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Old 07-05-2012, 11:14 PM   #1
elphie101
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You can probably walk away now, cause I'm about to start singing! June '12~DONE 12/22

Jambo and Nahtazu! Welcome to my humble trip report. We just got back from WDW this week, and I've convinced myself I won't be as sad about it if I start working on my TR There's no better way to start than with some introductions!

THE WHO


Me: I'm Jenn, your author and girl behind the camera. I'm a 20-something college grad who's recently graduated from the Disney College Program, and currently a seasonal cast member in Tomorrowland (and thus the reason/financial backing for the trip - but more on that later). I have a mysterious reservoir of energy (I've always suspected my body naturally produces caffeine) and have no problem bursting into song/dance in a public area, much to DBF's dismay (hence the title of this TR), Obligatory favorites include Magic Kingdom, The Haunted Mansion, Dream Along with Mickey and anything served at Auntie Gravity's.


DBF: This is Kevin, the DBF and all around Disney vet. He has never actually taken a vacation that hasn't been to WDW and has had an annual pass for most of his life, so I had no problem convincing him to join me on this spur of the moment trip. He has an endless amount of patience, bless him, but like me, he isn't afraid to openly embrace his inner 5-year-old. Favorites include Epcot, Wilderness Lodge, Figment and "all the rides" (he swears he just can't pick one).


THE WHEN/WHERE
We stayed at our favorite value resort to date (only two left to try!), Pop Century, from June 27-July 2 (aka MY BIRTHDAY!!!) I seriously would've considered a day or two later, since it would've given us more breathing room and relaxation time, but since I spent my birthday away from home last year (because of the CP) it just didn't feel right to do it again.

THE WHY
This trip originated because of two things: my old/current job and my new job. Like I mentioned above, I was recently a part of the Disney College Program, working from June 2011 - January 2012. Even though moved back home (which is Massachusetts), I decided to stay seasonal, at least for a little while, partly to keep the door open in case I decided to return to Disney full time, and partly because I just couldn't leave quite yet . If any of you know any seasonal cast members, you may know that Disney has recently changed their requirements making it far more difficult to keep status if you're living out of state or don't have a job with large chunks of vacation time (like teaching).

Meanwhile, I had been looking for work up here in MA ever since I got home, to no luck. Recently I had been on several interviews for a position, and I felt pretty good about it. They made it clear to me from Day 1 that even if they wanted to make an offer, it could take 2-3 weeks before they could officially start the hiring process. If I got this job, I wouldn't have any vacation time off until December, and if I didn't work in Tomorrowland before October, I would lose my training and essentially my position as a CM.

And so in about the middle of June, my mom said the most magical words I have ever heard: "Why don't you just go to Disney now?"

If I worked now, I would be set until the end of December. I could chip away at my yearly required hours. I could see some international friends of mine, who were about to end their time with Disney and return home. And most of all, CASTLE. (I find that tends to end most arguments. )

And so I "hypothetically" looked at the flights. And surprisingly, they were very cheap. So I "hypothetically" looked at hotel rooms, and found a mind-nubbingly fantastic deal. And so I asked DBF if he would "hypothetically" be interested in spending a few days in Disney, and he was all for it. And all of a sudden with less than 2 weeks to go, I found myself booking a Walt Disney World vacation about 24 hours after we thought of the idea. If that's not living in the moment, I don't know what is. :D

Oh, and I found out about 17 hours before we left for Florida: I got the job.

So come along and join us on this whirlwind trip to the most magical place on earth! Remember, your seat belts fasten from left to right.

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WDW: '91, '92, '94, '01, '06 (offsite)* 7/11 Pop* 8/11 AS Music* 9/11 AS Sports* 12/11 CBR* 6/12 Pop* (TR Here!) 11/12 AS Movies* 1/13 Pop* 9/13 Pop* 5/14 Pop* 10/14 BCV*
DL: '03 (day)* 4/13 Fairfield Inn Anaheim* DCL: 10/14 Fantasy Eastern Caribbean*

Star Command, over and out!*Hellllllooooooo Humans!*It's a great big BEAUTIFUL tomorrow!

Current TR: "That's not supposed to be HERE!" A Disneyland TR!***Our DFTW Planning Journal

Last edited by elphie101; 12-22-2012 at 09:23 AM.
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:03 AM   #2
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WDW: '91, '92, '94, '01, '06 (offsite)* 7/11 Pop* 8/11 AS Music* 9/11 AS Sports* 12/11 CBR* 6/12 Pop* (TR Here!) 11/12 AS Movies* 1/13 Pop* 9/13 Pop* 5/14 Pop* 10/14 BCV*
DL: '03 (day)* 4/13 Fairfield Inn Anaheim* DCL: 10/14 Fantasy Eastern Caribbean*

Star Command, over and out!*Hellllllooooooo Humans!*It's a great big BEAUTIFUL tomorrow!

Current TR: "That's not supposed to be HERE!" A Disneyland TR!***Our DFTW Planning Journal

Last edited by elphie101; 12-22-2012 at 09:23 AM.
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:52 AM   #3
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Following you over from my TR! Sounds like a lot of fun!

I find the CP and CM jobs so fascinating, I wish that I'd known about it when I was in college!

Can't wait to hear more!
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:45 AM   #4
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Hi!I'll be tagging along! It's looking good!
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:49 AM   #5
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I'm in. My boy thinks he wants to do the college program at disney. He thinks it will be a long commute from Pa. He wants to go to Penn State. I need to start saving now. I would love to hear about your fun.
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Hey read my PTR, see if we do go to WDW by saving with coupons[/SIZE]
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....light=bookmama

Look my 1st Ever TR. How we survived Tropical Storm Debbie
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....kip+the+lotion
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Old 07-06-2012, 03:25 PM   #6
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Joining in!
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Old 07-06-2012, 05:04 PM   #7
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Sounds like the most fun business trip a girl could ask for! Following along Congrats on the new job, btw!
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:16 AM   #8
elphie101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdwtwins View Post
Hi!I'll be tagging along! It's looking good!
Hi and welcome! Should but getting my next installment up today!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bookmama View Post
I'm in. My boy thinks he wants to do the college program at disney. He thinks it will be a long commute from Pa. He wants to go to Penn State. I need to start saving now. I would love to hear about your fun.
Hi there! If you have ANY CP questions at all shoot me a PM, I'd love to tell you about it - I actually did the program after I graduated (you're eligible as long as you're enrolled in college at the time you apply) which was great since I didn't have to worry about doing online classes or getting credit like many of my friends.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MinnieMouse24 View Post
Joining in!
Glad to have you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by shan23877 View Post
Following you over from my TR! Sounds like a lot of fun!

I find the CP and CM jobs so fascinating, I wish that I'd known about it when I was in college!

Can't wait to hear more!
Hello again! Glad to have you here and can't wait for more of your TR

Quote:
Originally Posted by merbobear View Post
Sounds like the most fun business trip a girl could ask for! Following along Congrats on the new job, btw!
Hi there and thank you!!! Yeah, one of the best parts about doing the college program was being able to say "Hmm, I've got half an hour before my shift starts, let's hop on the Peoplemover". Definitely miss that!
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WDW: '91, '92, '94, '01, '06 (offsite)* 7/11 Pop* 8/11 AS Music* 9/11 AS Sports* 12/11 CBR* 6/12 Pop* (TR Here!) 11/12 AS Movies* 1/13 Pop* 9/13 Pop* 5/14 Pop* 10/14 BCV*
DL: '03 (day)* 4/13 Fairfield Inn Anaheim* DCL: 10/14 Fantasy Eastern Caribbean*

Star Command, over and out!*Hellllllooooooo Humans!*It's a great big BEAUTIFUL tomorrow!

Current TR: "That's not supposed to be HERE!" A Disneyland TR!***Our DFTW Planning Journal
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:31 AM   #9
wdwtwins
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elphie101 View Post
Hi and welcome! Should but getting my next installment up today!!
Yay! I'll be looking forward to it!
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:51 AM   #10
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I'm in!! It sounds like it's going to be an awesome adventure! The CP is something I'd love to do, but I'm not sure if I can, but the IP does! I'm excited to hear all about it!
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:57 AM   #11
elphie101
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Day 1: "Smile! It's for the trip report!"

4:00 AM Wednesday morning came, bright (well dark) and early, but I know I don't need to tell you all that when it's a going-to-Disney morning, there's no such thing as too early! I finished up the last minute packing essentials and headed out to the driveway to wait for Kevin and his mother (who was driving us to the airport).


The view from my front lawn at 4:30 AM

Right on time they pulled up, and we were off to the airport. It took about an hour to get to Manchester, and we sped through security - and found ourselves with two hours to kill (our flight wasn't till 7:30). You see, SOMEBODY (coughKevincough) had factored in another 15-20 minutes with the anticipation of somebody (coughMecough) not being ready on time, which is a smart idea if we're going to the movies on a Saturday afternoon, but not in the early morning of a Disney day! I can make myself be on time when there's a castle waiting for me!

So once we were on the other side of security, we decided to get some breakfast at New England's favorite, Dunkin Donuts.


My last real coffee for four days.......I was practically crying taking this picture (well, only when I thought about the NesCrape waiting for me at WDW)


Somebody hasn't realized yet that just because you hold your hand up doesn't mean I won't take the picture......this is a trip report for Pete's sake!


I was really impressed to see that our plane was already here (the second one waiting to pull up to the gate) - plus this was my first time flying Southwest!

After we ate, I gave a quick call to my dad (he works the 1st shift at Boston's Logan airport so he was up and wanted to know what Manchester was like) and we decided to do some exploring, since I had never been there before (I've always flown out of Logan because of my dad). Definitely a much smaller airport then I'm used to (only one terminal!) and plenty of closed sandwich shops. The only place open was a NH liquor outlet, which we felt a little silly wandering around at 7:00 in the morning

We wandered back to the gate and killed time on various electronic devices. The gate was MUCH busier than when we left (you can always tell an Orlando flight by the amount of kids on the flight!) and they started to load the bags. I managed to snap a picture of Kevin's bag (the one with the blue belt).



As I said before, I had never flown Southwest, but Kevin explained the boarding process to me (we had B 03/04) and we got great seats up front with a very nice woman who was headed to Jackson MS (after we stopped in Orlando).

The flight was uneventful. I tried to read a little (A Game of Thrones - love the TV show and the book is great so far) but we just kind of fell asleep on each other for a bit, then watched 21 Jump St on Kevin's computer. The snacks were chocolate chip cookies, which I declined for us (Kevin's allergic to chocolate and I just don't like it) and the flight attendant mistakenly didn't give any to the woman, which I felt bad about. Towards the end of the flight, the attendant got on the intercom and told everyone that there was a very special little girl on the plane who was on her way to celebrate her 6th birthday in Chicago (which is when I realized the plane was going from Manchester to Orlando, to Jackson and then Chicago - very roundabout way to get there if you ask me!). She had given the entire crew handiwipes to use when she got on the plane, and they decided to thank her by having everyone sing happy birthday to her! So sweet and the very first bit of pixie dust

The next time someone got on the intercom, it was the turn off electronic devices message - we were landing in Orlando!!!

First stop after leaving the plane was the restroom, then we headed to baggage claim. (Don't worry, there's plenty more photos now that we're in Orlando - you stick out less when you photograph everything here!)


The MCO monorail!! Wheee so exciting.


My attempt at avoiding another hand photo........Kevin stocked up on Mountain Dews at the airport, because of that whole no-Coke-products-on-Disney-property thing.


The weather when we landed.......this was as the back end of TS Debbie was passing through Florida. I had been watching weather.com like a hawk before we left, hoping we'd have no trouble landing in Orlando - I expected today to be pretty rainy and gross, but this honestly was the worst of it. (And not another drop for the rest of the trip!)

We split off here, since Kevin's bag was in A, but we didn't have our Magical Express paperwork (since we booked so soon) and we knew we would have to wait in line, so I headed down to the desk.


I was so excited........my first trip on DME!!! (All my other onsite stays were during my CP, so I was already IN Orlando then.)

I got a little nervous at the counter because the woman couldn't find my reservation at first, and didn't seem like she believed we had made a DME reservation and not just a resort reservation.....until we realized everything was coming up in Kevin's name. I had been giving her my name for everything, since we were staying on a cast member reservation and I was the cast member, but since alphabetically Kevin's last name comes before mine it was his name showing up! Weird.

Even though it took longer than I thought it would, it ended up working great because Kevin showed up with his bag at the moment I was done. We hurried down the Pop Century line and got rushed onto the bus.....I was so excited, we must be about to leave!

........But the bus was practically empty. Boo. Oh well, more time for pictures!




Already the weather was getting better, though it was still a bit of a blah morning


Well aren't those two caffiene-powered faces of excitement. Note the "New England" sweater as I like to call it - even in late June it was still necessary back home and in all the heavy air conditioning , but it was almost time to be rid of it!

We waited about 20 minutes for the bus to fill up, and fill up it did. We were the second stop, after Caribbean Beach but before Art of Animation (!!!) The video started playing, and I was so excited - another first! I still loved it, even though it needs an update - maybe after most of the Fantasyland expansion opens up at the end of the year. I did get a nice shock seeing one of my co workers in the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor segment (as you may have figured out from my siggy, my rides are Buzz Lightyear/Monsters Inc/Carousel of Progress), wish I had gotten a picture!


Hallo there Nickelodeon hotel. I always passed this on my commute to work every day so I just had to take a photo - has anyone actually stayed here?

And then, the most glorious sight of all........


Came out pretty good if I do say so myself! Even with the three toddlers bouncing around in the seats in front of us (I was not going to let them ruin my shot!)


The best colored road signs in the world.....I was so excited to see them again!


Hi there Caribbean Beach! I stayed here when my parents visited back in December, and a good CP friend of mine worked at bell services here, and I thought it was great (though maybe I would've felt differently if we had been out in Trinidad or somewhere else really far from Old Port Royale). So for them, I tried to get a good shot of Custom House.




I believe this is part of the road widening project they're doing down by the Studios area.....or was that finished long ago? It was like this any time we drove by, though I can't for the love of me remember what street it actually was. You can see in the sign we're at the intersection at Victory Way. Well even if it isn't, the DIS has taught me that we you see construction at WDW, you photograph it!

Finally, I saw what I had been waiting to see for far too long.....


We're back!!


Coming up next: The Dining Plan: Disney's Bermuda Triangle
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WDW: '91, '92, '94, '01, '06 (offsite)* 7/11 Pop* 8/11 AS Music* 9/11 AS Sports* 12/11 CBR* 6/12 Pop* (TR Here!) 11/12 AS Movies* 1/13 Pop* 9/13 Pop* 5/14 Pop* 10/14 BCV*
DL: '03 (day)* 4/13 Fairfield Inn Anaheim* DCL: 10/14 Fantasy Eastern Caribbean*

Star Command, over and out!*Hellllllooooooo Humans!*It's a great big BEAUTIFUL tomorrow!

Current TR: "That's not supposed to be HERE!" A Disneyland TR!***Our DFTW Planning Journal

Last edited by elphie101; 07-07-2012 at 03:31 PM.
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:22 PM   #12
wdwtwins
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This is looking awesome!
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:24 PM   #13
elphie101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdwtwins View Post
Yay! I'll be looking forward to it!
Enjoy!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by katt789 View Post
I'm in!! It sounds like it's going to be an awesome adventure! The CP is something I'd love to do, but I'm not sure if I can, but the IP does! I'm excited to hear all about it!
Hi and welcome! Yeah, if you're from Canada you'd be on the ICP (though I believe if you were enrolled in an American school it'd be the regular CP......not too sure about that one), which I know is drastically different in every country, but you should definitely look into it! I have some great friends in Austrailia, New Zealand, the UK, Peru, Mexico, France and the Netherlands now because of the CP.
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DF Me
WDW: '91, '92, '94, '01, '06 (offsite)* 7/11 Pop* 8/11 AS Music* 9/11 AS Sports* 12/11 CBR* 6/12 Pop* (TR Here!) 11/12 AS Movies* 1/13 Pop* 9/13 Pop* 5/14 Pop* 10/14 BCV*
DL: '03 (day)* 4/13 Fairfield Inn Anaheim* DCL: 10/14 Fantasy Eastern Caribbean*

Star Command, over and out!*Hellllllooooooo Humans!*It's a great big BEAUTIFUL tomorrow!

Current TR: "That's not supposed to be HERE!" A Disneyland TR!***Our DFTW Planning Journal

Last edited by elphie101; 07-07-2012 at 03:32 PM.
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:38 PM   #14
vicceja
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I'm In! Unfortunately, can't make Disney World happen for us this summer ...I shouldn't complain as we usually go at least once a year . But wanted to spend my time reading all the Trip Reports to brighten up my mood
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Old 07-07-2012, 04:00 PM   #15
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Hi! I saw your TR in your signature when you posted on my TR, so I came to visit!
When were you on the CP? and how long did you get to do it?

Congrats on the new job! Good thing you got to go to WDW now I guess!
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