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Old 02-04-2004, 05:46 PM   #1
TraceyL
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Talking Tracey's Report - Day 13 - A Scary Birthday

Warning - this is very, very long !!

Friday 31st – Hallowe’en

Today is Rachelle’s 7th birthday – the one request she had – to stay in the villa swimming all day !!

Unfortunately we’d had a few problems with the pool heating. I’d noticed it getting cool on Sunday and by Tuesday morning it was freezing. I’d reported it to the management company first thing Tuesday and had been assured that somebody would be out to fix it that day – they didn’t. Rang them up again on Wednesday – different person, same story – we’ll get somebody out today…. but they didn’t. No message, no apology, no explanation no nothing. Went to the Office on Thursday morning to find a note on the door saying it was closed for the day so we left a note and a very angry message on the answering machine – we were paying $20 / day for heating.

Back to the master plan, we’d (read I’d ) decided that as we were going to MNSSHP in the evening that we wouldn’t go to a park during the day and had booked a 10:30 PS at 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian. Last time we’d visited we’d had breakfast there on the recommendation of a CM when we couldn’t get ressies for Cindy’s. I was so ill at the time I couldn’t eat so I was determined to go back there as Steve had raved about the food ever since ! The girls had new Sleeping Beauty dresses and Rachelle had her birthday crown and button on so the hostess noted it on our PS slip. Breakfast was good, especially the made-to-order omelette and the mickey waffles. Characters there were Pooh and Eyeore, Alice & the Mad Hatter and Mary Poppins in the Lobby. Annabelle absolutely fell in love with Alice and she, in return, was brilliant with Annabelle – kept on coming back to say ‘hi’, sat on the floor with her, picked her up for a photo.



When we were coming to the end of the meal, the Mad Hatter came over with a birthday crown & cup cake with a candle (birthday cake #1) and sang ‘Scary Birthday to You’ to Rachelle – she loved all the attention.



We rode the monorail back to the TTC and let Rachelle chose what she wanted to buy for her birthday present, she wanted a Mulan dress so we headed off to the Disney Store at the Florida Mall as all the costumes were in the sale a few days before (25% off). Unfortunately the Mulan dresses had sold out bu fortunately there was now 50% off all the costumes so she had a Lilo costume, sandals, headdress and bracelets for the same price (I just love a bargain). I also bought a Dewdrop Fairy dress (a beautiful pink affair with wings that Belle is convinced is a Tinkerbell dress) for less than $10 (it was 75% off plus my 10% Disney Club discount).

We headed back to the villa to brave the icy waters of the swimming pool so that we could rest before the late night we had in store. While we were there the pool guy arrived to clean the pool – we initially assumed he’d come to fix the heating and he offered to have a look at it for us anyway. Bless him – he broke the padlock off the heater control box to confirm that everything was OK there, checked and cleaned the pump and decided that maybe the water level in the pool wasn’t high enough to keep the pump running as there was no water being circulated. He topped the pump bit up but to no avail and promised he’d go back to the office and let them know. Shortly afterwards somebody from the management company turned up to have a look and to let us know there was nobody available to come to fix the heating as they had to confirm repairs with the owner first – so no heating for the rest of the stay. I have to say I will never rent through a management company/travel agent again, after the experience we had I will always rent direct from the owner in future. We spent the rest of the afternoon eating hallowe’en birthday cake #2 and generally chilling.



... more below....
__________________
DLP 97, 98, 01, 02 ~ WDW Offsite 92 twice, 93, 94, wedding 95 ~ 99(CBR) ~ 2000(ASMo)
Hallowe'en 2003 (Florida Pines & Polynesian) Oct 2003~ Dec 2004 (Indian Creek and Wilderness Lodge) Dec 2004
Easter 2006 (Calabay Parc & Vero Beach) ~ Easter 2007 (Sunset Lakes Villa & Royal Pacific Resort) Easter 2007
Hallowe'en 2007 Sunset Lakes again & HRH ~ Hallowe'en 2008 Highlands Reserve Villa & HRH
Christmas & New Year 2009 Bella Vida, HRH & Pop ~ Jul/Aug 2010 back for Harry Potter
Christmas 2012 OKW/Bahama Bay - Solo!!


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Old 02-04-2004, 05:48 PM   #2
TraceyL
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... part 2

... part 2

Next stop was a 5pm PS for dinner at Chef Mickey’s – Rachelle’d had so much fun there on her last visit it was no wonder she chose this restaurant for her birthday dinner. We drove to the Contemporary (mistake!) and arrived in plenty of time to find a huge queue of people all with a 5pm reservation, I don’t think we reached the podium for about 20mins and we were seated around to the right – right next to the queue of people waiting to come in – I’d only ever sat in the other section by the windows before. I think the girls enjoyed the meal but all the adults were quite disappointed. The food was good but the server was inattentive (we had to keep asking for drinks and dirty plates were left on the table), I don’t know if it was because we were sat out of the way but I didn’t feel part of the atmosphere that is unique to CM’s. It was a shame as so many people were in costume for MNSSHP that it should have been a really enjoyable, fun evening for all of us. Rachell did make a new friend though – a girl called Stephanie who was also celebrating her 7th birthday. Her mom & I did manage to work out that Rachelle was a few hours older due to the time difference lol! Birthday cupcake #3 arrived and much napkin twirling ensued !





Now, I don’t know if I missed something but have you ever tried driving from the Contemporary to the Magic Kingdom (I’d read all sorts of horror stories on the DIS about cars being left in hotel car parks instead of the park lots). I have no idea where we went but I remember driving out past Fort Wilderness and Bonnett Creek Golf Course before heading back in through the maingate parking booths – lucky I have an AP so parking is free ! Consequently it was almost 8pm before we got to MK – and what a sight ! There were huge balloons floating over the lands – I later found out they marked the candy stations and a huge ‘head’ in a globe (from Haunted Mansion apparently).

The girls were given trick or treat bags and we got our wristbands and went through the turnstiles. The place was transformed, special lighting, music, decorations and pumpkins everywhere – a completely different atmosphere. We decided to splash out and rent 2 strollers as it was going to be a late night (Rachelle and Annabelle were always arguing over who was going to have the rental one) and were pleasantly surprised to discover they were complimentary that evening.

We picked up a couple of maps and decided that as there weren’t that many people around Town Square we’d stop and watch the first parade (at 8:15) as we probobaly would get caught up in the parade crowds if we tried to head into the park up Main Street so we managed to get a good vantage point on the ropes right next to where the parade comes out. Now this is where I had my little accident – I left the group to see if I could get a view of the kids and the parade together so I could get some photos, I couldn’t and as I stepped back to join the others I forget there was a kerb there. I went right over on my right ankle (falling on the new digital camera) and ended up in a snotty heap on the floor. I couldn’t get up – I’d hurt my wrist, my left foot and I couldn’t move my right ankle – the camera survived with a few scratches. Within seconds a cast member was on the scene but he really annoyed me as all he was interested in doing was getting my name off me to fill in a form. I was in shock, I was in tears, I couldn’t get up and all he wanted to do write my name on a form! In retrospect I suppose I should have given him my name but it was just the way it was handled – I think if he’d asked Steve when he realised how shaken I was it would have made more sense. Steve managed to get me upright enough to sit on the kerb and once I’d declined offers of a wheelchair and a first aider the CM left us to watch the parade.

The parade was great – my girls took it all in their stride but there were a few screaming, terrified kids ! Once the crowd had cleared I attempted to stand up but couldn’t put much weight on my right foot so I used the stroller as a zimmer frame lol! By the time we’d got to the end of Main Street I decided there was no way I could walk round the park for the rest of the evening so I gave in and went to the first aid post. The nurse in there asked what was wrong and gave me a painkiller and an ice pack and told me to rest my foot for 20 mins. Another nurse took over shortly afterwards and came and had a look at my foot. She examined it and said I’d probably broken one of the bones and advised me that if it was still painful in the morning I should go to the Emergency clinic to get it x-rayed but that they probably wouldn’t do anything even if it was broken. She strapped it up for me (thank heavens for Velcro fastening sandals) and I refused a wheelchair yet again and set off to explore Mickey’s Hallowe’en party.

First stop (for me) was a bench outside the Crystal Palace in readiness for the fireworks. Steve took the girls to the candy station while mam & I people watched – it was definitely a good year for pirates and family groups of Disney characters, some excellent costumes. We sat and waited for the fireworks to start, the lights dimmed there were a few blooms and then nothing. A huge sigh of disappointment echoed around the park then an announcement was made that they were having ‘technical difficulties’. It took about 20 minutes before the display was restarted – it was worth the wait, I’d never seen the Castle multicoloured before – and the witch was really good flying from the Castle. We headed off (at my pace) through adventureland to find some more candy stations for the girls only for Rachelle to be ill again good job I’d packed a change of clothes for them!

By the time we got to frontierland it was time for the second parade so Steve and I decided to take dad on Splash Mountain (mam had done Atlantis and said that was her first and last ride) – it was a walk-on (just wish it hadn’t been so far to walk). I’d never done Splash at night before – we could see all the huge balloons and lights – amazing. Another first – we got to stay on and go round again !!

We walked/hobbled through Liberty Square towards Fantasyland – just taking in all the sights. The girls were asleep by now (it was getting on for 11pm) so we decided not to bother having our photos done. Rachelle woke up so Steve took her & my parents on IASW as they’d refused to do it last time. They’re still cursing us now . While they were on there a got some fastpasses for Peter Pan and by the time they escaped IASW there was just enough time for Rachelle to do her fave ride – The Carousel – before we flew off to Neverland. It always amazes me how such an old ride remains such a firm favourite with all generations, it one of the few rides that all of us want to ride again.



It was now midnight – we’d lasted all night much to my surprise! We had two huge bags of candy – there were CMs handing it out everywhere by now, two very tired little girls and one very swollen foot. At least we don’t have to get up in the morning.
__________________
DLP 97, 98, 01, 02 ~ WDW Offsite 92 twice, 93, 94, wedding 95 ~ 99(CBR) ~ 2000(ASMo)
Hallowe'en 2003 (Florida Pines & Polynesian) Oct 2003~ Dec 2004 (Indian Creek and Wilderness Lodge) Dec 2004
Easter 2006 (Calabay Parc & Vero Beach) ~ Easter 2007 (Sunset Lakes Villa & Royal Pacific Resort) Easter 2007
Hallowe'en 2007 Sunset Lakes again & HRH ~ Hallowe'en 2008 Highlands Reserve Villa & HRH
Christmas & New Year 2009 Bella Vida, HRH & Pop ~ Jul/Aug 2010 back for Harry Potter
Christmas 2012 OKW/Bahama Bay - Solo!!


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Old 02-05-2004, 03:53 AM   #3
highlander447
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Cool

How awful to hurt your ankle but at least u didn't let it spoil your night
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Old 02-06-2004, 12:29 PM   #4
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Great report Lovely pictures Tracey - I hope your foot was OK
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:57 PM   #5
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Great report and fab pix. Hope your foot was fine.
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