Drink up, me 'earties, yo ho!

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by jwhtewolfd, Sep 2, 2011.

  1. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    We're really bad eggs.

    Who: me (Jamie) and the ex-dbf (Tony)
    What: a friendship trip
    Where: WDW, Caribbean Beach Resort, Pirate room
    When: September 24 - October 2, 2011
    Why: Tony hadn't been back since the 9/09 trip. He was itching to get back and offered to lay down the gold to go. Who am I to arrgue?

    Ahoy! So by now it's obvious there's a pirate theme happening here. We've always stayed at values in the past, but now they only offer the QS dining plan during free dining. While pricing out values (and paying for the upgraded plan) vs. moderates (with the free regular dining plan), I happened to mention the pirate rooms at Caribbean Beach...We have our heading. Tony was smitten, and there was no debating the cheaper values, different moderates or less expensive CBR rooms. (FYI: it's cheaper to stay at a value and pay for the upgrade than to book a moderate.)

    I secured our quarters on May 2, then set about the onerous task of booking ADRs and scheduling park days after the 180 day mark. There were a few disappointments and a few tweaks along the way, but here be the plan (for now):
    Sat 9/24: drive from New Orleans, check in, DTD
    Sun 9/25: MK, The Plaza, MSEP, Wishes, MK pm EMH
    Mon 9/26: EP, Coral Reef, Tutto Italia, Illuminations, HS pm EMH
    Tues 9/27: HS, Kona Cafe, MNSSHP, HalloWishes, Boo-to-You
    Wed 9/28: AK, Yak and Yeti, Fantasmic!, EP pm EMH
    Thurs 9/29: EP, Chefs de France, Fantasmic!, explore CBR
    Fri 9/30: MK, EP Food & Wine Fest, Illiminations
    Sat 10/1: AK, MK, Wishes, 'Ohana
    Sun 10/2: 'Ohana breakfast, drive to New Orleans

    We'll be dining like kings, getting into the Halloween spirit at MNSSHP and taking full advantage of the first day of the Food and Wine Festival. Especially the FOOD part, and more especially the WINE part. Drink up, me 'earties, yo ho! That should be enough to whet your appetite until I post pics of our MNSSHP costumes and share the story of the trip book. I'll try not to overdo it on the pirate stuff, but I'm sure I'll be slipping in some quotes, and, aye, even some pirate speak and bad puns.
     
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  3. StitchSpawn

    StitchSpawn Florida Mouseketeer

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    :goodvibes subbing have fun
     
  4. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Welcome aboard, Matey! And the same to you on your adventure!
     
  5. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Avast! We're currently hunkering down under the deluge of a squall what goes by the name TS Lee.

    Luckily I got my Mickey mail about ten days ago, so it is high and dry.

    As promised, here are pics of our MNSSHP shirts.

    Mine:

    [​IMG]

    Tony's:

    [​IMG]

    I designed them at zazzle.com. They look good new, but I have a feeling the printing won't stand up to many washes.

    -----bad segue-----

    My first trip book is now full after three trips, so it was time to go on the hunt for a new one. I found this awesome Lion King journal on the Disney Store site:

    [​IMG]

    It's a picture of the computer screen, thus the swirly lines. I love this journal, but it was going to cost over $20 with shipping. Over $20 for a BLANK book! Forget that. There were some other Mickey journals that were cool, but not much cheaper, so I gave up for the time being.

    I was in the dreaded wal-mart later that night and decided to check out their journal selection. Lo and behold, I found this:

    [​IMG]

    The EXACT same Mickey journal that the Disney Store site was selling for almost $15 plus shipping. I got the EXACT same journal at wal-mart for under $5. I even came home and compared all the fine print and specifications. EXACTLY the same. Not a big shocker. We all know you pay premium price at Disney. But it's eye-opening to see how Disney can get away with a nearly 70% markup. Something to keep in mind while souvenir shopping.

    Speaking of souvenirs (better segue), I've promised a lot of people a lot of things. I'm already committed to bringing back an Eeyore key chain, something Eeyore for a newborn, a plush Yeti, a baby-character plush, candy for co-workers and I've promised myself a safari Eeyore plush and possibly a new bead for my Pandora bracelet. That's on top of any pins or shirts that I might not be able to resist. It's shaping up to be an expensive free trip. And we won't even mention the Food and Wine Fest. We won't. Ok, we will. But next time. pirate:
     
  6. Where'sPiglet?

    Where'sPiglet? DIS Veteran

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    Ahhh, TS Lee....I've been surfing the internet entirely too much this weekend!

    Okay, I LIKE the journal you picked up at Walmart. I wonder if my Walmart has the same one. Which area of the store was it in? Not that it matters, I still cannot figure out why a store that is exactly the same shape everywhere has a different floor plan everywhere. :confused3

    I also like the shirts you ordered! Hopefully they hold up better than you expect.

    It sounds like you have a good plan so far and a LOT of food! The only restaurant on your list that I recall eating at is Kona Cafe for breakfast!

    I like your shopping list so far. Hmmm.....Pandora bracelet. I don't have one but that sounds like a habit that I should start. *evil gleam in eye* Have you done the Pick a Pearl?

    Have you stayed at CBR before? I stayed there in 2007 and I really liked it. They have made big improvements to the pool area since then. I love how relaxing the villages are and that they have hammocks. I'm not as crazy about how many times the bus stops around the resort. At least you'll have a car if the bus is driving you crazy. They have a cute food court and a large gift shop.

    How do you do the drive? What time of day do you leave and where do you like to stop? I think we are going to drive to WDW from New Orleans in the spring, but I've never done it before. I've only flown to WDW. I might miss riding the Magical Express! :eek:
     
  7. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    The solo trip was different b/c of the funeral that morning, but I prefer to leave 3-3:30 am. It only takes about 3 hours to get to Florida. There's a Cracker Barrel round about that time that we hit for 6am breakfast. Other than that, just stopping for gas as needed (with munchies in the car). I've done it alone, obviously (requires one 5-hour-energy shot), but Tony and I switch up depending on how we feel. Every three hours is probably my best recommendation, but sometimes I feel fine and can easily go for 5 or 6 hours before needing to switch.

    Both times we got there with plenty of time to check in, unload the car, chill in the room for a bit, then hit up DTD for CS and more than enough shopping time and still get to bed at a reasonable hour.
     
  8. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    BTW, Welcome aboard, peg-leg-Piglet!
     
  9. Where'sPiglet?

    Where'sPiglet? DIS Veteran

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    I LOVE a good milkshake! I might have to try the Plaza. I can't make my ADRs for awhile, but I'm already pondering where to eat. I usually get my WDW milkshakes at Beaches & Cream. :love:

    Hmmm....maybe not on the Pandora. :rotfl2: I may do another Pick a Pearl; it was fun. The pearl itself was not too expensive; it was the setting that raises the price a lot.

    3am? Cringe! That is EARLY!! I was thinking maybe more like 6 or 7 am and getting sausage biscuits from McDonald's on the way out of town so we are not doing a TS on the way. It takes about 10-11 hours of drive time? I want to find a Panera on the way for lunch. I know Florida has them!

    :laughing: Thanks!
     
  10. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    3 am is NOT early when you are on your way to Disney World! Besides, don't you feel like this?

    Map quest says 10 hours. For the most part, I make better time than map quest suggests I should. ;) But we like our Cracker Barrel stop, so that takes some time. Plus gas stops, and don't forget time change. If you leave between 6 and 7am, I could see you getting there anywhere from 5 - 7pm Florida time, depending on how hard you push and how much you stop. But for me it's a one day drive; even when I left at 3pm. I had car munchies, my 5-hour energy that I drank about 3 hours in, only stopped for gas, and I was pushing it b/c I had to be up early to check in to the conference. I got there 1am Florida time. Yeah, don't do that math. I told you I was pushing it.
     
  11. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Let's talk Food and Wine Festival.

    Food:
    Shrimp on the Barbie with Pepper Berry Citrus Glaze
    Grilled Lamb Chop with Potato-Goat Cheese Salad and Shiraz Reduction
    Seared Mahi Mahi with steamed Rice, Hearts of Palm and Coconut-Lime Sauce
    Grilled Beef Skewer with Chimichurri Sauce and Boniato Purée
    Ropa Vieja (slowly braised beef ) with White Rice
    Jerk spiced Chicken Drumstick with Mango Salsa
    Rib Eye Tacos
    Taste of Scandinavia - Shrimp Salad, Cured Salmon and Herring
    Swedish Meatballs with Lingon Berries
    Black Pepper Shrimp (4) with Sichuan Noodles
    Xinjiang Barbecue Chicken Stick
    Seared Filet of Beef with smashed Sweet Potatoes and Braai Sauce
    Cheese Fondue with Sourdough Bread
    Artisan Cheese Selection
    Kielbasa and Potato Pierogie with Caramelized Onions and Sour Cream
    Ravioli Di Formaggio all’Emiliana
    Linda Bean’s Lobster Claw Cuddler with drawn Butter
    Linda Bean’s Perfect Maine Lobster Roll
    Shrimp Cake on a Sugarcane Skewer with Singapore Noodles
    Beef Rendang (a coconut braised beef ) with Jasmine Rice
    Seared Sea Scallop with Kumara-Red Curry Puree and Apple Radish Salad
    Guylian Belgian Chocolate Seashell Truffles
    Red Wine braised Chicken, Mushrooms, Pearl Onions and Macaroni Gratin
    Crème Brûlée au Chocolat au Lait
    Lobster & Scallop Fisherman’s Pie
    Kerrygold Cheese Selection: (Aged-Irish Cheddar, Dubliner and Ivernia)
    Warm Chocolate Lava Cake with Baileys Ganache
    Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup

    Wine, etc:
    Frozen Dragon Berry Colada
    Lime Strawberry Margarita on the Rocks
    Selbach JH Riesling Classic
    Belvedere Strawberry Chiller
    Mohua Central Otago Riesling
    Parisian Cosmo Slush (Ciroc Vodka, Grand Marnier, Cranberry Juice)
    Guinness Draught
    Bunratty Meade

    Are you drooling yet? How in the World am I supposed to afford, much less fit, all this food and alcohol? :faint:
     
  12. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Join me in a jaunty pirate jig, because I just completed online check-in for our pirate room at Carrrribbean Beach Resort!

    :dance3:

    Hmm. Not a very piratey dance, that.

    Gents, if that weren't good enough news, just this very day it's been confirmed that THE Captain Jack Sparrow will be in attendance at the Halloween party. Yes indeed, a pirate's life is a wonderful life. pirate:

    Only 10 days left and still so much to do - work, pack, see The Lion King in 3D, clean my car, sell my car, finish reading the Harry Potter books...How will I get it all done? Time and tide wait for no man.
     
  13. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    This is the second time that Louie has had health issues right before I'm leaving for WDW. Today we went in at 2pm for him to have surgery to remove his anal glands. They've been giving him trouble off and on since May, but last week we were worried they might rupture internally, so we decided to schedule surgery before I leave. He did really well under anesthesia. I was nervous all morning, but once we got in there it was easy to focus on monitoring him.

    In happier news, we saw The Lion King in 3D yesterday! :simba:

    Sometimes it feels like vacation is forever away, and sometimes it feels like time is slipping away and I'll never be ready in time. Packing will have to happen tomorrow. Only four more days!
     
  14. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    I'm mostly packed after the better part of two and half hours. I knew it would be a lot of back and forth gathering things up, but I somehow forgot how LONG it would take. Part of that time was writing up a comprehensive list, based on the two or three lists I had floating around. I like to have a fresh list that I can scratch off as things go into the suitcase. Another good chunk of time was devoted to having a heart attack because I couldn't find my memory card. Then there's still all that last minute stuff you can't pack until that morning that always makes me nervous that I'll forget something important.

    What I won't forget this time are my hat and ears. They are safely in the suitcase already. Still have a few errand-type things to do and have to do a phone check list with Tony before he comes with his stuff Friday night, but I think I'm on track and ready to go. Now just gotta get through three days of work...
     
  15. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Apparently my plans for getting to bed early before a 3am drive will never work, but at least I'm leaving in 5 hours!
     
  16. Where'sPiglet?

    Where'sPiglet? DIS Veteran

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    I had to come check your PTR to see when you were coming back so I could hear about your trip! I hope you are really enjoying it and have a safe drive home tomorrow!

    I was all the way across town the other day and I saw that journal in stock at the Walmart over there. Of course, it was not even remotely close to the same area of the store that the journals were in at the store by me. In my store, it was in the front right corner, and in that store, it was in the back left. :confused3:rotfl:

    I also got some cute pens to write in it with, but I haven't started yet. I want to print off some photos to paste into it, but I can't find my photo paper. This is turning out to be a major undertaking. :rolleyes:
     
  17. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Had a great time! I'm working on getting photobucket to cooperate (since somebody insisted I not skimp on the pictures this time), and then I can get the report started.
     
  18. Where'sPiglet?

    Where'sPiglet? DIS Veteran

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    Okay, this is bizarre.

    The list of pre-trip reports page has the last post as being from you on 10/6 at 9:33pm. I don't see it here! :confused3

    I am very curious as to how your trip went! Have you started a trip report yet?
     
  19. Where'sPiglet?

    Where'sPiglet? DIS Veteran

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    Okay, this is even more strange. Once I posted saying that I couldn't see your post, I was able to go to page 2. Before I posted, the link to page 2 was not there. :confused3

    Anyways, I'm glad to hear you had a great time!

    Who insisted to take lots of photos? Was that me or Tony? Encouraging you to take a ton of photos sounds like something I might do. :rolleyes1

    I watched the Lion King yesterday and thought of you. I can't figure out why you LIKE Scar, however. He is such a sleazy creature!
     
  20. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    I quote: "And don't hold out on us for the photos!! " -Where'sPiglet, from my solo TR.

    I was in Wal-Mart restocking my Diet Coke supply and they had Lion King playing on the big-screen TVs in the back. So of course I gravitated over and ended up buying The Lion King and Tangled. I HAVE to get out of vacation-spending mode.

    Scar is pure awesomeness. Don't get me wrong, I like Simba just as well, but heroes without villains are just regular guys with no story. You need an awesome villain to have a great hero with a compelling story. (That sentence started out with a lot more "awesome"s in it, but it was getting silly.)

    Anyway, photobucket is finally ready to roll, so there should be a real live beginning to this TR by tomorrow.

    BTW, the Disney PhotoPass site is a total FAIL. And GEAUX SAINTS!
     
  21. jwhtewolfd

    jwhtewolfd DIS Veteran

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    Let's get this adventure underway! Before we embark, a little disclosure - we aren't particularly raucous pirates, so sometimes this adventure will hit some smooth sailing. When there are no interesting stories to relate, we may very well slip into a pictorial, or I might be a lazy-no-good-blackguard and just list off that we hit ports x, y and z on our journey.

    That said, weigh anchor; we set sail at 3:15am (central). We're making this voyage in style in the SS Lexus RX300, a new-to-me inheritance from g-ma. Farewell little blue Sentra; you served me well for three WDW trips. First stop: port Cracker Barrel for 6am breakfast. From there, it's smooth sailing at about 65 knots (that's 75 mph - yeah, we took it slow this year) as we head east then south. We make port just after 2pm (eastern).

    Land ho!

    [​IMG]

    I have several pics of the signs leading us into WDW, but I was driving the last length, which put Tony in charge of the camera as we approached. Poor boy has no spatial sense. He fully admits he's no good at taking pictures, but if I'm going to be in some of the pictures he'll have to learn. Or keep trying until he accidentally gets a decent shot. Which did not happen this day.

    The lobby looked packed, but it was mostly people milling about. Once we got through to the queue area, we were the only ones in line for online check-in. The lady who checked us in was courteous, but not especially pixie-dusted. At least she didn't make any mention of my traveling party size.

    After a completely unnecessary explanation of the dining plan and transportation system, it was off to the other side of the lobby to the concierge desk to pick up our MNSSHP tickets. Only problem was that the CM couldn't find them in the computer. Of everything else I had written down, the one confirmation number I ended up needing all trip was the one number I had neglected to record. I sent Tony back to the car to retrieve my trip book which I thought MIGHT have the number written in it and I called home to my brother to look up my email account where I KNEW the number was still in my inbox. It must be that male blood has no sense of expediency, because by the time Tony got back with the book (which did not have the number) and my brother read me the right email, the CM had already called guest services and had them find the tickets. I don't know why she didn't do that in the first place instead of watching me scramble to find the confirmation number. At any rate, with tickets in hand, we were off to Trinidad South, room 3650. That would be second floor, no elevator, as the check-in CM so adamantly pointed out.

    Here's our above-main-deck cabin for the duration of our adventure:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We had all our supplies stocked up and squared away by 3:30pm. It was time to seek sustenance. Foolishly planning to travel on a Saturday, I knew DTD would be a Tortuga-esque madhouse, but we braved the treacherous crowds and set course for

    [​IMG]

    Here's our view as we waited for tenders to ferry us to the different islands that make up WDW:

    [​IMG]

    We arrived just in time to beat the dinner crowd. While we sitting down with our delicious Original and Full Monty, the rest of DTD was standing in line to order.

    [​IMG]

    We did a quick walk through of some of the shops in the Marketplace, then got down to the serious business of souvenir shopping in World of Disney. I had a list, literally, of goods to procure for the land-lubbers back at home. Here's the take for the day:

    [​IMG]

    We laid down a fair amount of gold for those treasures (>$200), but luckily the one haul took care of most of our shopping needs. After a day of driving and heavy duty souvenir seeking, we were ready to call it a night. We made a slight detour to check out the new lego sculptures:

    [​IMG]

    and a quick stop for the traditional leaving-DTD-Ghirardelli-chocolate-shake.

    [​IMG]

    Oh, you didn't know that was a tradition? Well now you do. You can thank me next time you're leaving DTD.

    We thought we were done for the day, but after our loot was stowed Tony wanted to check out Port Royale. We made a pit stop at the pool bar, where we caught glimpses of Fantasmic! and Illuminations. I had something green that tasted fuzzy (melon) that they were calling a Caribbean Limeade and Tony tried his first Pina CoLava. A little Pina CoLava goes a long way - more loot from Centertown:

    [​IMG]

    Yes, indeed. Tony got bit by the pin bug. At least I wasn't alone anymore.
     

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