"It's Fast! It's a Blast! It's in the Past!" - A Nov Solo Trip - The Finale

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by ZehnJahren, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. BridgetR3

    BridgetR3 Dreaming of Home

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    Love the room!!! I'm so excited for you!! A one bedroom??? WOW!! We've never had one of those!!! Sadly you know what would excite me the most about a one bedroom?? The washer and dryer!!!! :rotfl2:

    I bet you found it so convenient to be at Boardwalk! We found ourselves in Epcot almost every day this summer just because we were right there!

    Can't wait to read more!!
     
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  3. katt789

    katt789 DIS Veteran

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    I’m so game!! I saw some updates from facebook so I’m definitely here to read along!!

    I had the same experience last time, the told us the plane was fully booked with no room, but both my friend and I in separate rows had empty seats beside us! I didn’t know that about the electronics!! I could really use music or something during take off to help anxiety lol!!

    Yay for BW, it’s such a gorgeous area that I really do want to stay over there some day, it’s awesome!! I do enjoy walking over to the parks too!! So peaceful!
     
  4. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    Seeing HS in the distance was awesome; I felt like I'd been waiting forever to get back in a park. Also, I was STARVING. I was ready to get some food and ride some rides.

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    I was here in front of the hat at 12:50. So, to recap, I had gotten to the hotel at 12:15 on the dot, went to my room at 12:25, gotten on the path to HS at 12:35, and was through security and strolling into HS at 12:50. How do I know this? The time stamp is part of the name of each photo!

    So, I planned on double dipping this trip. I was told I could, so I was going to do it. I also wanted to test the theory that you could use both your room key and ticket to get FP-. Yes, I did it in spite of the vitriol of this strategy on the boards; this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance and the loop will be closed very soon, so I was going to take advantage of it if I could. :bitelip:

    Please, no flaming. I was one person. And I only did it about 4 times on the trip, because lines weren't so long I needed to! (This was my first trip without GAC - now the DAS - in a couple of years, and I did GREAT!! I never got the DAS and didn't need to! I was so happy!)

    Moving on.

    I knew TSMM would have no FP left, so where else should I go?

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    Duh.

    So using my room key and my ticket media (I used my tickets to get in the front gate, not my magic band), I pulled two FP- for ToT!

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    These are on a Tuesday pulled at 1:02 p.m. for 3 p.m. Guess all those rumors that there are no FP- available after noon are just plain wrong, huh? :duck: (Oddly, the FP- say they were pulled at 12:52 - maybe my clock was off, or maybe theirs was?)

    I needed to kill some time, so I went to Fairfax Fare.

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    This was the kid's turkey meal and actually really hit the spot. For some reason, the applesauce was especially tasty and I inhaled this plate of food.

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    I also contemplated what to do next. I had almost two hours until my TSMM FP+ and my two ToT FP-, and currently the line for ToT was at 30 minutes and TSMM was at 60 minutes. What's a girl to do?

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    I watched a bit of the street show, but it was over right after I walked up so I moved on.

    I wandered around, wondering if I should chance a "real" line without the DAS. Yep, I'm gonna do it. I have time. I'm going to .... get in the TSMM standby line!

    The wait time read 60 minutes but I figured I could bail if I wanted to (I talked to the two people at the entrance about this possibility), so I jumped in line at 1:16 p.m. and this is what I saw:

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    Wow, ok, well the first room is empty.

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    The second room had plenty of people in it. I weaved through the line, looking at all the cool stuff on the walls and in the middle of the room, enjoying it all.

    I'd never been through this standby line, so I sang along with Mr. Potato Head. Anyone else find his arms too long and particularly creepy??

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    Yikes! Looks possessed!

    While in line, I hear a woman almost shout "WHAT the H*LL is going ON HERE?" I turn around to see a very pregnant woman yelling at five kids as her husband looks on. It appeared that two of the teenaged-looking boys were fighting over a phone or a handheld device of some sort. She muttered some comment about not coming back, and then told them to "grow up" as the kids slunk behind her in line. Wow, lady, get a grip.

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    The above picture was taken at 1:41. I did the standby line at peak time at TSMM in about 25 minutes. Hm, think they're padding the time?

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    Not bad for a first time this trip!

    I got off the ride and passed one of the people I'd talked to at the entrance to the ride. "Not an hour, huh?" he called to me, with a wink.

    I still had plenty of unexpected time to kill; what would I do next? How about a ride I haven't touched in over a decade?

    The Great Movie Ride!

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    I thought these light fixtures were beautiful.

    I had completely forgotten this queue.

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    As we're walking quickly through the "theater" I hear a kid behind me pipe up "WAIT, are these OLD PEOPLE??" as the movies flashed on the screen. He got hushed by his mom.

    On the ride after a quick queue:

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    The picture of the light fixtures was taken at 1:57, and the pic on the ride was taken at 2:15. Less than 20 minutes in queue at peak time on a Tuesday.

    Because I hadn't been on in awhile, I didn't know the difference between the gangster and the cowboy. I got:

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    A rather handsome gangster!

    Wish I had a better picture.

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    That part freaked me out. I always HATED that witch.

    Once I got out of GMR, I wandered some more. I ended up grabbing a water while waiting for my TSMM FP+, and snapped this pic.

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    It was now 2:46, which means my FP+ for TSMM and my two FP- for ToT were almost due. It was time to go on a HS headliner ride blitz!
     
  5. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    Yes, that was my big pixie dust! There were no studios open, but the person who rented points to me was able to get a one bedroom and gave me just an unbelievable deal. I wouldn't have been able to do it without them! :littleangel:

    :welcome: I love the booked planes that aren't so booked. I had the aisle and the other guy had the window; it was perfect if you ask me! I like the aisle seat, since I get fidgety and need to stand up at least once every flight.

    It was so smooth having the electronics on. I get some anxiety even though I love flights, and having Make Mine Music going on while taking off was priceless. Plus, on the way home we had HORRIBLE turbulence on the landing; I listened to the song at the end of Tangled four or five times (the "Something That I Want" song) and it was perfect. :)

    I love the Epcot resorts. BWV was very beautiful, and the Boardwalk was a lifesaver for me, as you'll see later!
     
  6. LB1122

    LB1122 Life's full of tough choices...Disney is not one o

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    Looks like a blast was had and I look forward to the rest. Very very exciting.
     
  7. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    :welcome:

    Thanks for coming over!
     
  8. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    This time the line at TSMM was actually long, so I was glad to have my FP+. I scanned my magic band and headed in.

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    It was now 3:00 on the dot, and my FP+ started at 3.

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    Not quite as good as my first trip. I thought I'd get BETTER, not worse!

    Now it was time to head to ToT for my regular FP-.

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    Love that tower! This picture was taken at 3:18.

    I got in the FP- line, but there really wansn't a line anyway. I pretty much went straight through and onto the ride.

    I was put in a row with two other single riders! When does that ever happen? I chatted with the guy behind me; he was a bearded fellow from Boston. Nice guy, but seemed to want to be left alone. The guy in front of me (next to me on the ride) was by himself as well, but he was riding by himself because his wife and two daughters (11 and 12) refused to ride! They were on their very first trip and were at their very first park. Hope the week ended up better for him. :haha:

    I took a picture of this lighting fixture on my second trip through; do you see a face in it? I do!

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    I looked at the clock once I got off the ride, but I still had almost an hour until my FP+ for ToT due and frankly, I didn't want to wait. I had ridden TSMM twice and ToT twice, and I was chomping at the bit to get back to my room and unpack (my luggage should be there by now, right?), and I wanted to eat and head to Epcot early to meet my CM friend for a drink and Illuminations!

    So:

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    I was back at Boardwalk in 8 minutes!

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    My luggage was indeed in my room, so I took some time to unpack and take in the view:

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    I tried to turn on Stacy for background noise... but what's this!? My TV didn't work! I went into the bedroom - that TV didn't work either! I called the "front desk" and let them know; they said Engineering would be up soon. I told them I was going to Epcot but the room would be available if they wanted to take care of it while i was gone.

    I decided to walk over to Epcot, but I wanted to change to a t-shirt first:

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    It was now 5:15; I was meeting my friend at 7:30, so I planned on riding the Mexico ride, SE, and getting a few drinks. The night was young!

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  9. B&WMickey

    B&WMickey DIS Veteran

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    With any luck we'll pop up on the background on one of your pics. We were in AK on your first day.

    Looking back I wish I would have done some double dipping with the FP's. Nothing crazy just a time or too. I wasn't thinking.

    Love your light fixture pics. I thought I was the only one who was obsessed with the millions of different light fixtures around WDW.
     
  10. wrighter

    wrighter DIS Veteran

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    I also wish I'd double dipped some when I was there last weekend. Totally forgot about that - but it wasn't really necessary. But I do love giving FPs away! (No flames!) As it was, we were able to give away a few of our own anyway - and at least one mom of two young boys headed to the Standby line at Soarin' was happy to receive them. :-)

    Hopefully they got those televisions working for you! When you're alone the background noise really makes a difference!

    Can't wait to hear more!
     
  11. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    That's exactly what I did - double dipped just a time or two. My FP+ did not go well, honestly; I was sometimes just sick of waiting around for one ride I scheduled weeks ago and just passed it up.

    I cannot believe the huge scope of light fixtures at Disney! They're truly amazing and I think they showcase the amount of thought put into each ride, restaurant, shop, and all the external theming. They didn't buy those in bulk; oh no, each was chosen specifically.
     
  12. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    It wasn't too necessary for me, either, but I did do it a couple of times - including one time in your honor, as promised. :) That's coming up on day three.

    They did eventually get the televisions working. I brought my tablet, so I had plenty of background noise - I have a Galaxy Tab II.
     
  13. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    When I last left off I was here:

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    And walking towards Epcot to meet my friend - let's call him Mark. That's not his real name but I have to call him something, don't I?

    My plan was to go ride a few rides and then have a few drinks, meet up with Mark, and watch Illuminations. Mark was actually working IN Epcot until 7:30, so once he was off we'd meet up quickly.

    I paused on my walk to take in the gorgeous view:

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    I was absolutely loving the BW vibe - it was truly beautiful and in such a great location. I still couldn't believe my luck.

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    I strolled in through the International Gateway and thought about where I wanted to go. I decided to head towards Mexico and ride, then go to SE and some of the rides at the front of the park. Somewhere along the line, I decided to go to FW first, then come back and walk the lagoon, and THEN ride in Mexico.

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    While strolling along, I checked the MDE app to see what the current wait was for Test Track. I was almost to SE at the time. I almost fell over when I saw that there were "supposedly" FP- left for Soarin'! WHAT? It was 5:53 p.m.; how are there FP- for Soarin' left? I thought I read all over these boards that FP+ for headliners were gone quick?

    Should I go check it out? I went back and forth. I started walking towards Soarin' but decided it was ridiculous and turned back around and walked towards SE. I almost got to SE, checked the app again, and sure enough it still said there were FP-! I really had a few minutes were I just went back and forth walking, and finally committed to actually walking to Soarin', just to see. I really didn't have anything else to do anyway...

    I got all the way to the Land, walked downstairs, and saw....

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    Yep, I pulled two FP- for Soarin'! At 6 p.m. for an 8:30 return time! I actually asked the man minding the FP machines "Are there really FP??" and he said it happened sometimes right after Food and Wine. Wow! Well, I had two FP- for Mark and I, if he wanted to ride, so I headed back into the park.

    On to my first Epcot ride - a walkon at 6:15 on Tuesday: SE! But first I walked by Nemo (which I refuse to ride again; I think it's awful).

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    I made the dumbest face I could muster at the beginning, and here's what my future looks like:

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    Now it was after 6:30, and I hadn't gotten a drink yet to prove I was on vacation (drinking on a Tuesday is proof enough, don't you think?). I decided to do the loop from Canada to Mexico and grab a drink or two on the way. My plan was a stop in France for a gray goose slushie and then a stop in "Africa" for a Landshark.

    As I walked across the bridge to France, weaving in and out of heavy pedestrian traffic, I passed a large family. I heard a young boy pipe up "This is going to be over my head, isn't it?" and a woman say "Way." before I was past them and in France. Wonder where they were headed?

    I saw the gray goose slushie cart, but $15?? I am far too cheap for that. Maybe a beer would be more my speed. I'd keep walking and see what I came across.

    Soon enough I was in America. There were a lot of people but most seemed to be just walking, not in stores or eating or congregating. I stopped and bought a Sam Adams.

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    I did get a little irritated at the woman here. I asked what the Sam Adams seasonal was, and she said it was Winter Lager. I said ok and asked for one, pulling out my wallet. "It's a REALLY dark beer," she said, eyes wide. "Really dark."

    "O...k." I said, pulling out my ID.

    "It's a dark beer; are you sure?" she asked.

    "Um, yes?" I said. I was not exactly sure what the issue was with me drinking a dark beer, and am still not sure to this day. But she seemed to think I wouldn't like it. She must get that a lot!

    Once I had my (huge) beer, I was ready to move on. Those cups can't be 20 oz, they're bigger for sure. Possibly 24 oz? But it was large. I figured I was paying about the same at Disney for this drink as I'd pay at a bar around home.

    Of course I stopped in Germany. I took a picture of the favorite candy of my study abroad group. I lived in Bonn, home of Beethoven, but EVERYONE loved Mozart Kugeln!

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    And at $1.45, they really weren't that expensive either.

    It was now 7 p.m. I wanted to get on the Mexico ride, so I kept moving that direction with my huge beer. I stopped outside La Hacienda in a little alcove and sat to finish my beer. There was a man sitting there alone, so I asked him to take my picture. He looked a little clueless; I just told him I was travelling alone and would like at least one good picture of me. This is what I got:

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    Ok, well, get rid of the red eye and get a better pic of the beer and it would be a decent vacation picture.

    I looked at Mexico longingly.

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    This ride has been a favorite of mine since Epcot opened. When it was El Rio Del Tiempo, I loved it dearly, but when they merged it with the Three Caballeros (one of my all time favorite Disney movies), it had a permanent place in my heart.

    I looked at the clock; I had about 15 minutes until Mark was off. I chugged the rest of my beer (wow, I guess I don't drink much because I was a little tipsy!) and headed in to ride. Here's what I got:

    Heading in:

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    On the ride:

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    While I walked on to the ride, it was full. This is very rare for the Mexico ride, so I thought maybe I was in for more crowds than I thought.

    It was now time to meet Mark. My phone text messages were going off with questions at to where we could meet.

    Vamanos!
     
  14. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    Oh, and I'm not too clever so chapter titles will be quotes from my favorite movies each day. See if you recognize them! :thumbsup2
     
  15. LB1122

    LB1122 Life's full of tough choices...Disney is not one o

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    Beer yummy but tha photo sparked my interest in the Phineas and Ferb goodies at the bottom...looking forward to that. Great days so far
     
  16. B&WMickey

    B&WMickey DIS Veteran

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    National Lampoon's Vacation

    Love the BW. It's been too long since we've been over in that area. It seems like every trip I say we should check out the BW but it seems like we over plan too much and visiting the BW gets cut from our itinerary. Maybe next time.
     
  17. wrighter

    wrighter DIS Veteran

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    Landshark in "Africa?" :confused:
     
  18. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    I kept meaning to get one of those drinks just for the little beaker but I forgot completely.

    You're right! Have one picked out for day two; see if anybody gets it!

    BWV is so beautiful and so close to everything. You really have to make it over there next time. ;)

    Yes, the cheap and poorly executed "African Outpost" sells one of my favorite beers - Landshark. I buy it at home somewhat regularly (though I'm currently stuck on a Chicago favorite, 312).
     
  19. wrighter

    wrighter DIS Veteran

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    My husband will be so happy to hear about the Landshark! Ever since we went there during F&W, he's talked about how much fun he had just wandering around trying beer. :-) Nice to know he can add Landshark to his list of "regular" Epcot drinks.

    (I must confess we've never even stopped at the Africa Outpost! Shame!)
     
  20. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    Yes, it's $6.75 (for now) and one of my favorites.

    There's not much there, honestly; I tried to stop and chat with the guy whittling but he was a little too into carving and not so much into chatting. ;)
     
  21. ZehnJahren

    ZehnJahren DIS Veteran

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    When I left off, I was meeting Mark.

    I was in the Mexico pavilion when he texted, and he was in China I believe, so I texted him that I wanted to grab another beer at the Outpost and then we could do whatever. He texted back asking where we should meet, and I told him to meet me at the Stave Church in Norway. I was standing right by it, and looked over - he was sitting right there, texting me back! We hugged hello and headed to the Outpost for my beer.

    He had a surprise for me - he had talked to a friend of his that worked Illuminations, and we would be watching it from the boat dock in Mexico! Of course, we didn't have a lot of time before we had to be there to settle in, so I grabbed my beer and we took a seat in Norway to chat. He had some interesting views on the magic bands (he said as a CM he had tried it months ago) and we passed our time not riding rides but chatting. We weren't able to use the FP+ I'd scored for Soarin', but I guess that just meant more Soarin' for the standby riders!

    Mark took this pic of me:

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    And then we were off to Mexico to get to the boat dock.

    I won't overload you with Illuminations pictures, but this was a very neat place to watch the show! We walked down the dock and had a seat where you get off the Friendship boats during the day. There was a small boat parked in front of us, but other than that there was nothing between us and the show - much different than the view I was expecting for this Illuminations.

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    During the show, Mark told me that there were people who drove the globe out onto the lagoon.

    "What?" I asked.

    He said that there were two people who drove the earth-shaped barge onto the lagoon and back every night, that there was a bunker on board for them to stay safe during the actual show.

    I was skeptical - wasn't that barge already in place before the show, and stayed there during the day? I was sure I'd seen the globe out before the show, during the day.

    He insisted he knew the people who did it, so I conceded.

    The guy running the Illuminations show stayed on the dock with us and was talking with a family there (there were about 10-12 people on the dock altogether, and three crew members). He was telling them some of the nuance of the show. For example, during the show the images on the globe are going through history from the earth's creation to current times - when the horses appear, that's when humans appeared on earth. Also, the colors of the water signify the volcanic activities that were forming continents and moving mountains (red), or the water that was cooling the earth's crust as it formed (blue) and the formation of trees and vegetation (green). He had a lot more to say, but I didn't catch it all. It was fascinating, though.

    Now Mark and I took our leave; he was heading back to my hometown for a wedding before I left, so I wouldn't see him again. I headed towards BWV.

    (I found out just a little bit later that Teekathepony (Wendy) and her husband watched that showing from Canada, so we passed each other on the way out and had no idea! We were planning to meet on our MVMCP night.)

    On my way back to my hotel, I passed all the goings-on on the Boardwalk. There was a magician and a "traveling circus" guy. I was STARVING, as I had barely eaten all day; I stopped and got a big pile of french fries and devoured them on the way to my room.

    When I got back to my room, I took a moment to enjoy my view again, then headed in to bed. I was headed to AK in the morning!

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