Thursday-Sunny, mid 80's Characters: Me- 39, trip planner, roller coaster fanatic and stay at home mom DH- 41, wonderful husband of 12 years We decided we were going to spend most of our time in the World Showcase at the Food and Wine festival. We arrived at the Beach Club at about 8:30am. This is our first experience staying on property at WDW. WeÃ¢ÂÂre only here for 1 night. Unfortunately the service at the ground level wasnÃ¢ÂÂt impressive. No one offered to get our luggage when we pulled up. We checked in but our room wasnÃ¢ÂÂt ready, which we expected. The woman checking us in gave us a phone number to call after 3. I had to ask for a hotel map. She was pretty dour, not a smile in sight. It appeared she was new but at our request did call to see if we could get a room close to Epcot. Unfortunately she said it wasnÃ¢ÂÂt possible. But thatÃ¢ÂÂs ok. I had to ask for a hotel map and was given a welcome package. We purchased our 1-day Epcot passes, about $92. We went for a short walk to the Yacht Club Hotel, the Beach clubÃ¢ÂÂs sister resort restaurant. We are seated quickly. Service was cheerful and efficient even though the place is bustling. It must be bedlam in high season! Pat has the buffet, $11.95, nice selection. I had home fries $1.95and oatmeal, 2.95. The coffee is excellent! Total is $19.72, good value. We walked to Epcot, only 4 minutes from the Beach Club Lobby to the International Gateway. You canÃ¢ÂÂt beat the location! Since World Showcase isnÃ¢ÂÂt open until 11am we followed the path to Future World. ItÃ¢ÂÂs about 9:30. We decided to ride Test Track first. The standby line is about 30 minutes long so we used the singles line even though there are signs everywhere saying your party will be split up. We viewed a quick intro about the ride and in 5 minutes weÃ¢ÂÂre strapped in. Luckily we end up in the same car. I really enjoyed this ride but dh thinks itÃ¢ÂÂs only ok. We walk around a bit and buy some Ibuprofen at Mouse Gears. At 11:00, World Showcase opens. During the food and wine festival there are small booths set up around the lagoon. They sell sample size portions of food and wine/beer from different countries or regions around the world. Some included were Africa, Southeast Asia, Poland, Greece, Japan and many more. Also, there were booths specializing in chocolate, champagne and cognac. Our favorites were the champagne booth (they started to remember us) and the booth in Japan selling veg sushi, edamame and hot sake. We saw a very funny street show in France called Cyranose De Bergerac. A humorous take on the classic tale that included some great audience participation. Later we stopped to see the movie about France. It was beautiful! The theatre wasnÃ¢ÂÂt full and it was nice to sit down. At 3:00pm we walked back to the Beach Club and our room was ready. We reserved a regular room and received an upgraded to 5th floor, probably because we were paying full price and only staying 1 night. It was funny because we were never told it was concierge, I only knew because of this board! Unfortunately our room smelled badly of smoke so dh went to the concierge desk and asked if we could please be moved. The concierge people were wonderful; very helpful and friendly. We were changed to a room that was much closer to the concierge desk. The room was nice. Unfortunately dh and I are used to a king bed so the queen-size beds seemed small. Our view was a little bit of Stormalong Bay and a lot of roof but it didnÃ¢ÂÂt matter. We were only resting and sleeping here. After a brief rest we hurry back to Epcot. WeÃ¢ÂÂre burning daylight! Japan: We needed a new sake set so we went to the Mitsukoshi dept store. This was a beautiful store. The kimonos were gorgeous. The service was wonderful. We asked for our purchase to be sent to the Intern. Gateway package pickup. Pat went to watch a sushi making demonstration. While he was gone I had a great conversation with a senior citizen. When dh returned he said the demo was very funny and informative. IÃ¢ÂÂm really glad he went. He now makes excellent sushi at home. We were on the Japan side of WS when the first Tapestry of Nations parade started. There was plenty of room if you didnÃ¢ÂÂt mind standing. We were lucky enough to get a bench. We watched while enjoying our munchies then headed off. In France (we ended up there frequently!) we finally got to see the living statue. SheÃ¢ÂÂs amazing. The first person to walk up to her was teen who wasnÃ¢ÂÂt sure the statue was alive. Boy did she jump when the statue opened her eyes! I was impressed how polite people when getting their picture taken with her. This is definitely a Ã¢ÂÂdonÃ¢ÂÂt missÃ¢ÂÂ attraction. One fun I idea I read in a guidebook was to have your picture taken in each country while wearing a hat that represented where you were. Unfortunately I only remembered to do it in three places; a sombrero in Mexico, a tri cornered hat in Italy and a felt hat in Germany. When I got my vacation pictures developed I noticed my smile became bigger as the night went on! They were pretty funny. It was almost time for the 8pm Tapestry of Nations parade. My husband and I really love this parade. I find the music very uplifting. This time we were near the UK and was it ever mobbed. I would suggest not going there if you can help it. We grabbed a couple of delicious veggie wraps and found a place to stand near the International Gateway bridge. We wanted to find a good spot for Illuminations (Our last trip we had a terrible spot). So we decided to try a tip I read on this board. At the end of the Illuminations there are 2 cmÃ¢ÂÂs holding a rope that stretches from side to side (I assume to keep people from getting too close to the back of the last puppet). We merged with the people following the 2 cmÃ¢ÂÂs and when we crossed the bridge we stayed to the left and secured a place on the railing. It worked like a charm! DH was very impressed. But we couldnÃ¢ÂÂt have done it if weÃ¢ÂÂd had a stroller. You have to be pretty nimble! About 20 minutes later Illuminations started. ItÃ¢ÂÂs a pretty good show but I think IÃ¢ÂÂd personally enjoy it more if there were more fireworks and fewer lasers. We stopped at package pickup and get our box from Japan. It seems to be very well packed. Our intention was to drop it off in our room then explore the boardwalk. But I pretty tired so we called it a night.