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Old 04-11-2010, 01:16 AM   #1
Fastpaks
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Thin line tween Love and Hate WDW/Halloween TR Western Oct 24-Nov 6 updated 9/27

Point of View:
When I read the different reports I think about how in the world can I differentiate the story. The one thing that I may be able to offer is... my wife (now she is not sure) and I are not huge fans of Disney. I have my reasons which I' ll get into later. My wife has, IMO, just not had the time to make a judgement call one way or the other. My son is a kid. Put a cartoon in front of him, and it doesn't matter. So let's introduce the cast:

Me- My name is Jonathan. I work as a delivery driver for a fast shipping company and a plan-a-holic.

The DW- She is an awesome women that I talked into giving up her favorite holiday to go on a cruise. Halloween. Oh yeah, she can't swim.

DS- He will be traveling at the mature age of 7. To give you a glimpse into his personality, today we were watching some people body build. They flexed their biceps, and he exclaimed, "HOW THEY DO THAT!?" Next thing I hear, 1,2,3,4 (push-ups).... I asked him what was he doing? he simply replied, "Working on my four pack!"

The Background:

So I told you, I'm not a big fan of Disney. Why? Simple.. .bad experience. I grew up in FL. Not long after we moved to Florida, I was 8, we went to WDW. We all couldn't wait. I watched the New Disney Channel that just came on cable almost religiously. I laughed at all the cartoons that I could find on Goofy and Donald. Even some of the other films, like Davy Crockett and Swiss Family Robinson, we real treats in my household. So the basics were there to enjoy the holy city of cartoons and fun.

I can still remember the heat of the FL sun. What killed it for us was looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo ng lines. I am sure I am not the only ones that remember long lines and crowds, before there was ever a thought of fast passing. Then when we got on the rides, I was not exactly thrilled. I guess at the time my expectation were too high and there really wasn't nothing magical about it. I remember my parents getting frustrated at the 1 hour plus waits on all the rides. Anyways, I know this is a pro-Disney board so I won't go further bashing the place. Besides, you get the idea. I did start to change my mind about WDW a couple years ago when I visited again, but I am getting ahead of my story.

I guess you are wondering Halloween Hating? Again, a simple thing, parents didn't let me celebrate it.

So why a Disney Cruise and why Halloween?

Cause oddly enough, Disney's theme of celebration is one that may end up saving my life. So join me in finding out if a 33 old man, can find the fun of Disney on a Halloween cruise with his family.


Pre-trip:
1. 6 Months Ago
2. Its November now..I think we could?!
3. A Past, A Promise, A Purpose, A Plan
4. The $15 Christmas
Tangent Passing the time with 10 months?!
5. The Disney Curve and Monster under my House
6. The Last Email
7. Charity and the Monster Lives
8. MnSsHp, Leftovers, Tacos
9. Budget Wars: The Phantom Overtime
10.Moving to the Country
11.In one brief moment... something bad.. then Magic
12.SO confused?
13.Invitations and Sometimes I'll take the screams!
14.The Calendar
Finished

Intro sorta:
We are back! Quick thoughts

WDW

When Hate and Love Collide<-- the begining

The Trip Down and Day 1 :Sea World
1. The Alarm and the Cast
2. Life is a Highway
3. The All Important Red Folder and the Hidden Mickey at SeaWorld
4. Spooktacular and Tradition No More

WDW and Day 2
1.Pixie Dust explained
2.A Hotel... Finally!
3.Epcot: Signatures and Cars
4.Epcot: A World's Character
5.Epcot: Furture World the Sequel
Before Mnnshp
A.3 star to 5 star
B.Ahhh Rest... Ring Ring Ring
Mnnshp: Day 3
1.The Thin Line: begins...Mnnshp
2.Even Black Hearts Beat Red
3.Even Blacks Heart Beat RED Part 2
Magic Kingdom: Day 4
1.The Palace and Some Mountains
2.When Jacuzzi Attack and Mountains Redux
DHS: Day 5
1.1/2 at the Sudios
2.The Unsung Hero's
Animal Kingdom and Traveling to the Coast: Day 6
1.His Fault!
2.Working Hardly on the Railroad

DCL
Embarkation: Day 1
1.Cash Only Hell
2.When Life Gives You Lemons
3.Lemons Cont: Bucket List- CHECK
4.Mass Confusion
4a.Something I Forgot about Checking In
5.The One Thing I Desevred
6.I Know I'm Forgetting Something
7.Emails a Flyin'
8.Dinner Mates and Disney Service When It Comes to Allergies.. O boy
9.She Made Me Go
Key West: Day 2
1. Woke Up and WoW!
2. A Pleasant Surprise
3. Allergies: Dinner #2 goes from Bad to Worse
4. The Best Hidden Meal On the Ship
Sea Day: Day 3
1. Fab 5 and the A-Team
2. You Just Don't See That Everyday
3. Adventures in Babysitting
4. Dinner 180*
5. Hurricane
Day 4: Grand Cayman
1.Arrrrrr
2. Its only $20


On the same cruise, but other DisTR:
Video Killed the Trip Report Star: A Little Halloween Magic: Not-A-PTR PTR by Nenner1
PRE TRIP October 30, 2010 DISNEY MAGIC SWEET 16 CELEBRATIONS by Sarge219
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Cruise, Oct 30th,2010 Magical Western by the Podsnel
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Cruisewith some British Flair .... Mandymouse
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Last edited by Fastpaks; 09-28-2011 at 08:55 AM. Reason: A couple corrections
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:18 AM   #2
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Yes you can, and will, find fun on a Disney Halloween cruise with your family!

We sailed last Oct. on a Disney 7-night Western and Halloween was celebrated on the ship. I believe they celebrated it on every cruise in Oct.

Can honestly tell you I don't know who had more fun - the kids or the adults. Candy stations were set up all along Deck 3. I stood just outside the lobby by the mid elevators with my video camera as the youngsters and adults in costume swept by me on their way to see what was offered next. So many of the costumes were original designs and a delight to see.

Enjoy and we'll be waiting to hear all about your Halloween adventure.

Best wishes.
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Old 04-21-2010, 02:20 AM   #3
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6 Months Ago

In what seems to have become a custom when a family member has had a vacation of any sort, our entire family will get together and discuss the trip of whom ever is returning. In this particular occasion, it was my mom, dad, sister, nephew, and my sister's b/f. They had just returned from trip to the Caribbean on a DCL cruise. They had been on a Halloween Cruise of '09.

The whole group was in a good mood. My DN (9) LOVED it and starting telling my DS(6) about the trip. For the most part, I was expecting this....except I wasn't expecting my sister's b/f to be so happy about the trip. He would talk to me about his trip for the next 3 hours. It takes a lot to impress him, and boy was he ever impressed. He would tell me over and over that I should really consider trying a cruise, specifically, a Disney one. It wouldn't take too long to decide.

My wife and I have been talking about vacations, but it just hasn't been doable since the economy went south. We did promise our self that if the opportunity could arise that we would like to take our son to WDW before he is "too old" for it. So I contacted Dreams Unlimited and Small World Vacations to inquire about a trip. It was then I realized we might be out of our league with a cruise.
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Old 04-21-2010, 06:32 AM   #4
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Smile Doable vacation

Hello and welcome to the DCL thread. The great thing about Disney vacations is in my book so very doable because you can pay down and on your vacation like a layaway!!!! In fact this year I'm doing a land and sea adventure because I started paying in mine last Oct.! I was at WDW and booked this year's deal and got 40% off my deluxe resort which ended up covering the cost of my dining!!! If you see the cruise is out if your budget I highly suggest you go to the resorts thread and read the tricks to getting a great rate on a Disney vacation!!!! Look at the codes and rates thread found in the sub titles!!! Happy planning!!!
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missing this season at Disney...my new DGD will be arriving this fall so skipping this year....may try to sneak off this winter for a short trip lol
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Old 04-21-2010, 10:05 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Otimon View Post
Yes you can, and will, find fun on a Disney Halloween cruise with your family!

We sailed last Oct. on a Disney 7-night Western and Halloween was celebrated on the ship. I believe they celebrated it on every cruise in Oct.

Can honestly tell you I don't know who had more fun - the kids or the adults. Candy stations were set up all along Deck 3. I stood just outside the lobby by the mid elevators with my video camera as the youngsters and adults in costume swept by me on their way to see what was offered next. So many of the costumes were original designs and a delight to see.

Enjoy and we'll be waiting to hear all about your Halloween adventure.

Best wishes.
Thanks for the wishes. I'm driving myself nuts atm with all the planning and changes. This journey to the trip seems to be taking a life of its own. More on that as the report goes on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djblu883 View Post
Hello and welcome to the DCL thread. The great thing about Disney vacations is in my book so very doable because you can pay down and on your vacation like a layaway!!!! In fact this year I'm doing a land and sea adventure because I started paying in mine last Oct.! I was at WDW and booked this year's deal and got 40% off my deluxe resort which ended up covering the cost of my dining!!! If you see the cruise is out if your budget I highly suggest you go to the resorts thread and read the tricks to getting a great rate on a Disney vacation!!!! Look at the codes and rates thread found in the sub titles!!! Happy planning!!!
LoL I was about to get to the desicion in my TR, but I fell asleep at my computer last night trying to type some stuff up. Ultimately, I just hope ALL this work going into the vacation pays off.
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Old 04-21-2010, 10:58 AM   #6
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Its November now..I think we could?!

So after being contacted my the two travel companies, I wasn't sure really want to do. I decided through the emails that I received that I would go with DU as a agent, if I decided to go. I shot my agent TracyH several emails sometime 3-4 times in a morning.(I work 2nd shift) She always got back to me in a timely manner and didn't mind the dumb questions. It was about this time that in doing my research I came across TheDis. I mainly stayed in the cruise forums and read everything! If I was to attempt to go on a cruise, I would need to know as much as possible about all the expenses I could incur.

Finally, with all this information, I sat down a looked at the bills and income. It was the end of Nov, looking at the numbers, I was a little shocked. This could be possible. The only problem was which cruise and would my wife go for it now that we are a few weeks removed away from the "hype" of my family returning from their trip. See my wife doesn't swim and is prone to sea sickness. So I gathered all the information, I asked her "hypothetically" if she could go where would she want to go? She said eastern, then western. We discussed all the options and I told her that adding all things up, considering there was only 3 of us going, I think we could go in a Cat 11, have DCL transport us, and stay at a value resort before hand. However, there would be a HUGE sacrifice.

I was a little surprised that we talked as long as we did about it because I interrupted her Desperate Housewives (a big NO NO on a Sunday). It would come down to 3 weeks in October '10. One was next to a dry dock, the other was an Eastern, and the last was on Halloween. UH OH. Halloween. My wife LOVES Halloween and there is NO WAY she is going to give that up. NONE. If she had her choice of Halloween or a Christmas it was Halloween. We decided that we would like to go on the first 2 choices. So for Halloween, I hardly knew ya... or so we thought.


To be continue...
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Old 04-22-2010, 09:51 AM   #7
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Now, this is going to be a fun one to read since we are on the same cruise!

You and my DH have a bit in common: he is not a lover of Disney either. His parents were Disney fanatics and he just never got it. He tolerates WDW because our kids love it so much.

And yet....he LOVED our DCL cruise in Oct. 2009. Said it was the best vacation he ever took. Why? Because the kids were so happy and because people brought him drinks on trays! He said it was still the same fun vacation for the kids, without all the rush-rush feel of WDW (Although I am still making him do WDW for two days prior to the cruise). He actually insisted that we re-book the October 2010 cruise while we were on board.

He is not, though, a hater of Halloween. Like your DW, this is also his favorite holiday. He and DD both. They go all out decorating our house every year. But we figured we wouldn't really be missing it, since they do at least some Halloween themed stuff on board. Me and Halloween? Eh. I don't get their glee over the whole thing, but I'm happy they are happy.
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Old 04-22-2010, 02:52 PM   #8
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Looking forward to reading more.

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Old 05-07-2011, 07:09 PM   #9
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I just wanted too say your wife is gorgeous and your son is so cute! I love his lashes!! (: Keep em' comin!! (:
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Old 05-14-2011, 12:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CherylA View Post
I enjoyed the updates especially about your day in Key West. I hope I get weather that nice when we go in Nov.
I would think you would. Nov tends to be a very nice in KW. We had nearly perfect weather the entire trip. I know a friend of mine goes there every year in Nov and from her pictures it looks like good times.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashleeb View Post
I just wanted too say your wife is gorgeous and your son is so cute! I love his lashes!! (: Keep em' comin!! (:
Thanks for the compliments. My son was told that so much about his eye lashes that he tried to rip them out on his last trip to the world in March. Thankfully he gave up when he realized it wasn't worth it.
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:58 AM   #11
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Fab 5 and the A-Team

The first day at sea would bring my family, and many others, the character breakfast. As we walked into the breakfast at Parrot Cay, we were greated by a man in a white suit named, Wira.. He took us to a table to be seated and then our head server and assistant server ( the same ones we have had so far) came out to us to explain breakfast and the process. We were told that the characters would be by and that we would see them at some point so not to worry. Not long after, we were asked about our drinks and then given time to look at the menu. I can tell you that in many ways, I would have just rather skipped breakfast. It is really the least enjoyable meal on the ship. Its a bit of a shame, because later in the week we would find out not all breakfasts are bad. The head server took our order I think some english muffins, pancakes, eggs... your normal fare.

Then the characters came out. The first was



Chip and Dale


Etc,etc
You get the idea. We got our food during this time. The English muffins and something else didn't make it to our table and considering the dinner service we had before, I just understood that this is the way dinning was going to be. Before we had a chance to say hello, he asked us if we were the Boul Family. To my wife and I surprise, we told him that was correct. He then told us that he was aware of our situation from the night before and offered his sincere apology. I told him, “That there were 2 mishaps and that is ok now.”

He then said,”one night of bad service is one thing. But two nights is completely unacceptable. In fact, if one really is.” Wira went on to explain that he would get a smaller table for our service later on and that he will be taking care of us. I asked him who he was, and he explained that he was a head server and in charge of those under him. (btw the servers we had were not in his “section”) We then asked about my wife's allergies and to tell him what had happened so far.

It was sorta weird as we wanted to get out day started, but your couldn't help but enjoy his company. Wira came off very warm, sincere, and genuine. We didn't plan on talking to him as long as we did. After spending about 30 minutes with him, he asked us if there is anything that we could want just ask. I looked at my wife and her back at me and we both agreed there was nothing. We had explained to him that my wife order her meal for the tonights dinner service last night, and that we were pretty sure there was nothing more to think of.

I could tell my wife really wanted to get started with our day and so did my kid. He was DYING to get to the pool. As we said “goodbye”, I remembered one thing I saw on the boards or on All Ears about the CM being from another country. My wife's family is from the Medditeran. That said, do to a lot of things I'm not willing to go into, she hasn't had any of her home foods in a long time. I remember a CM say that overtime, some times Cms can get some of this food and bring it to your room for room service. When I mentioned this to Wira, he questioned us about what type of foods is she a fan of. “Stuffed Grape Leaves” I said off the top of my head. He then asked us about some other types of food, Stuffed cabbage, Chicken Curie, Kifta, to name a few. Wira told us that sometimes requests can be made like that. He said that he wasn't sure about it, but that he would look into it, and at the worst may be he could talk someone into something.

We thanked him again. He reassured us things would be different VERY different when we return in the evening. My wife and I left him, after we said our 'goodbyes' again. My wife said one thing to me. She said, “I really hope he doesn't try making those grape leaves. My mom makes the best ones and hers are homemade. I just don't really want anyone except those. If they did make them, and they are ot as good, I would feel horrible about it.” I told her it was just a request and like Wira had said, it may not even happen.

We split up. She headed to explore the ship and I took DS to the pool like I had promised


Next: You Just Don't See That Everyday
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Old 06-08-2011, 02:38 PM   #12
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Hey, we were on this cruise with you! I've been lurking and reading your report, but I haven't posted until now.

While we didn't have your level of problems with dinner service, we had some issues. Not really with the food itself so much but with our servers. Having read other peoples reports from our cruise and others, I gather we just were kind of unlucky.

Our drink server was fine, but our main server wasn't so great. He seemed annoyed all the time. He was bothered by the fact that I ordered for my children (my daughter (then 9) is ridiculously shy, my son (then 4, though very tall and seemingly older than his age), has pervasive development delay with his most significant issue being his delay in speech. I think he also was unhappy that I didn't take his food recommendations, even though I explained many times that none of us ate seafood.

My son is very structured in his routine, so it was a lot for him to sit nicely in restaurants every night. He did well considering. It would have been easier if the server was a bit more flexible. For instance, my son wanted chicken noodle soup one night (available all over the ship), but our server said no because it wasn't on the menu that night. Based upon what others have said about their servers going above and beyond, I think he could have done this for the kid and just didn't want to. At the very least, I wish he would have stopped trying to force my children to talk to him after I explained that they were shy and not very chatty....it only made them anxious.

Next cruise, I think I will need to explain to our server the situation right off the bat. Maybe it will help, maybe it won't. Or maybe I will be lucky next time and get the fantastic servers everyone else seemed to be blessed with!

Your son is adorable and I wish I would have met you and your wife. I wish I was able to meet more people from our cruise meet..... if only my kids had not kept me hopping the whole time!
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Old 06-09-2011, 10:53 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JKSWonder View Post
Hey, we were on this cruise with you! I've been lurking and reading your report, but I haven't posted until now.

While we didn't have your level of problems with dinner service, we had some issues. Not really with the food itself so much but with our servers. Having read other peoples reports from our cruise and others, I gather we just were kind of unlucky.

Our drink server was fine, but our main server wasn't so great. He seemed annoyed all the time. He was bothered by the fact that I ordered for my children (my daughter (then 9) is ridiculously shy, my son (then 4, though very tall and seemingly older than his age), has pervasive development delay with his most significant issue being his delay in speech. I think he also was unhappy that I didn't take his food recommendations, even though I explained many times that none of us ate seafood.

My son is very structured in his routine, so it was a lot for him to sit nicely in restaurants every night. He did well considering. It would have been easier if the server was a bit more flexible. For instance, my son wanted chicken noodle soup one night (available all over the ship), but our server said no because it wasn't on the menu that night. Based upon what others have said about their servers going above and beyond, I think he could have done this for the kid and just didn't want to. At the very least, I wish he would have stopped trying to force my children to talk to him after I explained that they were shy and not very chatty....it only made them anxious.

Next cruise, I think I will need to explain to our server the situation right off the bat. Maybe it will help, maybe it won't. Or maybe I will be lucky next time and get the fantastic servers everyone else seemed to be blessed with!

Your son is adorable and I wish I would have met you and your wife. I wish I was able to meet more people from our cruise meet..... if only my kids had not kept me hopping the whole time!
Welcome back to our cruise! hehe. I think I saw you walking around two times the entire week. To this day, I have told my extended family about how odd it was to see certain folks in the beginning of the week and then not see them from mid week and on. Vica versa. It would have been a great to meet your family. Like my son says regaurding a future trip, "Something to look forward and check off the next trip!"

I don't think that your experience wasn't the norm at that time. I neglected to tell about the conversation I had with the Chef as he was trying to calm me down. He had explained that the ship at the time had a %40 new people on the ship and they were there to train for the Dream. Although he was quite polite, you could tell that this was not the first time that he had heard of the service Hiccups. Now that I know how things are going to go, I won't hesitate to check with someone about any corrections.
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