"Nothing like a Disney vacation to test a friendship!" Saturday, 18 November 2000 The elves were still hard at work at the Wilderness Lodge when we left around 10:30 A. M. en route to Epcot. There were people in the Villas and people in the Lodge, all hard at work on Christmas decorating. After arriving at Epcot, we bit the bullet and rode Universe of Energy. (Chicken Girl loves it. My husband and I do not.) We sent D-mail from Innoventions East (which reminds me--never got delivered!) and hung around Future World. My husband and daughter joined the queue for Spaceship Earth, and I parked myself out front. My best friend of over 20 years had decided that she and her son would join us for part of our Disney vacation. They were supposed to fly into Orlando on this morning, and we had plans to meet at Epcot. They arrived right on schedule. (The pressure was on! She had turned much of her trip planning over to me, and I didn't want to hear any complaints!) We walked over to the Living Seas pavilion because we had PS for the Coral Reef. We were lucky to get a booth facing the aquarium, but I feared that all would not go "swimmingly" (pardon the BAD pun) because my friend's son was in a TERRIBLE mood. (They had a really early flight.) He refused to eat, and he was not wild about sitting through a rather long lunch. I ignored my inner voice which said, "How can you eat fish while looking at an aquarium?" and ate mahi-mahi over crawfish etouffee. (GOOD STUFF!) For dessert, I had the Chocolate Wave (yummy). We walked back to Spaceship Earth so that everyone could ride; then we strolled through Future World and into the World Showcase. We exited the park at the International Gateway and caught the boat to MGM. (My friend's kid was REALLY crabby by this time, so she thought that Toy Story characters might cheer him up! As for me, I was just glad that someone else was taking the heat off Chicken Girl!) We met Buzz, Woody, Jessie, Bullseye, and Green Army Man. Then, we all rode the Great Movie Ride. At that point, we decided that togetherness is highly overrated, and we split up. My friend took her child back to Port Orleans, where they were staying for the night, and we remained at MGM. Because we have annual passes, we were eligible to participate in the preview of the Osborne Spectacle of Lights. My husband has a theory that, if you stand still long enough at WDW, someone will form a line behind you. He put this theory to the test while we were waiting for the lights to be turned on. He was right! My husband declared the Osborne Lights the most anti-climactic event of the trip. I must admit that it was rather a let-down. We waited forever, then "TA DA"--some lights. Guess you had to be there. We caught the bus back to the WL and returned to our villa. The housekeeper had been "outta control"!!!!! The stuffed animals were on top of the TV armoire. (She had also created a bunny out of towels--and drew on eyes and a nose.) My daughter's favorite stuffed animal, a monkey, was rappelling (sp?) down the side of the armoire while Mickey pointed at him. We prowled around the WL for a bit, and I took some photos of my daughter with the great Christmas decorations as a backdrop. I hoped to get a decent photo for our Christmas cards. We picked up dinner from Roaring Forks, and took it back to the room. My friend called from Port Orleans to announce that her son had collapsed. I talked to "dt" (who was at the Yacht Club)on the phone for a while before calling it a night. I am blessed to have old friends--and new ones!