Holdensccs's DIBB Photo Blogs

A final bit of packing done, there's no point hanging around so at 9.30 we just load the luggage into the car and check put of the hotel.

Breakfast is first on the agenda, and it has to be our new favourite, Cracker Barrel...

DW had pancakes
I had the beef brisket skillet.
Great breakfasts and good service too. $19 plus tip.

Wal-Mart next for more essentials to take home with us this time...
Rice a Roni, Jerky, jelly beans, pretzel pieces and underwear too...amongst others.

We deciden to spend.our last couple of hours at the outlets on Vineland, but we were just killing time and boughtonly a CK hat for DS.

Final drive in my lovely red Dodge Charger R/T, before reluctantly handing it back ( I've done 599 miles and used $70 in fuel and averaged 18.8mpg (US gallons)) just hope I'll be as lucky with the car in December. I had prepaid a full sizecar through BA for a total cost of £210 which was a steal in my opinion.

Bag drop was a simple process and our boarding passes say TSA pre on them... there's a separate queue for this (hope its a fastpass)

Yaaas it is a fastpass, through the security in 5 minutes flat when the queue was showing 30 to 35 mins... no need to take off shoes, belt, jacket and leave liquid baggie in bag... simples.

We had a wee snack at Nathans near the gate. Philly cheesesteak for me and chicken tenders for DW

We then found that we were too late to get duty free as our flight had been called, despite there being 50 mins to departure... never mind, we got some onboard at roughly the same price.

The triple 7 on the way home is a refurbished aircraft. The seats are not quite as comfy as the older aircraft (or should that be slightly more uncomfortable than) mainly due to them being shorter. However we've got a bulkhead row (31) and so we can recline with impunity, which makes a difference. I also suspect thet the flight was sold as the old configuration as there are loads of free seats, so I can move to the aisle and leave the middle free.
The IFE screens are much bigger and better quality, its handy to have the usb too I expect, ours unfortunately wasn't working!
Food on the flight was dire, really dire.....good job we ate at Nathans!
Flight was quick though and we arrived a bit ahead if schedule.

As noted on our outbound travel day, Gatwick is an awful airport, has to be endured though, but its worse on the way home somehow.

Wish we we're still there.. instead of sitting in Gatwick airport waiting for the flight to Glasgow.

Tomorrow I'm hoping t o do a hotel review and an overall trip review.....
Thanks for sticking with me and also for your comments on my daily posts.

Florida Escapes

This morning we are up and dressed at 9 ish. I contact DD and arrange to pick her up... We found a Best buy on Osceola Parkway and secured a replacement (factory refurb) Iphone 6s for $349. DD will pay us back when she's in a tipped job.......

Perkins is right next door, so we have breakfast there, all very nice and good service too. Full up, we (I) Drive over to Animal Kingdom and park up in Peacock 8. Straight onto the waiting tram and we are inside AK in minutes.

The standby queue for FOP is 120 minutes, we get a return time of 2:25.

First fastpass was for Expedition Everest which was good as usual, I especially like the fast bit at the end.

Next was the Kilimanjaro safaris, longer than usual due to a breakdown, but at least we were held up in a shaded spot. again saw lots of wildlife.

By now our return window for FOP was open, so we all rode banshee again... just as good even when you know what to expect. Best laugh was when 2 grandparents with granddaughter who were in front of us...grandmother stops ride attendant who was loading us.. dead seriously "excuse me, but in that last room my granddaughter didn't link with a Naavi, will she be ok to ride?" Granddaughter then proceeded to scream and cover her eyes the whole ride...so maybe she didn't link after all!

Before exiting AK we did ITTBAB... great fun
about 50% of the toddlers and babies were crying by the end!

Trip to Disney Springs next and late lunch/early dinner in House of Blues.

DD and I had brisket sandwiches, DW had a bacon cheese burger.

bill with DD's cast member discount was $49

Filled up the car. $40 from empty to full... oh I wish it was this cheap at home.

Parked in MK....Hook 321 again a waiting tram, ... our luck is in today!

We took the ferry this time...great photo opportunity.

Philharmagic first, then my first ever Dole whip...mmmnnn nice....

Then we (3 grown adults) had a FP to meet Mickey Mouse...the big cheese in person!!

Beyond pleased at this (need to get a life ha ha)

We waited at the end of main street for Happily Ever After...Well worth the wait...stunning, joyful, spectacular...my photographs don't do it justice....

Within 40 minutes of it ending, we were dropping off DD at Vista Way for the last time ( until December) not a nice feeling and tears all round, but we are leaving her in a good place, she is happy and living her dream and it is only temporary...roll on December...

Tomorrow we travel home, checked in already, just a bit of shopping to do and one last breakfast....

A relatively early start and we managed out of the door within 5 minutes of our planned 8am, so not too bad.

Cracker Barrel for the second day in a row for breakfast as DW missed out yesterday. It was much less busy today, but this affected service in a negative way, it was quite slow, but on balance well worth waiting for. The usual pancakes bacon eggs and syrup sets you up for a day in a theme park and today it's Busch Gardens.

Fairly quiet roads all the way down, total journey time 55 minutes.

What happened to the row of Airstream Caravans that were 'planted' at the side of the I4, just before the I75 I'm sure they were still there in July 2016?

The parking lot is less than half full, but everyone is arriving at about the same time as us , however we are inside the park quite quickly.

I'll not go into details about all the rides we did, but suffice to say we had a full day, including 4 rides on Cheetah Hunt and getting stuck on Sheikra.... DW even went in the cable car (and she hates heights!) a good park day and not too tiring.

We ate dinner at Logan's Roadhouse on the 192 near Old town and as ìt was one of my " birthdays " we got a free dessert... the bill still came to $72 plus a tip though, but that's not bad for 3 steak dinners. Not a scrap left either so it must have been good.

Wal-Mart next for more essentials to leave with DD, notably 3 slabs of 48 bottles of water....
We dropped her off with her loot at Vista Way and drove the 10 minutes back to our hotel. On arrival I had a message 'have you got my IPhone in the car'... erm no?

She then traced it with the help of her laptop and some Apple wizardry to the general area of her apartment... of course it's outside in the car park, and I've run over it with my Dodge Charger (hence the title of this section), It's totally goosed!!

Tomorrow...Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom, Fireworks and very probably phone shopping!

I'm having a solo breakfast this morning...DW still under the weather, so I chose Cracker Barrel.
DW never fancied this place due to associating it with that naff cheese ...

it's a busy place but I am shown to a table straight away.

I'm having mommas pancake break fast. and I'm never going to IHOP again after this...delicious !

Later in the morning DW was a feeling a bit better and DD messaged that she was ready early if we wanted to go over.

So by 12:30 We were parking in Seaworld as was half of Orlando it seemed. Though we were parked round behind bay stadium, the park wasn't too busy.

spotted a young Lou Ferrigno !

DD got a return time for Manta, which leaves us 40 minutes to kill, DW set off for the dolphin stadium and we made our way to Mako.

It was a complete walk on, so we rode twice, row 3 and then the front row.

Front row or back row both take this coaster to another level, but front is best!

We went back to do Manta next, before joining DW at the dolphin theatre.

Really enjoy the new format.

DW then went over to the Shamu stadium whilst DD and I literally walked on to Kraken, it's a good coaster still, but a bit of a rough ride...

On our way over to Shamu we had to pass by Mako, but couldn't just pass by of course..... another front row done!

One Ocean next where DW was waiting, we got there just as the rain started. After this show, as it was still raining we decided to call it a day. The rain stopped as we arrived back at our hotel....

The ladies had a snooze, while I watched a bit of TV then showered and went to fill up the car ($2.79 A gallon)
and with a virtually empty highway, I thought I'd see what sport mode would do!!! very naughty I'll admit.. but oh boy that's a lot of grunt! I didn't technically break the speed limit ( it's 60 here) but I got there awfully fast...with a lot of lovely noise too!

anyhow, when I get home the ladies are ready, so we set off for Teak Neighbourhood Grill. love this place..
Not busy tonight so we have a high top inside at the bar.

DW ordered a Plain Jane (her first solid food today!
DD ordered the famous Donut burger

I had The Pig
We had garlic fries and chill cheese fries to share..
all delicious as usual.

We had the Ultimate Cronie for dessert with 3 spoons!

With the big deal card (10% off) the bill was $48 plus tip.

DD is staying with us tonight as we've an early start.. Busch Gardens.

We both had a good nights sleep so we didn't hit the road until after 9 this morning and made the short trip to Celebration.
Always meant to go there only sort of got there on our 2016 visit, that coincided with a huge thunderstorm and we didn't get out of the car!

This time around we had much more luck, the weather was lovely and we parked easily. As it was still early, most businesses were only just opening, we enjoyed a leisurely stroll around the lake before settling on the Marketplace Diner for breakfast, we sat outside under the veranda.

DW had the blueberry pancake with a side of bacon it filled a large dinnerplate.

I had the Kitchen Sink- Tatertots (about a bag full) sausage ham peppers onions and gravy!!

With 2 coffees the bill was $30 plus tip.

Thoroughly enjoyed it nice atmosphere and great service. View not too shabby either.

We will return to Celebration, it's a nice place to spend a couple of hours.

A good friend at home has asked us to check out the prices in the Bose outlet for him, so that's where we head next ( the top end of I Drive)

The wonders of modern technology mean I can send photos instantly to him in Scotland and we leave the store with a bag with the speaker and dock he wanted.

Job done, we head back to the hotel for a couple of pool hours.

Old Town for the cruise tonight, we use an Uber, quick and easy $7.50 I can have a beer maybe..

We decided to eat at the food trucks behind the flea market.. not a great success I'm afraid.. I was expecting more variety to be honest, but all the trucks are either Puerto Rican or Venezuelan. Very busy area and what we had was ok, but I'd probably not bother again.

The cruise at Old Town was very busy, had a couple of beers listening to the singer's on the Old Town Stage and people watching!!
There are some "different " people here right enough.. but it's all very laid back and friendly. I think they are making an effort here, lots of modernisation and development going on.
A lot of classic cars there tonight too.

The Uber back was $9.50 and again a quick pickup and trouble free journey.

Tomorrow a late start Seaworld and Teak on the plans.

** update DW has had a disturbed night with an upset tummy..... can only be the food from the trucks... !

Some womble was letting fireworks off at midnight but other than that we had a good nights sleep. Awake at 06:45 and got the Coffee on... cinnamon rolls for a sparse breakfast, before driving over to pick up DD from Vista Way at 8.

We were parked in Dinosaur36, Dinosaur 35 had just filled so we were directed to the far end of the row. DW wound down her window and asked if we could park closest to the tram as we would be short for time when we left, and they said ok! result....
There was a tram waiting too so we were at the park entrance by 08:45....

Today was an EMH day so we were directed to wait until park opening at 9

DD went to guest services to get her disability access pass, this lets us get a fastpass return (you can have one of these active at any one time plus your normal fastpasses) we have FPs for EE, Kilimanjaro safaris and FOTLK.

We head straight over to Pandora, as does just about everybody else!!

The theming in this area is excellent, really really good. We call at the FP entrance to FOP and get a return time of 10:57...

The standby line is already 150 minutes!

So first FP is Expedition Everest Just DD and me as DW doesn't do rollercoasters.
Standby for this is showing 20 minutes, looks more like 10, but we have a fast pass so it's basically a walk on.

My first time back in Disney for amlost 10 years, and one of the benefits of this is that I dont clearly remember all the rides ( thats probably an age thing too!) so the enjoyment is almost like the first time.

After EE we take a leisurely stroll through the park taking in the sights, we really love Animal Kingdom, and we get to FOP just about as our FP window opens. We are all riding this.

I was hoping that it wouldn't be too intense for DW as I'd convinced her that it was like a cross between Soarin and HP Forbidden Journey, ( both rides that she likes) I was going to be in the bad books if she didn't enjoy it!

I needn't have worried, but I was so far off with what I thought the ride was!

It is quite simply breathtakingly amazing, so so much better than I had ever imagined. Wow. All three of us thoroughly enjoyed it 10/10

DD fiddled with the app and brought our Kilimajaro safari FP forward to before the FOTLK, so We did that next.

it's changed a bit since we did it last, they've dropped the poachers bit, which I never really enjoyed. We saw lots of animals.

As it was now lunchtime we sat in the food area and ate our Wal-Mart sandwiches.
Love American sandwiches, very generous with the fillings.

We then head off to Festival Of The Lion King, our last FP.

Now this is a real nostalgia trip, glad it's never changed because it can't be improved. A good way to finish our visit to Animal Kingdom.

Now it's time to run DD back to Vista Way to get changed and then over to Epcot to drop her off for her shift.
She's being careful not to touch the car here, the paintwork is blisteringly hot!

We'll see her again Sunday.

We did a quick trip back to the Sketchers outlet on the 192, on the way there was a brief downpour, but that was the only rain we saw all day.

I got some running shoes and DW got a pair of flip flops.

Ticket price was $80 for the 2, but it was buy 1 get 2nd at 50% and they applied the 20% discount voucher that we got for joining the loyalty scheme as well,so we got both for $48.

Back at the hotel, we finally made to to the pool for a bit.

This evening we are at Culvers, which is a very nice burger and frozen custard restaurant (think posh quality McD's) I'd been looking forward to this and it didn't disappoint.An inexpensive and very tasty meal to end a very enjoyable day.

Spot the hidden Mickey?

The weather forecast is better for the next few days, fingers xxed.

Loose plans tomorrow to finally visit Celebration and go to the car cruise at Old Town in the evening. We'll see how it goes.

A good nights sleep. Still both woke up at 6am though.
I debate with myself about going for a pre-dawn run but can't make a convincing argument! yesterday's 2 park day (17666 steps) may have some bearing on that.

The weather channel...
"Bermuda high moves south, moisture not as concentrated " sounds promising.

DD is working early today , thats Epcot early (11:45), but she'd like to have breakfast with us (she'd like dad to buy her breakfast!)

There is a Dennys close to Vista Way so that's where we go.
DD had the Dulche De Leche pancakes with sausage and bacon sides
DW had the Grand Slam Slugger
I had Moons Over Hy Hammy

We all enjoyed what we had. DD blagged a Disney discount (10%l) so the bill came to $30.16 plus a tip.

We then dropped her off at cast member services. got a hug and waved her goodby until tomorrow.

We are planning on having a quiet day, some shopping. First atop was the flea market opposite Old Town. Lots ofbooths in here with the usual variety, it's also air conditioned which is nice. The only thing we bought was a t shirt for me, although DW had her eyes on a couple but didn't buy (expect we will be back). It started to rain whilst we were inside, so much that we waited for it to ease before making a dash for the car not 10 feet away!

we then went to the flea market further east on the 192 opposite the Wal-Mart just past Medieval Times...

It was to be honest more than half vacant and there was hardly nyone there shopping, we didn't stay long... I eemember when that was so popular, it's a bit sas to see its decline.

So we went to the outlet m at the south end of I Drive. First stop was the food court, just for drinks

I witnessed the most bizzarre thing in Starbucks. The guy in front of me in the queue, in full view of the menu board on the wall, was looking at the same menu on his phone.

Anyhow I got my several hundred calorie iced coffee and was happy.

So we strolled around the mall, mostly looking, bought a bit of Calvin Klien for DS and a t-shirt from Van Heusen for me. It rained a couple of times, but we mostly missed it.. and it was still very warm.

As a side note, our car can be started remotely from quite a distance away, so if you remember to leave the AC on max, its quite bearable inside by the time you get to it.

Wal Wal-Mart next for a few bits and food (pre made sandwiches) for tomorrow (planned early start at Animal.Kindom to hopefully do FOP)

We are staying at the Ramada Gateway, at the end of the trip report I will review it in full, but tonight, as we were walking to dinner, we decided to try out the manager's reception. Basically free beer and wine in the bar from 5 till 6. We were the only ones there however the barman Ivan, from Puerto Rico, was friendly and chatty.. we had a couple if free beers and then left for dinner at Wildside Bar and Grille. Kust a few minutes walk down Hwy192, we have a big deal card for here which gives us 15% off.

We appear to have arrived at the right time as we get a table right away. ( it starts filling up shortly after).

We decide to share 2 entrees, so we have the brisket platter and the full rack of baby back ribs.

Sides were coleslaw, potato salad, baked potato and fries.

Brisket is to die for. Ribs - meat falls off the bone - you can't pick them up but a wee bit salty for my liking.

However, no complaints had to leave a few fries, which is unheard of! It was even happy hour, 2 4 1 drinks...

with discount the bill was $38 plus tip...

If/when we visit again I think we'd share 1 appetizer and 1 entree leaving space for a dessert hopefully..

That's all for today. Tomorrow AK until early afternoon, weather permitting we might get in the pool after..

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Kenwood Travel
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Holdensccs's DIBB Photo Blogs
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - day 9 - A bit of shopping, travel day, home...
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - Day8 - New Iphone.Perkins, Animal Kingdom. House of
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - Day 7 - Cracker Barrel (again) Busch, Logan's, IPho
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - Day 6 - Cracker Barrel, Seaworld, Teak
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - day 5 - Celebration, Old Town car cruise and Food t
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - Day 4 Animal Kingdom, Banshees, pool and Culvers
The one unlike nothing you've ever read before - Day 3 Dennys, fleas,more rain and Wildside
The one unlike nothing you've ever read. Day 2 - Magic Kingdom, Epcot a bit of a downpour and Manny
The one unlike nothing you've ever read. Day 1 - Seaworld do free beer and I'm driving!
The one unlike nothing you've read before. Travel day
The one unlike nothing you've read before. Coming soon!
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Park Hours - Monday 25/03/2019

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Updated: 12:03 25/03/2019