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Old 05-04-2007, 12:54 PM   #16
mruhaak
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Hey Mozart-
We're taking a 4 day in November! I'll enjoy reading about yours right before ours! Our first Disney cruise was a 3 day too. I'm hoping that extra day makes it seem MUCH longer!!!
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Old 05-04-2007, 10:47 PM   #17
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Episode 3: It's like Deja Vu All Over Again

Okay, in my last installment I promised that I would talk a little about my dinner at V&A’s in relation to Palo and which one was better. That was a stupid comparison. I erred in even attempting to put them in the same league. V&A’s is a dining experience that one can only savor to understand. Palo’s is good, better than most of the restaurants I go to on a regular basis, but Vicky’s is just in another league altogether. It’s like comparing the singing of Melinda Doolittle to Sanjaya Malakar. Sanjaya’s really not that bad of a singer in the grand scheme of things…but Melinda’s just in a different league. (Why is it that I keep coming up with these American Idol references?)

Which brings me to an excruciating experience I am currently having. Why, OH WHY!?!?! did I not stock up on H2O shampoo while I was at the Grand Floridian. They sell the bottles there, and all I can think about whenever I smell that green beauty of a smell is how I’d like to be on a cruise right now. DW and I are on our last bottle from the previous cruise, and we’re stretching it out as long as we possibly can. The pain is cutting deep, that’s for sure. If you haven’t been to their website, go here: www.h2oplus.com. Check out the raspberry guava stuff. It smelled fantastic, but I’m just not a bath gel kinda guy.

So, we just got our next set of documents from our TA regarding our cruise. I pull out the package! RIP OPEN THE BAG! And ….it turns out to be the same (nearly) travel pack that I got late last year for our other cruise, though there are some subtle differences. It’s good to have something different to read. I mean, you can only read the DIS 5,000 times without getting a little tired of reading much of the same stuff over and over. So, I go to the TA’s packet and read the same stuff I read 500 times back in October of last year. I have to admit that I’m really struggling with using a TA to book your cruise. I just don’t feel like I’m getting alot for it, and what I am getting is them sending all of our travel information to our TA rather than directly to us. I don’t like that. I’m a hands on type of guy. I wanted to start using a TA for other trips, and figured I would let him help me with this cruise to get a kind of feel-good factor going between us. But since I booked it onboard, he really hasn’t had to do anything. What, exactly, does everyone else use their TA for? I’m just wondering if it’s the typical stateroom credit, or do they normally provide some services that I’m just not getting? I’m not upset with the TA, I’m just wondering right now how I really benefit from using one. I’m thinking that on this cruise, I don’t, where a trip to say – California wine country that I know nothing about – the TA would be much more helpful.

I’m playing the favorites game right now. You know the one. When reviewing the excursions and spa treatments…save to favorites. Then you go to your saved excursions and delete them, only to change your mind a few minutes later and save them again. I find myself doing that on many nights, as well as playing the “see how full the ship is going to be” game. It’s a fun one…pick a category, and plug in every room number to see if it’s booked or not. For example, on my Sept 23 cruise, there are 30 Cat 7 rooms (including the secret verandah rooms, of which I have one.) Only 9 of the 30 are booked at this time. Of the 4 secret verandah rooms, 2 are not booked yet. Looking pretty empty, isn’t it? I kinda hope it is. That would make the trip even more relaxing than I expect it to be.

Finally, I have an idea I’d like to see if we can get off the ground, but I’m going to need your help first. I saw recently on a cruise meets thread I read for some reason, that they were planning on meeting at 3:00 in the Promenade Lounge before leaving the port. I thought “Wonderful idea!” We should make that a DIS tradition! Just make it a known deal, that DIS’ers meet at 3, after they’ve seen the ship a little, but before the lifeboat drill, in the Promenade Lounge. That way you’re not looking for lime green mouseheads and the hand gesture from Meet the Parents. Instead, you just know you’ll meet them then! Agree? Should we propose that to the main board, or cruise meet thread? Help me out here.

In our next Oscar nominated edition: How to avoid the Ann Boleyn disease. (In other words: Looking for a way to get a head of the crowd.)

I live for these puns…
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:06 AM   #18
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[QUOTE=Mozart;18506968]
Finally, I have an idea I’d like to see if we can get off the ground, but I’m going to need your help first. I saw recently on a cruise meets thread I read for some reason, that they were planning on meeting at 3:00 in the Promenade Lounge before leaving the port. I thought “Wonderful idea!” We should make that a DIS tradition! Just make it a known deal, that DIS’ers meet at 3, after they’ve seen the ship a little, but before the lifeboat drill, in the Promenade Lounge. That way you’re not looking for lime green mouseheads and the hand gesture from Meet the Parents. Instead, you just know you’ll meet them then! Agree? Should we propose that to the main board, or cruise meet thread? Help me out here.
QUOTE]

I thought the idea of a meeting in the Promenade Lounge was great when I heard how other groups had done that – I’m glad you brought it up. I will put a notice on our "page 2" of our Cruise Meet thread – let’s spread the word.

Who is your TA? I did a fair amount of research in the exact thing you've described. The purpose of the millennium travel agent sure has changed. I was planning on doing all the work myself, but when it finally came down to it, I found that some TA's who buy in bulk can give you better deals. I finally went through All Seasons Travel on a tip from some good people on these boards. It saved us about $300. The biggest thing that saved us money was booking early - and oh did I book early. I've noticed the price has gone up three times since then.

I have a file already full - hidden in my office - with the Passporter Book, the Birnbaum DCL book, the DCL DVD, all my paperwork, and all the little packets. A couple of days ago we got the Shore Excursion booklet in the mail and I had to hide it in my car for most of the day - but now it too rests safely in this bulging file. I have one month from tomorrow to keep this a secret (this is my Silver Anniversary gift to my DW) and I'm so afraid I'll mess it up. I have so many conversations with Bethany in a day and have caught myself moments from saying things like, "Yeah this desert is good, but that Chocolate Soufflé at Palo's looks divine!"

I’ve been considering V&A’s during the land portion of our trip. If we do that, the two of us will have completed every “sit-down” venue in the Resort/Parks! I walked past the place so many times and read so many reviews. Are we going to get a detailed report of the meal Mozart???

Another interesting addition to our land and sea plans - our oldest son has been dating a girl for 4 years now, and is considering popping the question soon. He has always wanted to do that in front of the MK castle at the end of Wishes. He's now thinking of doing this during our "land" portion of our trip. Though it’s a good thing and not-so-good thing that we can never get rid of our kids - I think this would be such a wonderful idea and hope it works out so we can witness the event. Nothing is ever under-planned in our household.

Hear that ticking sound??? We are slowly approaching the summer…
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:25 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Dizney View Post
A couple of days ago we got the Shore Excursion booklet in the mail and I had to hide it in my car for most of the day - but now it too rests safely in this bulging file.

I’ve been considering V&A’s during the land portion of our trip. If we do that, the two of us will have completed every “sit-down” venue in the Resort/Parks! I walked past the place so many times and read so many reviews. Are we going to get a detailed report of the meal Mozart???
I really feel for the mail runs you're having to do. Hope nothing comes on that one day you get stuck in traffic.

As for V&A: Book now. I booked 5 months ahead of time and got the last table they had available. Dinner, including tip runs about $450. We got the wine package, though. Without the wine package you'd probably be able to get out of there for $325

And you should be getting to know me and trip reports by now:

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1438267
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Old 05-24-2007, 02:09 PM   #20
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Episode 4: What is Palo's, again?

I admit it. I have a problem. I am obsessed. I cannot think of anything during my spare time to do other than plan for this cruise. I struggle to concentrate on my work because I want to check the DIS for that one snippet of information I don’t already have that will make my cruise better. I need to stop starting every sentence with the word “I” because it is not proper grammar. I am lazy, Sam-I-Am.

I also just noticed that in every one of my posts so far, I’ve mentioned that I was obsessed. Could it be possible that I’m just obsessed with being obsessed? That is your deep thought for the day…

What makes me really think I am that way is that we recently had our very first cruise planning session with all 4 of us in attendance. My in-laws are probably now actively encouraging DW to consider alternatives to our marriage. Like having a Disney nut incarcerated for his own good. What they don’t know is that she’s just as big a Disney nut as I am. She just prefers to let me handle all the trip planning. Not that she has a choice in the matter in that area.

I had been trying to figure out how to actively engage them in planning excursions and the like because they really are the type who prefer to just wing it. We received a few weeks ago, the kit that Disney sends out with out potential excursions, packing lists, etc… and I figured this would be my best chance to get them talking. So, since they always want to meet us for Saturday breakfast, we obliged and said “Why don’t you bring your excursion book and we’ll talk about what we plan on doing?” I was prepared to start with the comment “So, we’re interested in parasailing at CC, what about you?”

Instead, my FIL started the conversation by saying “What ports are we going to?”

SUCK-A-DUCK! (That’s the closest this Austrian musician chihuahua gets to cussing on this board.)

No, they had not looked at the excursions book. They didn’t realize that they could book their excursions, spa treatments, Palo’s etc in a little over a month. THEY DIDN’T EVEN KNOW WHAT PALO’S WAS! I feel like I’m dealing with rank amateurs here. How can a person not spend all of their spare time (and a little they can’t spare) planning this stuff? It just amazes me. I mean, IT’S A VACATION! We have a tight ship to run here! Do they think relaxing just happens? IT MUST BE PLANNED!

All in all, though, it went well. Except for when they got into the argument about whether or not he would let her ride on the back of a jetski with him. Seems they did that one time before, and it didn’t go too well. Parasailing was even more complicated. They did that in tandem, and she apparently kept covering his eyes because she was too scared to look.

They promised to have their information looked over by mid-June. June 25th is the day our reservations open up, so we should be fine, although I admit to cringing over the fact that they don’t know the exact times and events they want to participate in.

One question I have to ask the peanut gallery reading this: Am I the only one who keeps checking to see if there is an error and the system will let me start booking my excursions and spa treatments now rather than waiting for the 90 day mark? Every week or so, I check out my cruise plans just to see if there’s some type of mistake and it lets me in.

In response to Erica’s statements on another thread recently about going cheap, I must respond with my way of doing things:

You know what to me might just be the best thing about going on a cruise? I am an admitted clothes hound. I tend to like to buy brand names, and therefore spend way too much money. Going on a cruise gives me an excuse to buy more clothes that are expensive without feeling guilty about it. “Gotta do it honey, if you want me to look good when we eat at Palo’s.” As Mel Brooks used to say, “It’s good to be the king…”

To prepare for our next class, please write a 1000 word essay about this subject: Why do I, whose stated goal in life is to be the best uncle who ever lived, feel guilty about going on this cruise?
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Old 05-27-2007, 12:24 PM   #21
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Just in case noone's ever mentioned it:

The Passporter is great! I got the deluxe edition, and, being the planner I am, am thrilled to announce that they give more ways to plan. I can start all over again! Plus the book is much more informative than I thought it would be. Goes into a lot of detail which is always good for me. Read the whole book in 2 days.

Took me 4 days to get my Passporter. My passport is at 12+ weeks and I am still waiting...
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Old 05-27-2007, 11:22 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
How can a person not spend all of their spare time (and a little they can’t spare) planning this stuff? It just amazes me. I mean, IT’S A VACATION! We have a tight ship to run here! Do they think relaxing just happens? IT MUST BE PLANNED!
I read this to DH & he thought it was something that I wrote! I'm the planner in the family & have become completely obsessed with planning our cruise for this summer. It's definitely taken on a whole new level because I get to read about what other people are planning. I'm addicted. Keep on writing. I think I may enjoy reading about everyone's planning phase of the trip as much as the actual trip.
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Old 06-07-2007, 08:44 AM   #23
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3 months...4 days

Did anyone listen to the old Eddie Murphy concert tapes back in the early 80’s? Do you remember the ice cream song? “I GOT SOME ICE CREAM…I GOT SOME ICE CREAM…”

Sing my version with me…

I GOT MY PASSPORT…I GOT MY PASSPORT…

I can start making Palo/spa/excursions reservations in 18 days. I’m nervous. Gotta get all the good times. I’ve got it completely planned out with initial times, backup times, etc…I just hope Disney’s reservation is working on the 25th at 3 AM or else I will spend all night clicking refresh…work will be fun the next day if that happens.

Would you like to know the words that just about break my heart?

“Uncle Mozart…when are you going to take me on Mickey’s boat?”

This comes from the mouth of my 3 year old nephew. My wife is encouraging him. She loves to play the Castaway Club cd all the time when he’s over. Especially the horn. He knows all the songs on there immediately. “What’s this one, bud?” “Serenity Bay While the Kids are Away.” “What song comes after that?” “The shores of Castaway Cay.” He knows the whole thing. It’s disgusting. Every time he sees me, I know what the first words out of his mouth will be: “when are you going to take me on Mickey’s boat?” It breaks my heart.

But…I have no children. And he’s too young to realize that the week his aunt and uncle can’t keep him is the week they go back onto Mickey’s boat. With Grandma and Grandpa. He could’ve gone but Mom and Dad didn’t want to. It’s their fault, not mine.

Oh yeah…we’re now officially booked on the 5 night Double Dip in Sept 2008. We’re trying to talk the SIL and BIL into bringing my niece and nephew on that cruise with us. Maybe the nephew will get off my back about Mickey’s boat if we're succesful this tie.

Next time on The Sopranos…

Oops…wrong board. But I can’t wait for that one either. Or The Tudors finale. I’m addicted to both. Someone please tell me though why The Tudors isn't showing up on my Showtime On Demand this week like they promised it would. I'm dying over here.
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Old 06-18-2007, 05:01 PM   #24
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Episode 6: Shopping, shopping, shopping

I feel like a runner at the starting line waiting to jump out of the blocks. It’s 7 days until we can start booking excursions, Palo’s etc…and I’m chomping at the bit. Over on our cruise meets thread, people are starting to talk about what excursions they’d like to do, etc….and I’m just waiting. How long until 3 AM Monday morning?

As for shopping, so far I have purchased specifically to be used on the cruise: 4 new pair of dress socks, 1 pack of athletic socks, a pack of sea bands, a pack of thank you cards for the wait staff, (See Life Stinks Volume 1 for the catastrophe that caused last time) a bottle of champagne, my wife’s already tucked away a large bottle of Amaretto DiSaronno, and 1 really expensive new dress shirt. All with the excuse that it’s stuff I need for the cruise. I use any excuse I can get.

I need some help, though. When we took my parent’s on the cruise for their 50th wedding anniverary, we split the cost of the cruise 50/50 with my brother. Now, since my wife’s parents are going, she wants to, at the very least, buy them a couples cabana massage. Tell me, should we buy them a massage, buy ourselves a massage, or splurge and figure out how to finance it later?
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Old 06-18-2007, 09:03 PM   #25
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I'm subscribing - I'm on the 9/23/07 with you too! Oh the anticipation
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:23 PM   #26
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I'm subscribing - I'm on the 9/22/07 with you too! Oh the anticipation
Well, we can't talk about this on the Meets Thread, or on Joel's (Ocealuvr's) thread, so here goes:

How can we ruin Joel's wedding? Not really ruin it, but just make it a memorable event which they're guaranteed never to forget? Everything I can think of would probably get me banned from DCL for life...

By the way, just making sure you remember... September 22nd is the day you're flying down to PC. We don't get on the ship until the 23rd. (Or when I go to sleep and dream in about 30 minutes.) Don't worry, I'm counting down to travel day as well. That's when it seems like the vacation begins...
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Old 06-21-2007, 07:59 PM   #27
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Sept. 08 5 Night Cruise.

My dw, son and daughter are going to try and book the Sept. 08 5 nighter while on the Sept. 23 cruise. Gotta have the discounts. We booked the 09/23 on our 05/06 cruise and got a pretty good deal...I think...yes...sure....or at least that is what I keep telling myself.

We got a shipboard credit anyway and when Disney buys the beer it always tastes better.

What ship will the 5 night cruise be?
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Old 06-21-2007, 10:45 PM   #28
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My dw, son and daughter are going to try and book the Sept. 08 5 nighter while on the Sept. 23 cruise. Gotta have the discounts. We booked the 09/23 on our 05/06 cruise and got a pretty good deal...I think...yes...sure....or at least that is what I keep telling myself.

We got a shipboard credit anyway and when Disney buys the beer it always tastes better.

What ship will the 5 night cruise be?
5 nighter is on the Magic. Here's a tip: book now, and when you get on board go up to the future cruise desk and find out if you'd be better off booking it then. If so, cancel the one you have booked, and use the deposit you've already paid to rebook the cheaper version.

I won't be able to do that, because we got the last Cat 7 for that cruise. Since that turns out to be the only way to get one, I guess we're better off.
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:38 AM   #29
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My heart goes out to you when you were talking about your nephew. Its a shame his folks can't pick up on that and book with you guys. I sure understand why you're not going to do it for them! Keep up the work man, you got the passport, before you you know it you will be booking Palo, massages and excursions!
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Old 06-22-2007, 09:13 AM   #30
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My heart goes out to you when you were talking about your nephew. Its a shame his folks can't pick up on that and book with you guys. I sure understand why you're not going to do it for them! Keep up the work man, you got the passport, before you you know it you will be booking Palo, massages and excursions!
Actually, we tried to talk his parents into letting us take him and our niece. We have offered to take them to both WDW and on the cruise, and even pay for it. His parents though have decided that they really want to be there when he sees Mickey for the first time, and have turned down both his grandparents and us on the idea of going to one or the other. They would go on the cruise in September, but feel like with the new mortgage they want to get used to a different "discretionary income." Right now, they're looking at WDW next spring, with the possibility of joining us on the DD next September. Whenever they go, we're going with them. They just don't know it yet.
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