Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Day 4: The All-Important Downtime!

Keith and I wanted very much to get back to the Kidani Village pool when it was open, while Jane and Tyler (decidedly NOT water people) wanted to sleep in. So in the morning, Keith and I headed out to Kidani’s pool.

We headed to EPCOT for lunch, then rode Spaceship Earth. We played Power City, a cool game in the Siemens Pavilion as you exit Spaceship Earth. You have to supply electrical power to a growing city by pushing around energy sources with clubs that look like hockey sticks. The city and the energy pills are all projected on the floor and the hockey sticks have electronic tips. Very cool game.

Since it was hot (shockingly enough, in Florida) we escaped into Mouse Gears, EPCOT’s biggest merchandise store. I shopped for gifts (one of my favorite Disney World activities) and we headed to Mission:Space. Always a fun ride to do! (We do Green Team only -- I am not a fan of throwing up).

We took the boat from EPCOT to Hollywood Studios to meet Jane and Tyler for dinner at Hollywood and Vine, a buffet dinner. Afterward, we headed to the Tower of Terror, which Tyler rode (he’s the only one of us who likes it), and we did the Great Movie Ride. This is a great ride, going through some of the best classics in movie history, and getting kidnapped on the way...I see a blog entry coming!

Tyler also rode Rockin’ Roller Coaster, which he likes (0 to 60 in 2.8 seconds), though he confesses to dislike the music (Aerosmith).

We went back to the hotel afterward. A mellow, fun day!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Day 3 Continued

Keith and I planned to go back to the Animal Kingdom after I finished unpacking, but he decided to hit the pool after lunch.

We got back to the room, showered and changed to go to dinner at Sanaa, in Kidani Village.

Kidani Village is a new Disney Vacation Club (DVC) property in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. While the Lodge itself has DVC villas in addition to regular hotel rooms, Kidani is all villas.
We had time before dinner to take more pictures of the animals on the savannah.

Sanaa turned out to be a really great restaurant, with excellent d├ęcor as well 

Keith’s dish was undercooked (twice!) but they were really good about fixing it and it tasted great, he said. He discovered a new type of tea…

…and we all agreed that dessert was amazing!

After dinner we walked around Kidani Village and found out that while we didn’t care much for the building design, the pool area was STUNNING!

They also have a brand-new, state-of-the-art workout room in which we tried to cancel out dessert…

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pictorial Interlude: Keith’s View From Our Room

Day 3: Fun and Diplomacy

My intent for today was to take advantage of the morning Extra Magic Hours for the Animal Kingdom. That’s when I discovered that Jane and Tyler operate in a different time zone than us, when it comes to mornings. Compromise became the name of the game for this trip :)

We got to the Animal Kingdom somewhat after 9AM, and headed to the Kilimanjaro Safari ride. Though my camera is perfectly capable of taking videos, I keep trying to take still pictures on a VERY bumpy ride with a camera that was NOT made to take action photos. It’[s not so much that I like pain and suffering as much as it is that I like the photographic challenge.

The Safari ride, especially if done in the morning when the weather is cooler, is really impressive in the wealth of wildlife you can see. Despite the limitations of my camera, I did get some not bad and good pics during the ride, and had fun trying.

We had breakfast at the Pizzafari, and got into a heated discussion regarding education (Jane has been a teacher for decades). Yes, the boys had strong, intelligent opinions as well. I’m really proud of them! Eventually we decided that since we can’t solve the Bellevue School District’s problems in one day, we may as well head over to…

I don’t do roller coasters, but Keith and Tyler sure do, and they love Everest. They rode it twice in a row, after which I put my foot down and demanded we go see Flights of Wonder. I absolutely adore this show, and HIGHLY recommend it to anyone visiting the Animal Kingdom.

We left Flights of Wonder and headed over to Kali Rapids. The day was VERY hot so I saw no reason to wear protective clothing (rain ponchos). I made sure and kept my feet up and tucked under the seat, because I despise walking in wet socks and snickers…We had a BLAST (we got drenched).

The Animal Kingdom is Disney’s hottest park, and Jane was getting overheated (she didn’t ride Kali). We headed back to the hotel and I unpacked. Keith took this opportunity to appropriate my camera and head out on the porch, where he took some really great pictures.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Day 2: The Magic Begins

For our first full day at the World, we had breakfast reservations at the Crystal Palace, home to Pooh and friends and great buffet meals. The Magic Kingdom opened early that day for resort guests, and I wanted to get there early, but we were all tired from traveling the day before. Jane had to take care of the room issue, and get her GAC card so Keith and I went ahead. We browsed in the yet-uncrowded Emporium on Main Street USA (a great everything-you-want parks merchandise store), and made our way up towards Adventureland.

We wanted to ride Pirates of the Caribbean, but realized we had only a short time before our Crystal Palace reservation and turned back. We checked in at the Crystal Palace and got our pager. Than we waited.

Tyler and Jane got to Crystal Palace 15 minutes later and we waited.

30 minutes later we were still waiting.

At some point, I was fuming (this normally doesn't happen to me at The World), so I sent Keith up to the check-in window to find out what was up. Apparently, they never entered our pager number into the waiting cue! There were many apologies, and two 4-people, any-ride-you-want Fast Passes (which Keith pointed out saved us at least the hour we spent waiting). Eventually we sat down to a wonderful breakfast.

We discovered that Jane likes some tea with her ice:


Teenagers aren't crazy about pictures with characters:

But I am (no big surprise there):

Keith also got a birthday celebration at breakfast:

We did ride pirates of the Caribbean after breakfast. As we exited into the inevitable store (it's actually a very cool store, with lots of pirate "stuff") we encountered this guy:

He was great. I stood there for 5-10 minutes and watched him getting poked, people kept trying to guess if he was live or audio-animatronic, they posed in front of him, he never moved or blinked. I'd hate to have that job but boy was it fun to watch!

And then of course we had to ride Splash Mountain.

And the boys rode Big Thunder Mountain. I am NOT a rollercoaster person, and neither is Jane, so we just waited for them to come off. Then we did several other must-do rides, including Toy Story. And to our great disappointment (though I knew of it in advance), the People Mover (Tomorrowland Transit Authority) was down for refurbishment. It was supposed to be back up on 8/24, but it stayed down for our entire stay. :(

Remember the tissues I ordered from GardenGrocer? I casually tossed a couple of packs into my fanny pack on our way out the door that morning. About halfway through breakfast I started sneezing. And I kept on sneezing through the rest of the Magic Kingdom. By about 3pm I was exhausted and miserable, and Jane still had room issues to resolve (!), so we decided to go back to the hotel. I always have zinc lozenges with me, so I sucked one, took a decongestant, and went to bed while Keith read. I slept for 2.5 hours, took another zinc, and felt like a brand new person. We headed for EPCOT, and aside from a couple of sniffles at the beginning of dinner I was fine. By the next day, there was no sign of a problem. Weird, but I wasn't complaining!

We ate in Tuttu Italia, in the Italian Pavilion at EPCOT. Personally, I miss the old restaurant that was there (Alfredo). Keith loved the new one, better than Alfredo. At least we all agreed that the desserts were great!

And Keith had yet another Birthday Celebration :)

We watched IllumiNations to end a GREAT day!

About Me

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When not planning my next Walt Disney World vacation, I write about medicine and science for various publications. I'm a bookworm and have recently fallen in love with knitting. I am owned by 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a 12 year old son who loves Disney as much as I do.