Another Cheeky, Sneaky Week in WDW - the Quickie Trippie...

CustardTart

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Oct 19, 2004
Cast.
Me:
Karen (a.k.a Kaz) 40-something. Loves all things Disney, a Kir Royale in Mizner's Lounge and spending slightly less DH's $$$ these days...
Him: Matthew (a.k.a Matty) 20-something. Loves most things Disney, a Daily Mail in any country and Downtown Disney's Virgin Megastore...
Him: Samuel (a.k.a Sam) 15-something. Loves all things Disney, hotdogs and hoarding his own $$$...

Monday October 20th 2008: I'd checked in online on Sunday, but like to get to the airport at a reasonable time so was up and about at 7am. However I received a call from VA at around 8am to inform us that our 12.45pm flight would be delayed until 4pm! Ouch! The nice lady on the phone duly rearranged our pick-up and postponed my pedicure so no problem there. I let the boys have a lie-in and went back to bed to read for a while... The car arrived on time and we were whisked to Gatwick arriving at around 1pm. The VA area was deserted but we checked in without hassle and were soon kicking back in the almost empty Clubhouse where I enjoyed a couple of Virgin Redheads - OK it's an old photo but worthy of inclusion... ;)



...and a creamy bowl of mushroom soup as the kitchen had stopped serving lunch. Eventually our flight was called and we strolled to the gate. I noticed that the plane was not as full as those I've taken in the last couple of years - there were quite a few vacant seats in PE and UC... We soon settled down for the flight - I had a Bellini to sip and a book to finish plus the boys were keen to check out the movies on offer. And so the time passed. I ate, drank, read and slept my way across the Atlantic before we finally started our descent into Orlando. Immigration and baggage claim were extremely swift and before long we were seated on a Magical Express bus ready to be transported to BoardWalk Villas! The driver, it seemed, had other ideas and we three sat alone on the bus for over twenty minutes before he decided to take us to our resort... Upon arrival we were checked in swiftly and directed to our room - 2102. This was a dedicated 1 bedroom villa with a view over the quiet pool and a short walk from the lobby so great for our needs. We quickly sorted who would sleep where - the boys opted to share the enormous super-king bed in the bedroom which left me on the sofa-bed in the living room. I had my doubts about this as I have back problems but figured it had to be worth a try. Suddenly there was a knock at the door and my big purple Owners Locker arrived to join the party! I set about unpacking this and our cases whilst the boys examined the room service menu - unfortunately we were too late for burgers so they each ordered a pizza! And what pizzas they turned out to be! Huge square boxes were delivered that only just about fitted into the fridge but the contents were tasty... We watched a little TV before crashing at about 11.30pm...

Tuesday October 21st 2008: I awoke at around 8am and decided coffee was in order. I set the machine to work and was able to enjoy my caffeine fix on the delightful balcony that had been invisible in the darkness of the previous evening. Looking thro' the trees to the right...



It looked like it was going to be a gorgeous day as I surveyed the deep blue sky and enjoyed the tranquility of the morning. Here's the view over the quiet pool...



To my delight, the top of the Hollywood Tower Hotel aka Tower of Terror was visible from my vantage point and I decided that was where we should head today! One of the things I love about DVC accommodation is the substantial free-standing shower and I spent a good ten minutes in there before waking the boys and getting the day started properly... We duly caught a Friendship to Hollywood Studios where I redeemed my Annual Pass and bought the useful Tables in Wonderland card. We strolled around the park enjoying the Prince Caspian attraction, Star Tours, Rock n Rollercoaster and Tower of Terror before sampling burgers at the ABC Commissary... We spent another couple of hours in the park before walking back to the Boardwalk... After relaxing in our room, we caught a bus to Downtown Disney. My boys love the Virgin Megastore - I'm pretty sure they visited 3 times during the trip! Soon it was time to eat and we chose to try Wolfgang Pucks - no tables were immediately available but seats were up for grabs at the counter that faced the kitchen so we stepped up! The menu was the same as the regular restaurant and we chose accordingly. Food was OK but I was disappointed that they no longer accept the DDE/TIW card AND they ran out of Rosa Regale after 1 glass!!! What's that about???????? Anyway, after about an hour we left and strolled to the bus stop ready to get back to the BWV and bed...

Wednesday October 22nd 2008: More coffee for me before showering and hurrying around to the Dolphin to collect my hire car at 10am. I always do this as I would hate to drive after the long transatlantic flight. There was a bit of a queue this morning as there was a hug conference ongoing at the resort. I waited my turn and it quickly transpired the small SUV I'd ordered was not available. So I got upgraded to a 7 seater Dodge Grand Caravan!



This is probably my fave car that I've driven in the US to date - comfortable with great visibility and less of that rear end boatiness (is that a word?!) I associate with American cars... Anyway, I picked up the vehicle and headed back round to park at BWV before collecting the boys from our room. Today we were off to the Animal Kingdom as Matty was keen to try out Expedition Everest - seems he couldn't recall the ride from his last trip... Which is exactly what we did! Oh and we rode Dinosaur too! For some reason Samuel and I know the script for this ride word for word which heightens the experience so we had a lotta fun tormenting Matty with our dialogue... Sammy took this spooky Dino-bones pic...



We lunched at Restaurantosaurus - usual fare of burgers (no bun for me) and fixings - TBH for mass catering it was very tasty! The weather was beeootiful so we decided to get back to the resort and enjoy some time by the pool in the afternoon before the boys got ready to go to the Halloween Horror Night at Universal Studios and I headed off to meet fellow-DISer Monica at 6pm. The boys took a cab to the event and I strolled (I did a lot of strolling this holiday) around the Boardwalk to Beaches & Cream where Monica was waiting! We had a great time chatting away like we'd known each other for ages!



I ordered an OTT sundae...



...whilst Monica tackled the more demure chocolate cake!



After a around two and a half hours, we had to make a move and I walked Monica to her car before saying goodbye! It was a lovely mini-meet and I can't wait to catch up with my new friend asap... So I returned to the room but the absence of boys forced me back out and I decided to explore more of the resort. Eventually I found myself in the comfy bar area located in the Boardwalk Inn so I ordered myself a glass of something red and sparkling called Magicale - it didn't disappoint! It's very similar to the delectable Rosa Regale - in fact it's from the same region of Italy! I was very pleased with my choice and headed out on to the raised verandah area to enjoy my tipple in the warmth of the evening... I soon got chatting to a gregarious couple from West Bromwich and their friends - tho' they pointblank refused to believe my own West Midlands credentials! Even when I obligingly brought my Brummie accent to the fore! Ah well, you can't please all the people... ;) Anyway, Allen the efficient bar tender quietly slipped another Magicale my way and I sipped the fizz until I realised well over an hour had passed! Time to return to the room to check whether the boys were back. I said my goodbyes, settled the bill and made the five minute walk through to the Villas. No boys tho' so I turned on the TV and settled down to watch CSI: Miami... My sons returned within the hour and their tales made me v-e-r-y glad I had not joined them at HHN! We watched a little more TV before turning in for the night...

Thursday October 23rd 2008: I let the boys have a short lie-in this morning as yesterday I'd booked a character breakfast for 10.40 at Cape May Cafe! I hadn't made a single ADR before this vacation which I knew would be something of a gamble due to the UK half-term AND busy IF&WF but it really wasn't a problem at all! I asked at the concierge desk about availability at a number of eateries including Le Cellier and the Yachtsman and we could have been accommodated in all of them - some with a choice of time! Interesting stuff, methinks... Anyway, we had a great time at the brekkie and here are the photos to prove it...







Feeling more than a little stuffed, we decided on our return walk to BWV to get in the Grand Caravan and go shopping!!! Which is exactly what we did. First stop, Mall at Millenia! I hadn't been here before and loved the experience. This trip was all about getting my wonderful DH a belated anniversary gift AND something special for his upcoming birthday - I'm happy to say, I succeeded on both counts! I knew I wanted to get him a new bag for work as his anniversary gift and he'd requested something more along the lines of a messenger bag so I had that firmly in mind. I saw some pretty pedestrian stuff and then when I ventured into the wonderful Tommy Bahama store. In their 30% off sale section, I found a gorgeous heavy-grained black leather messenger bag complete with tropical silk palm tree lining! Perfect - not the usual designer fare and How could the lining fail to cheer you up on a rainy day in canary Wharf!?! Anyway, here's a pic...



And the interior...



I also picked up a fab TB world time wall clock for his office - this shows the time in various exotic locations around the world so Richard can imagine where he'd rather be when he's locked in the Citi tower...



Armed with two great gifts already, it was time to get serious! I headed upstairs to the collection of designer shops! I'd had the desire to buy my husband a decent watch for a while but nothing had grabbed my attention - I hoped today would be different. And it was! I checked out Cartier and a store specialising in Rolex but nothing wowed me. So I headed into Tiffany's where a lovely white metal watch with a black leather strap really caught my eye! Perfect! So without further ado, I brandished my credit card and walked back into the Mall with one of those delightful light turquoise bags... Just in time to meet up with Matty and Samuel who'd been shopping in other parts of the mall. We found each other and headed back to the car intending to drive to Florida Mall for a little more retail therapy. A couple of hours later, we were shopped out and decided to return to BWV. Upon arrival, we found the car park was full so we let valet parking sort us out - which was handy with all the shopping bags we had to carry! We just had time for Matt to catch up with the Villa score back home before freshening up and heading out the door for dinner at ESPN. This time we chose to sit in the bar area so were served pretty quickly whilst watching the World Series build-up on the many TVs... After our meal, which was delicious (I heartily recommend the Full Court "Pressed" Cuban Burger BTW!!!) we wandered around the Boardwalk watching the many 'acts' performing there. Amazingly it was now around 11pm so we made our way back to 2102 and sleep...
 

CustardTart

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Oct 19, 2004
Friday October 24th 2008: Matty had requested a lie-in this morning and I was happy to oblige! So none of us surfaced until around midday and I spent the rest of the afternoon reading and doing some laundry whilst the boys returned to DTD - seems they just can't keep away from the Virgin megastore! Mid-afternoon, I indulged in a chicken sandwich from room service and eventually started to get ready in a leisurely fashion. EPCOT's IF&WF was hollering and I needed to wander the World Showcase with wine in hand! So that's what I did. The boys returned but wanted to watch a DVD they had bought so I ambled to EPCOT on my own. I love this park and I love this festival so it was a perfect couple of hours for me! My intention was to get to the champagne stall at the far end of the World Showcase and grab myself a glass of Moet et Chandon Nectar Imperial Rose and that's exactly what I did! Here's a pic of the sign for this stall...



I sipped my way back to Italy and replenished my flute with yes, you've guessed it, Rosa Regale!!! Just a little reminder of RR...



In the beautiful square, I made a silent toast to absent friends. Richard and Sophie, salute!!! How I missed my fellow World Showcase winos... I continued my World tour and wound my way back through France to the EPCOT gateway where I grabbed a Kir Royale and took a photo of myself with some success!



OK not very glamorous but the weather was wonderful and EPCOT looked beautiful so please excuse me...



The sun glimmered on World Showcase Lagoon...



But time to get back to the boys... On my through the reception area, I checked with the concierge what local dining was available for around 8.30pm - she was able to pull up a ressie for the Flying Fish Cafe at 9pm which sounded perfect so I took it, went back to the room to inform the boys and watched a couple of episodes of Wife Swap USA before heading out... The meal was delicious - very glad we went! Even my youngest son who is an avid meat eater was impressed with the selections and the desserts were fantastic! This is definitely on my list to return to with DH in the future... After dinner, we strolled the Boardwalk again and went back to our room ready for bed...

Saturday October 25th 2008: As far as I was concerned today was all about EPCOT! And forgetting the camera - so apologies in advance... I woke the boys after yet another sensational shower and gently persuaded them to get a move on. Matty proved tricky to shift this morning but I left him to it whilst Sammy and I went for a peaceful coffee and a croissant in the Boardwalk Inn. When we returned, Matty was in a mild flap which is the nearest he ever gets to a full-blown panic - so I knew it couldn't be good! Seems he couldn't find the wallet containing his room key and (more importantly) park pass so had turned the place upside down trying to find it. Yay! :yay: Time to retrace steps so I suggested he go and check in the car as he hadn't used the cards in a while. He returned in about fifteen minutes complete with Daily Mail and (sigh of relief time) wallet! I had been more than a little concerned about the pass as it was an all-singing, all-dancing 10 day non-expiry park hopper and had cost about $500 when the exchange rate had been more favourable :faint: - at least all's well that ends well... And we were finally off to EPCOT! The plan was to check out the Fast Pass/wait times of Soarin' and Test Track which by the time we arrived, were quite frankly horrific! Ah well, there's always next time. Mmmm, anyway, I tried to persuade the boys to do the 'soft' version of Mission Space but no one was biting so we opted for the re-vamped Spaceship Earth which we loved. As we were getting off, the Dream Team were handing out celebration Mickey ears so I felt we'd made the right decision. I was about to push them in the direction of the Living Seas when they both claimed to be dying of hunger and begged me to let them return to the World Showcase! And who am I to refuse...? So we turned back so they could chose some tasty international titbits! The queues were long but moved quite quickly so we chose and shared a variety morsels from different locations -
Santiago, Chile: Camaron con Pebre (shrimp with cilantro sauce); Melbourne, Australia: Pepperberry Prawns on the barbie with sweet potato hash; Wellington, New Zealand: Bay Scallops with baby greens and cranberry vinaigrette; Shanghai, China: Pork Pot Stickers; Cape Town, South Africa: Durban Spiced Chicken on a Skewer with coconut milk-infused root vegetables; Barcelona, Spain: Seared Tuna Loin with Roasted Red Peppers, spicy pepper coulis and garlic-herb ciabatta and Churro with Chocolate Sauce; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA: Praline Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel Sauce... We were quite full after all this and decided to return to the quiet pool at BWV for a little chillaxing.. Much later after a snooze in the sun, we opted for an evening in. The boys had amassed quite a collection of DVDs so we decided to watch Death At A Funeral as well as start the second series of 30 Rock and order in some room service... Good night!

Sunday October 26th 2008: This was our last full day and we'd already decided to get up and out to Hollywood Studios in a last ditch attempt to ride Midway Mania! True to our word, we were making our way along the path by 9.30am. We headed for the ride and were amazed to discover that Fast Passes were already showing return times of 3pm! What the...? So we queued for about 40 minutes - behind THE family from an outlying suburb of Hell! Mum, Dad and two sons - one a hulking (and somewhat malodorous) teenager, the other I would peg as an irritating ten year old. For the entire time we were in the queue, these mis-matched boys fought (physically) whilst the parents ineffectually tried to make 'em stop! Hopeless!! As it was, after one to many close encounters of the crushed toes variety, we kept a wide berth. Eventually, the father realised why so tried a little harder to make them behave. Too little, too late mister! :mad: Anyway, like most things we were able to turn this experience into a funny story and it didn't detract from the fab ride! Loved it and can't wait to take on DH competitively in the not too distant future... We didn't have much else we wanted to do so rode on Tower of Terror one more time before having an early lunch at Toy Story Pizza Planet. I really recommend the Pizza Planet Chicken Salad on offer here - as far as counter service far goes, it was pretty good and a refreshing change from bunless burgers for me. Making our way out of the park, we saw a Friendship waiting so jogged over to catch it. We decided en route to get off at the Swan and head over to Fantasia Gardens for a round of mini golf! This was one of the highlights of our trip for me! Matt was in sparkling form and had us all in stitches at his hilarious mock commentary! Again, I found myself wishing Richard was there but he will be in April so we'll be making our own memories then...





After the golf we decided to take advantage of the sun for one last time and chill by the quiet pool. Matty and I enjoyed a Pina Colava (see what they did there? This is a raspberry version of the more conventional cocktail and highly recommended BTW!) from Leaping Horse Libations and let the hot sun wash over our faces... All too soon, we had to go indoors and get ready for the final highlight of our brief break - Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party! I'd booked tickets at the last moment and printed them out at home so I wasn't quite sure how efficient this would be. The bus came extremely quickly (TBH this impressed me all week at BWV) and we were at the Magic Kingdom in about ten minutes. The home-printed tickets were easily scanned at the turnstile and we were soon sporting wristbands as well as bags for candy! I'd chosen this night for MNSSHP on the 'advice' of Tour Guide Mike and he was spot on!





Here we are on Space Mountain - apologies in advance for the view of my nostrils!



...Big Thunder Mountain Railroad...



See me peeking round Matty's head?!



And on Pirates Of The Caribbean...





We had a fab time rushing around collecting candy, dashing to our fave rides and generally enjoying the slightly spooky atmosphere! It was a considerably less crowded than the event I'd attended with Sophie last October and I was able to enjoy the parade without having staked out a spot hours in advance...









Oh and Cap'n Jack was definitely looking my way... ;)



But this guy was more than a little creepy...



I even remembered to pick up the Passholder pin for the event so I was an extremely happy bunny! We grabbed a burger at Pecos Bill (I love the 'fixings'...) before riding BTM throughout the HalloWishes fireworks - very atmospheric! We were able to ride our fill and collect several kilos (or so it felt) of candy so left tired and happy at around 11pm... We had to pack up and leave in the morning so were pleased to be back in the rooms by 11.15. Just time for a Chardonnay nightcap and an episode of Seinfeld before bed...

Monday October 27th 2008: I woke up early and proceeded to pack. We hadn't exactly shopped till we'd dropped - news of the exchange rate had discouraged any profligacy with our pounds but we always have a huge spare rolling duffle - just in case, if you'll pardon the pun. It didn't take long to get things organised and as I'd already re-packed my Owners Locker the previous afternoon, I was soon able to shower and dress for the day. Bell Services collected the crate and it was time to raise the boys. All too soon, we were collecting our car from valet parking and driving off. Bye Boardwalk Villas - I am 100% confident I'll be back soon... So we headed for DTD - I had a bunch of things to buy from the World of Disney, taking advantage of the 10% Annual Pass discount. Afterwards, time for a final foray in Florida Mall! We had a last lunch at Ruby Tuesdays before hitting the stores. By 3.30pm however, we were all shopped out but still had a couple of hours to kill before checking in at MCO. We looked at each other in confusion - what to do now??? Matty studied the map and suggested we check out Festival Bay Mall as we hadn't been since August 2004, so I pointed the Dodge in the appropriate direction and we were off! Unfortunately, Festival Bay had festered in the intervening years and we wandered around open-mouthed at the sad collection of stores. We had a quick drink before deciding to get in the car and make our way to the airport - it seemed a little early but by now we just wanted to get on our way. Which was just as well as the traffic was horrendous and we ended up dropping off the car at Alamo bang on time! Checking in was a breeze and before long we were sitting in the Delta Lounge, sipping Sauvignon Blanc (me) and Coke (boys), reading books and waiting for the flight to be called. We'd already lost our slot (8.40pm) to the delayed earlier MCO-LGW flight so were expecting to be called at around 8.30pm for a 9pm take-off but unfortunately we didn't take off till 9.45pm. After a quick bite to eat, we settled down, ostensibly to sleep...



....but I spent a few quiet moments reflecting on our small but perfectly formed trip. It was wonderful having a break with my boys - despite their age gap (23 and 15 years old) they get on well and I spent so much time laughing at their funny chat, my jaw ached from over stretching! Secondly, I totally loved BoardWalk Villas - the location and atmosphere were fabulous so I've already decided to try and switch a 3 night VWL stay there next September. Thirdly, I don't think you can beat EPCOT and the International Food & Wine Festival for feel-good factor - it really is a flavoursome fiesta with a positively party atmosphere! I only wish Richard had been with me to enjoy it as due to Uni/work commitments, I'm unsure when we'll be able to visit together! Ah well, it wouldn't be a trip to WDW if it didn't leave me wanting more - just as well we're due to return in March 2009... TTFN!
 

SusanEllen

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 24, 2004
What a perfectly formed report of your "small but perfectly formed trip." Sounds like everyone did what they set out to do each day. Glad to read that you tried and enjoyed Flying Fish. I don't seem to notice it mentioned often in trip reports and that's too bad. The food there is excellent (the best steak I've had at WDW, far better than at the Bistro in France, the Yachtman's Steakhouse or even Artist's Point at my beloved Wilderness Lodge.) It was lovely to read about the fun you had with your boys on this trip and I look forward to reading about your trip in the spring with Richard. Thanks for writing this--and getting it to us in such speedy fashion.
 
  • mandymouse

    Bahama Mama Time !!
    Joined
    Mar 8, 2003
    Great trippy Karen. It sounds like you had lots of fun with your boys :thumbsup2 I love your pics, especially the MNSSHP and drinky-poo ones ;)
     

    Tammy Stringer

    <font color=red>I love babies - all milky and baby
    Joined
    May 5, 2002
    A lovely report Karen - so glad you enjoyed time with your two boys

    Tammy
     
  • BRobson

    <font color=green>Beavers is a dangerous place to
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2005
    Another great trippie Karen - very disppointed in you going home with space in your bags though. I thought I could relay on you to shop till you dropped ;)
     

    ibouncetoo

    <font color=009999>I get excited by the little thi
    Joined
    Aug 31, 2003
    Loved your report, Kaz. Glad you got to meet 'our' Monica. Can't wait to meet you next September.
     
  • PoppyAnna

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 29, 2006
    Nice report for a nice trip.
    Lovely that your boys get on so well, unlike the kids in the queue.....
    We always have a Dodge Caravan too, love 'em!
     

    Pinky166

    <font color=deeppink>a little on the OCD side<br><
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2008
    Great report Karen. :thumbsup2

    It sounds as though you had such a lovely time with Matt & Samuel.
     

    Claire L

    <font color=blue>Enjoys a good broadway show<br><f
    Joined
    Apr 13, 2002
    Thank you for sharing the report, sounds like you had a great time with the boys :)

    Claire ;)
     

    wideeyes

    <font color=purple>Won't use fake tan, wants to st
    Joined
    Dec 22, 2005
    sounds like a fab trip. I can't wait to go in october, it looks fab.:)
     

    tennisfan

    Was told off for sliding down the bannister at SL
    Moderator
    Joined
    Jul 15, 2004
    Glad you enjoyed your trip with your boys, Karen. Lovely photos thanks for sharing:goodvibes
     

    mark&sue

    <font color=teal>I keep trying to convert everybod
    Joined
    Nov 8, 2004
    what a wonderful trip. thanks for sharing your precious vacations with all the various members of your family. I often think of that fantastic trip you had with DH when you renewed your vows.



    Susan
     

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