The Long and short of it. VERY LONG - Volume II Dec 15-22 7-Day Magic


Earning My Ears
Jun 14, 2000
Myself - 37, Compulsive planner Disney Nut
DW, A year or two older coming along for the ride who knows I am Nuts!!!!
DS - 12
DS - 9

Where were we? Oh yes the day we leave for the vacation of a lifetime. My biggest concern was bad weather as I knew Disney would do their part to make our vacation special. We woke up at 5:30am because my wife had to go into work for a half a day to clean some things up before our vacation. I dropped her off at work around 6:15am and then I was back to the house to finish with the fold over that contained our Tuxes, dresses and suits for the formal nights. If I am taking a vacation of a lifetime, I am going to make it count!

TIP: use the cable ties even if you use locks for your checked luggage. It made me feel so much more at ease when seeing those cable ties still on the checked bags. I have a friend who used to work in the baggage service at Dulles Airport and he suggested them. They will also provide those on the ship your final night to pack your bags for home.

I went to pick my parents up from their house since they would drive our van home after dropping us off at the airport around 9:30 to go approx. a 10 minute drive to pick my wife up. Are you starting to see the picture that I like to be a little early. I believe it skips a generation in our family as my father still had not taken a shower! We got to my wife's job around 10:10 (approx 20 minutes early) and sat in the parking lot waiting for her. It started to rain in Maryland and all I could think about was taking our time getting to the airport and not have a accident. Her boss surprised her with a early Christmas bonus which was nice. We headed for the airport and our 2pm flight on Delta.

Arrived at Dulles at 11:30 2 1/2 hours ahead of time, kissed the parents goodbye and checked 4 bags through sky-cap and went directly to the gate which was very nice. For the people traveling out of Dulles they have made some changes which made our sons feel so much more secure with the dogs and such.

TIP: Please remember to take cuticle scissors, file or such out of your carry-on. A man had a monogramed pair taken from him in front of us an thrown in a tub along with about 400 other items at that station. He asked for a receipt for them and the woman wrote down on a scratch piece of paper that they had been taken. How in the world he would get them back I do not know. Other than that, check in and to the gate took 35 minutes. I have no problem being to the gate early as we had packed a few items to keep us busy.

TIP: Make sure to pack a travel Yatzee, gameboy or CD Player if you have kids or just for yourself because the time will fly by. We also took turns watching the luggage as we took the boys around the terminal and into the shops.

TIP: Please do not allow you luggage to be left unattended as when we were waiting there for the two hours we saw the airport security take some luggage that was not with someone away and it was someone's carryon. Did not see that person come back for the luggage.

Flight went very smooth, my son was jealous of the man who brought sushi on the plane and was eating before the trail mix came from the attendants with our refreshment.

Arrived at MCO(Orlando International) at 4:15pm. Since we have ben to this airport before I sent my wife and kids to secure the luggage while I went to Avis to get the retal Car.
TIP: If you arrive early at MCO and are renting a car go with the compact as the woman at the counter explained they never have enough of them until the evening as people have not returned them yet before their flight out. We were given a Malibu which was a very roomy car. Fully loaded.

TIP: this is the time that the Motorola walkie talkies came in handy as my wife and I were able to find each other without trouble. Got in the car and with directions from Avis we were on our way. Left around 4:50 and arrived at the Radisson in Port Canaveral around 5:35. Checked in and went staright to the room. Took only the bags we needed as we were going to leave them for the shuttle to the terminal the next morning. We got to our room which had a port-side view which is just what we asked for.

The room was a 1 bedroom suite. It was beautiful. Two queen size beds and a jacuzzi!!! We did have some fun with that. We did however not realize the plug in the bottom of the bath was not on tight and the water we filled it up with above the jets as it asked, dropped down below that safe level and starting getting the bed closest to the bath wet. We corrected the problem and then decided to go to Ron Jon's in Cocoa Beach to get a few things before our trip and also get something to eat.

Ron Jon's was a very large store with everything devoted to beach attire/supplies. If there was something you want you can get it there. It might cost you a little extra but it was fun just going in the place. Open 24/7. We then decided to get something to eat.

I had heard so many great things about Kelsey's next door to the Radisson from these boards. We are now believers. The food was excellent and the portions were huge. We got a garlic bread w/cheese for the DS' and my DW and I had a couple of salads. We could have made a meal out of just that. Then we had the entrees. DS12 and I had Calzones that were extremely large. We coul have split one. Ending up eating a half of one for breakfast. DW and DS9 had split a pizza with half being cheese and the other half being ham and pineapple. Very good meal. Very inexpensive. We got out of there with a bill including tip for $30.00 including soda drinks.

After I dropped the family off at the room I went out in search of a Wal-Mart for some water to take on the ship. I am not a beer drinker but I gave up sodas May of 2000 when my weight reached 285 and went on a moified Atkins diet. I did not really read the book but just gave up carbs and started drinking water. I have a friend at work named Marisa, who bless her heart took on the task after I asked her to keep an eye on me with my carbs. I believe I startled her when I lost 25 lbs in 2.5 weeks. She was very direct in her conversation, I would ask if I could have something and her answer was always NO! She was very good at in the last year and a half she has been on my a** to lose the weight and she can be really hard on a guy. I love her for it. She helped me during the time I needed her most, at work!!! In the first year I lost 83 pounds and have kept it off. I now drink approx. 8 liters or 277 ounces of water a day. I also believe that my co-workers were ready to get rid of me as I converted a millenium countdown clock into a Disney Cruise countdown clock. I needed my water fix on the boat and I did not want to take the chance on the boat's filtered water. I really enjoy Deer Park which is sold in the Northeast out of PA. I found a WalMart but no DeerPark. I had to settle for Desani which is a Coca-Cola product. I drink that also however not my first choice.

TIP: if you decide to take water on board, make sure to bring along a roll of duct tape to tape a yellow luggage tag to the package or tape two cases together if multiple cases are involved.

After getting back to the Radission around 10pm it was time to settle in. Booked a 10:20am shuttle to the ship through the Radisson. Was ready to go to bed as it was like the night before Christmas and as soon as we got to bed the sooner the morning would come.

Coming up next in Volume III - Embarkation day and "Don't pack those sharp items in your carryon when boarding the ship".

See you soon.:jester: :jester: :jester: My DS9 asked me to put these on the screen.....
I am just loving this!! Keep 'em coming, I love your descriptions! :)

Just love your post, please keep them coming. So much needed information for our upcoming March 9 cruise. I am really looking forward to what your 12 year old son thinks of the cruise. Our son will be one month shy of 12 when we cruise, so the details are great.
I am enjoying all your posts! We have been on 5 other cruises but going on our first Disney cruise on Jan 20th!! Can't wait!! Will post ours when we return! Thanks for the great info! :bounce:

Did we lose some of your posts because of the hardware problems?

I've been anxiously awaiting your daily trip reports!:)


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