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Old 10-06-2001, 07:35 PM   #1
MickeyCanada
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Thumbs up Magical Trip Sept 2-16 Land/Sea/Land - Long!

Sept 2 - we arrived in Orlando around 2:30 pm, my friend picked us up at the airport and we went directly to PO Riverside to check-in. At check-in I was very happy to see that we would be able to see Spectro-Magic and the fireworks at MK if we went that night (they do it on only on weekends during this time of year). So we went for a swim, then for supper at OKW's Olivia's where my friend manages the restaurant, and then we rushed over to MK. We made it just in time to view the parade, and the kids loved it! The fireworks beautiful as always even though Tink did not fly as there was lightening in the sky. Back to the hotel for a good nights sleep. What a perfect way to begin our vacation!

Sept 3 - we went to MK for EE and enjoyed time doing some of the rides before we went for BF at Cindy's. The 1st ride we did was Buzz Lightyear (2). Shayne is a huge fan of Toy Story and loved this ride. We had a great time at Cindy's and Shauna was ecstatic. Belle told Shayne to wave his orange visor at her in the parade later in the afternoon. He did just that and Belle who was on the other side of the float came over to our side and gave him a special wave and blew him a kiss, Pinnochio brought Shauna & Shayne to dance with him and some of the other characters in The Magical Moments Parade, they were thrilled. We spent the day at MK and did everything we wanted to all of the rides except "A Small World" which was closed for refurbishing. We left the park at closing (7:00 pm) and went back to our resort for dinner and a swim.

Sept 4 - we went to Epcot for EE and enjoyed our time there till around 3:00 when we went back to PO for a swim. Then we headed back to Epcot for Tapestry of Nations (which was canceled due to a little bit of rain, I was so disappointed), dinner, and Illuminations (Fantastic). We absolutely loved Test Track, we did it 3 times today including once at night on our way out of the park after Illuminations. Shayne hated Honey I Shrunk The Kids, he cried, in fact there were a lot of kids crying at the show.

Sept 5 - we went to MGM studios for EE and enjoyed a full day there. Ricky (my DH) was ecstatic as he was chosen to participate in Indiana Jones. We ended up spending the entire day there. Shauna did not like TOT, or Rockin Roller Coaster. Shayne wasn't sure on TOT, but loved Rockin Roller Coaster. There was a chance that the Fantasmic show might be canceled due to rain, but we got a seat at 7:00 pm and waited. The show went on and was well worth the wait. We were all extremely tired.

Sept 6 - we went to Animal Kingdom for park opening. We had a funfilled day there and Shauna & Ricky got soaked in Kali River Rapids. Shayne and I got a little wet. Tarzan Rocks was our favorite show. However, we watched the Lion King show twice (which was also quite impressive) in a row due to a heavy down pour of rain. Both times Shauna got picked to participate in the end of the show, Shayne was too shy to do this one. Second show Ricky was the one to lead our group for the Elephant roar. We went back to PO and relaxed for a couple of hours before heading to DD's DisneyQuest, and dinner. We had a great time at DisneyQuest. We were really impressed with size of it.

Sept 7 - we went to Blizzard Beach for the day and enjoyed some relaxation and fun in the water. We went back to PO to meet my friend Cindy and we went back to Epcot to see Tapestry of The Nations (worth the wait). We went to the Yachtsman for dinner with Cindy, and then back to our room to get ready to go home (or so the kids thought).

Sept 8 - Cindy came to get us at PO and to take us to the airport (Ha,Ha,Ha). Shauna slept in the car and Shayne asked what was taking so long, we told him we had to take the long way around because of traffic. We woke Shauna up just in time to see our approach over the bridge and our 1st glimpse of the Magic. She screams out "There's the Magic", and Shayne too is screaming out the same thing. We of course say what are you talking about? They're screaming as we go over the final bridge and see the Magic "There's the Magic, there's the Magic" with pointed fingers. Now we tell them we are going on it, we're not going home. Shauna is screaming yea, yea, yea!, and Shayne is in denial saying no way! Unfortunately, Ricky we did not catch this on video, Ricky had packed it in Cindy's trunk.

We got on the ship (1:00 pm) and went straight up to deck 9. I sat a table with the kids while Ricky went and made ressies for Palo's (too bad we didn't know that we were going to be rained out in Freeport, we would have done the Champagne brunch). When he came back we went to the spa to make our Surial Bath ressie. Then we went to Topsider's to eat. Cindy had come on the ship (a day pass) to visit her friends (Cindy was one of the original crew for 2 1/2 years, she was a training officer) where Cindy joined us. We took Cindy to our cabin 5520 which we absolutely loved. It was perfect for us! Then we went to join the kid in the club. Now, the kids went swimming while Ricky and I just sat back and relaxed. We had a great time at the sail away, and the rain started to pour just as we were leaving the port exit. We went and prepared for dinner.

Our 1st dinner was in Parrot Cay we had PLAP. We had Marianna from Brazil as our food server, Gregor from Slovania as our beverage server, and Sam from Great Britain was our head waiter. We had a great time with them. We enjoyed our meals with them, as they made such a great team. They entertained the kids (and us too) with their Magic tricks, and Sam always came around to make sure everything was to our satisfaction. They all got extra as tips. Hercules was the show tonight, however we went to see the movie Atlantis with the kids. After the movie we were all exhausted and went back to the cabin to sleep. Paulette was our stateroom hostess, and she did a great job also, she made us some nice towel animals every night. She too got extra tip.

Sept. 9 - We woke up to rain in Freeport. We went for breakfast, and then heard announcements of excursions that were canceled and those that you had an option to cancel. We went to Studio Sea for our meeting place and we were advised that the weather forecast was for rain all day and we could cancel our excursion (Lucayan Beach Resort) for full credit. We decided to do just that. We played Disney trivia with the kids at Studio Sea, and then the kids went to their clubs. Ricky and I went to Walt Disney theater to watch Princess Diaries. Later in the afternoon Shayne came and spent sometime with us at Quarter Masters. We had gone back to our room to get our camera and Shayne was so excited that we all received Mickey rain ponchos (N/C). At around 4:00 we decided to get off the ship (rain had stopped) and walked around the port. Ricky and I took Shayne back to the kids club as we had our Surial Bath at 4:45. Absolutely fantastic!. After that we picked up the kids and went for dinner at Lumiere's. Tonight was C'est Magique and seeing as we had also seen this last year on our 7 day cruise, we opted to go see the movie Spy Kids. Ricky and I went to 70's night, and then to Dueling piano's for about an hour. We had a great day rain and all!

Sept 10 - Nassau was a beautiful day, we took the Nassau historic tour in the morning. I wouldn't recommend this tour as it was very depressing, as you mostly see the poor part of Nassau and the resorts. We went back to the ship with plans to eat lunch, take a swim and then Ricky and I would go back and walk around town. We ended up staying at the pool all afternoon as the kids were having too much fun with their friends in the pool. We are all really enjoying our cruise much more this time, as we know the ship and we don't feel rushed to do everything. Dinner was at Animator's palate. The kids love Marianna & Gregor. Sam advised us that we would be having a special breakfast at Parrot Cay at 7:30 am the next morning. Great we wanted to get onto Castaway Cay early this time. Tonight we had a chance to see "Who wants to be a Mouseketeer". The kids went to their clubs while Ricky and I went to the show. We really enjoyed it! Wish one of us had been picked!!! Oh Well, maybe next time. Ricky and I went up to the deck party and then got the kids to come and join us. We had a lot of fun and then went to Quarter Masters for about 1/2 hour as Shauna wanted a chance to enjoy some of the games. Then off to our stateroom for a very short & restless night's sleep. Shayne was coming down with a cold and kept waking up crying because he couldn't breathe.

Sept.11 - We had asked for a 6:45 am wake up call, but Ricky picked up the phone and hung it back down, and the next thing you know it was 7:37 am. Boy did we RUSH down for breakfast. Marianna told us she had arrived an hour earlier as she had an earlier wake call. They brought in Chip and Dale, Baloo, (I can't remember who else) for a little parade and a song during breakfast. We gave our envelopes out this morning as we were going to have dinner at Palo's. It was beautiful and sunny when we got off the ship at around 8:45 am. We found a perfect spot on the beach with an umbrella and a hammock. It started to rain around 9:30 am and we eventually ran for cover as it just poured. 10:00 am we decided to go back to the ship as I could get most of our packing done. The kids watched Cinderella while I packed. At 11:30 we decided to go back to the beach to enjoy the barbeque at Cookies, it was still drizzling however, the sun was coming back out. We had just finished getting our trays when, I overheard someone talking about WTC and hijacked planes. I said to Ricky, "Something bad has happened, I don't know what, but something has". A woman sitting down at the table then advised us "We have been attacked, The WTC is gone" We were shocked and couldn't eat. We rushed the kids to eat so we could go back to the ship. We spent a beautiful afternoon at Castaway Cay watching the horrific act of terroism in disbelief. The kids saw some of it, but because they were so tired we got them to nap.

Tonight was our Captain's coctail party for returning cruisers and dinner at Palo's. With heavy hearts we got ready for the evening. While preparing the Captain came over the loudspeaker and asked everyone to observe 1 min. of silence, after the 1 min. he advised us that we would be setting sail soon, but we would not sound the ships horn in respect to the tragedy that had happened that day. We went to the cocktail party and as we had already guessed the Captain would not be there. However, we did meet Jim our cruise director. We took the kids to the clubs for dinner and went to Palo's. With the mood we were in we did not enjoy our meal as well as last year. Let me emphasize it was not the food but merely our mood. After dinner we went to get the kids, went back to our staterooms to change, and saw a very nice letter from Matt Ouimet advising everyone procedures of the next day. DCL was setting everyone up at Disney resorts The Yacht Club, AKL, & Beach Club. We had already planned 2 extra days at AKL (DH says it must have been fate). It was very nice to know that they were going to look after everyone.

We went to Disney Dreams and let me tell you that show touched us even more this time than the last. I also, couldn't help feeling a little guilty sitting there watching this show when so many people had lost their lives that day. We went back to our stateroom, prepared our luggage for outside the stateroom, went and bought our souvenirs and then back to the stateroom. Again we put on the TV to watch CNN. We were supposed to surprise the children about AKL, however, we decided to tell them tonight as we wanted to make sure that they knew we were not doing this because of the terrorists (we did not want them to be frightened to fly home). DH and I again did not sleep very well and even though we already had our two days planned we still had worries in the back of our minds if we had to stay longer.

Sept. 12 - We got up at 5:30 am to go to immigration. I can now feel a cold coming on for me too! We were continuously reminding our children not to talk to the immigrations officers this time, as nobody was in the mood. We then went for breakfast at Parrot Cay, we said good bye to Marianna, Gregor, & Sam. They wished us a safe trip home. We didn't know when that would be. We disembarked and we were looking for Tiffany, and didn't see any cars waiting. We were advised that we had to take the Mear's shuttle to terminal 10. Upon arriving at Terminal 10 we saw Tiffany, however, the driver we requested was not there as they did not want to take the chance that he would be harassed as he has an Arab name even though he isn't Arab. We had Darcy who is Debbie's brother, he was very nice and advised us that they had checked the cars with dogs, and really checked their Id's.

As soon as we had checked in at AK we called home to find out if the family we have in NY was safe and to advise that we were at the hotel. We then found out that the airports in Canada were also closed. This is one piece of news we hadn't heard on the American news networks. We really had more concerns after this call. We watched CNN and eventually DH and I took a nap while the kids played together quietly in the room. We were exhausted! We went to the pool in the afternoon. I really couldn't relax as we really didn't know when we would have a chance to get home. We saw someone at the DCL counter at AKL and we were speaking to her and advised her we had been on the cruise, but we had already planned our 2 days in advance, she gave us ultimate park hopper passes for the 4 of us while we were stranded there. We ate supper at Mara's and then went to the room and we all fell a sleep very early, exhaustion had set in.

Sept.13- We were thinking of going to Typhoon Lagoon today, but the weather didn't look too inviting, so we asked the kids which park they would like to go back to. They wanted MK. We went there at 12:00 pm and ate lunch we then met Cindy (as it was her day off). At around 2:30 pm it just started to pour. We were just outside Buzz Lightyear and took cover. Ricky and the kids went in to do Buzz again. Ricky is so proud that he got 350,000 points. They wanted to do it a third time so, I went in with them (Cindy had a bit of headache). Ricky is not too happy to find out that I beat his score , I got a score of 933,500, (we were stopped in the ride for about 5 mins. and I quickly racked up the points hitting Zurg). We must have waited about an hour, when it finally decided to let up we put on our ponchos, Cindy went and bought one and we went and did some more of our favorite rides and got to do "Its a Small World" as it was reopened. Rain and all we had a good time and were glad that we had decided to go back to MK. It really helped us escape some of our worries. We left the park at closing (7:00) and went to DD. We had already decided prior to the cruise that this is when we would do our souvenir shopping. We ate at House of Blues. The 3 adults decided on the blackened cajun chicken sandwich. Hooooooooooooooot, but good! Mouths were on fire. We went shopping and then had a coffee and went back to AKL. Cindy was driving and even with her CM sticker, they wanted to see our resort card, and a picture ID. Thank goodness they accepted Cindy's, I thought she wanted ours, and they were in the safe in the room. We called home to find out from our friend (who we had bought companion passes from) what the news was. He told us we were definately not going to be leaving tomorrow as planned as the Canadian Airports were also still not re opened. We went down to guest services and asked her what we were to do. She told us that tomorrow we should come back down to GS with our passports and tickets and they would give us a nights stay. We were a little nervous as we were on open tickets. She checked with her manager and told us it wouldn't be a problem and that she was going to note everything in the computer so we wouldn't have a problem in the morning.

Sept 14 - We woke up to the threat of hurricane Gabrielle. Just another worry to add. We went down to GS with passports and tickets and as promised the night before everything went smoothly. A little bit of relief. We ate BF at Mara's and went back to our room and watched CNN again. We were looking into alternate ways home. Ricky called Amtrak as we didn't really want to drive home for 2 days straight. The price for 4 was going to be $1500. Not even an option. He then called Hertz and we would have been able to rent a luxury vehicle for $69 per day with a drop off at the airport near us. There was now another option if we couldn't get a flight out soon.

We watched from our room how the CM's prepared everything in case of the hurricane. There were very heavy winds and rain, but not hurricane status. Finally at about 1:00 pm I said to Ricky, "we have to get out of the room and let the maid do her job", also, I had had enough of the TV it was just too gloomy. We went down to the lobby and had a very entertaining afternoon, as the CM's at the lodge brought out games, crayons, and paper for the kids to keep them occupied. The next thing we knew there were characters coming out to entertain the kids (parents too). I have very fond memories of Shauna playing "Twister" with Timon, and King Louie, and Shayne playing "Trouble" with Chip & Dale. Baloo, and Brer Bear were also playing with the kids. We had animal sightings on the verandah with the characters. They really turned a grim day around. By late afternoon the hurricane threat had been diminished. It was about 4:30 pm when we left and the characters were all still out entertaining. We went to DD and grabbed a bite at McDonald's and then spent a few hours at DQ. We called our friend to find out how things looked for Saturday. He said no way, but there is a good chance for Sunday. We just had to be at the airport for 4:30 am (flight was scheduled for 6:45 am).

Sept 15 - We woke up this morning and went to GS where we advised them that we would be staying another night and they said no problem. They gave us a business card with the phone no. of the lodge, and asked us to call if we definately got out on the plane the next morning, if not they would keep our room for us. Ricky and I just can't say enough about how great Disney was during this horrible experience.

We decided to go to Epcot today and go to Innoventions (we hadn't done this last week). We spent the afternoon doing everything in East & West with time out for lunch and of course another ride on Fast Track. We decided to check out the Canadian pavillion, unfortunately, it is an embarassment for us Canadians as it is a very old film (done in 1982) and really doesn't represent Canada well at all. One of the Cm's we spoke to said they are trying to get the CDN government to re do it, and they are looking for a sponsor. Hopefully the CDN government will change this soon. We walked around the pavillions and decided that even though we were getting up very early the next morning we would eat dinner, and stay for Illuminations (Ricky's favorite). We left the park and went back to the lodge to put the kids down and re-pack. Ricky and I finally lay down to sleep at 12:00 am, however, we really didn't sleep well. Worrying whether we were going to get on the plane the next day and also not wanting to miss our 3:30 am wake-up call.

Sept. 16 - We got up at 3:30 am got dressed and went down to wait for Tiffany TC. Just as we walked out our driver pulled up to the front. We got to the airport and were amazed at how many people were already in line for NW (all airlines for that matter). The people in line were so nice and we struck up conversations with people in front and back of us. Its funny, with everything everyone had been through in the past few days spirits were still pretty high. You just have to make the best out of every situation. We found out that our 6:45 am flight was delayed till 9:45 am. The ticket agents arrived at around 5:30 am. We were able to check in fast as we were 1st class companion tickets, but we were not confirmed. As International passengers, we had to have our luggage taken to a huge X-Ray machine. Once they were cleared they gave us our tickets back.

We sat outside the Disney store and brought breakfast from the food court to eat where we were sitting. There were many US Marshalls visible around the airport. The kids were able to watch the TV that they had Disney movies playing on. We went to our gate around 8:30 am. Ricky and I were very unsettled until we found out we were getting on the flight. Our friend had told us that a lot of the flights seemed to be booked but there were a lot of no shows. This was very true. So, now we just have to worry about getting on in Detroit.

So were on the plane, on the runway, ready for takeoff, full throttle, when you feel the pilot pull back. In the meantime, we thought we smelt something funny. The flight attendant thinks its the Cinnamon buns she is cooking. Anyway, the captain advises us we are going back to the gate and that a mechanic would be checking out the problem with engine # 3. We ended up having to deplane. We had to wait until 2:00 pm when the plane was fixed (oil filter had to be changed). Now I'm nervous about getting back on the same plane. Ricky, Shauna & Shayne were all able to sleep on the plane, not me. We arrived in Detroit around 4:05 pm. The flight from Detroit to Montreal was at 5:10 pm. We ran to the gate and had to wait to find out if we would be able to get on. We made it! Again the plane was had quite a few empty seats. We arrived at Dorval Airport at around 6:55 pm. The only problem we had was that our luggage didn't make it. This was a big problem the airlines were having, as there were loads of luggage from the day before, that people hadn't received. We took a taxi home to get a nice greeting from our neighbours. They were very worried along with our families. We told everyone, if we had to be stranded Disney World was the place to be. Received many calls from our friends and finally got to bed around 11:00 pm. We had to go back to work and school the next day. We received our luggage Monday night delivered to our house.

Ricky says that out of a scale of 1-10, our vacation was a 12, I agree whole heartily!

If anyone has any questions, I will be pleased to answer them.
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Old 10-06-2001, 08:33 PM   #2
cuis'n czns
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What an incredible trip you had. You handled the adversity quite well. It had to be hard not to be home after 9/11 but I'm glad to hear that Disney didn't leave you stranded and that you got home safely. We are going on the Magic on 10/20 for our family's first cruise. We had some doubts but decided not to change our plans. We are now in the packing mode and getting excited. THanks for sharing your trip log with us.
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Old 10-06-2001, 09:51 PM   #3
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What a trip you had. Glad you all made it home ok. We had 5520 on the 9/22 cruise. Paulett was so very nice. We just loved her and the cabin. I LOVED the location of it!

Disney is first class all the way. The way they took care of their guests is unbeliveable! I read a trip report from a person who was on another cruise line and they were standed on the dock! OH, they were offered a "hotel like" price to stay on board (the ship had nowhere to go!) but no extra sevices.
I have said it before but it is worth repeating....Disney can "nickle and dime" me all they want, they can charge me 3.00 for a coke and 6.00 for a burger.....when it comes to the safty of their guests, they put their guests first and money second. They went way above and beyond in this case.Just my humble opinion.
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Old 10-08-2001, 06:23 AM   #4
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Thanks for the great report. We are going on the 4 day Wonder and now I am confused. Your report states that you went to Freeport on the first day. Disney identifies Nassua on Day 1, Freeport on Day 2 and Castaway Cay on Day 3. Did they switch the itenerary? This would mess up all of my separately planned excursions.
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Old 10-08-2001, 08:15 PM   #5
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lampy - The best thing is to check with DCL. When I booked our cruise we weren't even scheduled for Freeport. When I received my documents the itinerary had been changed.

Disney definately out did themselves. When we arrived home and were waiting for our luggage, we spoke to people who had been stranded in Vegas and they were charged the same rate as they had paid when the booked. Not even a discount! My husband and I are really doing our PR work for Disney as we tell everyone exactly what they did. DH even called our local radio station the day after when they were talking about places (even here at home) that were price gouging. He told them he had a great story to tell, and was immediately put on the radio. The talk show hosts were amazed and even kept plugging Disney throughout their show.
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Old 10-12-2001, 02:51 PM   #6
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Enjoyed reading your trip report. Great idea to surprise Shauna and Shayne with the cruise. I would love to do that with our three sons! Happy to hear you finally arrived home safe and sound with your luggage not far behind.

Disney is one class act. No doubt! We were on the 9/22 cruise and were talking to a number of castmembers, one in particular being an officier. They all seem to reiterate the same thing - Safety is Disney's main concern, and it certainly shows!
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