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We were all awake at 6am today. Derek and I had quite a restless sleep. We can hear something mechanical sounding from outside the room somewhere. I'm guessing the mechanics for the lift or something as it goes on and off although they are quite far away from us so I'm not sure. The kids had a comfortable sleep although Katie said she would like to sleep in the couch bed tomorrow night as Murray was taking up too much room in bed.
We were aiming to get to Hollywood studios for extra magic hours but by the time we managed to get ready and unpack properly we only left the room at 8am. As we came out of the hotel we could see a friendship boat had just pulled up at the dock, however it was still a fair way to walk. We decided to leg it over and caught it by the skin of our teeth. The temperature was very bearable at this point so none of us were sweaty, I couldn't even imagine doing this in the summer!
The boat took about 25 mins stopping at the Swan and Dolphin hotel on the way. Once docked we fast walked through security and headed to Toy story. Alas it was showing a 45 min wait so we decided not join the queue which was snaking its way down the street at this point and headed to Starbucks instead as tummies were rumbling.
The usual order was made, Trenti latte for me, Trenti iced coffee for Derek, pain au chocolates and iced water for the kids, blueberry muffin for me and cinnamon roll for Derek. We had been looking forward to this and it didn't disappoint. We sent he kids to find seats and they ended up on a bench outside Hollywood and vine, I think it was the waiting area but no one moved us.
Once breakfast was demolished we headed for Star tours as it had a more manageable 10min wait, I rode once with the kids (Derek doesn't handle simulators well) then they went on themselves while Derek and I waited. Derek bought himself a new phone cover, delighted as you can see.
We walked towards Tower of terror next as Katie was desperate to ride this but by now the wait here was 65mins so we called it a day as Epcot was the main park of the day, HS was just a little bonus which would have worked out better if we had managed to get out the room a bit earlier!
We caught the boat towards Epcot but got off at the hotel and walked to the entrance as the boat stops at the Boardwalk next and we were convinced we would beat it if we walked instead. We were right but only beat it by a very small margin.
Our first fast pass was for Figment so we made our way through World Showcase, stopping off in the gateway shop to buy an Easter egg hunt challenge (cost $6.99)There is an egg hidden in every country and when you find it you stick the corresponding sticker on the chart. Once all are found you take it somewhere (I haven't found out exactly where yet) and you get a prize. We had a good look in Britain and Canada but couldn't find anything. There was also a high school marching band parading through the showcase on their way to perform at the fountains, they were impressive and with Katie having just taking trumpet lessons at school it was nice for her to see.
With the Flower and Garden festival on at the moment Epcot was looking lovely and the many topiaries were gorgeous, I may have taken quite a few photos!
There was an actual queue at Figment, not something you see very often, so the fast pass helped for once. Once off the ride we mucked about in the play area and went in one of the photo booths for some silly pictures.
Our next fastpass was for soarin so we headed over to the land. We were all a bit thirsty at this point and the kids were getting a little "hangry" so we stopped off at Sunshine seasons for some drinks and as if we needed anymore pastries another cinnamon bun, the kids had a taste of Derek's earlier and really liked it. This mammoth cake was split between four and Brightened everyone up a bit. We also downloaded the Disney parks edition of The Heads up app which is free if you do this from a Disney park and had a little rest and play with the game before heading into Soarin. We played some more Heads up in the queue, it passes the time really well without the usual brother and sister winding up that often goes on when boredom and jet lag sets in.
Soarin was fabulous, we have ridden with the new film once before but I think I was so wowed with it I didn't take in lots of the details, the smells that are coordinated with the film were especially great. The only problem is very tall buildings looked odd and distorted by the curved screen I guess.
After Soarin we decided to take a wander to Test track to see what the wait was like for the single rider queue. At 40 minutes so we decided against that and to wander round the showcase looking for eggs properly this time. We had a reservation at Beirgarten at 2.45 and it was now 12.30ish. The kids said they were hungry so we got a Mickey Pretzel but Murray didn't want that, but couldn't make up his mind what he did want and was in quite a foul mood because of it, we spent a not so enjoyable 20 mins checking all sorts of places for food that he might like but I think the tiredness had got the better of him and he just didn't know how to snap out of it. We ended up in Germany checking if we could move our reservation forward by the queue for the check in desk was 12 deep so we reckoned there was no chance. We had a dilemma as to whether to go back to the hotel then come back to Germany at the reservation time or hang about waiting but with Murray in a "hangry" mood. Eventually though a suggestion of ice cream from France was enough to light the spirits and on the way I spotted our first egg in Japan, quickly followed by Katie spotting the next one in Morocco so we were all really chuffed with ourselves and had a renewed spring in our step once the ice creams in France were obtained. The internet being a wonderful thing I managed to fjnd a webpage which gave some hints to where you could find the eggs which meant we were able locate the one in France before heading back to Italy for more egg hunting and a few photo pass photos and topiary admiring along the way.
In Italy you have to look up very high for the egg
We were in time for the voices of Liberty showing at 2pm so we had a welcome rest in America while enjoying the entertainment, such lovely singers, although I am definitely more enthusiastic about this than the rest of the family. America egg also found we headed to Germany to find the egg there and finally check in for food.
We were seated in time and as is customary sat with two couples, both American, from the first couple the girl was a current cast member on the college programme. The other couple the gentleman was a former chef at the Yachtsman and his friend was a chef at the Biergarten and was on duty that day so kept coming over to check on them. Suffice to say we made some small talk but they weren't the most talkative bunch we've had the pleasure to sit beside.
The buffet was great as usual, a big hit especially for Murray who had several helpings of all sorts of meats and both kids loving the cookies as usual. We all enjoyed it but I think the timing of the meal wasn't the best in hindsight and I don't think we ate as much as we could have if it had been a later dinner or earlier lunch.
Once finished and bill settled we headed out and back towards the hotel, we were pretty knackered by this stage and Katie was desperate to get to the pool for a dip.
Once we arrived back Katie and I got the swimming costumes in and headed to the Yacht club quiet pool we had loved so much last year. It was almost a private pool for us and I got some much needed sunbed rest time while she mucked about in the pool. I eventually got into the hot tub which was wonderful, Derek came down for 20 minutes and joined us while Murray stayed in the room, the Scotland game was showing in the TV (in Spanish) so he wanted to stay and watch.
On the way to the pool Katie had to get a picture with the boat we will be sailing on in 5 days time!
We all headed back to the room at 6.30ish via the Marketplace for some drink refills and snacks for us to have in the room. We found the first Hunger games film playing on the TV and we all a chilled out and watched it before finally giving in to sleep at 9.15 after watching a bit of the fireworks from the window.
Tomorrow there is a visit to Magic Kingdom, BOG breakfast and dinner at Captains Grille.
Thanks for reading along and the lovely comments!
Hi everyone so here we are on Day 3 of our trip and it was time for Expo day!
Today we as always had a plan and due to horror stories of last years Princess expo where fights broke out over wine glasses 😳 we decided to not wait for the official buses to start taking us to the Expo and instead booked an Uber.
We were up dressed selfie done and out the door for our 8am Uber this worked out really well and the driver was so nice but well but read on for our full review of Uber's in Orlando!
Anyway we grabbed some cereal in the room and chucked a cereal bar in our bag for the impending queue.
Arrived at ESPN in no time and got some standard photos with all the princess medal signage.
I'm sure if I remember correctly the expo officially opens at 10am but we wanted to be there earlier to head to the queue and wait for those doors to open. The queue was already pretty big by the time we arrived but it was a beautiful sunny day and it was nice sitting waiting in the sun watching the cheesiest dj in the world try to rev up at party at 9am!
Kirsty had some friends she met on a running Facebook page who messaged to say they were in the queue so I held the spot while she popped over to find them. Kirsty wasn't long back when they opened the doors and let us in at 9:30am we were so excited.
We both had things we wanted to get mine was a pretty simple Christmas decoration and maybe a running 10K finishers top luckily they were letting us straight into the run Disney merch so no more extra queuing!
Kirsty got these gorgeous tops but I don't have a picture of my decoration but I ended up with 2 the princess 2017 one and the official run Disney one they are shaped like trainers I love them. Granted one women was blocking the whole stand while sweeping racks of them into a basket so once I'd climbed over that I got mine 🙄
I think all of kirsty purchases where fight free! While paying there was a lady next to us with $1000 rung up and another 3 baskets still to go 😳
Anyway crazy shopping done and we survived no fist fights! It was time for meeting up with Kirsty's friends and packet pick up!
Got our packets and numbers and then spotted that they had some of the new beauty and the beast movie costumes out on display! Kirsty was very excited to "meet the rose" 😂
Clothing items met it was time for the next part of our day and outlet shopping! So we booked another Uber and waited in the now glorious sunshine for it.
At this point we noticed on the uber app that our driver was listening to 80s love tunes, so we may have already been a bit concerned, this only got better or worse depends how you look at it when we got in. On route to the outlets and suddenly Lady in Red came on I think we both lost it and turned into giggling fools you would think we had peaked but oh no our taxi driver who hadn't spoken once to us suddenly then starts singing along! Unbelievable funny and so very random.
Lots of shopping done with some impressive bath and body works haul for us and a few bits in the Disney outlet. I visited the Vineland outlets lots during my last trip and I do think it's much better than the this international drive outlet.
When we were shopped out we grabbed another uber and headed home this was even more scary as our driver seems rather angry and at one point he made a call to a guy and had a rather angry phone call with some guy. We may have thought we were in danger and took this photo for evidence.
Luckily we survived our uber trip and decided some glow in the dark drinks where needed! So drinks bought and a double quick service giant pizza was ordered.
Back to the room for cocktails and pizza in bed to get ready for tomorrow's early start at Animal Kingdom and our Tusker House breakfast!
Hi everyone!! Kirsty here. Since today is the Epic Epcot adventure, and I took enough selfies to fill my iCloud photo album *ooops* I said to Gemma that I'd cover this day off. As Gemma explained earlier, we had very strong plans for our days, and today was Epcot.
Outfits planned. Gemma in her Olaf inspired disneybounding and me in my Jasmine (although Elsa thought I was bounding as her. #allabouther). We set off to the bus stop and we're waiting for a bus at about 8am. I can't remember if we ate breakfast in the room, but we did get coffee once in Epcot so that'll do right?!
Soon we arrive at the park, and begin the task of bag check (had to pack ponchos today...!), security, band scanning and then the standard slow walkers and general faffers as you get into Epcot!
However here we were and off to Soarin, when we picked our FP Frozen was the Tier 1 pass we picked. This meant that we did the Soarin Shuffle at opening and waited standby.
Without more than a 15min wait we were in our loading line and ready for our flight. We'd asked if we could get front row and the CM very kindly let us into the next concourse. A super way to start our Epcot day, and we both agreed that the enhancements that have been made are amazing!!!
Next up. My favourite. Living with the Land.
I LOVE this ride. And with a wee 5minute wait it was a no brainer after our Soarin flight. Today was no exception, a thrilling boat ride through the fish farm (why do the Sturgeon look so scary!!) and into the greenhouses (all the while getting jealous of the Mickey shaped produce, I can barely keep a cactus alive!!)
Our plan today was very much focused on batting through the attractions before we headed into World Showcase, and we decided that neither of us was hugely fussed about Test Track. So we had a little snack stop...yes, it was barely touching 10am, but don't judge....
Thanks to Gemma's amazing snack planning skills we knew exactly where to find this little Mickey shaped cheesecake beauty in Sunshine Seasons!
Suitably sugared up it was time to journey through time with Dame Judi Dench, after we figured out where the fastpass line started and the standby line ended...! Epcot seemed hugely busy today, spaceship earth had close to 60 minutes at 10:30am!!
Spaceship earth sorted and our futures viewed, we headed towards World Showcase, with a little stop at Starbucks - Gemma was beginning to realise that a decaffeinated Kirsty isn't a fun Kirsty, and from here on in made sure I had coffee on hand!!
We reached World Showcase just as the rain started, and where better than to shelter from the rain than Mexico...
A quick stop into La Cava Del Tequila proved fruitful, and with our margaritas we decided to explore the pavilion...like any responsible adult...
We found small hats.
We found big hats.
Just as the last drop of margarita goodness was drunk....we found Donald.
On our way out we grabbed another poor unsuspecting photopass guy and had a mini photo shoot in front of the statue.
And just like that, we decided that it would be a GREAT time to meet Anna and Elsa. So off we went to Norway, fuelled by tequila, for our first Princess meet of the trip...
After a short wait (and a lovely chat with a family behind us in the line - we were hyper aware that it was only 11:30 and we had a light aroma of tequila about us) we met the frozen sisters.
Elsa recognised Gemma instantly with the orange bow and called out the disneybounding, and then seemed very touched that I had bounded as her. I hadn't but I didn't have the heart to say it was Jasmine!!
A nice meet and greet which lead us to the next stop on Gemma's snack tour of Epcot...Kringla Bakeri
Frozen Ever After was our final fastpass of the day, a great wee ride but so glad we had the pass for it. The line didn't get anywhere near 60mins all day!!
Rather controversially, we decided to split the Troll Horn rather than the School Bread. This was delicious!!
A quick seat to shelter from the (easing) rain and we were off again...to China...and I decided it was time for lunch!
The food in China is great, for anyone who says you only was fast food in Disney I dare them to come to Epcot!!
A quick stop in the lotus blossom cafe for some scrummy Chinese food, ready to hit the rest of the Showcase for snacks and drinks.
The rain had started to ease off and we were able to remove our ponchos just as we left lotus blossom
We stopped in at Germany for some caramel goodness, and then onward to Italy, Morocco and France for the next stops on the Kirsty drink tour of the world...
I won't bore you with each individual picture. Take it from us, we took on my drink 'sampling' challenge and did our best!
Prosecco in Italy.
Some vibrant coloured slushy with copious volumes of run from Morocco
Grey Good and Grand Marnier slushes from France
And then we took a little wander around the boardwalk to Ample Hills to sample their prosecco with sorbet (very good!!)
Whilst we were in Ample Hills getting our drinks, the heavens opened again and the rain started. So it was on with the ponchos, and we ended up sitting outside the shop in the shelter drinking and facetiming our poor boyfriends back home - poor boys!!
No amount of rain keeps us down.
We decided to head back to Disney Springs as we had plans for the Coke bar, and as we were close to the boardwalk hotel, we squelched our way into the hotel lobby and off to the toilets to try and make ourselves more presentable!!
Just like that the rain stopped, ponchos were whipped off and we hopped a bus to the Springs! We never really experienced any problem with the transport during our short trip, everything was just perfect
As we headed towards to Coke bar we spied that in wee square loads of RunDisney banners were up and a huge poster for Beauty and the Beast was there too. So we took obligatory photos there before heading into the Coke shop and up to the bar
We decided to forego the alcoholic options and go for a standard Coke Float Flight. These were great, and enough in the cups for us both to try them and decide which ones were the favourites and which ones really tasted quite like antiseptic!!
Another thing that I was pleasantly surprised about, and will definitely be adding to any future trips to the Springs.
After our Coke Float experience we decided it was dinner time, and like any good Dibber, when on the QS dining plan and in Disney Springs there is only 1 place to go. Wolfgang Pucks.
We took the short walk to WP at the marketplace and ordered! We totally forgot to take pictures of the food though so you'll have to imagine me tucking into the meatloaf and Gemma enjoying the spaghetti and meatballs!!
It was a fantastic 2nd full day, and it set us up nicely for the RunDisney Expo which is just around the corner on day 3..
Day 3 - Shopping & Olive Garden 26.3.17
Walked 6,085 steps (2.5 miles/4km)
Spent - $244.42
Boys spent - $172.38
All that walking in MK yesterday worked a treat and we all slept like babies last night, waking up around 8am this morning. I think that's us quickly adjusted to US time.
It was a hot one this morning so after breakfast DH and I sunbathed while the boys had a swim.
We had hot dogs for lunch then got showered and changed ready to go shopping. The loop is 10 mins from our villa so headed there first.
First stop was Dollar Tree. We spent $50.15 on a load of random things, but mainly sweets and Yugio Watch toys:
Went to Ross next but it wasn't up to much. Neither was Burlington which was disappointing
I got to pick dinner since it's Mother's Day and I chose Olive Garden. The one at the loop was very busy and at 5pm they told us it'd be over an hour wait so we decided to drive to the one at crossroads before going to Vineland outlets.
This Olive Garden was empty and we were seated right away and started with drinks and breadsticks. DH and I both got the 'buy one take one' dinner deal at $12.99 each. This is great value and you get a full meal to eat in the restaurant plus another full one to go along with either endless salad or soup. I picked fettuccine alfredo for now and spag bol to go, along with endless salad. DH chose spag bol for now and baked ziti to go along with endless soup. DS1 had pepperoni pizza, DS2 had cheese pizza and DS3 had chicken tenders with spaghetti and fries.
We left $65 inc tip. For the cost this was a ridiculous amount of food on the table and we also had a huge bag of food to go. I even had the cheek to show a coupon for a free dessert and picked black tie chocolate mousse cake :P I asked for this to go!!!
Full to the brim we headed to the outlets.
Adidas up first and it was but one get one half off. DS1 and DS2 wanted football boots. This came to $74.53 from their own spends.
DS3 was desperate to get to toys r us for Five Nights At Freddy's toys he'd saw on YouTube...Success!!! He was over the moon and happily handed over $97.85 of his own spends.
Michael Kors for me straight to the back of the store for clearance. It's 70% off the lowest ticket price. For $117.65 total, I got a gorgeous grey and silver large jet set tote $78+tax down from $259.99!!! And a lovely merlot quilted clutch for $32.99+tax down from $109.99!!!
Last stop was character warehouse. We spent $11.62 in here: Some tsum tsum toys for DS3's collection back home. They were 99.cents each but buy 2 get 1 free. Also bought 3 light up multicolored Mohawk hairpieces at 99.cents each and 2 large mugs at $1.99 each.
We got back to the villa around 9pm.
Tomorrow's plan is Hollywood Studios. We're meeting up with my mum and dad
Day 2 - Steak n Shake & Magic Kingdom 25.3.17
Walked 11,688 steps (4.8 miles/7.7km)
Spent - $120.66
Thank goodness our bed in the villa is super comfy as I badly needed a good sleep after the two previous nights having next to none. So i woke up at 5am feeling brand new The boys woke up and had breakfast...s'mores pop tarts, pancakes and syrup and sausage and egg biscuits. By 7.30am they couldn't wait any longer and back in the pool they went. They played while we relaxed for the next two hours then we got ready and headed to a favourite of ours for brunch.
We got to Steak 'n Shake around 11am. Milkshakes were ordered. DH and DS1 both had chocolate shake, I had salted caramel pretzel (my fave), DS2 had kids Oreo red velvet and DS3 had kids strawberry.
Meal was $27.30, we left $32. Kids eat free all day every day now. It used to only be at the weekend but it's recently changed. Great food, great value
With full bellies, we set off for Magic Kingdom. $20 parking paid and parked up in Scar 425. We had to redeem our etickets at will call and this took an age. I forgot to bring my magic band so bought a new red one at will call $13.72 inc tax. All sorted, we caught the ferry and it was after 2pm by the time we walked up Main Street. Our 1st fastpass was for the Haunted Mansion for between 2-3pm so rode this first. It's DS3's favourite ride.
The park was absolutely heaving today. We expected it tho being a Saturday but still wanted it to be the first park of the holiday.
We nipped in to Mickey's PhilharMagic before our next FP which was POTC.
As we came out we caught Capt. Jack Sparrows pirate tutorial show. The cast member was really good
It was around 5pm by now and all the walking had made us hungry and the boys were desperate for Turkey Legs! x2 and a coke cost $26.92... compare that to what we got earlier in Steak 'n Shake and you get the reason why I hate buying food in the parks!
Last prebooked FP was 7DMT. This was our first time riding this as it was impossible to get a FP last time we done Disney in 2015. I was a bad mummy here... I never let on to DS3 who hates coasters that it was in fact a coaster. Up until we were strapped in he thought he was just going on a train...lol. He survived and was very brave, played it cool when we came off but then stated he will never go on a roller coaster again!
That was our 3 allowed FPs done now so got another for a favourite of mine The Little Mermaid...I love all the songs on here
It was after 7pm and we were somehow feeling peckish again. We stopped in at Gaston's Tavern for x2 LeFou's brews and a croissant and that cost $15.52. Also bought x2 popcorn tubs from cart outside and this was $8.50.
We were all shattered by this point and thought one more ride then home. On the app we grabbed a FP for the Mad Tea Party.
The sun was just going down as we made our way toward the exit. The castle looked beautiful.
By the time we waited on the monorail and the transportation to parking lot it was getting late and we were feeling the first day tiredness. It had been a busy day and we managed to do a fair bit.
Back at the villa for 9pm-ish and we all crashed out right away.
Mother's Day tomorrow so I get to shop... yay
Quite a bit of a wait later they announced the flight boarding and although they said world travellers etc only, everyone seemed to pile forward. I am always happy to sit and wait but Derek gets ants in his pants and as soon as they announced Bronze traveller he was off like a shot, (eventually remembering we were with him) and we all managed to board with some breathing space.
The flight was fine, plenty of film choices and the kids were great, a good age for keeping themselves amused with a mixture of pre purchased magazines, film watching and iPad/iPhone playing. We had some families surrounding us which made for some interesting people watching and made the flight go that bit quicker. Something that's never happened to me before, the guy in front took his size 11 trainers off and put hem under his seat using up my leg room, I had to politely ask him to move them where he proceeded to stick them in Derek's leg room space, oh how we laughed before we asked to move them for a second time.
The movie selection was good, the kids meals were poor though, soggy chicken nuggets and tasteless veggies accompanied by raisins and yoghurt for dessert. The kids took one look and said no way. Fully prepared for this we had picked up fajita wraps from WHSmith and crisps. The adult meals by comparison were really tasty, we both had Tarragon Chicken with dauphinois potatoes and lovely chocolate puddings for dessert. I must admit to having four little bottles of wine as Derek doesn't drink on planes, nor does he drink wine, so I was very content.
We all had a doze at some point which was good as we don't usually manage a sleep on the way out.
We landed ahead of time, at customs we were sent to a holding area where everyone who had been to America since 2008 were instructed to go and use the machines. This took very little time, I had already read that because Derek had less than 6 months on his passport the machine wouldn't work but we managed to get print outs for the rest of us and then headed to the proper immigration hall where the very nice customs man(yes he really was nice and chatty) sorted out Derek. The hall was fairly empty but once we got picked up our bags from the carousel there was quite a queue to go to the second check. Once we were eventually through we decided to keep our bags with us and head straight to the monorail. It was smooth sailing for the hire car with Avis preferred, there was a looong queue at the desk in the airport but we went straight to the garage and the Avis man was free and waiting. Please sign up to this if you are hiring with Avis, see my last trip report to compare how easy this really was. We were very soon picking up a big saloon car (Volkswagen Passat I've just been informed) with enough room for our cases. We were on the road and arriving at the Beach Club at 6.30pm. Derek dropped us off with the luggage which bell services took from us and he went to park the car.
This was my attempt at taking a photo of the Disney sign, there are road works so we didn't actually pass under the arch, we were a bit disappointed.
A lovely CM greeted us at the door, found our reservation on his iPad thing and was able to check us in right away. He initially said to me that we had been upgraded to a lagoon view, I was delighted, then he said no sorry just a standard, my face must have been a picture but I sucked it up. I had originally booked a garden view as that was the cheapest available, then two weeks later I happened to be looking on the website and standard room at £300 cheaper were now available so I phoned and changed. I had a conversation with the lovely CM on the phone that I would much rather have more spending money and wasn't too bothered about the view, and would maybe spend it on a treat for my birthday and before I knew it she had added the celebration to our booking and I honestly hadn't intentionally mentioned it. So when the CM said we had an upgrade I was really excited and thought it must have been some pixie dust for my birthday.
Anyway he went away and brought back our magic bands and gave us our room number and that was that. Derek arrived soon after having parked the car. We decided to get our bags from bell services ourselves as they said it would be half and hour before they could bring them up and we wanted to head out quickly for something to eat.
Our room is number 4703 and when we opened the door I could see out the window that we could see the pool and lagoon but with just a little balcony so I'm thinking this isn't a standard room and maybe the CM worked some magic after seeing my disappointed face? I knew we would be able to see the fireworks too, I was very happy.
This is the view.
The room is spacious enough and the decoration is really lovely, we had wrecked it with all the cases within two minutes though so I will try a take picture a little later when it is semi tidy. I thought I had been quite organised in packing some shorts and stuff for us to change into quickly but forgot where I had put them and also the toiletries were in another case, everything just didn't feel handy, packing cubes are definitely the way to go next year. So with every case opened and everything half in half out we finally got changed and headed out to Epcot for something to eat. I think it was about 7.30 by this point. We decided to walk round to America and grab a burger at Liberty inn. Epcot was heaving, we were really a bit in a daze at this point I think and we all agreed it didn't seem real to be here, we were trying to take it all in but also it was very familiar and we were just on a mission for food. We finally reached America and managed to grab some food and eat it as quickly as we could, Derek and Murray had Angus burgers and Katie and I had cheeseburgers, sorry no pictures of the food again. There was a rock band playing at the live stage, it was very loud and we were sitting eating our food trying to talk by shouting at each other, it wasn't the best for a family who had been in the go now for close to 18 hrs and we soon made our way back to the hotel. On our walk back to the hotel plenty Americans were singing along to the rock band but I didn't recognise any of the music.
Our first photo pass pic of the holidays, turned out okay although I look rather haggard to say the least, we were all a bit cold too, there was quite a breeze but I think it was mainly down to tiredness.
We were in our beds for 8.45pm, the kids asleep almost immediately. At 9 the fireworks started and we realised we did indeed have a fabulous view of the Star Wars ones but I was so tired I decided to lie in bed and listen after seeing the first couple of minutes and give them my full attention another night.
We were all asleep pretty soon, we will be visiting Hollywood Studios and Epcot tomorrow.
The alarm went off this morning at 4am. It was no problem getting out of bed, I should tell myself I'm getting up for my holidays every day, might make waking up for the usual 6.50 alarm a bit easier! Derek and I got ready first before getting the kids up, again much easier than the usual dragging them out of bed. We only had toiletries to add to the last bag before getting the cases closed until for the taxi. Very excited at this point to be able to say 0 sleeps until Florida!!!
We were picked up at 5am and we were soon on the road to Edinburgh airport. It went smoothly enough except for a few small situations .
First situation was the "faster print your own baggage tags queue which ended up with the machine telling us "computer says no" and us joining the back of the " should have just queued here to begin with queue" where we handed over our three checked in bags with the promise of "that will be four bags on the way home cause I will plan to shop".
Next situation was me obtaining a bag at the "toiletries" desk for my less than 100 ml stuff (I like to take moisturiser and a lipstick in my hand luggage and I had run out of ziplock bags at home) and where I am instructing myself to make sure I don't just leave all the passports and boarding passes(which I am always left with and had in my hand) at this desk and telling myself how that would be a disaster if just walked off and left everything when I realised that someone else had done just that. Of course as soon as I discovered this I went into panic mode for them and was looking around frantically for them even though I had no idea what they looked they like ( although in hindsight I should have looked at their passport picture). Derek of course thinks some disaster has happened to me personally, my face must have been a picture right enough. We soon found a friendly enough police officer and handed the passports and boarding passes to them to hover around the desk for the owners to return. I'm sure the owners would have returned quickly enough when they arrived at security.
We went through the family security queue where we all went through without too much hassle and straight to "the gathering" for breakfast where the kids had pancakes, I had a roll with sausage and Derek had a salmon and cream cheese bagel. This was all very tasty and a we had nice view of the planes arriving and taking off. No pictures of the food sorry.
We were soon ready to go to the gate and board for our flight to Gatwick.
British Airways no longer have food provided on this flight so we paid for some drinks and were happy for this to be a relatively short hop to London.
We arrived into Gatwick South terminal. We had to get a bus from the plane to the terminal. The terminal was extremely busy, luckily we were flying out from the same terminal here but we had to go back through security, no big deal although everyone except Murray was chosen for the X-ray machine and body check which was fairly "intimate".
Also just a little rant but why does everyone insist on lining up for their trays at the other end and then continue putting on their belts, getting everything back in their pockets etc right there rather than moving away with their tray to the bays provided, most annoying, they should definitely have someone stationed here to shout at everyone to tell them how to do this properly, I think I would volunteer.
Once through security the busy theme continued, quite intimidating at a few points until we found some seats. The info boards said that we wouldn't find out the gate until 11am. Since we were due to fly out at 11.10 we could only guess that we were delayed. We had a fairly enjoyable hour people watching and with the kids playing "heads up" on the phone. A couple of visits to the toilets (which in the south terminal are a very long walk by the way) and we decided to have a look at the board at 10.50am which said we were now boarding at 11am at gate 25. Eeek! the gate was far away and not what Derek (who has a philosophy of being at the gate at least an hour before boarding) was happy with at all. Thus we legged it all the way to gate 25 ending up being very sweaty and out of breath and actually arriving to an area full of expectant Orlando bound travellers, none of whom were getting on the plane any time soon.
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