Cast: Lezah - Disney Specialist Travel Agent and Trip Planner Rob - DH Firefighter and Floridian wannabe Jordan - DS Almost 8 yo and not a clue about this trip Friday, August 16, 2002 - Left work in Mississauga, Ontario at 11:30 am with a pit stop along the way for a Super 7 lottery ticket for the $20 million draw tonight. Hopefully we win and we won't have to come home. Decided to cross the border at Fort Erie, due to delays of up to 1 hour at Windsor border and a heavy storm warnings for the area with damaging hail. 15 minute wait at border. They asked us 2 questions - nationality and where we're going. Jordan had headphones on in the back so he didn't hear us say Orlando Florida instead of Myrtle Beach (where he thinks we're going). We stopped for lunch at the Angola McDonald's rest area and almost got food poisoning with the raw Quarter Pounder I got. It would have been a very good way to start our holiday, but thank goodness my tummy was okay. By 3 pm we were almost in Pennsylvania. Jordan was watching Buzz Lightyear in the back being quiet as a mouse. All of a sudden he pipes up, "Mom, look I see a hidden Mickey." I look up from my crossword puzzle and sure enough a van passing us with a WDW Mickey Mouse ear decoration on their antenna. Now, remember this is the child who has no idea we're on our way to WDW. He had even asked my at lunch, what hotel had the grand piano and guitar pools at WDW out of the blue. He then said maybe in 2005 (when we were planning our next trip to WDW) we could stay at that hotel, but you'll have to show me where the shallow end is Mom. Do you believe this kid? By 4 pm we had just crossed the border into Ohio and we've been travelling 3 hours and 37 minutes according to the trip computer. At 4:35 pm we filled up for the first time ($17.00 Geneva Ohio at the Sunoco). The rain started as we pulled back on to the highway. Major rain on and off, really big storm. By 6:21 it seems like forever to get across Ohio, we're just outside of Mansfield. We're all getting hungry, but not ready to stop yet. We finally stopped for dinner at 9:15 pm at Wendy's slightly outside of Cincinatti. Not much better than lunch, musty tasing baked potato for me and gross fries for the boys. Rob finished my burger for me and Jordan only ate half of his ($9.07). Got gas beside Wendy's ($16.70). We'll be in Kentucky soon and will stop at the Welcome centre for the coupon book as I think the Sweetwater, Tennessee stop tonight will be too far for us. I'll slip into the back then and watch a movie with Jordan so he'll fall asleep snuggling with me. He's getting punchy cause he's tired, but just goofy and giggly not grumpy. He's doing awesome. Thank goodness for the tv/vcr. 1:30 am finally stopped for the night in London, Kentucky at the Ramada Inn exit 38. 11 hours 39 minutes total driving time, 673.1 miles driven. ($38.16 with coupon). The room had a queen bed for Jordan and I and a window seat bed that Rob slept on. We only needed it fo a few hours so it worked out fine. August 17,2002 Up at 5:30 am without the 5:45 am wake-up call we had asked for. Rob and I are so eager to get on with the surprise. Got cleaned up and checked out. Re-loaded the van and came back in for the free breakfast. One of the best we've had on the road. They had 3 kinds of cereal, bagels, english muffins, bread to toast. Coffee, tea, OJ, and milk and best of all, make your own Belgian waffles which Rob really enjoyed. Not liking the Parkay margarine in a squeeze bottle, haven't these people heard of real butter. Back on the road at 6:48 am with a fill up at BP ($9.00). By 8:10 am Knoxville, Tennessee and at 8:46 am arrived in Sweetwater. No way we could have made it there last night. Rob says we can stop at a Cracker Barrell for lunch. Real food for a change, YaY! 12:12 pm Morrow Georgia made our 2nd attempt at eating at CB, but they were lined out the doors as they were last night when we tried it in Ohio. 989.6 miles and 16 hours 32 minutes driving time. Chevron gas ($18.00). Lunch finally in McDonough Georgia at Pizza Hut ($18.06) Stopped for gas in Valdosta ($10.75) at 4:41 pm finally we're in Florida (1217 miles so far). Jordan still doesn't know but we're about to tell him!! Pulled into the Welcome centre to tell him. Rob told him he wanted to take a video of Jordan by the Welcome to Florida sign to start our vacation video (we had told him that Myrtle Beach was in Florida so we could get this far without having to tell him, sneaky, eh?). I told him I had some bad news and that we wouldn't be meeting our best friends in Myrtle Beach. He said will I still be meeting them and you're going somewhere else? I said no and told him we're all going here and handed him the WDW for kids by kids book. He looked shocked and said, No mommy tell me the truth. We went on like this a few times and then tears sprang to his eyes and he said stop kidding me Mom we're not going til 2005. I assured him that we were not only going this year instead of 2005, but that we were staying at the ASMu for 13 nights. He was absolutely floored and was teary for about 15 minutes with the shock and joy of going back to our favourite place. Of course he'll never admit that he was really crying so were we of course. We got back on the road and the heavens opened and we had the worst rain that we've had yet this trip. According to the trip computer the temperature has dropped from 98 to 78 in the last 5 minutes with the effect of the rain. Still need the AC though cause of the humidity. We all can't wait to get there now. Jordan is so excited almost as much as we were while we planned the trip. Haven't told him all his surprises yet. We hoped to eat at a Disney restaurant tonight, but with all this rain, I doubt it. 7:24 pm Just paid the FL TPK toll and we've had torrential rains and thunderstorms off and on for the last hour and a half. No way we'll eat at Disney tonight. Arrived at Disney about 9 pm or so. Took a wrong turn on I4 and ended up towards Lake City by mistake. By the time we'd turned around it was another 45 minutes till we arrived at the resort. We checked in and booked our Fantasmic Dinner Package for Tuesday night at Hollywood and Vine at 6pm. Went to our room with 2 luggage carts full and 2 cast members to help. Gotta love driving, between Robs golf clubs, TV/VCR, basket of books, basket of videos, cereal, shoes, sweatshirts (in case) and our luggage. Tipped CM's well for their help. We then all headed down to Intermission Food Court to grab something to eat. We also bought our refillable mugs too. You should have seen Rob's face when it came to $44.22 for the snacks we bought. I had to remind him that most of that was for the mugs. We ate and then returned to the room to unpack and fall into bed. Thank God for our safe trip and we can't wait to start tomorrow. We're flipping a coin in the morning to decide where to go as we have no PS's for tomorrow yet.