The NASTEE (Nate And Spencer Trip ExtraordinairE) Trip Report--Day 5 (Part 3): "Mommy, Mary's Touching My Pee-Pee!" Cast: Nate ("Aerobics"): 24, 4th trip to WDW, 1st trip in 12 years, 1st time staying on property Spencer (Anti-aerobic): 29, 8th trip to WDW, hasn't stayed on property since 1992 Dates: September 16-23, 2000 Lodging: Wilderness Lodge--September 16-21, 2000 All Star Music--September 22, 2000 When we returned to the Wilderness Lodge, we decided that all of that running around Mt. Gushmore (and clapping for older, spontaneous, fully clothed couples on water slides) had made us rather peckish. So, we stopped in to Roaring Forks to grab a bite to eat. Note to all you anal-retentive Type-A planners....um, stop looking around behind you, you *know* that I'm talking to you!!! When I originally planned this trip, only once did I plan to eat counter-service. Since it was just the 2 of us, I figured that we'd have enough time to see and do all the things that we wanted to do and still have time to have a nice sit-down breakfast and dinner each day, with little snacky food breaks (a la granola bars and Blue's Clues fruit snacks) inbetween. I wasn't upset that we ended up cancelling more than one PS ressie or "intended" dining plan (we had planned on eating at Bongos Cuban Cafe that night), but I wanted to warn you guys that, even if you might "plan" for a living (I personally plan on certain life/death processes, so you might say that my planning is indeed a matter of life & death ), be prepared to change (i.e., HAVE A BACKUP PLAN!!!) because there is absolutely no way to know 5 months from now what your body will be feeling/saying/doing, etc. Um, that was kind of a long side note--sorry. Anyway, so we stopped at Roaring Forks. I got a hot dog combo and Spencer had the pepperoni pizza. We considered both to be rather good for quick/cheap eats, but I didn't have any funny CM's "teasing" me this time (for an explanation of this statement, please refer to The NASTEE Trip Report--Day 1 (Part 3)). We decided that we'd eat at Roaring Forks this time (rather than taking it back to our room)--this really is a cute little "cafe". I remember reading somewhere that some people found it to be a little cramped, but I didn't get that impression (maybe I've just lived in the city too long and am used to having to co-habit in small spaces w/other people?). After our most enjoyable lunch, we headed up to our room to shower and change and generally ready ourselves to re-visit those Future World (Epcot) attractions that we had missed on the 1st day. When we walked into our room, we were greeted by the newest member of our family. On our bed, our housekeeper had placed a little towel animal (complete with little eyes and a nose). In true Nate/Spencer fashion, we spent the next 5 minutes debating just exactly what we thought it was--I thought it was a dog and Spencer adamantly insisted that it was a fox. I'd like to present to the jury (that would be you) Exhibit A--a photo of said animal. (If only I had a scanner, then I'd let you guys issue a final verdict for us, but I know that it's a dog, so perhaps it's a moot point. ) By this time, it was about 4:00 p.m., and we still had quite a few attractions that we wanted to see before attempting to "re-see" Tapestry of Nations (after our "high-wind" incident on Day 2). So, we grabbed all of the necessary items (backpack, ponchos, umbrella, PassPorter, etc.--Just a note: In true September Florida fashion, rainstorms would pop up w/absolutely no warning, so we just made a habit of always having on hand our ponchos and umbrella. This way, we were always prepared, just like the Boy Scouts. ), and headed out to catch an Epcot bus, which arrived within a few minutes. Yet again, we had our own bus, but unfortunately, we got a driver who didn't seem that interested in talking to us, so we just kinda used this "down time" to record notes in the PassPorter. Again, people have asked me how I was able to give such detailed reports and the answer isn't really that complicated--just use any down time you can find (i.e., waiting/riding on a bus, waiting in line at parks, sitting at dinner, etc.) and just jot down little notes. They don't have to be all that detailed; just hit the major points. At the end of each day, just before going to bed, re-read (aloud to encourage input from other members of your party) your notes and add any additional notes for clarification, etc. I found this method to be very helpful not only in writing my trip reports, but also in assigning captions to my pics and stuff. So, now you have a quick synopsis of NASTEE Trip Report Writing 101. Our first stop upon arriving at Epcot was Ellen's Energy Adventure. Now, the last time I was at Epcot, at this attraction, they had some kind of "rotating boxes in a wall" pre-show. Does anybody remember what I'm talking about or am I just completely on crack on this one? Anyway, even without rotating blocks in the wall, this show/ride was excellent. I love Ellen DeGeneres (I have a participant in one of my step classes named Ellen and every time I see her, I greet her (in a very Audrey-like tone) with "Hell-O Ell-en!"), and I also love Jamie Lee Curtis ("Stupid Judy"), so this was highly entertaining for me. As far as attractions go, this one's pretty long, so if you've been downing the Cherry Coke (or the Beverly, but if you've been doing that, then there's something seriously wrong w/you ), make sure you visit the facilities before visiting w/Ellen. Besides, you might laugh so hard that you'll end up wetting yourself, anyway. We next visited the Wonders of Life pavilion, which was not at Epcot the last time that I was there, so these were also new to me. We first visited Cranium Command, which I found to be very cute. Having Hans & Frans man the heart was a brilliant touch. I don't remember too many of the other characters--I know Bobcat Goldthwaite was in it, and I think the guy who was running the brain was the guy who played Nicky in The Great Muppet Caper--can anybody help me out on this one? Oh, well. Take the time to see this one--very cute. Also, try to time it so that you can also see the pre-show; I think seeing the pre-show in its entirety adds some continuity to the actual show itself. Following Cranium Command, we headed over to Body Wars--Oh, did I mention that we had no waits on any of these attractions? I think most of the guidebooks got this one right--see Future World in the late afternoon; you'll be spoiled rotten by how incredibly empty it is. As we waited to enter our simulator, I spied 2 younger boys sipping soda out of these really, really cool Spaceship Earth mugs, so I just had to ask them where they got their mugs. I was told that they "got their balls" (that night, this ended up being one of those recurring lines that makes you laugh no matter how many times you hear it--you've all had that sort of experience before, haven't you?) at a concession stand near Mexico (World Showcase), so I promptly added "get balls in Mexico" to my list of things to do on my Page 5 PassPocket. We then proceeded to enter our simulator. Since Spencer had been on this one before (and had gotten motion sickness), he almost opted out of riding it again, but decided that he'd give it another try (for the record, he just rode it w/his eyes closed, but kudos to him for riding it at all). As interesting as this ride is, there's just something about it that makes me kind of squeamish. I don't know--the whole "trying to get shot out of the heart" bit kinda did me in, but I didn't get sick or anything. Overall, I did enjoy the attraction, but wouldn't necessarily place it on my "must-see" list for next time (as it was on my list for this trip). We had originally planned on sticking around for The Making Of Me, but we just missed the cut-off for the next showing and we still needed to go to the Imagination Pavilion before attempting to view the 8:10 p.m. Tapestry of Nations, so we skipped it. I'm sure I could see something similar to The Making Of Me on PBS, no? Anyway, we crossed over Future World toward Honey, I Shrunk The Audience and made it inside just as it was beginning to lightly sprinkle. Once we were admitted to the pre-show area, I was amazed by how many people ignored the "walk all the way down and to the left" instructions, but, in their defense, they may not have spoken or understood English. Eventually, the CMs were able to convince everyone to get up off their duffs and make room for all the people behind them. I don't seem to recall much about this pre-show--did it have something to do w/taking pictures? (Kodak keeps popping up in my head as playing a major role here.) Anyway, I was a little tired of standing on an incline by this time, so I suppose I didn't pay as close attention as I could/should have. Eventually, we were shown to our seats in the large theatre. Now, I want to share w/you what happened to me in this attraction, but I also don't want to "ruin it" for any HISTA virgins out there. So, again, if you'd rather stay uninformed about this attraction, please just skip down to the next paragraph. I'm assuming that if you're still reading this that you either: a) are interested in hearing my experience, or b) are not paying any attention and should probably just quit reading now. So, during this show, some mouse gets "duplicated" (I think)...anyway, all of these mice start kinda running around all over the screen, and since you're supposed to be the size of like, a Q-tip head, these mice are HUGE! Well, all of these mice eventually take center stage and everybody around me started screaming their heads off, but I had absolutely no clue why. So, I had to lean over to Spencer and shout, "Why's everybody screaming?" to which he replied, "The mice are sniffing your legs!!!" Unfortunately, I had placed my backpack under my seat and I guess it acted as a nice, little "barrier" between me and the mice. After having the living crap scared out of me in It's Tough To Be A Bug (and getting stung in the back), I wasn't too upset that I missed the mice, but, I thought I'd share my experience w/you--hope it wasn't too boring to read. Ok, if you skipped the last paragraph, welcome back. So, we both liked this show, and I'd gladly see it again. Our final Future World attraction that we had planned on seeing that night was the critically acclaimed (NOT!) Journey Into Your Imagination. The only cool thing about this ride was the car in which you ride--it was kinda cool looking, don't you think? Also, we sat in the front seat and behind us was a family of 4 whom we determied to be a mother and father (50s) and their son and his wife (30s). Apparently, the son was either really drunk or just really stupid (or, probably, both), because as soon as the lights went out, he started saying things like "Mommy, Mary's touching my pee-pee!" After about the 3rd or 4th time, I just about turned around to say, "And, if you keep it up, I'll touch your pee-pee too....with my foot!!!" (but, of course, I just kept that one to myself). I don't recall the old Imagination ride, but I'm sure it was better than this one. The other cool thing about this pavilion was the photo e-mail stations. We were able to take our photo and send it to 3 e-mail addresses. They also had one station where you could record yourself for like 20 seconds, but the line was kinda long, and we didn't want to risk missing Tapestry of Nations. So, we did the photo e-mail thing (I still have a copy of it if anybody wants one--just send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org). By now, it was 7:30 p.m. and the rain started to pour a little bit harder, so we donned our ponchos and tramped on over to the concession stand near Mexico (there are like 6) to "get our balls," but it turns out that most of the concession stands at Epcot sell the Spaceship Earth mugs. These were a great deal!! 44 oz., filled w/soda, for only $4?!? Word up! We each got one and happily sipped on our Spaceship Earths. As we walked by, we would hear the funniest comments: "Look, they have the big balls," "Ooh, look at those balls," etc. Spencer finally commented that "People just keep staring at our balls." I know it sounds silly and childish now, but during the moment, it was absolutely riotous. Our goal for Tapestry of Nations was to try to view it from a location near the International Gateway so that, once it was completed, we could then take the boat over to the Epcot resorts area. Unfortunately, by 8:00 p.m., the rain was so bad that we gave up (knowing that Tapestry of Nations would be cancelled, which it was) and tabled (yet again) our viewing of Tapestry of Nations for another day (don't worry--we got to see it! ). So, we headed out of Epcot via the International Gateway and boarded the boat to the Boardwalk; our next stop--Downtown Disney!!! Also, coming soon: The NASTEE Trip Report--Day 5 (Part 4): Would You Like Some Food W/Your Bucket O' Fries? Somebody call I-X-I-I!!!