Tag: disney

Congress and diapers at Disney World

Two ridiculous things for a Monday:

  1. Congress. I’m reminded of the old joke: if “pro” is the opposite of “con” what is the opposite of “progress”?
  2. Kids wearing diapers at Disney World. Kids mind, you, not toddlers. The Little Man is in the very early stages of potty training. So naturally, Kelly was searching online about the subject and discovered one site in which people were discussing how they encouraged their family members to wear diapers or pull-ups at Disney World to avoid having to use the restrooms. Presumably they want to maximize their time at the park. There are a number of reasons given for doing this, but they all read to me like blatant rationalizations by parents who think more about themselves than their kids. I don’t know what else to say about this. I was stunned.
At the moment both of the above items weight equally in my mind in their overall absurdity.

Disney World, Day 2

Today was Magic Kingdom day.  We were up at around 7:30 AM and met for breakfast just after 8 AM.  One of the cool things Norm did was get us a 50% discount on all hotel food, so our meals were cheap.  So we ate a cheap, but yummy breakfast and then headed out to where the shuttle buses were to pick up a bus to the Magic Kingdom.  After some brief line confusion (but others, not us) we hopped on a bus and made it to the Magic Kingdom just in time to catch the end of the opening ceremonies.

The first thing we did was head over to Space Mountain.  Kelly and Vicky shopped while Norm and I waited in line to ride.  It was fun, but I was spoiled after riding the Rockin’ Roller Coaster yesterday.  After the ride, we met up with the ladies and then headed to Buzz Lightyear, which is an interactive ride, and quite possibly one of Norm and Vicky’s favorites.  After that, it was on to the Haunted Mansion, one of Kelly’s favorite rides.  She could barely contain herself, walking over there.  There was really no line to speak of and we got right on the ride without a delay.  My favorite part of that ride is the singing statues.  Long time readers of this blog will recall that I suspected one of those statues followed me to an Orioles game back in the summer of 2006.

From the Haunted Mansion we made our way over to It’s A Small World.  I can’t remember the last time I’d been on that ride.  I spent most of the time taking pictures.  (Norm and Vicky were constantly talking about how they weren’t taking enough pictures, so I was trying to make up for it.

Kelly wanted to go on the Snow White ride, and while we waited in line for that, Norm and Vicky went looking for hats.  Specifically, they were looking for the hand-embroidered mouse-ear hats.  Alas, as they found out, they stopped hand-embroidering the hats a month ago.  Norm seemed particularly annoyed by this.

We stayed in Fantasyland for a while, riding the Winnie the Pooh ride, and then took in Mickey’s Philharmagic 3-D show, which was a good one.  I’d seen it once before last year.  While on that ride, I took what I thought was my funniest picture.  I attempted to take a picture of me being frightened by all of the scenery.  Norm, observing my attempt at a self-portrait, decided to interject himself into the pictures, with what I think is hilarious results 

Vicky needed some water after that ride, so we stopped briefly for some water and then used our Fast Passes for Peter Pan.  We were all getting pretty hungry and so we stopped to get some funnel cake after Peter Pan.  Kelly did a little bit of shopping.  I attempted to feed a friendly duck some funnel cake and got “yelled at” by a Disney employee.  (Norm says I got yelled at; I claim that he simply suggested that I didn’t feed the duck.)  After a quick bathroom break, we headed over to Pirates.

Pirates of the Caribbean is one of Kelly’s favorite rides.  I don’t think the ride takes Fast Pass, but it wasn’t very crowded at all.  We managed to zip through the extremely long queue that they have set up for it in no time.  I snapped a few more photos while we waited in the line.  I have to say, however, that I liked Pirates better before they modified it to better match the Johnny Depp movies.  It’s still a fun ride, but it’s just not quite the same.  Also, the Magic Kingdom version of the ride is somewhat different than the Disneyland version and I like the latter better.  But it was still fun.

After Pirates, we made our way over toward Big Thunder Mountain to get some Fast Passes for later.  We wandered around the park for a while, at some lunch, and took pictures in front of the castle.  Then Vicky and Kelly decided to do some more shopping while Norm and I went on Big Thunder Mountain.  It started raining on the way over there.  Big Thunder Mountain was, for some reason, probably the longest line we waited in.  The standby line was 70 minutes and the Fast Pass line probably took 10-15 minutes.  It was a fun, relaxing, and fortunately, most of the rain had stopped by the time the ride was over.  We wandered back through crowds of people, half of whom were caught out in the rain and had shuffled into various shops looking for Disney ponchos.  We met up with Kelly and Vicky and headed back to Tomorrowland. 

We needed a break so we rode the People Mover, which was relaxing.  Then we went to the Carousel of Progress.  I’d been on it last year and I took the opportunity to nap.  And nap I did, through the whole thing.

Norm had been prodding us for silly one-liners for the Monster’s Inc. Laugh Floor show.  Kelly and I had no one-liners, but we went to the show anyway.  Actually, it was pretty funny and pretty impressive how they make the animated hosts and comedians interact with the audience.  At one point they ask you to text jokes to a number.  Norm texted one on behalf of Vicky and hers was the first joke read by the comedian.  “This one is from Vicky from New York,” he said.  The four of us were visibly pleased.

As the day wore on we rode the Jungle Cruise.  We also walked by an area near the castle where crowds had gathered to watch the Osmond’s (all of them, I think) being filmed for something.  There they were, just a few yards away from us.  The park closed at 7 PM today because of a special event this evening, so sometime around 5 PM we started making our way out of the park.  We went through several shops and I got some chocolate fudge in one of them.  Then we left the park and caught the bus back to the hotel.  Norm had made reservations at a restaurant that I’d been too once before and really enjoyed–a buffet.  We decided to rest for a few hours before heading off to dinner.

Rest we did.  Kelly and I fell asleep almost at once, and when I woke up an hour or so later, I felt sick–nauseous.  I lay in bed shivering, certain I was going to be ill.  We told Norm and Vicky that we’d have to skip out on dinner (I felt terribly guilty for that).  More than likely, I was just dehydrated.  I drank a lot of water and the shivers passed and before I knew it, I felt completely better.  Eventually, I ate a hot dog and some fries (Kelly had eaten a bit earlier) and we invited Norm and Vicky to come to our room to hang out when they got back from dinner.  Norm brought beer with him and he and I drank through the six-pack while sitting around talking.  Vicky went to bed and we continued talking until about 1:30 AM.  We decided to meet for breakfast at 8:15 tomorrow morning.  The plan is to spend the day at Epcot.  Sickness aside, today was a really fun-filled day.

Epcot: the future of gas and wet willies

Andy, Mandy, Lisa and I caught a shuttle bus from Animal Kingdom to Epcot and if the day hadn’t already been fun, and funny, it was about to get funner and funnier. It all started with Andy’s comment, “Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us.” Wait, let me back up, I’m telling this slightly out of order.

There we sat on the bus and sitting in front of us was a woman holding a sleepy little boy. So sleepy was he, in fact, that just before the bus left, the boy peed his pants, much to the surprise of his mother. Andy, in an effort to make light of anything at all, pointed this out to Mandy, at which point the mother looked up at Andy in sad, soaking desperation. And that’s when Andy said, “Don’t worry it happens to the best of us.”

It was Mandy who jumped in and said that it had happened to “Ands” last night.

The four of us arrived at Epcot (dry, thankfully) and proceeded directly onto the Spaceship Earth attraction, which allowed us to sit down and relax for a little while. From there we headed to “Soaring” but discovered that all of the fast-passes for that ride had been given out for the day, which meant we’d have to stand in line for it. So we went ahead and grabbed some food and then got into what ended up being a 55 minute line.

Two things happened in the line that had us in stitches.

Halfway through the line, Mandy was getting tired. It was a wide line with lots of people packed in pretty tightly. Mandy had been leaning her head against Andy’s back, half asleep, when all of a sudden, she said, “Oh, Ands, that’s terrible!” and walks away from him. Apparently, Andy had let one go much to the dismay of everyone around him, but to Andy’s great delight. He was laughing so hard he was shaking, which made me laugh so hard that I was shaking. We probably laughed for five minutes barely breathing. It was hysterical.

Flash-forward about ten minutes later, surrounded by kids (and their parents) who have been standing in line for 45 minutes. Andy was leaning up against the wall, asleep. Lisa, with a devilish look in her eye, licks her finger and promptly sticks it in Andy’s ear. Andy instantly wakes up, and shouts, “That’s fuh–” and then freezes because he realizes we are surrounded by kids. I went to pieces, though, and so did Lisa, and so did the two girls who’d been in line in front of us all this time. I was laughing so hard there were tears in my eyes.

Oh, we finally did get on the ride and it was awesome. You really felt as though you were hang-gliding over all of these places. The funniest thing about the ride, however, were the sounds Lisa made everytime we swooped over a ridge and suddenly appeared to be very high up in the air. I can’t quite describe the sound. It’s a sound that I wouldn’t think a human voice could produce, but clearly she made it.

After Soaring, we decided to stay grounded for a while and take a walk all the way around the International Plaza and lake. The weather was perfect. We walked around and I managed to have myself not one but two ice cream sandwiches. People thought this was funny for some reason. We got some good pictures here too, including one of Andy performing a rather un-Disney like act on a ice-pop. (For that matter, we got one of Mandy doing the same.)

We took a boat back to the hotel. Andy and Mandy had to get ready for the rehearsal dinner and Lisa and I headed up to the room to relax for a few hours. We planned to have a late dinner on the boardwalk and then head over to Jellyrolls that evening to meet up with everyone.

And I want, and I need, and I love, animal

Friday morning I woke up early feeling a bit dizzy and that’s because I drank quite a bit Thursday night. I lay in bed for about an hour and finally got up, showered and started to get ready for the day. I decided to skip the gym. Lisa and I met Andy and Mandy for breakfast and then caught the bus to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

We had perfect weather all day long: clear skies with temperatures reaching up into the 80s. It felt great. Lisa had a plan for what she wanted to see at the Animal Kingdom, and we more or less followed her plan. There were all sorts of cool things to take pictures of, and I couldn’t take pictures of any of them because my battery had died and all attempts at finding a charger or replacement battery had failed.

We took a train to the vet hospital to see how they take care of the animals. We visited the petting zoo in order to pet the sheep and goats, all of whom seemed strangely attracted to Andy. We got a Fast-Pass for the Safari, which was what all of us were really looking forward to. Andy and Lisa got some amazing pictures of the tigers, but you’ll have to wait for them to post their pictures.

Mandy couldn’t ride the safari because it wasn’t recommended for pregnant women. So it was just Lisa, Andy and I. We were in luck because all of the animals were out in force, even the cheetah and then lions. There were elephants. A giraffe walked right along side us, until it saw Lisa and then it took off the other way for some reason. We even managed to catch some poachers.

Given that we spent only about half a day at Animal Kingdom, I think we did pretty well, and Lisa and Andy have the pictures to prove it.

Welcome to the Magic Kingdom

Today we took on the Magic Kingdom.

Lisa and I met Norm and Vicky for breakfast at the Picabu Buffeteria at about 7 AM. I had done a workout so I stuffed my plate with protein: scrambled eggs, bacon, and some fruit. The eggs were terrible, like something squeezed out of a tube or sprayed out of a can. But the bacon was good. We sat around eating breakfast and planning out our day.

Norm drove us to the transportation center and from there we caught a monorail to the Magic Kingdom. Our timing was perfect as they were just counting down to the opening of the gates. We got there right at 8 AM, and the this particular day, they were letting resort guests into the park one hour before everyone else.

Lisa and Vicky waiting for the Monorail.

Our first stop was Space Mountain. We got a fast-pass for a later ride on Space Mountain but we got into a relatively quick line for our first ride of the day. Space Mountain at the Magic Kingdom is different than Space Mountain at Dinseyland, but it was still fun.

This was Norm’s pose for much of the day.

Norm and Vicky are experts with fast-pass use and because of that we were able to make good use of our time. We went on a bunch of other rides: Pirates, the Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, and back onto Space Mountain once again. Half way through our day, we met up with Norm’s brother Scott and his girlfriend, Meredith, as well as Norm’s sister Julie and her fiance, Bob and we spent the rest of our time there with them.

Norm and Vicky pose for the camera.

Our first attempt at Splash Mountain resulted in a 40 minute delay because the ride was not working. Eventually, we bailed from the line, but not before being given return passes, which are essentially the same as “fast-passes”. That worked out well because it meant that when we used our fast-passes for Space Mountain, we had four extra passes to give to Scott, Meredith, Julie and Bob so that they could go with us.

Scott pointed out this amusing angle of the Walt Disney statue. If you look closely, you might notice something funny about Walt (although my picture isn’t as good as some).

What’s ‘up’ with Walt?

That’s what she said

Just a quick post to say that the trip is loads of fun so far. I haven’t had much time to post because we’ve been out and about, but I will get caught up, just perhaps a day or two later than usual. I have been taking pictures, which I will get posted soon too.

We spent the day today at the Magic Kingdom with Norm and Vicky, and later, with Norm’s brother Scott and his girlfriend, and Norm’s sister Julie and her fiance. I’m just done napping and about to get ready for dinner. We’re meeting Andy and Mandy at 6 PM. Then, at 8 PM, guys and girls split up for their respective celebrations.

Oh, and I hope you all enjoyed the guest blogger this morning. She may be back again before the trip is over.

I sat next to a Disney(TM) haunted house singing statue at Camden Yard today

It was your typical beautiful day at the ball park today. There was a nice breeze keeping the temperature from being overwhelming. Game time temperature was a breezy 91 degrees. The game was exciting with a walk-off single by Miguel Tejada to win the game. But the most unusual part of the day was the fact that the guy sitting just to my left looked, to my aging eyes, exactly like one of those singing statues from Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion. Specifically, he looked like Ned Nub.

I didn’t think anyone would believe me so I have pictures to prove it