March Trip Report -- Part 4: The Universal Meet Begins!


DIS Veteran
Aug 20, 1999
March 10, 2001

The cast:
Me (the 29 year old)
Donna (aka Molokai Gram, didn't ask age, from Hawaii)
Ohai (Donna's DH, didn't ask age either, from Hawaii)

The meet was scheduled at 8:30. I had woken up at 6:30 and had my donut breakfast. The news had said it was 55 degrees, so I put on a long-sleeved shirt. I packed up and took all my bags down to the car.

I tried to get out of the parking garage. I swiped my room key many times, but the gate did not open. I still had my parking stub, so I guess I will have to pay for parking. I was not too thrilled because I had read the sign in the parking lot. 0 to 2 hours was $6. 12 hours was $17. My total would probably be around $34! Valet parking would have been less. I paid for parking at the parking cashier and it costs me $6. That was a lot more reasonable! I got an exit key to use. It took several swipes for that to work. I was just glad to be out of the garage!

I drove to the main parking garage. I didn’t want to deal with the Portifino parking garage anymore. As I was walking to the parks, I realized that I could have parked in the Hard Rock Hotel parking lot. I was going to check in there later, so it would have been more convenient to park over in that lot. I didn’t feel like walking back and moving the car.

I was directed to Jaws 217. When I got into the parking lot, it was getting too warm for the long-sleeved shirt. I had to take it off and toss it in my car. I walked from the parking lot to Hard Rock Live. I thought Hard Rock Live would be deserted at this time. Then I saw a huge group of people. I didn’t think the Universal meet would have this many people. I noticed that there was a band competition going on at the place. This made it harder for me to find Universal meet attendees.

Donna and Ohai came around 8:30. We waited for attendees to show up, but we didn’t see anyone else. I had a DIS t-shirt on and I was certain that would help identify me. We waited for about 15 minutes and headed to Islands of Adventure.

Donna and Ohai did not have breakfast, so they stopped by the Crescent Moon Bakery. Ohai had the breakfast sandwich (which was $4.25) and coffee (about $1.75). Donna and a donut and one of those huge cookies. Those cookies are huge and very delicious! I would have liked one of those for breakfast, but I had my fill of donuts.

While Donna and Ohai ate their breakfast, I took a ride on the Hulk. The wait was about 15 minutes. I thought that would be just for the front, but the wait for the other rows were 15 minutes. I was regretting not using front of the line. I got on and rode in row 8. I told Donna I would be riding in the back and she was going to take a photo, but she could not see me.

After waking up on the Hulk, we headed to Spider-Man. We used front of the line access for this. The Universal Express queue did cut through the main Spider-Man queue. The Express queue had the four news articles on several villians’ rampage and went through the darkroom. After the darkroom, you could peek around the corner and see the newsroom, but the line turned through a door and up the old VIP ramp. Another door was the single rider line, which wasn’t open at the time. We were waiting for car 118 to come, but we didn’t get it. We rode in the second row. Donna felt a little woozy after the ride and said that it was not a good idea to eat breakfast and ride Spider-Man. I’ve never had that problem, not even on the Hulk. I did almost get sick on Dueling Dragons last month!

Donna said that she wanted to ride Jurassic Park River Adventure next. We passed by the water rides at Toon Lagoon, but Donna wanted to ride them tomorrow since it would be warmer.

We could have used front of the line on Jurassic Park River Adventure, but the wait was 0 minutes. Why bother? It appeared that everything was working on the ride. The T-Rex at the end was well-covered. The Ultrasaur was not there and a bunch of bushes covered where he should be. They did play sounds of wild animals from the bushes. We were all seated in third row. A group of kids in the second row didn’t want to get wet. One kid pulled his shirt up to his nose and pulled his head in whenever he thought that he would get wet! The photo at the end was the funniest I’ve seen. A mother in front was holding onto her two kids. The kids in the second row were all ducking. The one kid pulled his shirt all the way up to his forehead. You could only see a small part of his hair! Ohai had his hands up! We will have to get Ohai on a roller coaster later.

We took a walk to Cat in the Hat. As we passed by One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, we were surprised that it had a Universal Express line. We were kind of confused why we couldn’t use front of the line for that ride. The regular wait was 30 minutes. I don’t think I could stand waiting in the line and listening to the tune!

The wait for Cat in the Hat was 0 minutes. We did not use front of the line for this one. We had a tight fit in the car since all three of us were in the front. The ride was working pretty well. We stopped twice. I don’t think there was a problem with the ride. I thought that a disabled guest might have been loading or unloading. Thing 1 and Thing 2 had nice, combed hair. They must have used troll doll combs on them. One addition I did notice were new doors. Right before the car entered the closet, two sliding doors opened. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that. The exit doors for the closet were opened, though. They seemed to have been designed to open, but I’ve always seen them propped open.

We had some time before the noon Men in Black meet, so we decided to go over for a few practice rounds. Before we did, we stopped by the Universal Trading Post shop in the Port of Entry. Donna wanted to buy the souvenir video and some other things. She noticed a amber candy lollipop with a bug in it. She had the idea that if she rode the Hulk, I’d eat the bug candy. It didn’t look that bad, so I agreed. She’d have to buy it, though!

We headed to Universal Studios for the Men in Black shoot-off.


Barry Hom
Moderator, Universal and Sea World Boards

Click HERE for interesting Universal Orlando information!
Aloha all,
Sorry I am so late posting,work has been hectic and DGS is over for the weekend. :)

I did take pictures of Barry on the Hulk, but not sure if I got him. I sent the film in for developing and if I got Barry on the Hulk, I will send it to Barry to scan so he can post it here. ;)

I did get the picture of all of us on JPRA and sent it to Barry this week. I hope he will be able to scan that one and the others I sent and post them. Ohai continued to surprise me by putting up his arms on JPRA. At least this time I was prepared for the possibility. When he had done it the day before at SeaWorld, he hit my sunglasses and knocked them off and I almost lost them. This time I moved back and there were no mishaps. :) But wait until you see that family in front of us, even the teens extra nervous!

This was the first time I rode Cat in the Hat and both Thing 1 and Thing 2. I did have a disappointment in Seus landing...Barry was the one that had told me before my last trip about the surprise you get when you throw a coin in the mouth of the fish at McElligott's Pool. It had been one of the unexpected highlights of the trip with my DGS. But when I had Ohai and Barry do it, nothing happened. :( Maybe they are too old?

I will be honest here, I bought that lollipop because I thought it would give me an excuse NOT to ride the Hulk. I dared Barry that if I rode Hulk he would have to eat the lollipop. It had a real bug inside and looked like those pieces of amber you can buy. It was so gross. But Barry is a very good sport and agreed to eat it! :D



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