Our room. Day 2, dose 1 for Kid #2’s ear drops.
Wait around for Wifey’s college friend, whom we haven’t seen since our
previous trip to Disney World ten years ago.
Our room (12:30pm). Friend arrives. We spend quite
some time in our hotel room with her, catching up on typical old-person
topics (who died, who has grandkids, etc.) My children are polite and make it
seem like they actually care about such things.
Landscape of Flavors (lunch, 2:00pm). We give the
friend one of our plenitude of food credits; as of May 2015 it is now
permitted to buy food for people who are not on the plan. We all have lunch
together, then split up by gender.
Wifey, Kid #1, and the friend
Big Blue Pool (inside Art of Animation Resort). Hang
out at the swimming pool for more conversation.
Pixel Play Arcade (inside Art of Animation Resort).
Our accommodation includes a coupon for 100 play-points at the arcade, but
both of the machines that are supposed to convert the coupon to an access
card say they are “empty”. There is no cast member at the arcade today
(it’s Sunday), so we go to the concierge desk; they give us a card with 250
points *and* return the unused coupon. What a great deal, eh? But the
games are not much fun and half the games we select are “free play” anyway,
so we use very few of the play-points before losing interest. One of the
less-uninteresting games is Fruit Ninja, which Kid #2 recognizes as a
game that was originally written for the iPad and has been retrofitted for
the larger screen of an arcade game. (Back in my day, the arcade was the
initial target-market and then games were retrofitted for personal
Our room. Use our computers with the hotel Wi-Fi.
This is more fun than the arcade.
Our room. The womenfolk return to the room for more
conversation. The friend leaves around 5:30pm, so she got a five-hour visit
for which she drove 2½ hours each way. Then my family has more computer fun
while we wait for it to get darker.
Our room. It’s Rosh Hashanah, the beginning of
Jewish year 5776. This is at least the third time in the last 25 years that
we have celebrated it in a hotel room. Wifey’s original plan was to eat
dinner in the room with rotisserie chicken from a grocery store, an apple,
and Winnie the Pooh® brand honey. But we didn’t get around to buying the
chicken or the honey and I forgot to pick up an apple at the hotel food
court. In our room fridge there is a leftover fruit cup that includes three
slices of apple (desserts are included in the dinner food-credits, but the
Disney dinners are too much food for us). So we look up the Rosh Hashanah
blessings on the Internet and say them while eating the apple slices (Wifey
and I share one slice). Wifey brought along a single birthday candle from
Canada, so we stick it in a leftover-dessert cupcake, light it on fire (oh
noes! An open flame in a hotel room!), and wish the world a happy
birthday. Then we blow out the candle and divide up the cupcake. Happy New
Disney Transport (Lake Buena Vista FL). We take a
bus to Downtown Disney, which is in the middle of being rethemed as “Disney
Springs” so many of the parking lots are closed for reconstruction. Hey,
it’s another ride!
Wolfgang Puck’s Express (Downtown Disney, 7:18pm). I
wasn’t too impressed with Chef Puck when we ate at
one of his cafeterias
in Boston. This one is considerably upscale from that, but still there is
much to complain about. My chicken soup tastes sweet. My brownie tastes
like gooey sugar syrup with chocolate flavor (but other family members enjoy
theirs). The receipt makes it look like we paid $74.87 for family dinner,
but actually the cost was covered by our dining plan. Bottled juice is
available, but only fountain drinks are on the plan, unlike at
Disney-branded restaurants. The cashier keeps asking us to list our “meals”
first (eventually we figure out that she means “entrées”).
After dinner, we split up by gender again.
Sassagoula Steamboat Co. Take a ferry across Lake Buena Vista
to Downtown Disney’s “West Side”. The captain says the name of the ferry
company, as if it were an attraction, and the name is displayed on the dock
but doesn’t appear on the Downtown Disney map, so I’m calling it a ”group”
(like the popcorn carts) rather than an “attraction” (with name
shown here in purple). Walt Disney Corp. owns everything in sight, so the
distinction is sort of arbitrary. The Sassagoula River flows into Lake
DisneyQuest (8:15pm). We have a coupon for a day’s admission
to this five-story building full of arcades, restaurants, and a few rides.
We just go on the rides and are done in an hour. Attractions visited today:
Invasion ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter, Buzz Lightyear’s
AstroBlaster, Aladdin’s Magic Carpet Ride, and Pirates of
the Caribbean Battle for Buccaneer Gold.
DisneyQuest is scheduled to be closed next year, so this is our only
chance to go on these rides. AstroBlaster is the main one that I
would want to go on again. It’s sort of like bumper-cars but for two-man
crews. I steered (which was difficult) while Kid #2 loaded the “cannon”
and lobbed “asteroids” at the other vehicles. When hit, a vehicle would
spin around and then return to the control of its occupants. Fun!
Sassagoula Steamboat Co. Ferry back to the “Marketplace” side
of Downtown Disney.
Disney Transport. Bus back to our resort. The bus driver
asks the men to give up their seats for women and children, who must surely
be tired from all their shopping. No one moves. Kid #2 (who is nearly a
man) and I try to get some standing females to take our seats, but none of
them will accept the offer. “Don’t be silly,” says one. “I’m a teacher
and I stand all day.” So we sit back down. “The bus driver was making a
joke,” I tell her.
Mickey’s Pantry (8:00pm). Two packages of shortbread
cookies, paid for with snack-credits.
Goofy’s Candy Co. (8:15pm). A box of animal crackers
and a bag of plain M&Ms, to use up two more snack-credits.
Little Miss Matched (8:22pm). $9.94 for three
deliberately-mismatched but color-coördinated socks, to be given to a
homeschooler girl we know who likes to wear that sort of thing.
World of Disney (9:07pm). $8.47 for a silicone
pancake mold shaped like Mickey’s head. Also, a box of mints that we’ll
give to some homeschooling friends (snack credit).
Ghiradelli (9:17pm). Shared hot fudge brownie sundae
for $11.66. The receipt comes with a “10% off” coupon, but there are no
Ghiradelli stores in Canada. Perhaps we can use it in Boston.
Tren-D (9:39pm). $6.34 for a Minnie Mouse rhinestone
headband, to be given to yet another homeschooler girl we know.
Disney Transport. Ride the bus back to Art of Animation Resort.
Our room. The guys return only shortly before the
gals, even though we did less stuff, because of our additional travel time
on the ferry. Also, day 2 dose 2 goes into Kid #2’s ear.