Disney Information Station Logo

Go Back   The DIS Discussion Forums - DISboards.com > Global Neighbours > UK Trip Reports Board
Find Hotel Specials & DIScounts
facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates
Register Chat FAQ Tickers Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 11-12-2009, 03:22 PM   #1
Would love a diet on Cadbury Flakes
Admits she's strange when it comes to eggs
wilma-bride's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wiltshire, UK
Posts: 20,999
DISboards Moderator

Bad Mothers' Handbook - Chapter 1

Apologies for the delay in getting this started - I blame a combination of post-holiday blues, serious jet lag and over-demanding governors As usual, Nat's comments/interjections will be in pink.

So, without further ado, I bring you...

Chapter 1: The Journey

The day had arrived, the time had come, the last Mickey head had been covered over on the countdown calendar, BT had been informed (in case they worried about the demise of me or Nat over the coming two weeks ) and we were off to the airport. We had arranged to meet the Longstaffs at the Hilton at 3:45 pm so, shortly after 1.30, Gary finally deemed it was time to leave and we set about the arduous task of fitting the cases into the boot of the car. Having not allowed for the time it took to manoeuvre four large cases into a car boot just about big enough for three, we were a little behind the curve by the time we set off. We then had to deposit Ollie at the local cattery and thus it was almost 2:30 by the time we hit the M4. Shortly before we had reached the Reading turnoff, Nat phoned to say that Ayrton Senna – I mean John – had managed to get them to the M25 in record time and so they were a good hour ahead of us. Unfortunately, Nat had lost the car park information so they needed to wait for us to arrive in order to find it. Consequently, they decided to slow down and Gary sped up a bit (much to the delight of the three tortoises stuck behind us in the slow lane).

To be fair we had no trouble loading our cases in our car and the traffic on the M1 was non-existent for a change so it was an easy run down for us! John was obviously keen to get the holiday started as well, bless him.

Finally, we arrived at the Hilton dead on 3:45 (Gary felt the need to point that out several times so I assume it is pertinent information for the trippy) to find Nat and John already checked in. I had a slight issue when checking into the hotel. Basically, I had booked the hotel through Tesco Clubcard Deals. Tesco had apparently sent me my Hilton vouchers but I hadn’t received them. When I contacted Tesco to let them know, they agreed to speak directly to the hotel to give them the voucher numbers and, despite having confirmed with the Hilton on the Friday before we left, it appeared they actually didn’t have the voucher numbers at all. It wasn’t a major problem and eventually we were checked in, and directed to our rooms. We had booked two inter-connecting rooms – one double, one with twin beds and a rollaway – for the grand total of £197 (£50 in Clubcard vouchers – thanks Mr Tesco). This included breakfast for the five of us and, if anyone can recall how much we paid for breakfast last April just for four of us, I considered this a bargain in itself.

After taking a couple of pictures before the children destroyed the rooms rock-star-stylie, it was off to the Long Stay Supersaver Plus car park, which turned out to be almost directly opposite the entrance to the Hilton – I reckon even Nat could have found it. We approached the desk to book the cars in. Most people are familiar with the expression ‘If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys’. Well, in that case Supersaver Plus must pay their staff in sour lemons The woman behind the counter could definitely have used a lesson in customer service. Still, it was all fairly painless and it wasn’t long before we were on the bus back to the terminal and returned to the Hilton to collect our bags for twilight check in. As we were walking down the ramps to the main terminal building, I slipped on a flower (of all things) and fell, twisting my ankle and scraping the fronts of the toes on my right foot. As I was struggling back to my feet, I heard Nat behind me say ‘I thought you were gonna do the worm then mate’

Having confirmed there was no major damage (other than to my nail polish), we carried on into the terminal and joined the line for check in. It wasn’t long, however, before John realised he had brought the wrong rucksack with him and the correct one, which contained the tickets and passports, was safely ensconced back at the Hilton. Ayrton Senna became Linford Christie as John sprinted, in record time, back to the Hilton to get said rucksack. Eventually, we were all checked in and had received our boarding passes, with the five of us seated in our pre-booked seats in row 45 and Nat, John and the kids in row 43.

Next, it was off to Travelex to pick up the small amount of cash we had pre-ordered. Something I hadn’t realised until we got to the desk is that all currency now has to be collected once you have proceeded through security. Apparently, this is due to the amount of people who were checking in, going through security and forgetting to pick up their travel money. Because I hadn’t realised, they did let me have our order but Nat and John had already arranged for theirs to be picked up on the Monday so they decided to wait until the following day. Next, it was upstairs to Frankie and Benny’s. Although we’d had a bad meal at F&Bs earlier this year (not the Gatwick one, admittedly) and DH doesn’t rate it much, there wasn’t much of an alternative and we didn’t really want to start venturing out of the airport. So, F&Bs it was and we were seated more or less straight away. Nat and I were still grinning away, not quite able to believe that this day had finally arrived. We took some pictures and ordered some drinks:- beer for Johnny, glass of wine for Nat, a Cosmopolitan for me and cokes/soft drinks for the kids and Gary. Gary really isn’t much of a drinker which might surprise you when you think what he has to put up with We decided to forego starters in favour of dessert and orders were placed, amid high spirits and much hilarity.

The food took a little while to arrive and we were all more than pleased to see it when it did – more about the food, including pics, in our separate dining report entitled ‘Nat and Joh make a food porno’, which will be posted over on the restaurants board as soon as Nat gets round to starting it.

After dinner, we paid the bill and wandered around Gatwick village for a bit. Daniel had managed to spill half a bottle of tomato ketchup down his t-shirt during dinner and, as we hadn’t brought a spare, we wanted to try and get him a replacement. While we were walking along, Nat and I were giggling and laughing (during the course of dinner, we had also shared a cocktail pitcher and so were slightly merry), dancing and singing. The girls were growing increasingly embarrassed and eventually stormed off to sit on a bench where they could pretend they didn’t know us.

Score: Bad Mothers 1, Children 0 (Result! The holiday is only hours old and already the kids are losing)

I was left with the difficult job of getting Nat past the internet stations and failed dismally.

However, she didn’t have any change so couldn’t actually use the computers I want it noted at this point that I did indeed manage to go the whole 2 weeks without the DIS and Facebook....it nearly killed me

We caught up with the kids and decided to call it a night and head back to the Hilton. Back in the room, Daniel got ready for bed while Rea tried to wash his t-shirt out in the sink as we hadn’t been able to find an alternative. With Daniel in bed in the other room, the four of us congregated in our room and watched the X-Factor results show. Having expressed our disgust at John and Edward surviving the public vote and knowing we probably wouldn’t get much sleep, we called it a night and the girls went off to their room.

The next morning, I was awoken by the sound of giggling from the next room. When I went to investigate, I found all 3 kids huddled together in one single bed. despite the fact that it was only 5.30, it was fairly obvious they weren’t going back to sleep so I hopped into one of the other beds and we all watched telly for a while. Just after 7, I put the kettle on and made Gary a cup of tea – anyone who has read my previous reports will know that this is generally the one and only way of actually persuading him out of bed when on holiday – while Daniel made a start on the shortbread biscuits that were provided.

Shortly after 8, I phoned Nat to see if they were up and about and we arranged to meet downstairs, outside the restaurant. We were seated at a lovely big table towards the back of the restaurant where many breakfast items were consumed and we definitely got our Clubcard vouchers’ worth. Daniel, alone, probably ate his own weight in croissants. Having spent almost an hour eating, chatting and generally annoying the people at the tables around us (I think the fact that Daniel and Matthew were shouting Easyjet/Virgin/British Airways at the tops of their voices every time they saw a plane take off might have sealed our fate), we decided to move on and, collecting our stuff from the rooms, we made our way over to the terminal and joined the line for security. We were through security surprisingly quickly and Sian’s bag was picked out for a full bag check – more fool them - I think they underestimated just how long it would take them to sift though all her paraphernalia!

Soon, we were into departures and the usual round of look in shops, sit for a while, look in some more shops began. Me, Nat and the kids headed to WHSmiths so I could help Nat spend the gift vouchers she’d got for her Birthday and had been saving especially for this occasion. We ended up choosing a Harlan Coben book, which we had secretly been hoping would be published in paperback before we flew – and it was! I also bought a bookmark and a couple of bottles of Pepsi Max for the flight (Virgin Cola - enough said!) and Nat picked up some Pixar Top Trumps cards for the kids (those came in very useful at keeping the kids amused...that game goes on for ever. I was definitely trying to lose towards the end!!!!)

While we were in WHSmiths, Nat had made some kind of joke about being a lady (can you remember how it started Nat? - no idea!) and I responded that she was about as much of a lady as Florence from Little Britain. This prompted much hilarity, particularly when the carrier bag Nat was given had an advert for the magazine ‘The Lady’ printed on the side.

Back at base camp (where Gary had remained for the duration of the shopping expedition), Nat and John settled down too and I took Daniel and Matthew for a wander. We were going to head up to the observation deck, following a quick detour to Next, when we spotted that our flight was boarding.

We gathered up the others and began the long walk down to the gate. The rest is fairly boring – waiting to board, making comments about the other passengers, waiting some more to board, talent spotting, waiting to board, fighting our way through all the people who insist on standing up and crowding around even though their row number hasn’t been called etc. etc.

Eventually, we were all on the plane and settled.

We were pretty happy with our seat locations and the girls even had two spare seats next to them which remained empty during the flight (or would have if two undesirables from Hinckley hadn’t come and sat in them ). Well, I do have a reputation for turning up uninvited!

The flight itself was uneventful at best, apart from the fact that none of the kids got their pre-ordered kids meals. Daniel isn’t a fussy eater but the alternative adult meal was completely unsuitable (and inedible) – Rhiannon is well known for her ability to eat anything and even she turned her nose up at the muck we were served. We ended up buying some Pringles and Mini Cheddars from the duty free/snack trolley, although I firmly believe these should have been provided for free. I spoke to a member of the crew about the problem and she advised me that only half of the pre-ordered meals had been noted on the manifest and, unfortunately, the ones that were indicated had to be provided first (which was fair enough). She did, however, take a note of our names and return flight details and promised that the children’s’ meals would be available on our return flight.

I couldn’t concentrate particularly well so didn’t really watch any films on the flight. Mostly, I played Professor Layton on the DS and tried to entertain Daniel, who absolutely refused to try and sleep. Nat and Rea didn’t have a similar problem though.

Finally, we landed on time and, after what seemed like an eternity, were off the plane and joining the lines at immigration. We used the right-hand lane which got us through the line quickly enough but the guy who dealt with us were painfully slow and it seemed to take ages to get the stamp of approval. Nat, John and family were through well before us and had actually got all of their luggage by the time we made it through. It wasn’t long before we’d located ours and were through customs and on to the monorail.

Despite having booked a Virgin Holidays fly-drive, we had separately booked a 12-seater minivan with Alamo, through Holiday Autos, and got an excellent deal due to a sale and a further civil service discount. The guy at the desk tried to persuade Gary to ‘upgrade’ to an 8-seater and, despite our protestations that there were 9 of us, kept telling him that with little ones we’d be fine with an 8-seater. Neither of us could figure the logic and we stuck to our guns, ending up with a 15-seater minivan which was immediately christened the Mystery Machine (this picture was taken on the last day of the holiday but it’s the only one I’ve got).

Annoyingly, there was no boot and all of the seats were fixed so John and Gary had to manoeuvre the cases onto some of the seats, while everyone else squeezed into the back seats and I, as navigator, hopped into the front with Gary as designated driver.

Finally, we were off to Disney World.

Next up – Chapter 2: Giraffes are Boring

Last edited by wilma-bride; 11-12-2009 at 03:39 PM.
wilma-bride is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 03:53 PM   #2
I need a cup of tea and a big bar of free chocolate now
Was born with my dancing shoes at the ready
I will be back later to stalk some more
natalielongstaff's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: leicestershire,england
Posts: 80,404

brilliant mate, im cracking up remembering all our antics !!!
April 2003 DLRP, November 2004 WDW and Barbados, September 2005 WDW, September 2007 WDW,October 2009 WDW

natalielongstaff is offline   Reply With Quote
Register to remove

Join Date: 1997
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,000,000
Old 11-12-2009, 04:04 PM   #3
Latte Lover
in charge of the credit cards and plotting quickest routes to the shopping malls
Latte Lover's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Hampshire, England
Posts: 1,333

Fab first day, girls. (And about time too! Don't you know how much we've all been waiting for this?)

Love that big mini-van. I want one of those for my next car!

1975 Royal Plaza 1997 Master's Inn Kissimee 1999 Clarion Universal 2001 Howard Johnson Maingate East 2003 Econolodge 2005 Howard Johnson Maingate West 2006 Our Timeshare at Sheraton Vistana Resort 2007 Club Sevilla 2008 Sheraton Vistana(May), Terrace Ridge (Aug)Nov 2009 Barefoot'n' in the keys, Kissimmee2010 Cumbrian LakesOct 2011 Sheraton & Disney MagicNov 2012 Florida Keys, The Sheraton, and OKW
Latte Lover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:18 PM   #4
DIS Veteran
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.A.
Posts: 1,717

Originally Posted by natalielongstaff View Post
brilliant mate, im cracking up remembering all our antics !!!
I'm laughing, too, and I have no memories (only your account) of the adventure. But you conjure a strong image and I feel like I'm going along for the fun. We seem to be off to a great start.
SusanEllen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:19 PM   #5
If It's Not A Bahama Mama Then I'm Not Interested
Can I put my Christmas Tree up yet ?
mandymouse's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Nuneaton U.K.
Posts: 72,360
DISboards Moderator

Great start girlies, love your photos too. I look forward to you next chapter
Mandy xx

mandymouse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:28 PM   #6
Repeat after me....I LOVE CROC's, I LOVE CROC's, I LOVE CROC's!!!!!!
jockey's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: N.Ireland
Posts: 7,503

I have been checking daily for your trippie so glad you have started! Great start, the Hilton thanks to Mr Tesco is soooo good value, I always feel smug stuffing myself at breakfast! Can't wait for more
jockey is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:34 PM   #7
Tora Millypoops
Cleaning my Ears
Tora Millypoops's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: England
Posts: 2,124

Great start to your trip report. I can't wait for the next instalment!!!

Success is often the result of taking a misstep in the right direction.

1998-May-Sequoia Lodge-DLP; 1999-May-Newport Bay-DLP; 2001-March-Disney's Allstars Movies Resort-WDW; 2003-March-Holiday Inn-I Drive; 2006-April-Port Orleans French Quarter-WDW; 2007-October-Saratoga Springs Resort-WDW; 2008-October-Saratoga Springs/Boardwalk Villas&Vero Beach-WDW; 2009-Wilderness Lodge/Animal Kingdom Villas

Tora Millypoops is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:40 PM   #8
Would love a diet on Cadbury Flakes
Admits she's strange when it comes to eggs
wilma-bride's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wiltshire, UK
Posts: 20,999
DISboards Moderator

Originally Posted by Tora Millypoops View Post
Great start to your trip report. I can't wait for the next instalment!!!
You're just looking forward to the one that you feature in, aren't you
wilma-bride is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:48 PM   #9
Despite the end of tWW I'm still crazy about Josh Lyman
PoppyAnna's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Beckenham, Kent. UK.
Posts: 7,134

Fantastic first day - love the mystery machine

Just to clarify, was the score still 1-0 at the end of the first day?

Shocking about those meals, but that's a whole other thread
1982 WDW off site * May 2001 WDW off site * May 2005 DLRP * May 2007 WDW off site * Oct 2007 WDW off site * May 2009 DLRP * DLRP Christmas 09 * April 2011 3 wks Emerald Island, 3nt Dream cruise & Miami Beach * November 2011 SSR & VWL
PoppyAnna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 04:57 PM   #10
I need a cup of tea and a big bar of free chocolate now
Was born with my dancing shoes at the ready
I will be back later to stalk some more
natalielongstaff's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: leicestershire,england
Posts: 80,404

Originally Posted by PoppyAnna View Post
Just to clarify, was the score still 1-0 at the end of the first day?
yes it was....stay tuned !

Originally Posted by PoppyAnna View Post
Shocking about those meals, but that's a whole other thread
indeed it was
April 2003 DLRP, November 2004 WDW and Barbados, September 2005 WDW, September 2007 WDW,October 2009 WDW

natalielongstaff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 05:01 PM   #11
Tammy Stringer
I love babies - all milky and baby powdery
Do you knit, Barbara?
Up for the marquee option
Tammy Stringer's Avatar
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Gloucestershire, England
Posts: 1,503

Oh goodie you've started. I was just thinking today I wonder when day 1 will be up.

Great start girls can't wait to read more - I have a feeling it is going to be lots of fun to read

Tammy Stringer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 05:01 PM   #12

I am sooo proud, happy, relieved and impressed - it's a great day...
CustardTart's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: South West London...
Posts: 15,478

Great start, ladies!!! Loving the fact that Nat didn't change her top for the whole holiday...

Originally Posted by wilma-bride View Post

Originally Posted by PoppyAnna View Post
..Shocking about those meals, but that's a whole other thread
Bless Jed I Knight.... May the Farce be with you...
Grand Floridian Resort & Spa - Christmas 1998 * Dolphin/Vero Beach - Easter 2000 * Polynesian - August 2001 * Grand Floridian Resort & Spa - August 2004 * Beach Club/DCL Wonder - May 2005 * Grand Californian Hotel - NYE 2005 * Polynesian - August 2006 * DCL Magic Western Caribbean - September 2007 * Yacht Club - October 2007 * Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa - December 2007 * Villas at Wilderness Lodge/DCL Wonder Double Dip - May 2008 * DCL Magic Mexican Riviera/Disneyland Hotel - August 2008 * Boardwalk Villas - October 2008 * Animal Kingdom Villas/Hard Rock Hotel Club - Easter 2009 * Bay Lake Tower/DCL Magic Eastern Caribbean & Tortola/Villas at Wilderness Lodge - September 2009 * Bay Lake Tower - June 2010 * DCL Magic Westbound Transatlantic - September 2010 * Old Key West - October 2010 * Sequoia Lodge/Paris - November 2010 * Boardwalk Villas/DCL Dream Inaugural Cruise - January 2011 * Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa/Villas at Wilderness Lodge - November 2011 * Boardwalk Villas - July 2012 * Animal Kingdom Villas/DCL Fantasy Western Caribbean - November 2012 * Boardwalk Villas/Bay Lake Tower - January 2014...
CustardTart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 05:23 PM   #13
Been There, Done That, Going Back!
darthtatty's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Leicestershire UK
Posts: 3,013

yay its started
i think everyones been waiting for your report, just to see what trouble you got up to

you havent even got there yet and sounds like youre having fun, cant wait to hear more. have to keep an eye out for the food report.
May 2004 - Wedding@ Disneys Wedding Pavillion
May 2004 - Honeymoon @ Disneys Contemporary Resort
Feb 2005 - Sequoia Lodge @ Disneyland Paris
May 2009 - Holiday@ Disneys Contemporary Resort Trip report
August 2011-Holiday @ Disneys Contemporary Resort Trip report
March 2013-Perth Australia
August 2014- Holiday @ Disneys Contemporary Resort
darthtatty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 05:30 PM   #14
Found the Tag Fairy's hangout
All whacked up on Scooby Snacks
UKDEB's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Gloucester, UK
Posts: 11,982
DISboards Moderator

It's all far too happy for my liking. When does the fighting start?

October 1992 ~ Enclave Suites, I-Drive May 1996 ~ Omni Rosen, I-Drive October 1998 ~ Villa-Clear Creek August 2000 ~ Beach Club/Villa-Sunset Lakes July 2001 ~ Animal Kingdom Lodge/Hard Rock Hotel/Villa-Formosa Gdns Christmas 2001 ~ Villa-Formosa Gardens October 2002 ~ Hard Rock Hotel/Villa-Formosa Gdns May 2003 ~ Portofino Bay/Villa-Cumbrian Lakes January 2004 ~ Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes/Villa-Formosa Gardens July 2004 ~ Grand Floridian/Portofino Bay/Villa-Formosa Gardens December 2004 ~ Villa-Rolling Hills/Disney Wonder Cruise/BoardWalk Grand Villa/Contemporary April 2005 ~ Washington DC, Shenandoah, Blue Ridge Parkway, Charleston, Savannah, Royal Pacific Resort/Villa-Acadia Estates January 2006 ~ Reunion Resort/Royal Pacific Resort April 2006 ~ Celebration Hotel/NCL Jewel Cruise/Hotel Victor, Miami/Beach Cottage-Disney's Vero Beach October 2006 ~ Reunion Resort/BoardWalk Villa/Rosen Shingle Creek August 2007 ~ Saratoga Springs//Reunion Grande January 2008 ~ Saratoga Springs/Beach Club Villas/Reunion Resort November 2008 ~ BoardWalk Villas/Royal Pacific Resort/Saratoga Springs March 2011 ~ Celebrity Cruise/Veness Towers, a stone's throw from the Magic Kingdom November 2012 ~ Bay Lake Tower/Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota/Ritz-Carlton Destination Club, Jupiter/Saratoga Springs September 2013 ~ Kidani Village/Saratoga Springs May 2014 ~ Beach Club Villas/Wyndham Grand Bonnet Creek/Bay Lake TowerJanuary 2015 ~ Four Seasons Golden Oak/Bay Lake Tower
UKDEB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2009, 05:33 PM   #15
Boss Hogg
It's 5 o'clock somewhere
Tinky Winky isn't it?!
"How do you fancy it?"
Boss Hogg's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Where else? Wastin' away again in Margaritaville!!
Posts: 2,528

Shame about the lack of boot on the Mystery Machine, think Dodge used to have a variant with a boot, but it was then 65ft long, so they got rid of it
Boss Hogg is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Pop Picture Thread, Chapter 2 jenseib Resort Community Threads & Photo-Video 894 09-03-2014 07:12 PM
DISer chapter of NKOTB anonymous, part deux... we don't want an intervention!!! hmdavid Community Board 3740 11-16-2010 03:13 PM
DDA Chapter 23 Tammi67 Creative DISigns 3763 12-01-2009 09:13 PM
my birthday at DCA plus did i get bad info? LavenderPeach Disneyland (California) 13 11-29-2009 10:26 PM
Pixie dust and prayers needed so badly today... cathie1327 The DIS Unplugged Podcast 28 11-13-2009 03:03 PM

facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:33 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 1997-2014, Werner Technologies, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

You Rated this Thread: