with fresh batteries…I am so organized!) and hold him up to window, but it upsets Dan. “I want his return home to be a surprise!” he whispers. He has his Angry Eyes on. So I pull Mickey from the window and back onto my lap. After the pilot announced that we were approaching Orlando, Dan is suddenly overcome with excitement. He put Mickey on his lap and clapped his hands together. I think it freaked out the guy next to him, who gave us a nervous smile and went back to his reading. His eyes flickered over to Dan once in a while.

The plane lands in Orlando and I’m like a happy puppy with a full bladder. Stuffing Mick back in my bag and trying to ignore his muffled pleas for air, we scamper off the plane and find baggage claim. There’s the dude from FL Tours, holding a sign with my name and waiting for me very patiently. “I’m Princess Wendy,” I introduce myself. Okay, not really. But how can you not feel like one when you have someone waiting to whisk you off to Where Magic Lives?

After the bags arrive, FL Tours Dude leads us to a row of town cars. Stopping at the car, he pulls out his keys, aims the remote at the trunk, and presses the button. The trunk doesn’t open. He steps closer, pushes the button again…nothing. So he walks over to the driver’s door and pushes the button. Nothing. He tries to open the door, thinking that he just didn’t hear the click, but it’s still locked. He stares at the remote as if this will help troubleshoot the problem. Staring at it didn’t help, so he gives up on the remote and sticks the key in the lock. Ah, the key doesn’t work, and now he’s starting to look nervous. Good thing another driver walked by. “That’s not your car,” he told FL Tours Dude. Apparently the nonworking remote and keys weren’t a big enough flag.

We step two cars down and pop! the trunk opens at once. Our driver lets out a big sigh and gives us an apologetic look. I purposely look away from Dan because if I do, I know I’ll lose it.

Driving down the expressway, I am fondly remembering the last time Dan and I took this ride. It was two years ago and Dan’s very first trip to WDW…at the time I didn’t want him to read the billboards and know what to expect. I loved everything about that trip…everything was new to him. So how do I keep this trip fresh? With some careful planning, I made sure we had a different itinerary and did new things. I also kept it to myself, trying to maintain the element of surprise as much as I could.

I pulled out Pal Mickey again and showed him the billboards. Even Dan couldn’t resist letting Mickey see his Homeland. (“Say Pal, these signs look awfully familiar!”)

I pulled out the camera and we took some pictures of our arrival with the Mouse. Oh look, the Magical Express bus is driving behind us. I wonder where the bus with their luggage is headed?


On the way, Dan asks me about how the Shades of Green knows which grade I am as a Department of Defense civilian (which is how they figure out how much you pay for your room). “I told them what grade I was…but come to think of it, I don’t know how they would know that.” We ponder on that for a few moments but then soon let the excitement of our destination take over.

I have my Passporter handy and stuffed with important papers…like if they need our reservation at the Magic Kingdom entrance. I am so organized! Last time, they asked to see it and I didn’t have it handy since it was in the trunk. Of course, this time they don’t ask for it. No matter. That’s just a part of being uber-organized. A few minutes later and we reach the Shades of Green resort. After we leave the guard shack, our driver gets confused about where to drop us off, despite the huge signs. Left? Right? Left? He is jerking the wheel in both directions and pressing hard on the brake, clearly unsure where to guide his vehicle. “Where do I go?” he asks us. Pointing at the sign, we tell him to keep right, RIGHT! Mercifully he drives into the drop-off area. Dan and I get out of the car. I double-check the seat before I shut the door. Good thing I did! I left the camera sitting right there. Duh. I grabbed the camera and shut the door. The FL Tour dude smiled at me while dragging my oversized luggage to the curb, “Don’t forget your camera,” he said.

“Don’t forget which car is yours,” I said back. Okay, I didn’t really say that. I really am much nicer than you think I am.

I hand the man his money and he gets into the correct car and drives away. I do a silent prayer that a different driver picks us up for our return home.

Dan and I walk into the lobby and he says, “Whoa.” This is his first time at the actual SoG resort. It is a pretty lobby, no doubt about it. But he has ten whole days to admire it. “Yeah, yeah. It’s pretty. Let’s go.” I shove him toward the check-in counter and anxiously wait to be called.

“Next,” says the SoG dude at the counter. I ran to the counter. “Hi, I have reservations and here is my DoD card and my CAC card.”

SoG Dude looks at my ID cards. “That’s great, but I’ll also need your Leave and Earnings Statement.”

“My what?…oh crap.” Realization has just sunk in. “I…don’t…I forgot…to bring…it.” Do I have to fly back home to get it? I feel panic and anxiety building.

Dan thumps his hand down on the counter. “THAT’S how they figure out your grade! I was wondering about that.” He is very proud of himself and looks down at me. “Did Little Miss Organized forget something?” His smile is turning very Cheshire Cat-like. While Dan was being so smug about thinking about something that I clearly didn’t, my mind was buzzing about how we get around this little issue. I look back at SoG dude. “Umm…do you REALLY need that?” I almost feel sick, like I’m about to hyperventilate. I don’t like this feeling of being unprepared. Not one bit.

Ignoring Dan’s taunts, he tells me that YES, they really do need it, but Guest Services is around the corner. They have a computer and can print out my LES for me on the spot. “Otherwise you’ll have to go to the Grand Floridian for a printout.”

I thank the man profusely for not making me fly home to get it. Dan and I run to Guest Services. Guest Services Dude tells us with a sigh that we were told incorrect information, Guest Services does NOT let guests use their computers, despite that I’m a Guest and that would be a great Service. It must have been the desperate and pathetic look on my face that made him cave (Dan says I have a great pouty face). “Alright, you can use our computer.” He gives me a stern “don’t-let-this-happen-again” look and gets up from his chair.

I must have thanked the man a hundred times. I sit at his computer, pull up the link, log in, and print out my LES. I thanked the man a thousand more times before leaving Guest Services and getting back in line at Check-In.

We are called again at the counter but we have a different person helping us. “Hi, I have reservations and here is my Leave and Earnings Statement and my DoD card and my CAC card.”

She looks over my LES and for one horrifying moment I thought that there was a problem (the printout cut off part of the right side of the page). But then she hands my stuff back with a smile and says everything is in order. WHEW! And I made fun of the FL Tours dude. Meanwhile, Dan is still grinning down at me. He thinks it is hilarious that “Little Miss Organized” really isn’t so much. Oh, stop being so smug. I absolutely hate this feeling and the panic associated with it (which explains the overpacking thing). This has become a horrifying moment for me, it doesn’t matter that we were able to correct the situation. I am very disappointed with myself.

I ask for the top floor, golf view, on the new wing, and hold my breath. Click, click…she types away on her keyboard for a moment. She smiles at me again. “Yes, we have that available.” Well, this is certainly becoming a better day!

Next installment: The great food hunt

Last edited by hucifer; 10-09-2006 at 11:29 AM. Reason: yer mamma
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Old 04-23-2006, 08:27 PM   #2
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I'm glad he let you print out your paperwork. Great start.
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Old 04-23-2006, 11:04 PM   #3
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Yay a Hucifer trip report!
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Old 04-25-2006, 10:51 AM   #4
hucifer
The tag that was here was staler than 3 yr old bread crumbs
The Van Halen song "Running with the Devil" was about my parakeet!
Smell anything? It's just my sauerkraut
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cherylp3
Yay a Hucifer trip report!
Hey! I have a fan!

Sweet.
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Old 04-25-2006, 10:53 AM   #5
hucifer
The tag that was here was staler than 3 yr old bread crumbs
The Van Halen song "Running with the Devil" was about my parakeet!
Smell anything? It's just my sauerkraut
 
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Hey Frankenpooh! So honored that you graced my report! Welcome to my trip report.

Everyone, thanks for the compliments!
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Old 04-25-2006, 02:12 PM   #6
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Did Dan have blonde hair in your last trip report? Did we see Dan in your last report? Am I just imagining things????? Does Pal Mickey really talk to the billboards? Is there a limit to how many questions you can ask in one reply?
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Old 04-24-2006, 05:21 AM   #7
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You're off to a great start. That is too funny about the FL Tours guy going to the wrong car.

Thanks for posting!
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Old 04-24-2006, 10:33 AM   #8
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I had to laugh at your husbands concerns with Pal Mickey being surprised and then making him clap his hands when you were close to Orlando...I showed this to my fiancee and he laughed...it's so something he would do too!!

Great so far, looking forward to more!
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Old 04-24-2006, 04:50 PM   #9
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Nice to see I'm not the only one experiencing organizational lapses!

I can't wait to get the rest of your report. I will really need something to do once I finish mine, so it's fine with me if you drag it out!
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Old 04-24-2006, 05:26 PM   #10
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Too funny! What a great post!!
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Old 04-24-2006, 05:55 PM   #11
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I knew I shouldn't have started a newer trip report I always read old ones so I get all of them . I'm waiting
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:34 PM   #12
hucifer
The tag that was here was staler than 3 yr old bread crumbs
The Van Halen song "Running with the Devil" was about my parakeet!
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Day 1, Part 2: The Great Food Hunt

Our room is huge! And we have a gorgeous view. We run around like crazy people, throwing our clothes in the drawers and shower stuff in the bathroom. I change into different clothes and slip on my new Tevas. We still have park tickets to buy and lunch to consume, so Pal Mickey gets clipped to my belt and we head to the lobby map to decide where to eat lunch at the resort. Garden Grill is closed, but Evergreen’s is open for lunch. No problem, let’s go there.

Easier said than done.

If you could view this situation from above, we must have looked like mice in a maze hunting for cheese. We darted down long corridors and around corners and found ourselves in several dead-ends. SoG signs did us absolutely no good. After several grueling minutes of wrong ways, I paused, sniffed the air, and shouted, “This way!” and we were off again in a new direction, so desperate to find food.

Eventually even the most idiotic mouse will find the cheese if he’s hungry and desperate enough. When Evergreen’s finally came into view, I almost wet myself. We practically ran to the building. Despite the fact that we were seated right away, unfortunately we weren’t acknowledged right away. And when you’ve spent the afternoon hunting for the bloody restaurant, your blood sugar has plummeted, and you’re desperate to hit the parks on your first day, these extra minutes can be infuriating. Eventually we were recognized. Fittingly I ordered the grilled cheese. Dan ordered nachos.

1:30 pm. We didn’t order complicated food. And the place had 4 tables with people in it. So what was taking so long was beyond us. Dan said he was going to smoke because the food always arrives when he leaves. Wouldn’t you know it, the man was right. No sooner does he step outside to spark one up, than the food arrives. I warned him before he left that I wouldn’t wait. And I didn’t. I started inhaling my sandwich. I tasted his nachos and WOW were they tasty. Maybe he wouldn’t notice if I started taking them around the edges. When he returned from his smoke, his grin was huge. “Told you.”

“Yes, you are the brains of this operation, sweetie.” I say. “But why didn’t you go for a smoke earlier?”

We ate our food, paid our bill, and stepped outside to return to the lobby. Oh crap. Why didn’t we leave a bread crumb trail? Or Dan droppings?

“Let’s go the way we came,” I say. “I can figure it out if we go this way.”

Oh no, that is too simple of a solution for Dan.

“No, there’s got to be a better way than that,” says the Brains of This Operation. “The lobby should be just through the doors ahead.” I am skeptical, but I give in.

I should have listened to my inner critic. Although we do find the workout room and Italian restaurant, we end up going nowhere that can get us to the lobby. “Let’s try this way,” he suggests. And that’s how it went for another painful ten minutes. We asked for direction twice. At one point we found ourselves on the other side of the resort and in the golf area, which wasn’t even affiliated with the resort. Man, how did we get so lost…and on the way back too? Are we even on Disney property?

Eventually we find someone who points us in the right direction. We wouldn’t have needed his help if Shades of Green spent some money on signs. What a confusing layout!

When we passed the ticket booth at SoG before lunch, there was no line. When we returned from our crazy lunch, there were 10 folks ahead of us. Isn’t it always like this when you’re in a hurry? After an eternity, we purchased a 10-day park hopper ticket for Dan (I had an Annual Pass), and we finally set off to our first park of the trip.

We hit the trail that takes us to the Poly. The scenery along the way is quite nice, especially considering this is a well-manicured golf course. There is a small pond on the left that has a sign which warns you not to disturb the dangerous wildlife, particularly alligators and snakes. Ever since I saw this sign, I was pretty geeked about seeing alligators. And every time I passed that pond, I saw squat. Like this time.

3:10 pm. We arrive at MGM Studios.


Me and Mick, ready to tackle our first park

And guess what? My new Tevas are rubbing my baby toe raw. Good thing we’re nowhere near our resort! How long I can endure this pain? Not too long. I have about enough endurance to walk through the gates before I’m bee-lining to First Aid.


Me, limping to First Aid for a Band Aid

But before I’m handed anything remotely medical, I have to fill out the form at the counter and give my name, the time, my blood type, place of birth, emergency contact, turn-ons, and favorite hobbies. In exchange for my information First Aid Lady gives me three band-aids. I thank her and hobble over to the couch. While wrapping my throbbing toe, another woman crawled into First Aid, moaning for a band-aid.

3:30 pm. We catch the next showing of Beauty and the Beast. Dan and I actually saw the Broadway play during the holidays last year and enjoyed it very much. I tried not to be disappointed in this performance, but Belle was so flat in her acting. The saving grace of this little show was Gaston (and the music).



After the “Belle” song sequence, the narrator says “Through a series of strange events she finds herself in an enchanted castle.” The next thing I know, Belle is getting serenaded by her food. They cut out half the freaking story! I realize they’re dealing with half-hour shows, but that was really disjointed and awkward. If you don’t know the storyline, you’re pretty much screwed.

Next installment: Part 3. The Great Roo Hunt

Last edited by hucifer; 04-26-2006 at 04:45 PM.
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:23 PM   #13
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Oh sure I wait how long for this report and do I even get an e-mail or a PM????? Noooooooooooo. I have to stumble across it by accident.


Then I find out you have a completely different guy playing the part of your husband in this one. You didn't even tell me you were casting for the part before you hired the skinny surfer looking dude.

And then to top it off you post a picture of yourself at MGM taken by someone who was standing in Epcot at the time! You're so small in that picture it could be your avatar.

I guess you tossed me to the curb once you figured you wouldn't need an index for this report because you're doing it all in one thread. Bratus was right about you.

Well I can't promise I'll still be around to heckle you once you get up to part 34. So there!

PS I hope by day 5 they ran out of lettuce and you had to eat a burger.
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Old 04-27-2006, 11:12 AM   #14
hucifer
The tag that was here was staler than 3 yr old bread crumbs
The Van Halen song "Running with the Devil" was about my parakeet!
Smell anything? It's just my sauerkraut
 
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Lou, if I send you an up-close and indecent photo of myself, will you forgive me?

BTW, that burger comment was hardly called for.
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Old 04-27-2006, 12:28 PM   #15
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Depends if it's a good one or not. And don't try that pouty smilie stuff with me. It doesn't work.
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Last edited by Loubon; 04-27-2006 at 02:47 PM.
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