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Old 02-05-2013, 03:03 PM   #31
brandihead2012
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Subbing!!! Great start!!!!!
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Sparking up the Romance at WDW...March 2013 Trip Report for Lovers
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....3009981&page=8

He finally said YES to Disney, a ptr for March 2013
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3009981

998 picture, 10 pairs of Shoes 2 Girls.. completed TR
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....9#post25194679
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:18 PM   #32
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Welcome brandihead2012!

Hopefully another update coming soon...
still bedridden and today has been very hard. Pretty much melted in my recliner is how weak I am...
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Old 02-08-2013, 05:24 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by AnnieDan_Artlover View Post
Welcome brandihead2012!

Hopefully another update coming soon...
still bedridden and today has been very hard. Pretty much melted in my recliner is how weak I am...
Feel better!! Sending you some pixie dust and good vibes
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Sparking up the Romance at WDW...March 2013 Trip Report for Lovers
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....3009981&page=8

He finally said YES to Disney, a ptr for March 2013
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3009981

998 picture, 10 pairs of Shoes 2 Girls.. completed TR
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....9#post25194679
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:29 PM   #34
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Chapter 10 - Nov. 29th part 1: Getting ready

Now, I need to apologize... the first few days of this Disney part of the TR won't be very detailed. I realized with horror that I didn't have notes.
Rather, I did take a few notes, at the end of the day, like each day while in Disney, religiously, in my Passporter envelopes, which are a godsend (so useful to keep the receipts, too!). And without those, I would be in a lot of trouble trying to recall what happened in those first few days right now...
Because for a time lapse of almost 3 days, I did not take a single note in my notebook (which was for the TR) or on the computer (I started that way before realizing a few notes jotted along the way was much easier than taking a whole hour at night!).

So... sorry! And yay for the Passporter enveloppes!

We woke up at 5am, since we went to bed so early! And since we were EXCITED! Our first Disney day! We had been waiting for this for over 4 years!

We had breakfast in the room, as planned.
I was pretty excited, because I had bought some Uncrustables... and I had never had that, ever! I had never even tasted PB&J (crazy, I know). It's just not something we eat...

I loved it! But damn, was I happy we had bought MILK, because it's so... pasty and sticky!
Mama had her bagels with cream cheese. We made coffee and tea, with the microwave and coffee machine... it felt just like home!

Then what did we do first? We I had my haircut appointment, which I had made sure to get as soon as we checked in last night!
I was the first appointment, and I was so happy when it was done! I felt tons better!

After that we had other errands to make (and Mama made a few while I was at the salon) : I had 3 packages shipped to us at the resort... and we were very apprehensive since, in 2008, I was supposed to receive 2 and never got them... but that was at POFQ which are not known for their great customer service... So we crossed our fingers.
And whattayaknow : 2 of the packages were there indeed!!! It did take a bit of time and effort, as when Mama called they told her they didn't have anything, and then to go to the Contemporary desk... where they told her they DID have our packages... but it took about 15min to find them. As for the 3rd one, it wasn't there yet... or maybe it had already been delivered, they weren't sure. Since we knew we didn't get it... we insisted. The man at the desk took a note to check later... and by the time we went back to our room, someone was at the door to deliver it! So I called back that nice man to tell him not to worry about our package anymore!
In those packages were some Bodyglide, to help prevent chaffing and blisters (my skin being very fragile, blisters happen just looking at my feet...), a cooling bandana in case of bad heat, so it would help prevent blood pressure drop (my body doesn't like heat)... and in the last package was a kit of trading pins! It felt like Christmas sitting on the bed and unwrapping all those pins and putting a select few on my lanyard!

Mama had to go get a bag we had forgotten in the car, then we got park ready, making sure we had everything... we decided to go with just one shoulder bag for both of us, since we would be together all the time and we weren't bringing that much stuff... and we would simply trade the bag once in a while.

When we got back in the room, there was a mousekeeper there. We were like... what is she doing there?
If you don't know, when you stay in a DVC, you don't get mousekeeping every day, unless you ask and pay for it, that is. If you stay for more than 8 days, like us, you get a full cleaning on the 4th day, and a trash and towel service on the 8th day, and another full clearning on the 12th day, and so on and so forth. You have all you need to do the rest (extra garbage bags, a trash chute on the floor, even a hoover).
So seeing the mousekeeper on our 2nd day was not normal. And of course, whattayaknow... she took the mousekeeping thank you enveloppe we had left on the desk for 2 days later (so we wouldn't forget)!
We told her there had been a mistake and she left. Of course we didn't ask for the enveloppe back... after all, she had did the job.
I called Mousekeeping, and they asked if we were checking out that day... WHAT? I said we had just got there and were staying for 15 days... they said it was taken care of and not to worry, I wouldn't be billed for that "extra service" and they apologized.

Before we left we called my dad with Skype on the laptop; I texted him updates every day while we drove down but we hadn't called yet.
Plus, I noticed I didn't have any signal on my phone, and didn't had any since we got to Orlando! Which meant I couldn't get any phonecalls (which was good money-wise, as I didn't have a call-plan) or any texts messages...
As usual, he didn't have much to say, did sound happy to talk to us... and that was it.

We then took the monorail for the first time of our trip!

And we went to the TTC and then Epcot.
Which was Mama's big disappointment of the trip, I think... altough I'm sure I told her at some point, she was convinced it was a direct line to Epcot, and was a bit upset that we had to walk so much between monorails... in an incline, on top of it all! (at least she didn't have to push my wheelchair... I'm pretty sure she wouldn't have been able to...)

First thing we did at Epcot was go to Guest Services and activate our Annual Passes. And buy our Tables in Wonderland card!!!
...And the nice CM there is the one who solved my no-signal-on-the-cell problem... simply suggested I turn the phone off and back on, saying it was a problem he encountered when he used to work for a cellphone company... and it worked! I think the carrier in Orlando is different, and didn't play nice with my iPhone... I lost the signal again when we left, and I just had to do the same thing... restart and the new signal was finally picked up.

Formalities taken care of, we finally entered Epcot!

Where we took our first Photopass picture!


...and since it was noon, did the exact wrong thing, and walked straight to a restaurant.
I mean, it's nice to know what to do and what not to do... but when you haven't eaten anything for 6 hours and walked all around, you're HUNGRY!
But we were in no hurry, we knew we would be in a crowd because of that, and luckily it was low season... so it wasn't even that bad!

Our choice was Sunshine Seasons, which we had loved 4 years ago.
And we both chose asian noodles... couldn't remember exactly what though.
Food: 4/5 It really was very good!, Atmosphere: 3/5 It's really nice for a quick service. So many choices, so big and airy that you don't feel crowded even if there are a ton of people... but it's big and noisy. Yup, big is also a negative. Takes a lot of walking to get there and around, to find a table, etc.
Service: N/A.
First time? Nope!
Would I recommend it? Definitely! More than any other quick service in Epcot. There is bound to be something for everyone, and it's good quality food.

After that well... we had to go back to the hotel.
Had we known, we would've just walked to the Magic Kingdom to do those things... But we didn't know.

My feet were killing me, even though I had made sure NOT to put on those bad walking shoes and was wearing my comfy Converse shoes... and I was tired.

So, we hopped on the monorail again... and had the biggest, worst, surprise of the trip, for me anyways : it takes about 50 minutes to get from Epcot to the Contemporary!!!
And it was not crowded, it was not closing time (it's much longer then), there wasn't any break down or anything! Just the normal : wait 3-5min for the monorail at Epcot, ride it to the TTC, walk down the ramp and up the other one, wait for the Resort monorail another 2-3min and then do the whole route from Grand Floridian, Polynesian, MK and THEN arrive at the Contemporary!
We simply couldn't believe it.
How come I never came across this info in my years of Disney research?!

After that I checked... would the bus be faster? ...There isn't one.
One thing is faster, if you're up to walking : take the Express MK monorail, get down at that stop, and walk the 10min from MK to the Contemporary. It takes about 30min instead. Definitely the best choice at Epcot closing time! But the Express MK monorail has to be running...

Once at the hotel I removed the shoes and noticed the underside of my right foot was blue... and both feet were swollen (between the heel and the ball of the feet... where it's arched... and tender!).
With my weak body and crazy bad shoes I had managed to partially tear a ligament in my right foot!!! It seems crazy... but I'm not joking... with my Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, it doesn't take a lot for me to tear a ligament... and there are many in the feet.
There was something wrong with those shoes, or at least, wrong for me!
It's not that I had not broken them in, I had wore them regularly for the past months... (and often felt pain... but didn't make the connection)... and it's not that I'm usually sedentary and that my feet weren't used to the walking. Puh-lease... even I, with my EDS, don't tear ligaments just from more walking then usual... I go to dance classes after months of doing nothing, I went to China in 2010 and walked a lot, every day, for about a month... I went to Atlanta and Washington DC in 2011 and walked a lot in a week there too... without ANY preparation whatsoever. I had no problem then other than the usual sore legs and feet everybody gets.
No hematomas, no huge swelling, no barely able to walk. Especially not after just 2 days!

No need to say I was very worried about the weeks to come! And I was in a lot of pain...

All that to say... we got to the room, Mama went to get me some ice and I iced my feet... Then we tried to take a short nap, but we didn't have a lot of time since we had an ADR... and I just couldn't go to sleep knowing it would be for so little time. I was so tired already, I would've went to sleep for hours... So Mama read on her bed while I rested my feet.

That's about when there was a knock on the door. Mousekeeping!
WTH!!! We told the mousekeeper that there was a mistake, that there had been someone already in the morning and that there wasn't even supposed to be! And I called Mousekeeping again.
They apologized again. This CM seemed more alert... she asked if I still want my full cleaning service in 2 days (on Saturday), or if I wanted to reschedule. After asking Mama, we decided to reschedule. So the full cleaning would now be on Monday, Dec. 3rd. ...keep that in mind.

In the next chapter: Will we get a nice IllumiNation seat at Rose & Crown?

Last edited by AnnieDan_Artlover; 02-21-2013 at 12:25 AM. Reason: Important thing I totally forgot! :)
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:34 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by brandihead2012 View Post
Feel better!! Sending you some pixie dust and good vibes

Thanks!!! It worked!
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Old 02-10-2013, 11:08 PM   #36
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Chapter 11 - Nov. 29th part 2: Epcot, finally!

After the "nap", we took the monorail again back to Epcot. Where we arrived at about 4pm.
Walking towards World Showcase we saw the huge tree


First thing we did was walk close to Germany and get in line for the 5pm Candlelight Processional... Yup... with the aching feet... but I wanted to experience this, even if we are not religious one bit, but I had read so many good things about it and how magical it was!

The wait was made at the same time more interesting and annoying by a crazy young college girl who just kept talking non-stop, and the way she was talking I couldn't even tell if the young girl she was talking to was her friend, with her in line, or just some random girl she decided to chat-up to pass the time!
She was loud enough for us to hear everything, loud enough that we couldn't ignore her at all... we heard all about how she had trouble with her roommate, what happened with her boyfriend and how things were now that she was away to college... and so on and so forth.
But hey, at the same time we had something to get our minds off the wait, I guess...

The wait wasn't too bad over all, especially since it was a very slow day and that it was the early showing... we waited maybe 20min.

But it was a special CP: today the narrator was NEIL PATRICK HARRIS!
That was the main reason to go today!

We were lucky enough that we were seated in about the middle of the theater... which is so huge we still only saw small figures and wouldn't have been able to identify NPH except for his voice...
But the worst part was we got seated right behind a tree. I mean, really? Since we were there mostly for the music I didn't make a fuss, but other people tried to change seats and they were told to go back to where they were seated.

Here's our view

Can't you see NPH? He's the little figure in black, in the middle...

So, what's our verdict? VIew non-withstanding, it was great!
The music was wonderful, with so many singers in harmony... makes your heartstrings vibrate! Especially when it's Christmas songs that everybody knows... it's great when the crowd sings along, too!
And it was funny, once or twice, the song was sung in german, the crowd was singing the english version, and Mama and me would sing the french version!
Made you feel how much Xmas carols are universal... well of course, not 100% universal, but you guys know what I mean!

As for the people worried about too much religion, like we were... I mean, lets be clear, I don't want to ruffle any feathers or be taken wrong, it's just that we are not religious, so hearing a lot about religion, whatever the religion, for one hour, would not have been any fun for us. That's just that. In fact, just too much talking about anything would not have been fun!
But the way it is, the narrator tells the history of Jesus' birth in very short sentences, sprinkled between the songs. I'd say, a minute of speaking and 3 minutes of singing, and repeat. And when it's NPH speaking, it makes it all at least 3 times better, right?

We felt it would've been that much more impressive when it's dark out, so if you feel like waiting or have a CP package, I'd suggest going to the second CP, where maybe there are not as many people, but it's dark.
It still was beautiful! My main feeling is that it's captivating... you listen to that music and you forget where you are.

After it was over, we walked slowly through World Showcase, taking the long way around towards the UK where our ADR was.

We stopped in Japan to listen to the kodo drums, then to hear the story of the japanese new year... and that's when I realized that my plan to check out each and every one of the storytellers, was flawed. For 2 reasons. a) my feet killed me and I didn't really feel like sitting on the ground with the kids (getting up is almost as difficult as standing up!). b) Mama finds it boooooring.

So, well... we'll have seen one!
It was interesting. But I don't feel super sad that it'll be the only one, unless we happen to walk to another one as he/she starts... because I wouldn't want to see them enough to wait, and I wouldn't want to just catch the end of a presentation either.

After that we saw Mr. and Ms. Claus from a distance and checked the Christmas temporary kiosks beside the american pavilion.

And then... well we were already in the UK, so we had time to lose... we went around the shops... but there's only so much time one can spend, and a little early for our 7:20pm ADR time, we went to the desk and checked in. We were seated very quickly, and the restaurant wasn't very full. In fact, only 4 of the maybe 10 tables were filled in the area we were in (covered patio, closest to the podium). We were seated beside the patio cover... which I'm guessing means if you're there during IllumiNations, you can see it... but we were not on the water side. We probably would've seen some of it, or been able to go close enough to see... maybe they even pull back those heavy curtains (with the plastic "windows")... but stretching our dinner for over 2 hours just to see IllumiNations... it would not happen!
You see, when I made the ADR, I based the time on the usual IllumiNations time, and the planned time in the schedule... except they changed it for 9:30pm, probably because of the Candlelight Processional's 3rd showing... It's probably like this every year, but I don't know how... it didn't come up and the predicted schedule, 6 months prior, was 9pm... Proof that planning can't be perfect!

Since it wasn't full, it would've been peaceful, except the table JUST behind us was a group of 2-3 families, with middle-aged parents and their kids, and the parents were pretty much all drunk. The kids were not the problem, it was the parents who were so, damn, loud!
We were looking at their table and when we saw their desserts coming, we were thinking "come on, now, eat, quick!" We couldn't wait for them to leave... I mean, of course we're in Disney, we know it's going to be loud... but when you happen to be in a pretty quiet, almost empty restaurant and want to enjoy a nice meal and take your time... and then you get that noisy bunch playing a guessing game and almost screaming answers across the table to each other... If it had been kids running around or a baby crying I wouldn't have minded (well, maybe a bit, haha). But this annoyed me just as it would've anywhere.

Luckily, they did finish their desserts and did not stay for one more drink, and we had peace for the remainder of our meal. Which was AMAZING.
We ordered the cheese plate, Mama ordered a glass of wine... I don't know about the wine (I think she said it was good), the cheese plate was OK. Not fantastic, and one cheese was the blue, which we seriously dislike... so maybe that appetizer wasn't a good idea after all!
For entrees we both ordered the classic fish n chips, and we shared a side of cauliflower with cheese.
The cauliflower was so totally delicious! But also so incredibly hot! We almost burned ourselves on it and the middle was still burning hot when I finished it at the end of the meal! But it's definitely something to share, as it's very rich and quite big!
The fish n chips were the best either of us had ever had, and easily beats the one we had 4 years ago at the Yorkshire quickservice counter. The fries were great, the fish was crispy and melted in your mouth... not too greasy (altough looking at the paper underneath it... it's very greasy!). Amazing!

So, for Rose And Crown
Food: 5/5 Amazing quality food and taste!
Atmosphere: 4/5 Raucous family excepted, quite peaceful place, but being outside on the patio, the red heating lamps made things a bit weird. But they were definitely necessary, as it was COLD. In the low 60°Fs!
Service: 5/5 Nothing bad to say, our server was nice and service was perfect. We saw how he interacted with the noisy table and altough it was obvious they were bothering us and other tables, he was polite with them, which is a good point for him.
It was my first time to use the thank you cards I made!
First time? Yup.
Would I recommend it? Definitely! I would go back myself... or at least, I would stop at their quick service window (I'm thinking the fish n chips would be the same, right?)

I did the math on the bill, and it turns out that the Tables in Wonderland saved us over 1$ on our bill... Doesn't sound like a lot... but that's OVER the tip! What I mean is that the money saved covers the 18% gratuity, which is added automatically, so we don't even have to think about it... AND you still save a buck or 2!!!
I won't keep the suspense : all in all, over the course of the 15 days, we saved over 150$ (gratuity included)... which is an AMAZING value for a 75$ card! ...and if you think that we'll use the SAME card on the next trip this fall... it's definitely a great option!!!

After dinner, we went to France to get tomorrow's breakfast at the bakery. I took a chocolate croissant, Mama chose 2 regular croissants... and we couldn't resist taking 2 strawberry tarts for dessert!

With that in hand, since we were both tired and since my feet were still awfully sore, we walked back to the monorail, a bit before 9pm, and got proof the monorail is way slower near closing time. Because on top of the long ride, the monorail stops on the track "while we wait for further traffic clearance". It took a good hour to get to the resort.

Oh, wait, on our way out, we saw the tree illuminated! Beautiful:


Once we got to our room, a bit before 10pm, I soaked my feet in the bath for a while, then we both took showers, ate our pastries and went to bed at around 11pm.

My
High of the day: Candlelight processional
Low of the day: The pain in my feet and discovering the injury was worst than I thought and might make the whole trip a problem
Food of the day: Cauliflower in cheese

Mama's
High of the day: Rose and Crown
Low of the day: Discovering how long it takes to, and especially from, Epcot with the monorail
Food of the day: Fish n chips

Plan for the day:
Epcot from morning to closing time
Candlelight Processional with NPH at 5pm (arrive at 4pm for a good spot)
Rose & Crown dinner at 7:20
IllumiNations

What actually happened:
Haircut at 8:30
Errands until noon
Epcot for lunch
Short nap at the resort mid-afternoon
Epcot 4pm-9pm
CP with NPH at 5pm (arrived at 4:30... OK spot, happy to wait less)
Rose & Crown close to 7:20
...back to room before IllumiNations

Overall, we did a lot less than planned... but since the general plan for the trip is to take it easy so I can have enough energy to last the whole way... it's OK.

In the next chapter: Will my feet kill my fun?

Last edited by AnnieDan_Artlover; 02-20-2013 at 09:21 PM.
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Old 02-11-2013, 05:25 PM   #37
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I love EPCOT at Christmas. Last time I saw Candlelight "Lt. Dan" aka Gary Seinse was reading on Christmas Eve. Magical. Smart thinking on the nap. If you had to hear the college girl talk that loud, I hope it was at least entertaining.
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Old 02-14-2013, 01:12 PM   #38
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It actually sounds like you paced yourselves just right. I think R&C is now on my wish list for dinner. We've been there for drinks, but not dinner.

Loved the CP. We had Trace Adkins and he was wonderful
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:20 PM   #39
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Chapter 12 - Nov. 30th: Hollywood Studios

You are right girls, going back to the resort, even if it took us much longer than anticipated, was worth it. Without it we wouldn't have been able to finish the day. But still it didn't feel like we rested much... or accomplished much either!

Susan, R&C is definitely a must!

I feel bad that it's already been 10 days since my last update, and this time I don't even have a bronchitis as an excuse... not that health as been wonderful, but not that bad.

OK, on with the show!

Oh, by the way, please excuse any mistyping... I elongated a few ligaments in my left fingers and they are taped together to try and help... which doesn't make for good typing... And I never have the courage to proof-read myself!
-------------------------------------------
Since we (I) had planned a late park arrival, we didn't set the alarm clock. We were still up at 7:25am!

Mama ate bagels with cheese bought our first night at Contempo Café while I ate the chocolate croissant from the french bakery in Epcot.
Mama took a shower while I worked on the Passporter pocket notes for this TR... and then we went to do laundry, which was really overdue... remember it was our 7th day being away from home! And being on the road we hadn't really had a chance to do any laundry before.
We had brought a foldable laundry basket, which was completely full and heavy enough we needed to both hold one side... we were quite disappointed to realize we had to go down to the first floor and cross the main lobby with our laundry to get to the laundry room... we felt a bit weird walking around with our dirty stuff for anyone to see... but then again, we said "it doesn't matter, we'll never see them again!" and started to laugh...

We were lucky, there was no one in the laundry room, and all the machines were free (there were 3). So we pondered about etiquette for a while... and then figured, you guessed it "it doesn't matter, we'll never see them again!" and took them all. No, seriously, we guessed etiquette is not to remove someone else's clothes to put your own, but that it's OK to use all the machines. Maybe we were wrong. We mostly figured someone else wouldn't have even asked themselves the question... We always end up trying to be nice and polite while it seems no one else does...

We were indeed happy we had decided to go at that time, mid-morning, when most moms are out in the park with the young kids... we figured laundry rush-hour must be early afternoon, when babies nap!

We finished the laundry, and hang dried our delicates all over the room (we have a lot, mostly things we don't want to shrink... which is almost all my clothes!) and then we finally headed to the park!

We arrived at Hollywood Studios at almost exactly noon.


It was the PERFECT day. About 75°F and sunny!

Since we had prepaid for the Photopass CD, we had agreed we would take every opportunity, so we took another picture just as we walked in


Of course, once more, it was peak lunch time and we were hungry.
Mama remembered how much she had liked Hollywood & Vine, and even if it was a TS and we had a TS ADR for that evening, she decided she'd rather we try going there then just eat fast food.
So we walked to the podium (after checking the map AND the GPS map/directions in my "Disney Experience" app on my iPhone multiple times... We always get lost and confused in this park!) and asked if there was availability... and there was!

We were seated almost immediately... and that's when I remembered it was a character meal now... With characters we don't know AT ALL. We don't have kids, we don't even have that channel.
They all came to say hi at our table : Handy Manny (I did know his name... wonder how!), Oso, June and Jake. I had to ask a CM their names...
Oso was so funny... he came beside Mama, a bit behind her and she wasn't paying attention at all, didn't see him coming... and he scared her (intentionally!). She jumped pretty high! We had a great laugh! Oso "apologized" and it really created a nice moment!
Hollywood & Vine:
Food: 4/5 It's very good, there is a lot of variety... but it's not "to die for".
Service: 4/5 Well, it's a buffet... but the little service we needed was great. Nothing bad to say.
Atmosphere: A family might say different, but for 2 adults... 2/5 Even if Oso was so fun and all the characters real nice... we paid more for the meal because they were in the place, even though we didn't care for them... there were songs with the kids, very loud.
1st time? No. But as a character meal, yes.
Would recommend? For families with kids who know the characters, yes. I would go back myself, maybe even with the characters, but not as an ADR... like this, if I didn't feel like fast food one day. But I would probably more likely go if it wasn't a character meal.

After that we walked to Toy Story Midway Mania, as I knew FastPasses went away early... they did so indeed... as at that hour (around 1pm) they had already gone out... even on a pretty low crowd day!

A friend of ours had asked if we could gather a few autographs for her little boy (3 y.o.). We were happy to oblige. His favorites were Woody, Buzz and Mickey. So we had set out the goal to get these and mayyyybe a few others, if it happened easily.
I wanted a few pictures with characters myself, but just if I didn't have those already and if it didn't mean a long wait.

Since we were in the vicinity, we checked out the wait for Buzz & Woody, in front of Toy Story... the line didn't seem too long, so we got in (I hadn't checked my app, and we didn't see the sign which says how long the wait should be).
After 20 min my feet were SUPER killing me, Mama was exasperated, and we had still 2/3 of the way to go... so we got out.

I was in so much pain we had to get a snack so I could take pain meds right away... I took a few cheese curls with water. Salty snacks that aren't huge (like entree size) are hard to find...
And by then I had no more fun, ZERO. I didn't feel like doing anything and was about ready to get in a bus and back to the resort.

So Mama said we should walk to the front of the park and rent a scooter.


I had dreaded that moment ever since we had started to plan.
But I was sooooo angry that it was just because of a stupid feet pain!!! For once I felt fine, I wasn't weak! But it felt like I just could NOT catch a break... It always had to be SOMETHING.

So we rented the scooter. Turns out I'm a very good driver!

And that way, we could stay in the park and enjoy. A bit, anyways... because the pain was still great.
And I learned fast that, thanks to my EDS, relieving one pain can often just create a new one... sitting on that thing for a long time gave me knee and back pain... and in case you didn't know, you command it with your thumbs on little levers (to give gas), well of course I hyperextended my thumbs doing it! I had to keep changing thumb and try to find the "good" way to push on the lever so that it wouldn't hurt too much. Seems so stupid, such a little thing... how could just pushing on that little thing create a problem?! That's my life... It's a collagen defect and you have that all over your body, and ligaments are everywhere, not just in the big joints...
And of course, directing the scooter happens with your arms, including shoulders and wrists... and I have torn ligaments in both my wrists and in my right shoulder...
All in all, the scooter was definitely a help... but it wasn't a miracle and I could see I would not be able to spend 15 days driving that thing around.

Once I had the scooter, though, and was mobile again, we went through the park and I did a few attractions...
And, sadly, I did not take notes.
I do remember riding in the Muppet 3D show, which is quirky and fun, but definitely not a must do...
Then, if I'm not mistaken, I did the new Star Tours, which is GREAT! I loved it!

After that we parked to watch the Pixar Pals Count Down to Fun parade.


That's where I noticed there is such a thing as being too close...

I have no idea what was on top of that float!

I know he's mean, but I was pretty excited to see Lotso! He's so fluffy!


By the way, I smelled a few of the stuffed Lotsos in the shops... they DO smell like strawberries! mmmm.
A bit disgusting when you think how many noses touch every stuffed Lotso... ewwww.

By that time I had to take more pain pills, so it was another snack. Why, do you ask? Because prior (and current) meds have pretty much ruined my stomach, and now each time I take meds, even just Tylenol, I need to eat with it... but this time was worse... because the pain was so unbearable and I needed to push through so bad, that I cheated and too Advils even though that's a big no-no with the condition of my stomach... But I needed to reduce the swelling. And that was on TOP of the pain meds. So snack was definitely in order, even if I didn't feel hungry one bit.
I settled on a pretzel. I had felt like having one yesterday, but mostly, it was the only thing close by.

We then went to get a Tower of Terror FP, and back to Rock n Roller Coaster where I used the single rider line (more rides should have that option!) while the FP time arrived. I rode it twice "to pass the time"

I had a pair of FP for RnR we had taken a bit earlier, before I had realized I could just take the single riders line... so I spotted a couple walking to the standby line and gave them the fastpasses. They were so surprised! They thanked me twice and I could see them turning back to look at me while walking in the FP line, as if they couldn't believe what had just happened.
Sprinkling a little pixie dust like that made my own day just a tad more magical!

Since it was a slow day, the ToT FP return time was less than an hour later. And of course we had taken an FP each... but Mama doesn't ride so I rode it twice!

ToT is definitely my favorite Disney ride!

Then we went in the direction of our ADR, checking a few stores on the way... and taking silly pictures




I would never have guessed it, but these are the pictures Mama liked taking the best, and the only one of her she likes looking at... she never likes herself in pics, so I'm guessing one where she is SUPPOSED to look silly is easier on the ego... I can relate... But I've never pictured her as a silly-pics-taker kinda person! She is actually looking forward to taking more on our next trip!

Then it was finally time for our ADR at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater.
We were set up in a 3 rows car, in the last row, as "hitchikers" behind a family of four.

We were on the side (close to the entrance) and about the middle of the room, so we couldn't really see the scope of the place unless we really turned and looked. We liked the theming and the originality of pretending to be at an old-style drive-in... not so much the mini space you have in front of you as tables... having your condiments (ketchup, salt, etc) on the back seat of the people in front of you, so you almost touch them when you get some... did not fancy the lack of lighting (altough we knew it would be like that), especially with Mama having bad vision in low light! We also were disappointed to notice the same movie clips again after about 40min. I think that not ALL clips were playing again, but some... so maybe it's not a loop but random... not sure.
Sadly, it was one of the worst experiences we had. And that's for the food.
We ordered the spinach artichoke dip to start. It was just OK. For entrees, I got the chicken pasta and Mama ordered the Ruben sandwich with cucumber salad.
It took a long time for us to get our food. And when we did, Mama did not have her cucumber salad and my pasta was cold. I rarely, EXTREMELY rarely turn back food... but it was not eatable. So I asked for it to be warmed up. The waiter said they would make me another. (such waste of food!).
And he said he would bring Mama her salad.
So we waited, and waited... I eventually got my pasta... which was... kinda warm. I was HUNGRY, so I said it was fine. Mama never got her cucumber salad.
My pasta was not good. It wasn't awful, but it wasn't good either.
So...
Food: 2.5/5 McDonalds would've been MUCH better.
Service: 2/5 Bad. Forgetting a salad. Twice. Bringing cold food. Twice. Not making much of a fuss about it. Not being wonderful about drinks either.
Atmosphere: 4/5 May not be practical to eat there, but it is really a special experience, something you don't see anywhere else.
1st time? Yes.
Would recommend? No. Altough I know it could've been just an off night.

While we were eating, another trend started (along with the "it doesn't matter, we'll never see them again...") which almost made it to substitle satus in the TR.
My iPhone welcome screen at the time was an Instagram picture I had taken of one of our 3 cats. My favorite one (shhhh! don't tell the other 2!).
His name is Muzo. He's a bengal cat and these cats tend to be very faithful... not the usual independant cat. Which is probably why he's my fav!
Here's the pic

And so, each time I would open the iPhone to check something, I would see the picture. And I would cry out "Mumuuuuuu" (which is one of his numerous nicknames). It became the running gag. The first few times I cried it out because I missed the cat... and then I would repeat it each time I saw the picture just to make us laugh!
...I did miss him a lot though!

After dinner we walked (rode) into the Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights


It was CRAZY! You could never tell it was a slow day in the park!!! It was jam packed! Which was hell in the scooter... It took forever to get through there...
But still, we loooooved it! It was magical! I always loved lights moving to music, be it in a rock show or fireworks, and I had watched similar Xmas light shows on people's houses on YouTube... (well... similar in concept anyways!), so this was right up my alley!
We both loved it.

When it was over (we didn't linger because it was so frustrating in the scooter), we went to bring the scooter back, the park was closing, and we took the bus.
On our way we took that pic


We couldn't believe that it was faster than the monorail back from Epcot!

By the way, we learned that taking the bus from the Contemporary, you are the first picked up (then they go to the Polynesian)... but you're the first off! So you win both ways! The choice of seats on the way there, and the shortest time on the bus when you just want to get "home"!

We got back to the resort at around 9pm.
We decided to hop in the hot tub to relief my aching feet... we were alone in there except for a dad and his chatty little son.
Afterwards we walked to the Contemporary beach so I could FINALLY watch the Electric Water Pageant. We were sitting on the beach chairs... and freezing! We were just dressed in our bathing suits with a vest or something to cover us... bare legs and flip flops... and it was about 60°F and windy! But I wanted to see it!
I felt like a little kid! I was super giddy and wanted to shout the names of the characters each time a new one lit up! It was really a magical moment.

Then we went back to the room, showered and got ready for bed, I finished taking my TR notes and we went to sleep at around midnight.

My:
High of the day: Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights and the look on the couple's faces after I gave them the RnR FPs
Low of the day: It's a tie between the pain in my heels and having to rent the scooter
Food of the day: Nothing amazing... but the berry cobbler at H&V was nice.

Mama's:
High of the day: Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights
Low of the day: Dinner at Sci-Fi... or maybe seeing my disappointment and anger when we had to rent the scooter...
Food of the day: Not sure but I think the caesar salad at H&V. I know she also feels like there was nothing particularly special food-wise today.

Plan for the day:
Laundry in the morning
HS from noon to closing, including:
Pixar parade
Sci-Fi ADR
Epcot EMH

What actually happened:
All which was planned, except we did hot tub and EWP in the evening instead of Epcot EMH because of my feet. Not too bad of a trade!

In the next chapter: Can I walk?

Last edited by AnnieDan_Artlover; 02-21-2013 at 12:34 AM.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:34 AM   #40
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Chapter 13 - Dec. 1st part 1: Epcot

**There was an update on Nov. 29th part 1

Wow, 2 months in Disney!
It seems it's a pattern for us... when we went in 2008, we arrived in April and left in May... we're doing it again! Maybe it makes us feel like we're staying longer? Nah, honestly, it just happens like that. Check out the PTRs to see why and how!

OK, so... the plan was to arrive in Epcot around noon, so, again, no alarm clock... guess what? We woke up, again, at around 7:30am. No use!

We ate our bagels and croissants in the room... by then the fresh bakery croissants were not as fresh, though... We'll remember that!
We ran some errands, like going to the Fantasia Market to get more milk and Diet Coke for Mama, to the food court for new breakfast items since we would be coming back too late...
And we took our sweet time. We couldn't go back to sleep, but there is a difference between taking your time and staying in, and going in the parks... it's still is more relaxing, and less taxing!

This morning, I tried my Chuck Taylors Converse shoes without any socks in them... I hate not wearing socks and I always do, but I am starting to have blisters, and my feet were swollen so I tried without following Mama's suggestion.

Still, at around 10am, we arrived at Epcot.

First thing on my radar was to go get Soarin' FPs. It's Mama's favorite ride, one of the few she can do, the "scariest" one for her... she's on the verge of getting motion sickness on it, but not quite, so it's great! First time she did it she cried, both because it was beautiful and fun and because it was a ride she could actually do and enjoy! (and maybe a bit from relief too, hehe)

But I knew we didn't want to wait and FPs could run out quick so... we headed there ASAP.
And it's a good thing we did, too, because the return time was for around 3pm this afternoon!

As long as we were in the Land pavilion, since we needed to save our steps because of my feet (well, anyone should, really!), we did the Living with the Land ride (there was maybe a 10min wait). Mama really enjoyed the ride, as it's her favorite type, getting into a little boat or bugy and being told a story (or science facts, just as good). It was nice.

After that I needed a snack to take pain pills, so we were in the perfect spot, Sunshine Seasons! We just shared a huge M&M sugar cookie and a carton of milk. It was the perfect size.

Then we went into the Circle of life movie, which we liked. Hey, yes it's big on the moral thing, but it's a good thing in my eyes... it's important to teach people, especially kids, about keeping the planet healthy! Plus, it's Timon and Pumbaa, so how could it be a bad time!?!

Having done all we wanted, we walked back towards the World Showcase.

We then took this picture

Notice any trend? It started to feel like the photographers lacked ideas of what to make us do, since we were just 2 female adults.

We noticed the gospel show was just about to start, so we sat on a bench almost in front of the stage and waited. Yup, we were lucky enough to get a bench!
And then we watched the show!

Of course an obstructed view was the price to pay for staying seated... since we mostly wanted to HEAR the singers, not see them... it was just fine by us!

We took the time to walk to MouseGears to take advantage of the annual passholders deal that was going on that day : if we bought for a certain amount of merchandise (I think it was 50$), we got 2 glasses for reduced price. Since we knew we wanted to buy merchandise anyways... it was a good time to do it!
I wanted another Tshirt, since the one from Hard Rock Café was not enough on its own... and I found one, a great one! It's a used looking, old style Mickey, in green. It's soooo soft!
Only problem was, they didn't have it in my size... in any color!
So I took one size bigger, thinking I wouldn't be worried if it shrinks...

I also chose a sleeping gown, with Eeyore. It's sooo funny, it has a scratch and sniff chocolate cup... it did indeed smell something, something sweet... of course it was gone after the first wash... but what was funny is, once I tried it on, the sticker saying "scratch n sniff" was just in the WRONG spot! You get the image...
Someone did not think in the marketing department!

With just those 2 items I got over 50$, so I could get the glasses... and I look at the check and either I got screwed or I totally misunderstood, because spending 50$, I got the incredible luck, as an annual passholder, to pay almost 15$ for 2 glasses. I mean... maybe they are worth 30$ and it was an incredible deal... but I had been under the impression I was getting ONE glass free if I bought for 50$. Now, the glasses look great, and since it's written "Annual passholder exclusive" on it, I can be sure not everyone has the same... and I'm glad I have two.
But I would rather have had the same as everyone else, and just one, and free.
I really will check the info better next time...

We then headed to France, because we wanted to have lunch at the bakery, because the items we had seen there when we ordered our croissants made our tummies rumble!

On the way though, we stopped because we saw this :


She is one of my all-times favorite, I was so happy!
We were not so happy that there was no Photopass photograph around, though. Mama had to snap that picture and knowing how much I love Marie, she was stressed out about messing it up!

Before we headed to lunch we snapped that pic


And then, finally, we ate!
The wait was short, and we could order. I chose the ham tartine and Mama another turkey sandwich. Once more we noticed how we just confuse the french CMs by talking to them in french! They speak to us in english, then realize what they are doing, switch to french, back to english, fumble in both languages, can't remember the french words, because they are so used to just working in english... and they feel bad for not being able to serve us in our own language, while we feel bad for confusing them.

Thing is, living in Québec we are used to switching from french to english and back all the time. I often chat, for example, with friends of both languages at once, and have to do the switch back and forth regularly.
We watch TV, listen to music, read in both languages. This is the case for most people living here... most french-born anyways.
Both me and Mama are perfectly bilingual.

But most French, even if they are also perfectly bilingual, don't live on the fence of both languages that way, they don't need to.
I have one friend living in Paris, and we met while in China, surrounded by people from all countries, and we were all speaking english... he hated when I spoke french to him, because he had to put his brain in "french" mode again, and then back to "english" mode. He wasn't used to having to do that switch, or not fast. He was watching US tv shows, listening to english music, etc. But in his everyday life, it was all french all the time.
Not so for us...

So... I remembered that when I saw those poor French CMs, which I was plucking out of their english mode and back in french mode, unprepared. Still, it was nice!

But the best part was the food
We were lucky to find a table just outside Impressions de France, and it was nice to be able to sit and enjoy the food. Mama had regrets about not taking the tartine (which is a pizza, basically, without tomato sauce).

To cap it off, we went to the crêpe kiosk and I ordered a chocolate crêpe. Yum!
It would've tasted better if it hadn't been so windy... I couldn't enjoy the moment, having a very gusty wind rush over my face and being worried my food would fly away any minute. We were sitting between the 2 France kiosks beside the water... it was deserted. No wonder... it had been sunny and warm until noon, but now it was cloudy and pretty cold, especially with that wind! If it wasn't that I needed to sit down to eat that crêpe, I wouldn't have sat there either.

Mama would've wanted to order some champagne, but she was scared it would make her too prone to motion sickness in Soarin', where we were going next...

On the way we stopped at Club Cool, where I drank a few cups of the mexican soda (the one with apples!) and bought a pink Minnie case for my iPhone, to protect it better, and to hide the chip it got when Mama dropped it when we were in Universal a few days back. She had been keeping it in the front pocket of the messenger bag, along with some kleenex... and with both in it, the pocket flap did not close completely (it's only velcro)... and when she pulled the bag over her head to remove it, turning the pocket upside down, the heavier iPhone dropped to the ground... from about 6 feet high... Lucky those are very sturdy! She felt very bad, I was angry, but what could we do?
I only had skin protection on the front and back, now I was adding a plastic back and side cover...
We would sadly soon discover that having such a thing on it made it hard for my flimsy fingers to push on the buttons, and less than 3 months later I have given the case to my dad (yes, the pink Minnie case!).

I also bought hair clips with Minnie ears attached to them at the kiosk just outside Innoventions. I had seen ONE little girl in pigtails with those and they seemed ideal. I had thought they were elastics, but I realized then they were just slipped in the ponytails... I felt it would be the right thing for me... I didn't want a hat that would ruin my bangs or make me too hot (since my body doesn't react well to heat, and since you lose body heat through your head mostly, it's better for me not to wear a hat when it's hot!)...
But I wasn't able to make them stay on properly... I had to wait to be at the resort and make half-ponytails so I could stick them in.
It did look a bit weird, since the ears are sized for kids... I have to admit they looked more like bear ears on my head, than big mouse ears... but it still was fun! And for just 7$, a great deal, too!

We hit Soarin' at about 3:30pm, and it was just as great as we remembered!
From there we walked over to Imagination with Figment, which I had really liked 4 years ago, kitsch as it is
I love the song!
Mama isn't the biggest fan, but at least it's her kind of ride, so she doesn't hate it either. She agrees, very much, that it's kitsch.

I then had to stop for a snack to take, you guessed it, pain meds (get used to that, there's a lot more coming!). Once more, I took a pretzel... that was the only food available in that area... lucky I don't hate it.

And finally it was time for Captain EO! I'm a big MJ fan, and I had seen the video on YouTube a few years ago, and I remember being sorry, in 2008, that EO wasn't in Epcot anymore... MJ and dancing, it must've been so fun!
So I was extatic when I learned they were bringing it back!

The whole time we were waiting, altough I just wanted to sit down (against the rules...) or just die because my feet hurt so much, I was getting super excited, because they are showing that making of video... and there is sooo much dancing! We couldn't wait for the movie to start!

And then the pre-show video ends (one of the longest I've ever seen...), we get in... snap that pic

See how happy and excited we look?

OMG, such disappointment!
The whole thing is just silly, MJ, as much as I respect him, just looks like the bad actor he was (maybe worse...), the effects are few and un-impressive... and the dancing? Where is all that dancing??? In the pre-show you feel like it's going to be a 30min movie of just dancing... but you barely have 5 minutes...
Mama felt it was 20min of her life she'll never get back... or close to that. One thing was for sure... watching the pre-show video, we thought we'd be back at least 2 more times before the trip was over... after the movie ended, I knew I'd have trouble convincing Mama to go again on another TRIP!

In the next chapter: Can I walk... for 15 hours straight???

Last edited by AnnieDan_Artlover; 02-21-2013 at 12:39 AM.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:38 AM   #41
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Chapter 14 - Dec. 1st part 2: Epcot AND MK! Wooo

Then we walked over to The Seas pavilion. Where we saw my friends! I love those...

"Mine, mine, mine"... it's so funny how, like Mama said, everyone looks completely retarted in that area, as we all can't help but blurt that out when we see those seagulls!

We had plenty of time before our Coral Reef ADR, so we did it all! We had never been to The Seas!
Starting with taking a picture

It's not the best... but Mama had trouble hitting the button delicately with the iPhone's new case (I did mention I had to get rid of it eventually because it made it too hard to push those).
You can see my new ears!

We started by riding a clamobile in Nemo and Friends... It was cute, but way too short! Barely seated in that uncomfortable thing and you already have to squirm out!
I found the bit going sideways along the turtles in the tube a bit dizzying. I was scared Mama would get motion sickness with that, but she didn't. Yay!

Then I insisted we try Turtle talk with Crush. It's a kids thing, but I had heard how cool it was to see it in action, and we had time to spare so... in the end, Mama didn't feel it was lost time, but she wasn't as excited as I was.

I must say, this trip, compared to last, my mood was great. I was ready to be a kid at heart, I was ready to laugh and be excited, to find joy in the small things and get wide-eyed as if I was 5 again! Mama... not so much. Not that she would spoil it or anything... she just stayed more of an adult... so when she saw Turtle talk with Crush, she said "yeah, it's well done, it was nice". She laughed at a few jokes. She was willing to shout with everyone and play along... but she didn't ENJOY it, didn't completely let go. I think, for the most part, I was able to.
But you can't force it. I have no idea why it happened this time and not the last. Maybe simply because I was physically better.

After the turtle stuff we visited the aquarium. We like that and so it was not just to spare time. Problem was, especially on the second level, it was very warm and humid... I couldn't enjoy it and we had to leave in a hurry because I was starting to feel weak.

I must say though, as much as I trust Disney and as much as I love looking at fishies in an aquarium... I don't like the idea of those fish and other marine life stuck in those boxes. It's a big dilemma for me.

And so, it was about time to go have dinner!
We headed to Coral Reef, and when we got inside I was very surprised at how beautiful everything was! walking up to the restaurant... wow.

And we were seated... not a great table. Maybe we should've asked for a table "with a view" and waited for it... maybe it would'nt have helped, I don't know. But we were seated on the second tier, in the middle. So we were not close to the aquarium, AND there was another table in our line of sight... so when we tried to look at the aquarium, it felt (and looked) like we were spying on the table next to us! We were happy when they left!



It's lucky we don't like fish and that I'm allergic (slightly) to seafood, because I would find it VERY weird to eat the nice fish I'm looking at!!!

We ordered a caesar salad to share as an appetizer (OK... why is it that you english people insist on using our french word "entrée" for the main course, when in french, it means appetizer?! We get confused all the time!!! Anywho...), and it was very good! Maybe not the BEST we ever had, but very, very good!
Then we both ordered the chicken with spaetzle. We did not know what it was... but the chicken was the only thing on the menu we felt like eating.
Turns out spaetzle is a bit like gnocchi... but small like orzo... dense potato pasta. DELICIOUS! And the chicken was one of the best chickens I've ever eaten! We wanted to lick our plates...
We finished with a shared crème brûlée and Mama took a Spanish coffee.
That was also very good!

When we looked at the menu and saw very little that inspired us, we never would've thought we'd enjoy our meal so much!

I hadn't read great reviews about this place (not necessarily bad, just not great) so I didn't expect great things... we just wanted to see the atmosphere. Well, this was a great surprise!

Food: 5/5 One of the best of the whole trip!
Service: 4/5 Nothing bad to say, but she didn't do anything special, she doesn't stick out in my mind...
Atmosphere: 5/5 Even with a bad table, it was very nice. Having something to look at is fun, there are nice boxes so it makes for intimacy, instead of feeling all piled up... it wasn't a very loud restaurant, the way it's arranged, and with the lighting and everything, it's relaxing so kids don't run around or scream a lot... and at about the middle of our dinner, there was a scuba-diving group in the tank, which made for even more entertainment! And they went around for a long while. We would stop seeing them, and then one would come back... They would wave, it was fun!

It was one of those times when we felt we might get judged for being cheap, because we split our appetizer and our dessert. Would the CM think we were cheap? Would she be frustrated since it would mean a smaller tip?
I almost felt like explaining that it was mostly because we simply wouldn't eat more food even if we ordered more... and then we realized the CM probably didn't care, probably saw every kind of people, including very, truly cheap ones...
And it was one more occasion to say "It doesn't matter, we'll never see her again!"

Two very full ladies walked out of there and snapped this pic


As we walked out I noticed I was missing one pin I had traded earlier in the afternoon... and since the same thing had happened just yesterday, I stopped at the camera center to buy some regular black pin backs!

We then took the express monorail to the Magic Kingdom. But not as a shortcut to our resort... we were going to the park! YAY! MK! Finally!

Tonight it was closing late to make up for the filming of the ABC Xmas parade in the morning, and we wanted to take advantage of it!

Here is a pic of our first view of the illuminated, Xmas lighted, castle, and Main St.


We arrived just in time to get a spot on the path between Main St and Tomorrowland, near the castle, for the new castle light show "Celebrate the magic".


We then scooted over in front of the castle to wait for Wishes.
It was a big adventure getting there, as it's pitch dark, already not easy for me to navigate... but Mama, with her eyes problems, doesn't see a thing, and is a bit scared of moving around in that darkness!
So she hung onto my hoodie and I used the LED flashlight of the iPhone, and thanks to that I didn't trip and neither did she, and we got to a good spot, almost dead center in front of the castle and closer than where the path ends...
While we were waiting there was a commotion, just about where we had come, near the path to Tomorrowland... a woman had tripped over the sidewalk and fell on her back (people had scooted over to let her fall instead of catching her, of course)... And not only was it so dark that she could fall, but it was so dark that people could hardly find CMs to call for help!

Of course, it's still Disney, CMs eventually appeared, not too late, and the lady seemed OK, altough shocked and bruised.

I know it has been that way "forever", but I'm really surprised there is no more lighting in such a crowded place, especially with so many kids, elderly and handicapped present!
I understand they can't use big lights that would ruin the mood or the look... but would it be so crazy to add luminescent paint to highlight the sidewalk and tramway rails? To add a BIT more light, especially in more "dangerous" areas, like where paths cross?

We noticed the same lack of light in all the parks... I see well enough in the dark, and I didn't feel safe. I'm not talking about dangerous people lurking to attack me, I'm talking going the wrong way or spraining an ankle on something I didn't see...

Anyways...

After that little incident, we watched Wishes, and it was just as magic as ever!

When it was over we walked to the special parade viewing spot I had learned about online... should I give it to you? ...mmmm... oh, alright!
Go to Frontierland, especially in front of the Frontier Trading Post. There are even boxes there where you can sit to wait, and there shouldn't be so much people (if you go at the second one on a night where there are 2 parades) that you can't stay seated until the parade is almost there. Maybe even stay seated to watch it, if you don't feel you need to be up close!

The parade starts in Main St. at the entrance of the park, and makes its way towards Frontierland, which takes about 20min.

While we waited I went to get us a DoleWhip float, on a whim. I had just went to the bathroom, between Frontierland and Adventureland, and I figured where I was, and remembered where Aloha Isle was (I was soooo proud of myself for that!). So I did a quick stop there and surprised Mama with that late night snack. We hardly finished it between the 2 of us... but it was good. Tasted much better than last time we had one... must have to do with the fact I was just back from almost fainting from a BP drop that time and that we went to get one so the trip wouldn't end with a visit to the first aid station...

Lucky I remembered to buy us a bottle of water with that though, otherwise we would've suffered!

And finally, we watched the Main Street Electrical Parade!!!
Mama had watched it about 35 years ago... I had always wanted to see it, knew the song by heart!!! It was everything we wanted it to be!
We liked it much more than Spectromagic... which we had loved!!!
I can't wait to see it again!!!

Sorry I don't have any pictures, I only carried my iPhone and even if it's amazing as a point-and-shoot, like MOST point-and-shoot cameras, it's totally crappy in low-lighting.

After the parade we walked out of the park and back to our resort

(I realize I took all the pics of the Contemporary, and none of our actual resort, BLT... probably because of the mickey head!)

The walk took us 10 minutes. We couldn't believe it! It was magic!

And once we got in our studio, we had a surprise waiting: Mousekeeping had come, AGAIN! Mama had been sure the rescheduling thing wouldn't have worked... and she had been right!
But this time there had been no enveloppe laying around, so that poor mousekeeper came in and did a full cleaning and got nothing. Well, I know it's technically a non-tipping job... but we tipped the others... even if it wasn't willingly!
I'm getting frustrated with this!
How hard can it be to keep up with this? Don't they have a computer?

My feet were killing me and I had something like 6 blisters... One on the side of each of my big toes, some on the back of the heels and a bunch on the ball of my right foot, under the big toe... probably from walking all weird because of the injury.
Clearly, not wearing socks had been a bad idea...

We were in bed at about 1am. And we had done ALL WE WANTED.


My:
High of the day: Seing Marie, MSEP & being able to do all we wanted!
Low of the day: recurring theme : aching feet.
Food of the day: Spaetzle

Mama's:
High of the day: Soarin'
Low of the day: Changing viewing spots in the dark
Food of the day: Spaetzle

Plan for the day
Epcot from noon to around 9pm
Must do's include Soarin', Captain EO, Imagination with Figment, Mission Space
Lunch at Boulangerie pâtisserie
Coral Reef dinner ADR
MK for late evening, to see Wishes and 2nd MSEP

What actually happened
We arrived at Epcot a bit earlier, and we did everything we wanted but Mission Space!!!
A most satisfying day!

In the next chapter: What surprise could be in store for us?

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Old 02-28-2013, 03:48 PM   #42
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Rare Disease Day

Hi guys!

This is a totally post, a short one, but dear to my heart.

Today is the International Rare Disease Day.
The disease I suffer from, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobile type, affects only about 1/5,000 people, maybe as few as 1/20,000.
It may sound a lot, but just start counting, or compare it to other diseases, and it's really not a lot.

It's not enough for doctors to really know anything about it but the name, most other health specialist even never heard about it (nurses, pharmacists, etc).

It's not enough for big drug companies to want to do research about treatments, because it's not financially interesting. In the US, and in some countries, the governments have to force them with laws... sadly not yet in Canada... and it'll never be a big enough budget to really help all the 7,000 different rare diseases sufferers all around the globe, but it's a start!

You can get more info here : http://www.rarediseases.org/

Living with a chronic illness is never easy, but living with one that you feel alone in the world living with, one that few people know about and that even your doctor can't help you understand is even worst.

Thanks for taking a moment to care!

I'll be back soon with a real update, promise!
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:06 PM   #43
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Chapter 15 - Dec. 2nd, part 1: A surprise! ...and Animal Kingdom

We woke up at 8:15am, took our showers (we had been WAY too pooped yesterday evening, WAIT... THIS MORNING! to take them!) and got ready and ate toasts for breakfast...

At 9:30 we started our "errands":
One of us went to pick up what we had bought and shipped to the resort's shop. We always take advantage of that option!

Then I had to call Mousekeeping, AGAIN, because of the snafu from yesterday, with them coming to do our full service as originally scheduled, even though we had changed it so they wouldn't come until Monday!
The CM I got on the phone was not very apologetic, didn't seem to care much, even when I said I was sorry that the poor mousekeeper had no tip because we had not known she would come... I asked that the supposedly re-scheduled mousekeeping for Monday be cancelled... turns out it wasn't in the computer (argh), and said I was getting tired of them showing up when they were not supposed to, and I certainly would make sure I wouldn't be charged for any of the "extra" cleanings! The CM assured me I wouldn't.

And then... drum roll...
We booked our next trip!!!
I had done some research before we left, while I had all my documents and more time, so I already knew the good dates for weather vs. price vs. crowds vs. events (we wanted to go back for Halloween and Food & Wine Festival).
The only offer in the DVC studio was for free dining, but booking full price and not for the dates we wanted, so it wasn't at all good for us.
But I knew the extension to call for a bounceback offer, if I could get one... so I dialed #8844 on our studio phone... and it worked!
But it wasn't as easy as I thought it would be. I thought I would simply get a machine telling me if there was a bounceback offer for us or not, and what it was, and the PIN code to use...

Instead I got a booking agent asking what she could do for me.
I almost was at a loss for words! So I said I was wondering if there was a bounceback offer we could take advantage of when we were planning on coming back... she asked for our information (name, reservation number), made sure we were still checked-in... and told me there was indeed and offer!!!
But it didn't exactly fit my dates... so I went ahead with the closest match, and instead of telling me, for example "I can offer you 35% off a Deluxe, or 20% off a Value" etc, instead also of telling me prices... she asked where we wanted to stay...
Well, that pretty much depended on the offer!
But we went ahead asking a quote for our wish, the Contemporary... I had to basically decide everything and only then did I get the price with the discount.
Turns out it was indeed about 35% off! We could get the cheapest rooms (the only ones we can afford, even with the discount), the Garden Wing, standard view. But we couldn't care less! Well... Mama cared a little... she's worried it will be a longer walk... but it's not like we have a great choice. The other availability was club level! Heck no. It's like 3 times the price...
So we went ahead and booked it!

We are COMING BACK!!!!!!
Dates will be Sept. 25th to Oct. 4th, 2013. Yeah!

Right now we are staying at Bay Lake Tower, which is the round-ish thing on the left of the main building. Next fall we will be staying in that H-shape thing on the right. We'll hope that we'll be lucky and get a room in the building closest to the main one, so that the walk to the bus, monorail and MK is shorter!

After that was settled, we went to take the bus, and waited. And waited. And waited some more. It took over 30 minutes for the bus to arrive! And we got it, and it was freezing. The A/C was full on, but even if it was pretty hot outside, people inside were not wearing much and so after 5min everyone was shivering... that felt like the longest drive ever! We got to Animal Kingdom at about 12:30pm.

And of course we were hungry!

We took the time for this nice pic:


We then walked straight to Yak & Yeti's quick service counter, as we had loved to eat at the full service restaurant 4 years ago!
But we did not eat there.
We asked a CM if we could take the trays further away, and he said we could take them anywhere we wanted in the park as long as we brought them back... and then he laughed and said we didn't even have to bring them back!

We witnessed people eating in the most uncomfortable positions, sitting on the curb, on top of garbage cans... and we took our trays and walked less than 90 seconds to the HUGE sitting area near Flame Tree BBQ, where we had the most peaceful meal of the whole trip, I think.
Alone, close to the water, so nice...



This is a nice little "secret" you should all note somewhere!

As for the food, I took the honey chicken and Mama ordered the mandarin salad. We loved the little boxes it came in! It was still plenty hot by the time we settled in (in fact, was still hot when we finished eating). Well mine... Mama's salad was cold, duh.
We both loved our food! Perfect. We'll eat there again for sure.

Then to digest a little, we walked the Discovery Island Trails. And I couldn't help but be amazed that I was walking it instead of being rolled on it with difficulty. It was so much better than last time!

And finally it was time for Expedition Everest!
Thank god for the single rider line!
I rode it twice in a row.
The second time, I got seated with 2 young teenagers, and it was so funny. The boy sitting with me asked if it was my first time, if I would scream... he said he would... I told him as long as he didn't throw up on me he could do as he pleased.
And then he started to tell something about a girl to his friend... but then stopped and said "I'll tell you later" and I couldn't help but add "Yeah, cuz I'm here, ya know..."
I love messing around with teens heads! They see me like this dinosaur, while I oh so remember the feeling.

Anywho... I loved EE just as much as I remembered, maybe even more now that I could just walk to the single-riders line and hop on, and do it again, without Mama having to push me around.
And even if she had to wait for me, it was much more fun for her to just sit on a little stone wall further and people watch!

But I felt twice in a row was enough and I wanted to do something else.

At 3:15 pm I had to take some pills, of course, so we took some ice cream at the Anandapur bus. I tried an orange soda float (with vanilla ice cream), it was great! Mama took a simple vanilla ice cream cone. And thank god we remembered to take a water bottle with that!

With that in hand we moved on to scout a parade spot. Mama had studied the parade route, and felt the area between Africa and Asia would be a good spot, so we walked there. It was already not a busy day, but there was a whole section that was EMPTY! I soon found out why though... the sun was setting, and you had it straight in your eyes from that side of the road. And there was no roped-area on the other side. It was also making it very hot, and of course there was no shade. But I decided I could handle it if I could sit on the ground. Except Mama does NOT sit on the ground. So she took a walk, went to stand a bit further away in the shade, moved a bit... I was VERY happy to be sitting anyways, my feet, as usual, were killing me.
Ligaments don't repair themselves fully even with rest and care... they definitely don't when you continue using them! As for the heat, let's just say I was VERY happy we had thought to buy this cooling scarf! (and to bring it that day!).

Then finally the parade started, Mama joined me and I got up... and we realized we had the PERFECT spot!
Not only did we have plenty of space (even though, of course, by then others had joined us), but we were on the edge, so we were the first the characters saw after a turn, and since there was only one side rope-off, they had all their attention only on us!
I never had so much character interaction!


This guy took my hands and started to dance with me!

Then Chip and Dale came buy

And one of the handlers pointed out to them that I had the same exact scarf! So they came to "chat" with me for a bit (so sad that Mama doesn't carry her own camera, she could've captured those moments... happened to fast for me to give her mine, I barely had time to lower it!)

Pluto also came by


It was like that pretty much all the way!

Except towards the end... a family came and stood on the side of the rope-off area... on the "security corridor" or "free pathway" if you might call it... They were told repeatedly by CMs to NOT stay there and move... and of course they didn't listen.
There was a young girl of maybe 9 y.o. with that family and she stood next to me, and of course the characters would interact with her then and not with me.

Had she been in her right place, had her mom asked if she could stand in front of me and went to stay behind herself, I would not have minded at all. It's normal that kids get the attention! As much fun as it was to play with the characters, let the kid have fun while she's a kid!
...But the way her parents are raising her made me angry, showing her that bullying is the good way to get noticed and have fun is not the right way... so that, I minded.

The interaction was good even with those guys


Poor guys, working so hard to move those floats while it was so hot out...
And then the funniest moment happened : one of them announced that snow was gonna fall (behind the Donald float). To which Mama replied (loudly enough that he'd hear) "Sure, that's why you're sweating so much!"
I couldn't believe she had blurted that out!!! It's so NOT her style!!!

Everyone had a good laugh, the sweaty guy included!
And it was another one of those "It doesn't matter, we'll never see them again" moments...

In the next chapter: Does Mama find something she likes at Boma?

Last edited by AnnieDan_Artlover; 03-03-2013 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:11 PM   #44
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Chapter 16 - Dec. 2nd part 2: Animal Kingdom and Boma

After the parade, we did the Maharajah Jungle Trek.
After which we took this pic:


And we were on our way to see Nemo- the Musical. We had seen it in 2008, but we felt like sitting down and enjoying a cute little show
Once again, it was fun to be free of the wheelchair, as we had better seats!
I still have "Keep on swimming" stuck in my mind months later... big earworm, I'm warning you!

I couldn't resist Primeval Whirl, altough I was worried I would be sitting with others like last time... In 2008 they maybe it was busy, or I got an incompetent CM, because I got seated with a dad and his son... but as you may or may not know, PW is a VERY jerky ride, and the seats are made for 4 kids, or 2 adults... and there is no real separation of the 2 seats, it's just a bump. So you very well might end up bumping the person besides you.
It won't be fun even if it's your kid, as you might fear you'll hurt him by crushing too hard on him, but when it's a STRANGER's kid!
Let's just say I had no fun at all and just spent the ride holding on as hard as I could and trying to counteract the pushes and pulls so I wouldn't crash on that kid...

Luckily, that did NOT happen this time.
There was no FP or single-rider line, but the wait was a big 5 minutes... so I went in... and while I waited I could see the CM asking if there were single riders, and how many would be riding, and I could see he never put more than 2 adults together, never put strangers with others either. Phew!
I rode ALONE. And it was much more fun!!!
I still tried not to slide, as getting bumped around too much I can get hurt bad (no joke), but I really could enjoy the ride.

Wow, that is NOT a kiddy ride! It's really one of the roughest ones, when you stop to think about it! It goes down fast, turns you around in many ways, jerks roughly... spins a lot... the only thing it doesn't do is HUGE drops and loops. I'm not saying it's too much for me. But I'm saying it's much more thrills then you'd expect looking at it... it's built the right way to get you the "weeee" feelings without using lots of space... and so if you have scaredy-cat people in your party, motion-sickness prone people who think they'll be fine because it looks like a thing for kids... just don't let them ride this!
On the other hand, if you have thrill seekers who think they'll be bored and don't want to try it... push them to, because they'll have more fun than they think!

In front of Primeval Whirl we saw Christmas Pluto and Goofy taking pics, so we got in line. It looked worse than it was, with the line doing a snake... it barely took us 15 minutes to get there.
We got out the autograph book we had gotten for our friend's little boy, and asked if we could get pictures of the characters while they were signing (without us in it) so we could show "the little kid back home" they really did sign it!
As you can see, they were happy to oblige, doing a big deal about it (even though it seemed it was a weird request, from the way the handler and Photopass photograph looked at us)


And then it was time for OUR picture


I finished the park day with a ride in Dinosaur... I can't remember if I rode it straight on or if I had taken a FP earlier... sorry!

On our way out of AK we took that pic


We took the bus to Animal Kingdom Lodge, and the driver was kind enough to make sure we got off at the right stop after I asked him a question about Boma... I had not done all my homework, not realizing there was more than one AKL stop!

Once there, I realized the bad side of having a dinner ressie was we wouldn't be able to see what the resort looked like, just the inside...
But already, the inside was awesome!


Since we had a bit of time to spare, we waited for a Photopass photograph to finish setting up and we took this pic


He asked us to look surprised...
After that Mama practiced a "surprised" look for days!!!

(don't tell her I put this pic here, she'll kill me! )

And finally we got into Boma.
We were shown to our table... quite a bit far from the buffet... we almost got lost, haha!
Mama had been worried she wouldn't like anything. Because she can be a tad difficult and she's not fond of new tastes... but she was willing to try, and was OK with eating just salad and bread for one meal if it came to that.

Wow, was it NOT the case!
This is the only time I thought of taking a food picture in the meal, and almost in the whole trip, too


I ate about 3 plates like that, plus 2 bowls of curries cauliflower soup (the one without coconut!) AND a dessert plate! And Mama ate just as much!
We didn't necessarily eat the same things, for example she didn't even got to taste the hummus, because she ate more salad and other things, but she was just as happy as I was!
It was de-li-ci-ous!!!
I ate more than I usually eat in one DAY, and I still was sorry I couldn't eat more!

I have since found the recipe for that soup, and made some (check my next trip PTR for that recipe) and I've managed to make it almost as good... yum!

I must say though, it's true that the Zebra domes are overrated. Not liking alcohol, I did not like them at all. Mama liked them, but didn't rave about them.
I much prefered the bread pudding, dessert-wise!
....Getting hungryyy...

So, Boma:
Food 5/5 Some of the best food we ate on the trip. We should be going back!
Service 4/5 It's a buffet, for starters... Our plates were not cleared each and every time we left the table, and as you can see in this picture, our drinks were not always full. But since it's a buffet, I never expect a lot... and it's not like we had to wait forever to get our drinks or the bill at the end, and the CM was very nice and friendly, talking to us about the weather in Canada and so on.
Atmosphere 3/5 It's noisy, especially when you have that short african percussion performance, you have to navigate between tables to get to the buffet (unlike H&V or other places in Disney which I remember from 4 years ago, where it's clear wide paths), and it's not clear which food is where, even though the CM explained it to us when we got there. Some food are there twice (if I remember right?) but not all, so many people end up just going all along the line when it's not needed, feeling angry that you "cut them" when you are just wanting some couscous or soup... It could be better organized.
But the look and feel are nice!
1st time? Yes.
Would recommend? Definitely! And would go back!

At about 9:30pm we took the bus for MK... it was there when we got out of AKL, so we ran to it... well Mama walked as fast as she could and half-ran with her full belly from Boma and her tired legs... how could I run in my own situation, full as well, just as tired, with my bad heel and so on? I DID NOT WANT TO WAIT ANOTHER HOUR THERE!!! I think they call that despair energy. We do in french anyways.

When I got there, the driver said "Are you trying to make your mom lose weight by having her run like that?"
I could NOT believe he was saying something so disrespectful!!!
I should've taken his name and report him... but I was so much in shock and so tired I didn't even think about it at the time.

From MK we walked to the BLT while the magic was all around us: Wishes in MK, IllumiNations in Epcot and the Electric Water Pageant on the lake were all going on at once!

Once we got "home" we ran some errands in the Contemporary: bought tomorrow's breakfast at the market and Contempo Café.
That's when I took that pic of the gingerbread creation


Doesn't it look nice?
Sadly, it doesn't taste as nice.
We bought a shingle, and first off, I was put off to notice there is CHOCOLATE under it. Chocolate and gingerbread don't mix, in my book.
Plus, it was a bit dry. My own gingerbread is at least 3 times better!!!

And on that note, we went to bed at around 11pm.

My:
High of the day: The character interaction in the parade... tied with booking for next fall!
Low of the day: The long wait for the AK bus and then being so damn cold!
Food of the day: Curried cauliflower soup at Boma!

Mama's:
High of the day: Booking for next fall AT THE CONTEMPORARY
Low of the day: Long wait for the bus
Food of the day: Curried cauliflower soup (what can I say, it was good!)

Plan for the day:
AK from mid-morning to park closing at 7pm
Expedition Everest
Dinosaur
Jammin' Jingle Jungle Parade
Dinner at Boma at 7:40pm
See Wishes from the Top of the World Lounge (at least try to see if we could get admitted as non-DVC guests renting points...) and/or EWP on the lake.

What actually happened:
Arrived at AK after noon
Did all the attractions planned and the parade too
Dinner at Boma, we were early, as usual: 7:20pm
We were too late for either EWP or Wishes.
Overall a great day!

In the next chapter: Mama gets the TR bug!

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Old 03-27-2013, 03:47 PM   #45
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Chapter 17 - Dec. 3rd part 1: Hollywood Studio

Wow, almost one month without writing... I've let you guys down...
I'm sorry and I'll try to make it up to you... and not do that again!

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

We woke up around 8am, had breakfast in the room, as usual... and we took it at a slow pace. Taking the bus for HS a little past 10am.

We arrived around 11am.
We hadn't even walked in the park, just off the bus, and since my feet hurt a lot and my feet were swollen, Mama suggested I remove my socks, which we put in our bag.

As usual, getting in the park we got a Photopass pic


And thank god for the time post on that pic, because having almost taken no notes that day... without those and the receipts, that TR post would be bad!

We were already hungry and I of course had to take pain pills, so having heard of that almost hidden gem of the Writers Stop café, we went to find that... what a disappointment... because it was only sweets... and nowhere to sit, really!
We were not in a mood to eat cookies or cupcakes... but we were there, hungry, and I couldn't walk anymore... so we settled for that.
I must say, though... OMG! I took a peanut butter cookie (and WHAT a cookie! I think it was 6" in diameter!) with half a pint of milk... it was heavenly! Mama took a muffin (HUGE of course) with a diet coke (yuk... those DON'T go together! someone needs to tell her that )... It was good and did the job.
We ate sitting on a bench close by, with a mom breastfeeding on the bench beside us... it was peaceful

After that we decided to do the Great Movie Ride, which turned out to be less than great. We remembered it to be "so-so"... but having now done all the parks, and 4 years later, not being "park naive", it just felt very outdated... and much in that ride lies on the shoulders of the CMs and their acting skills... and our "guide" was the worst EVER. You know the part where one uses a gun, in the ambush? That was simply pitiful. Like, high school amateur bad. No... high school BAD acting amateur bad. Because many high school who love theater would've been much better!
The Wizard of Oz scene was beautiful as always, though.
I kept thinking "people need to do very hard auditions to work in those types of jobs... how could that girl get the part???".

We then went to Toy Story Midway Mania, to get fast passes. I was lucky, at 12:20pm we could grab our 2 FPs... for a return time of 6:30-7:30pm that evening! A little later and I wouldn't have gotten any!

We checked the line for Woody and Buzz... and it still was way too long for us, especially with my feet.

So we sat down for a bit... and it turns out we sat down in the line to see Minnie! She had either went for a short break or was scheduled to be there in a few minutes, and it was the spot to wait... and we ended up being 3rd in line totally by chance! We wouldn't have waited in line for Minnie, as I already had her autograph and pics with her in different costumes already... but hey, we could wait sitting and were already there!
Plus, when we saw her arrive and it was a new outfit... yay!



Then, Mama hoping to help with my aching feet, thought that maybe if I could wear different shoes, I would feel better, we started looking for some, especially Crocs. We remembered buying some Disney Crocs in 2008, and they were everywhere then... But we checked a few stores and could not find a single pair, except very little, for kids.
So we stopped for a breather, near Hollywood and Vine... and we stopped a cleaning CM to ask her if she had any idea where we could find adult Crocs shoes. That lady went above and beyond. She told us to wait there and left her job to go ask someone else and she came back to give us the info.
I can't remember her name now, but rest assured we noted it and made sure to send an email to HR to say how great she had been. And we made sure she knew how much that extra service had meant to us!

Sadly, the info she gave us was that only 2 shops in HS still carried Crocs shoes... and when we went there, it turned out even though they were the right brand, they were not the comfortable, ugly things, but flip-flop type sandals, which would've been no good for me.

It was then that I had to stop for a bit before I had a blood pressure drop because of the heat.
I had NOT brought my little cooling scarf today, because we had checked with AccuWeather and they had said it would be pretty cool today! Well, turns out ACCUWeather is not ACCUrate at all. It was HOT. Too hot for me. I started feeling dizzy. So I sat down while Mama went to find me some Powerade, which I drank slowly... after which I felt better... and we filled our water bottle and poured the Gatorade powder we always carried with us in it, and I continued to drink that along with lots of water.

When I felt better we walked to Rockn Roller Coaster and I rode it twice in 20 minutes using the single rider line, at 1:25 and 1:45.

It's at that moment that Mama caught the TR bug!

She asked me for my TR notebook and said she might as well take notes while I ride, instead of me rushing to write things in between things, or forgetting... or going to bed later, etc. She said she had plenty of time when I did attractions she couldn't do. As much as she likes to people watch, it gave her something to do.

From that moment on, each time I went to do a ride she doesn't do... she would get the notebook out and write down all we did since the last entry! And in a much nicer way than I did, with more details, most of the time, too!

As became my routine, right after RnR we went to Tower of Terror, which we had taken FPs for just before RnR. I rode twice, at 2:10 and 2:20pm. Yup, it was THAT busy.

After all that shaking around, at about 3pm, I was definitely hungry. Mama had been hungry for ages, she always is (her words!)... so we went to ABC Comissary, where we had noticed an interesting menu walking by a bit earlier... Mama ordered a cheese angus burger with fries while I ordered the quinoa chicken salad. It was delicious!!! And way too big. We could've easily shared either of our choices... but neither of us felt like eating the other's choice.
ABC Comissary:
Food: 4/5 Very, very good, especially for a fast food! But only 4 out of 5 because the choice is limited.
Atmosphere: 4/5. Not that bad, really! TVs everywhere, but not too loud, lots of seating and very airy. Is that a word? Not cramped, lots of space. And cool.
Service: 5/5 Fast as a fast food place should be. Nothing special to note.
It was a nice place to relax and regroup. We didn't feel we had to rush out of there or didn't want to hurry to leave, on the contrary. We even saw someone sleeping in there!
1st time? Yes
Would I recommend? Yes. We'll go back.

With full bellies, we went for the Backlot Tour. More to pass the time then because we really felt like it, honestly. But also because we knew Mike and Sully from Monsters inc. were taking pics at the exit. We could've just walked in the exit... but we had all the time in the world, so why not to the attraction?
It was non-eventful... I seem to remember more action in the canyon at the end from our 2008 visit... did they change it?

When the ride ended, I left Mama and made a dash for the characters, so I would be among the first in line. My reasoning was : there is a LOT of people in each ride vehicle, and so each time it unloads, when the bunch of riders exiting arrive at the character location, the line forms... if you take your time exiting and walking around the exhibit, when you get there you're at the end of said line, and wait the longest... if you know what you're doing and head straight there... you'll be first in line, behind those poor people last in line from the previous batch.
But Mama being unable to walk fast (more from an inability to rush than because of any health issue), and since she didn't care for those characters, I rushed alone... and indeed didn't have to wait long.
Mama caught up with me quickly enough and waited close by while I took those:


Don't you love how small and thin that big furry Sulley makes you look? I do!



Mike being a plastic ball makes things a bit awkward, I must say! I wasn't sure if he (erm... she, I'm sure) was trying to give me a high five or shake my hand (those arms are not articulated)... I didn't want to be mean and ignore "him"... but I only cared about Sulley... sorry!

Walking out we took that Photopass pic


In the next chapter: Is Le Cellier really overrated?
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