A Hop, NO Skip, and Many Mishaps to a Disney Dream!

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by jenseib, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. Caretames1

    Caretames1 Mom & Crazed Planner

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    NICE :thumbsup2 Pictures!!! We saw the bay in January, he jumped up with momma on the front platform, and he did look small compared to momma whale but not compared to the trainer!
     
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  3. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    They really are impressive and huge.

    Don't go reading about them, it will make you depressed. I feel so bad for these whales as many were basically stolen from there families so long ago. And of course there is no way they can be put back in the wild now.

    It is sad. They are really beautiful creatures, but not meant to be captive. I did some reading on them and it's kind of depressing. I think Sea World treats them the best, but some whales have horror stories.

    Yes, I did use my long lens on those. I was glad I had enough juice left to shoot the show.

    You could tell they were cautious. I do wish they could go back in the water with them though. But I totally understand. It just makes the show not so great. And these whales do now love human interaction....well most do. Some show signs of depression when left alone.
    That bird cracked me up. I thought...get out of there, you'll be eaten alive...one big gulp!

    It is a neat park. We will have to go again and hit many of the spots we missed.

    He was so cute. Kind of reminded me of a puppy dog. :laughing:
     
  4. Tinker_Tam

    Tinker_Tam DIS Veteran

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    Those are some amazing pictures!!! I so need to go back and catch up on the whole TR. I have fallen behind. Maybe after I get Gavin taken care of today I can do that!
     
  5. petals

    petals Irish Princess because Cinderella said so!

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    I love the shamu show but we saw it in 2008 with Tillikum in it and again in 2010 without him and in 2010. What I noticed was how muhc they had cut out of the show because of the accident with the trainer and the smaller whales didn't make as big a splash as Tillikum used to make when it came to splashing the audience.
     
  6. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    Hey, good to hear from you again. Oh, and I have to tell you that Paige was over last night (dropping off laundry for me to do, isn't she sweet) and she saw the new watch I bought at Disney this past trip. She said she loved it....so now I know what to buy her next time. She likes watches! LOL! Maybe she'll be my caregiver in my old age after all. LOL

    I have his part coming up. I was hoping to get it posted today, but I need to shower becuase we are going to some party here shortly.
    He did make a pretty good splash with his tail. I would say, I wouldn't want to be sitting in the first 20 rows or so. LOL. I have a bit of video of it.
     
  7. petals

    petals Irish Princess because Cinderella said so!

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    I never sit in splash zone but it does make me laugh especially when people start running up the steps because they are getting wet.. It says clearly splash zone why sit there if you don't want to get wet lol! :rotfl:
     
  8. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    The bad boy came out next. Now they didn’t say it was Tillikum, but we ‘knew’. All the trainers got off the stage and platforms and came to the ground in front of the tank. This guy was HUGE and he knows how to throw some water, as you can see in this video.

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    You can hear a little of Claire squealing in the background. I think she was actually saying something about wishing she was in the rows that were getting wet…I on the other hand am very thankful we were up high!

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    Like I said before, I have done some research on the whales since I have been home. It’s kind of depressing. I can’t believe the number of whales that are performing that were actually captured. I guess I assumed all were born in captivity now. (They can no longer actually go out and capture them anymore though) And it’s really sad, as many whales they first captured lived a very short time. Some only days. And they would actually kill other whales while trying to get to the babies they wanted to capture. And I didn’t know this, but only 1 whale was actually named Shamu. And then one was called Baby Shamu, but I don’t think it lived very long.
    Many whales that are born in captivity don’t live very long lives either. For a long time they could get them born, but they would die with in a few days. Now they do live longer, but still a lot seem to dye much earlier than they do in the wild.
    And then I research edgood Ol “Free Willy” and that is a very depressing story. Basically the movie story of him being in a seedy marine park with a tank too small was the truth. He was very sick and not till after the movie was he taken to another park and was able to gain weight and get some of his health back. But as you may or may not know, he was set free, near Iceland, but didn’t want to be free and swam to Norway and tried to interact with Humans. He ended up dying.

    OK, enough depressing whale stories. It was nice to see the show, and I will not be doing depressing research again after watching something like this.

    One more of the big guy!

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    The show ended and we decided to just sit back and let the place empty a bit before trying to fight our way out. But that didn’t last long. Claire had to go potty….NOW! So I told Mom and Dad that we would go and find them later. We fought our way down, but I wasn’t familiar with the area. From the map I had, I thought I knew where the bathrooms were, but I actually went the wrong way and couldn’t get to them once I got outside.
    I headed towards the Happy Harbor and figured there had to be some there. And there was! Disaster was averted and Claire felt much better.
    Now for the task of finding Mom and Dad. We hung around the area and took some pictures while waiting. I believe Mom called me and they eventually made their way to us.

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    Mom and Dad joined us. I think it was about 6:30 now and the park closed at 7 for a private party. Dad was on a mission to leave NOW. I told him we would walk the long way back and do some browsing and shopping. That got a bit of grumbling, but I had the car keys. LOL!
    We stopped off and made a few purchases. I got Claire a keychain that she picked out that looked liked a flipflop. Mom bought Claire some bracelets to give to the girls in her class. I think they were 2 for $5 and we got 10. We should’ve gotten an extra packet though. Claire wore hers that day and then put it back in the bag. When we got home, I sent all of them to school with her. There are 9 other girls in her class. Well Claire gave them all out and then one to the teacher, which I told her NOT to do. But it was my fault as well, as I didn’t specifically tell her that her bracelet was still in the bag either. One girl in her class lost hers right away, so the teacher gave hers to her. Claire came home and told me about it, and then I had to break the news to her that her bracelet was in the bag as well, and now she didn’t have one. Of course that produced a lot of tears. Actually a bit of a tantrum. I told her next time we go we would get her one again. I think that is one of the reasons she keeps asking to go back to Sea World.
    My goal was to find a small Shamu plush for Claire, but so far al lwe could find were ones that talked (or made some sort of noise), ranging in the $25 price. That was more than I wanted to spend. So we kept looking.
    Mom did a bit more stopping than us in the shops (Dad was thrilled, LOL) and I took a few pictures while we waited on her.

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    I saw this guy, and he looked so cute, so I took a few pictures. We had seen squirrels all day, and I kept joking that it was the same one following us around because we looked like such a fun family. Dad thought it was dumb to be taking a picture of a squirrel and as soon as he said it, another lady came up and took one too.

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    We found a rather big store closer to the entrance to the park and that had a small Shamu. Claire gave it lots of love and was happy. I believe Mom started going crazy here too. I think she bought some stuff for Paige, maybe a t-shirt and shorts. We left the store with a little less money in our pockets, but happy. I was sad that we had to leave already; I really missed a lot of the park. There were parts I had said were must dos that I never even saw, let alone have the option to do. There is always next time!

    A few departing shots!

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    We made the walk out to the van and got situated. We decided to head back to Residence Inn and ask where a Best Buy was near by. I don’t like Best Buy at all. I think they are usually over priced, and I really don’t like that they are always pushing warranties on you. I actually bought my first computer from them many years ago and got the warranty, but when I brought it in to be fixed, everything they said “would” be covered was not. Since that time, I actually pretty much boycott them if possible. I do know they have gotten better over the years though. I chose Best Buy though, because I knew they would be the best chance of finding a charger for my battery. I didn’t want to jump from store to store looking and hoping to find one. Remember, I wanted it to be an early night. HA!
    We took off out of the parking lot and I went to turn left. Dad swore I was going the wrong way. I told him no, our Hotel is just over that way, you can almost see it, we’re so close. Nope, I was wrong and he was right….in his mind. I went with my way though. And I was right. We were just around the corner basically and in no time we pulled up to the front of Residence Inn. I jumped out and went up to the desk and asked for a near by Best Buy and if there were places to eat near there as well. The guy gave me directions, and also named a few restaurants in the area. One he named was the Cheesecake Factory. I had never been there, but I have read some reviews of it, and it sounded great….just what I would like. I hopped back in with the family and suggested that to them. Mom said fine, but Dad said he ate at one in Chicago once and wasn’t thrilled with their version of cheesecake. I guess we kind of ignored him. LOL!
     
  9. Caretames1

    Caretames1 Mom & Crazed Planner

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    Tillikum wasn't in the show in January :sad2: He looks huge! Kadence loved the video, she said she would have sat in the splash zone with an umbrella.:rotfl2: Now would have been funny!

    We didn't want to spend a load of money either, so at one of the game booths Kadence picked some ducks (for 3 dollars) and got a penquin. It made her happy and pur pockets too!
     
  10. bubba's mom

    bubba's mom <font color=red>Proud Redhead<br><font color=darko

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    he is a beautiful creature....so sad the history of their capturing :sad2:

    funny...we boycott Best Buy too...but only for major purchases. We still buy video games, movies, small stuff from them... I wouldn't hesitate to get a charger from them...even if it IS a bit more $$.
     
  11. PrincessBetsy

    PrincessBetsy "It's kind of fun to do the impossible."

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    Wow, Tillikum is huge! And he can sure splash that water... No way would I want to be anywhere near the splash zone.

    Those stories about the whales being captured are truly sad. I never had any idea that they were captured that way. :sad2:
     
  12. Tinker_Tam

    Tinker_Tam DIS Veteran

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    How sad about capturing the whales. I guess I never stopped to think that they had to come from somewhere. I guess in my mind I just thought that we would be into breeding our own in captivity. Sometimes as a human race we aren't very nice to others... including beautiful creatures. And then we wonder why they turn on us sometimes!

    I think if we ever do make it back I am going to have to add a day at Sea World to the trip. Heck, no plans in sight so I can add all I want to!
     
  13. Normangirls

    Normangirls DIS Veteran

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    Hey, Jen -- awesome pics of SW! I only went to the one in Ohio once, when DD15 was about three years old, and to be honest I just don't remember much. I went to the one in Orlando once when I was little, and can't remember much of it, either. Must be getting old!

    I cannot believe how many outfits I see Claire in that I have for my DD5 -- it's almost like we shop at the same stores. Oh, that's right we do. There's only one Disney store around here!

    Anyway, I'm still lurking out here, and enjoying your TR very much.
     
  14. mickeystoontown

    mickeystoontown DIS Veteran

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    Oh my word! Tillikum is huge! I remember reading stories about how whales were captured and taken to rinky dink parks where their enclosures were way to small for them. It's good to know, though, that they have stopped doing that and they have better care.
     
  15. joy13

    joy13 DIS Veteran

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    I'm sure we saw Tillikum in 2005 when we went - I remember the slumped over dorsal fin. Glad you knew your way around and got to the RI quickly - your Dad probably never would have let you live that down if you hadn't - and how can he not like Cheesecake Factory cheesecake ??? Yummy!!!!
     
  16. petals

    petals Irish Princess because Cinderella said so!

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    I love Seaworld. Last year we managed to see all the shows and somehow had time for exhibits as well and it didn't seem to rushed. Dunno how we managed it.

    I posted a short video from the splashing at the show I was at on you tube.. it's linked in my pre trip.. Sound is a little dodgy and I kinda lost the whale at times but you can see it's not really as big a splash as Tillikum makes.
     
  17. Beth D

    Beth D DIS Veteran

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    We've been lucky the times we've been at Sea World. The trainers could still go in the water and the shows were special. We also saw one of the last shows before one gave birth. Since the baby was born in the main tank about 3 hours after the show, they shut down the show for the next 3 weeks or so to allow Mom & Baby to bond.

    We went back later that week and they have just open exhibition in the Shamu stadium, and talk about the birth. The baby was already about 5 feet long and 250 lbs!

    I had to laugh at your squirrel pics. DH got attacked and scratched by one on our last trip. He had sunflower seeds and tossed some to the squirrel. BIG MISTAKE! Mr. Squirrel decided he wanted more, and when DH put the seeds into the diaper bag in the boot of the stroller, he jumped up DH's leg looking for more. :scared1:DH spent 15 min in first aid getting the scratches disenfected. :rotfl:
     
  18. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    Claire just loved it, I told her the water was full of wahle poop though. LOL! I wanted to get a little something there for her, but I wasn't paying $25 for a Shamu. LOL!

    It is really sad. They no longer do that, thank goodness, but if you read about the earliest captures, it's just heart wrenching.
    I do buy a few small things at Best Buy too, usually if someone asks for something from there like for b-days or Christmas. But I think I do most of my electronic shopping online anymore.
    But I knew that was probably the best place to find what I needed. I sure as heck didn't want to give them $70 though. :rotfl:

    There is a law now, which I can't remember how long ago it went into effect, but they can't anymore, but it is so sad. I think the beginning of the movie Free Willy has a capture scene, where he is being captured. And if I remember right, it depicted it pretty good from what I have read. I should go and find that movie, I don't think we own it, but maybe we do, and watch it again.

    It is sad. Now only the whales they breed can be added to the team. No longer do they capture them. I do love to watch them perform, but in a way I wish they couldn't breed them and that would put the end to the whales in captivity. I am in no way a freedom fighter type person, but reading about them just really touched my heart.
    I scoped the boards and got our tickets for a pretty good discount. I wish I could find Universal tickets for that price. LOL!

    The same EXACT stores. :laughing: Sadly, Claire is starting to outgrow Disney Store stuff. I'll go crazy then. Where wil lI find the cute stuff? I'll probably start looking more on Etsy and paying way more than I should. ;)

    Yes, it's so sad. Some have such small tanks. I think the theory is that the ones who have the flopped over fin is because they don't have enough room. And really compared to an ocean, these tanks are not big enough. I know some places do really try to do their best, but of course it takes a lot of money to build bigger tanks and keep these guys fed too.

    I think he's been there for awhile. He was involved in 2 other deaths over the years, but at other parks. One though, they believe a guy hid in the park and then got naked and wanted to swim with the whale and died from the cold water. He had bite marks, but they think it was from the whale finding him and trying to figure out what he was....whales feel by biting. They said they think the bites had nothing to do with his death.

    Wow. I know if we go there earlier and then if the park was opened later, we could've done a lot more. But I did enjoy our time there....even if my feet hurt the entire time. :laughing:

    That would be so neat to go in and get a birth talk. LOL!

    I have seen pictures of squirrels stealing food off of carts before too. I actualy think Lisa...Mickeystoontown....may have posted some at one time. It's kind of funny. But I don't want one to touch me. :eek:
     
  19. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    We started out of RI and quickly realized that there wasn’t an on ramp to the expressway for the direction we wanted to go….something the guy at the desk didn’t mention. Oh well, we just kind of followed the highway till we found one. Soon we found the Mall (which I am having a blank on the name right now). I parked and ran into Best Buy while the family sat out and waited. I think Claire wanted to come along, but it would’ve just slowed me up.
    I asked a worker where I could find a battery charger for the battery of a Canon 50D. He helped me look and we found one….the VERY last one they had……and the price…..drum roll please!................ $70.00….yep, it was that much. I asked if a battery came with it too, and he said no, but it was a double charger and could do 2 batteries at a time. It also had attachments to do several kinds of batteries, none of which I own. And it also could be charged in your car as well. So to put it lightly, it came with a bunch of cords and attachments……...which for me means more things to lose. LOL!
    I sucked it up and paid for it, of course with tax it came up even higher. And of course, as luck would have it, I had to wait in line forever. There were 2 registers open and both had troubled customers. One was doing a bit of arguing about something, while the other was having some sort of problems with how she wanted to pay, so it was rang up, then canceled out, rang up partially then she used the wrong credit card, canceled again, etc.
    Finally I was checked out and I ran back to the car, with a grumbling Claire waiting for me.
    I think Mom about fainted when I told her how much it was. I think she felt bad, but there was nothing I could do, I needed it and I wasn’t sure my other had been found.
    We drove the quick drive over to the mall and I dropped the family off at the Cheesecake Factory. I went in search of a parking spot. This Mall was hopping and open spaces were far and few between. I did finally find one though. And I seem to notice a pattern throughout Florida. The parking spaces seem much narrower than I am used to in Ohio. I squeezed her in a spot with very little room to actually open doors. I then opened up that million dollar charger and found the correct attachments and started charging the battery I had with me.
    I was happy now that I had one battery on its way to being charged for the next day. I grabbed my point and shoot and went in the restaurant to find the family had already been seated.
    We browsed the menu….which was more like a book. I swear, it was like 20 pages. So hard to make a choice, but we knew Cheesecake was going to be ordered for sure. We figured we would take that back to the hotel with us. Yes, we were looking at Dessert first….Nothing wrong with that!
    I decided on pizza. Mom wanted to share, and that was fine by me. She also wanted quesadillas, so we decided to share those as well. Note to self…that was way too much food!

    I think Dad had a steak. I didn’t take a picture of his. I have to admit again, that the lack of sleep was catching up to me, and I would forget to take pictures sometimes, or the camera was becoming heavy! LOL!

    The bread was REALLY good here. Claire was going to town on it, and would yell at us if we went for some. We asked for more and some went back to the room with us as well.

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    Our quesadilla after we had already started to attack it.

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    It was good. Not the best one I have ever had, but still very good.

    Claire went with the corndog and fries. She loves corndogs (after all it is in the hotdog family) and really enjoyed this meal.

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    Our pizza arrived and we attacked it before I even thought to take a picture. It was very good.

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    We boxed up half of the quesadilla and the pizza and received our cheesecakes to go. We were stuffed, and I couldn’t even imagine how we were going to eat those wonderful desserts. And sadly I never took a picture of them. I got Reeses Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake Cheesecake and it was fabulous and rich. Dad got UltimateRed Velvet CakeCheesecake™ and Claire got strawberry cheesecake. All were great, though it took us 2 days to eat them!

    I don’t know what this cost. Mom paid for us all. I offered to pay the tip, but she told me not to worry about it since I had just spent some money (much more than I wanted to) at Best Buy. I was very happy to try this place. I wish there was one close to me. I will definitely try to find one in my travels in the future.

    After we were super stuffed (and Dad actually loved his food), we rolled out and back to Residence Inn.
    Well coming back I missed the exit for Sea World because it was NOT the exit for our hotel. And sure enough there wasn’t an exit for our hotel, so I got off at the next one. My Dad was having a fit. Why did I miss the one, we should’ve known from when we left there wasn’t an exit from that direction, etc. I asked him if he had to be anywhere at a certain time, and he said no, then I said, why care about it. We will just take a nice leisurely drive through Orlando and see the sights and in the mean time work our way back to the hotel. LOL!
    And we did make it!

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    I had kind of hoped to take Claire for a quick swim before going to bed, but it was pretty late at this point, (I think around 9:30 or 10) so we skipped that idea.
    We got her bathed and a good hair wash and got her into bed. But she was FULL of energy. I couldn’t believe it. The room we got here had a bedroom with 2 queen beds and then the living room/kitchen area. (I did eventually take pictures of it)
    My Dad was watching TV and my Mom and I went down to start some laundry. I couldn’t believe she was still hopping around in the room when I came back up, so we shut the door on her and told her she had to sleep and she went out then.
    The laundry was washed and Mom and I each threw our loads into the dryer. It was taking forever to dry. I had just had it for the day. Again, I had very little sleep the night before, so I was running out of gas fast. I told Mom that I was just going to leave my laundry in the dryer till morning. There were many dryers and I highly doubted someone would need the one I was using in the middle of the night.
    I hit the sack and went out fast. I think it was around midnight then. The beds were very comfy here as well and I slept like a rock!

    And that is the end of Day 6. Only one more full day left……Boo Hoo!
     
  20. KatMark

    KatMark DIS Veteran

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    Great update, Jen. We haven't been to Sea World in so long...really need to get back there to see all that they have added. It is a sad story of the whales and them capturing them to use in shows--very sad.

    We LOVE Cheesecake Factory for meals; Mark likes their cheesecake well enough (although it is NOT Eli's) (I don't like cheesecake so I'm okay with just ice cream).
     
  21. joy13

    joy13 DIS Veteran

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    Glad to hear your Dad liked the food - I just love Cheesecake factory! We don't have one close either :( It figures that Best Buy would be out of chargers! I would have bought it too though - can't be without a charger on vacation!
     

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