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Old 09-16-2012, 04:54 PM   #1
lmhall2000
May the road rise to meet you....May God hold you in the palm of His Hand.
 
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Space town, AL
Posts: 5,476

Murphy's Visit with us on the Fantasy Eastern!

The Proclaimers: "Five Hundred Miles"

Warning: Personal opinions/experiences will be shared in this trip report. There are some events I will have to use clever clues (song lyrics/movie scenes) to share the essence of what happened. The purpose is to protect those who I will be ratting on and bring some levity to some heated events that took place. Let's just say parenting teens and being married 20 years brings its own challenges

Our 20th anniversary cruise almost did not happen: We scraped and saved the funds to pay in cash (after having 2 mortgages for 31 months we've sworn off credit cards)...IRS decided our bill should be exactly what we saved, but, LO, our state income tax would be just enough to cover it, surely, it'll be in before our 75 day pay off! NOPE! We had to cancel our category 8 (cheapest option for five) and they were not to be seen again. I stalked the website hoping for GT rates. Finally, at day 39 VGT rates came out...but did not want to book 2 rooms...waited until day 30 and no OGT/IGT rates had come out..so booked it, it's our 20th right??

Within 12 hours Disney released IGT/OGT...would have saved us about $1500!! UGH! But, happy to wait for room assignment! We get our assignment and instead of connecting (hoped) there was one room between us...now I was worried...I can not put 3 teenagers in a room by themselves...I trust them greatly, but I know siblings, I would be dealing with door slamming with them coming to our room for "MOM! He won't get out of the shower!" My plan was to show up at port EARLY to see if we could get pixie dusted with adjoining!

..13 hour drive and we finally arrive at our hotel! The grounds are amazing and had no idea the Bonnet Creek was soo close to Disneyworld! We were given the top floor (14th)...was tickled b/c knew we'd have a great view of the fireworks! Having survived stuffing all our luggage (I pack light!) and five pretty tall adults/teens in a Prius for the long haul...the hotel was a nice change!

The bad on the hotel...it advertised an 'executive lounge' where refreshments and light snacks could be enjoyed...we're not picky and thought for the minimal upcharge (had a code online that knocked this room for five down to $99) for the executive floor would be worth it ($5 upcharge)..get what you pay for...all they had was old water with cucumbers in it (nasty stuff floating in it and it was not cold!) and a dismal arrangement of fruit...the oranges were squishy/brown/with mold spots!

But, we're not easily dismayed so we looked at the positives of the room...great soaps/shampoos...lovely set up for five, bunkbeds and two queen beds...they were just what we needed to rest our weary squished bodies!

Would we do it again? No. The $16 resort fee was wasted on us...I had visions of us running through the lazy river/pools that were shared with other resorts, but ALL of us were exhausted....even too exhausted to watch for the fireworks! We were in bed by 9pm!! The $13 parking fee was excessive as well. A great deal for families who can get there earlier in the day and use the facilities. If we cruise again, it's decided, we'll stop at a Residence Inn off I-75 that is 2 hours from port...13 hours in one day is just such a long drive!

MURPHY ALERT: Don't worry, pretty much every day has its own alert..some more than one! We embrace Murphy...we mentally prepare for his arrival (not sure why I attach a masculine semblance to him)...this time it was our camera...the charger was nowhere to be found! Several DEAR families on our Cruise meet on Facebook hoped their charger would work...after taking the time to photograph their chargers I realized we had no working options. I spent one hour on the computer looking for the best deal for a camera (an early birthday present for me - to be had on the 13th) I found a camera!!! It was cheaper at Best Buy than at Amazon.com but only one Best Buy had it...after I bought it online, realized they had me picking it up at our BB in Alabama!! EEK! Quick call to customer service and all was ready for us to pick up in the morning...but store would not open until 10:00...which puts us getting later into port...but we will have a camera!!

No pictures from today, no camera...but tomorrow, will have our first go of shots!!

Next up: Toni Basil: "Hey Mickey!"
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