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Old 18 Oct 15, 04:18 PM  
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Thrillin',Chillin',Feet are Killin' Day 8: Hard(Rock)Day's Night.

Wednesday 26 August the previous day is here

We are off to Universal today . Woo hoo

We are up at 7 and the boys are up at 8 – we are keen to be early, but no need for stupid o’clock.

It is a bit irritating though that despite numerous reminders we are still waiting for Connor to deal with his teen wolf facial hair and have a shave before setting off.

So its more like 9 before we get on the road with all the last minute faffing about .

But we are arriving here just before 0930

We go to check in while Andy parks the car – the room is not ready so we take the case to bell services and take a few snaps – there is no queue and within 10 minutes we have our express passes in our hands and off through the hotel lobby.

Taking in some of the memorabilia

And the lovely hotel

Boarding the water taxi at 0945 – this is the way to travel

Just bliss

We are heading for the Studios today and agree to meet the boys at 12 at Moe’s Tavern. They scamper off to get on Rip Ride Rocket.

Andy thinks his luck might be in

Check out the scary minder dude, lol.

He might have better luck with the Woodpecker …

Ok – educate me , who the heck is Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees?

We join the queue for the Minion ride at 1015 – standby line is showing at 70minutes . We are on and off in 30 minutes . The express passes are definitely worth it.

Captions for this photo on a postcard purlease !

Mid morning and its not that busy because everyone is queueing for minions or harry potter obviously !

We have a wander down towards Men in Black

Andy is now in search of a lighter top.

It is a park day , its is sweltering hot and he has chosen the thickest possible top he has.


So this necessitates us stopping in every store to see what we can find that a]fits and b] fits and isn’t the price of small Caribbean island.

On our travels we discover the Milton Keynes cows have been relocated

We stop off in here

But no suitable tees
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Old 18 Oct 15, 04:20 PM  
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We are on and off MIB by 1100 – very little queue.

And no tees for Andy either.

Across to the Simpsons and we are on and off by 1115 – absolutely breezing it so far.

And we finally hit tee success

We arrive here at 1130

And have a chat to the barman about football before the boys arrive at 1145

We go through to the Foodcourt

Connor went for the pizza

Jamie opted for wings

I had the Krusty Burger

Andy had the chilli dog - not that you can see it under the onions

It was ok as fast food goes - we all bought separately and I dont have the receipts - but i think it was between $10-$12 per person with a drink

Andy wasnt very well later that day so either the dog - or the chinese thats coming up later- copped the blame !

The boys have been on all the rides they want to do and we just want to go on Transformers – so make our way up there

pausing briefly to admire the bins

Something furtive was occurring with money

The park was slowly being decorated in readiness for Halloween

These trapped your fingers
Of course you would only know this if you were ingenious/dumb enough to poke them in there in the first place

But why would you do that ?

So the boys had to test them numerous times and nearly gave me heart failure that I would have to call someone to release their fingers

And explain why my elder teen sons had their fingers wedged in decorations

Only my family

Record Shops – remember those !

We headed for Transformers and got straight on with the passes – do love this ride .

I then carry out my “ one new ride in each park” challenge and go for the Mummy.

I have never been on this before and am sure it cant be that bad.

I am not so keen on the queuing area but before I know it we are on the vehicle .

My nerves are not helped by someone being helped off the said vehicle in tears and clearly not able to cope with the ride . Ho hum.

Anyhoo best tactic I find is to always take my specs off – that way I simply cannot see anything to be scared of – which is even better in here as its so jeffing dark that without my specs I am reduced to my incredible bat like powers of sonar for navigation.

And I am not gripping the seat so hard that my knuckles hurt at all.

No not at all.

Of course Tweedledum and Tweedledee who are accompanying me are not doing their best to put me off at all – I mean, how many times can you say “ are you sure Mum” without it becoming slightly disturbing and starts to make you think of that 50 Ways to Kill your Mammy programme .

And off we go – hmm, not quite The Mine Train is it !

Secretly, I quite liked it – bit jerky , but liked the effects ( yes I can feel the heat, I don’t need to see it !) and it was really great on the fast bits.

Maybe or there is an inner adrenaline junkie waiting to be released

Or maybe the orthopaedic bill after getting off will put paid to that notion– eesh it’s a bit of a bone shaker.

Fresh from my Mummy triumph, we decide to head back. Its certainly a bit busier now and we are hoping that the room might be ready and we can change and laze by the pool.

We pitch up at the Hard Rock at 1.15pm.

Boo, the room, isn’t ready.

So Up to the Club Lounge instead – which has been refurbed since we were last here – then it was all orange and purple

Now its very blue

Its also very empty.

Edited at 04:32 PM.
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Old 18 Oct 15, 04:20 PM  
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We settle in the corner , availing ourselves of the fresh lemonade and various crisps and snacks and break out the cards to pass an hour or so.

Around 3 we decide to try our luck once more on the room front – we had by now decided the pool was a non starter as the clouds were building and the sky was turning that ominous colour

Shame as the pool is nice ( although far too shallow in reality for the more leggy members of the group, never an issue for my gnome sized self)

Alas the room is not ready. And we are told that there is a “problem” although what this is, remains a mystery.

But reception is full of people with cases, unusual quantities of them. ( people, not cases, or maybe both)

I don’t know why we didn’t just get our case and get changed in the shower rooms by the pool – we could easily have done so – we just had it on our heads about going to our room so camped down by reception.

4pm comes and goes – no room ready , quite peeved now and we are offered free drinks – no thanks we have paid for Club level , we get those anyway .

We only have one night here and had banked on the room being ready earlier – it’s a gamble isn’t it, but whenever we have been before its always been ready way before 4.

But not today.

They must have taken pity on us encamped on the sofas and at 4.15 they come over with our keys and some free cocktail vouchers ( such a shame, 4 vouchers, only 2 of us can drink …)

Up to our room – nice , not as big as the last time . This one overlooks the front of the hotel and is a bit smaller than the ones at the back.

Very nice though

I so need to carry one of these around with me

We all have a measure up on the rockstar height mirror

I am somewhere in between Madonna and Lady GaGa – a combo perhaps best not visualised!

We were a bit snappy at this stage – as we had chargergate to deal with.

Yes , all the 3 chaps had to do was bring their own ipad and charger .

But here we have 3 ipads, all of course about to run down, and only two chargers and much squabbling over who gets priority.

The two who packed their charges are feeling in a somewhat pole position but the one who didn’t is pulling rank , weight and everything else.

I leave them to it – completely fed up with the lot of them – they should try planning and packing for a two week holiday not just one jeffing night away !

We did all felt better after showers and heading back to the club room just after 5 for snacks.

And I have no idea how they sorted the charging nonsense out.

Back to the club room

Which gets busy very quickly and we nab a table just by the door
Snacks were Wings and mini shepherds pie bites plus cheese and salads - very nice

Washed down with some very nicely chilled rose and buds.

During our stay in here a lovely Dibber came over to say hello .

Which completely floored the chaps – who for some bizarre reason refer to me at home as WileyFiveEars ( there are eight Dibb ears in fact I believe).

Anyhow, it was lovely to meet another dibber

Just a shame I completely forgot her name – as by the end of the night I was a bit, ahem, well oiled.

But more of that later.

But if it was you, hello lovely Dibber, it was nice to meet you and I hope you enjoyed your hols !

We popped back to the room to pick up our park passes and then this happened

Lots of it

Sheeting down as my parents would say

Yeah, we said something similar

So what to do

Oh yes , free cocktails that might pass some time – so we leave the boys and take a wander here

Passing this along the way

Arriving here

The pre drinks pics are definitely the best

As I picked myself Angies Atomic Apple Pie martini

On the left

Andy picked the Candied Ginger Martini

On the right

But he couldn’t remember which was which so half way through we swopped

And anyway , how did that glass of wine get in the photo, oops.

Well what can I say, hic, they were very nice

I took some more pics

Perfectly focused, oops

I also tried to convince Andy it wasn’t raining that hard

See , its not THAT bad !

Cocktails consumed we head back up the room, via the lounge for a top up, au naturellement ..

No one really wants to go out but we have one night , we have never seen the cinemaspectacular ( now there is a Trading Standards case all in itself for misleading description) and I am jeffing determined that we will see it

Unless of course it is rained off ...

Edited at 05:34 PM.
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Old 18 Oct 15, 04:21 PM  
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But by 7.30 its definitely easing so I insist that we go out

I never learn

We have not eaten properly since lunchtime – Hangry man could surface at any time

We never, ever, ever ever , have a successful time when viewing fireworks.

It is guaranteed to be a catastrophic failure/meltdown/super strop –

or sometimes all three just for the heck of it.

But of course tonight would be different


But that’s yet to come

We set off and the boys were absolutely amazed to learn that if you pass inside the magic walls you end up in Diagon Alley – they had walked straight past earlier in the day and were genuinely astounded

They head off to get on Gringotts as its only a 15 minute wait and that means we can really focus on IoA tomorrow

So I decide to hang about and get a pic of the firebreathing dragon, having been told somewhere it breathes every 15-20 minutes

So we waited

And took some pics

And we waited

Sheesh, you can tell its not Disney, they wouldn’t leave the washing hanging about

We were still waiting

It was getting dark

About 40 minutes had passed – no sign of the boys and no bleddy firebreathing

So Andy waited

And I set off to see if they had got lost – and they promptly appeared with the ride having broken down for 20 minutes ..

Angies Apple pie hadn’t affected my judgement of focus at all

Nice pavement there

Some hours later , we were still waiting

Or so it felt, vacation ruined, no fire breathing dragon , refund purlease !

We gave up in order to stake out a decent spot for the “ spectacular” – but it was hardly crowded

And Connor was giving it some serious hangriness and not a snack cart in sight to keep him quiet

But not to worry the awesomeness of the show would shut him up

Er, I said, the AWESOMENESS of the show blah

Just checking – still no bleddy fire

Back to the “spectacular”

Really ?

Ok by this point, Mr Christian had nothing compared to the mutiny on Grimauld Place that was occurring and I had to concede that the show wasn’t cutting it.

In vain I tried to reason it was building up to something amazing but it wasn’t working. The film clips didn’t cut it, nor did the effects.

Some voting with feet took place

That’s right reservoir dogs are leaving the park.

And were not happy campers.

By now there was a full monk on about where to eat

Nobody wanted a sit down meal and everybody wanted something different

And of course everywhere looked really busy

Oh dear grumpy gruffalos and hangry teenagers


But the good old foodcourt saved us at just after 9pm

Andy and I opted for Panda Express

I had the orange chicken with rice - and even the single portion was mahoosive

Andy had the same plus the walnut shrimp and with noodles

just short of $18

The boys opted for a whopper bar - this almost went totally Pete Tong .

Without his glasses Connor couldn’t see the menu.

Jamie wouldn’t help him

Andy was still doing his best smouldering volcano impression.

It wasn’t helped when said eldest offspring kept asking why he couldn’t just have a bacon double cheeseburger

Well, maybe because its a WHOPPER bar and that 's all they serve for the xxxtttthhh time .


Finally boys and burgers were re -united

What can I say, they were BK burgers

See that last line - " Have it your way" – this is unless of course you want a bacon double cheeseburger , mate.

Not our finest moment

By now tired and perhaps overfull we went back to the hotel and stopped by the lounge for a final surf on drinks and pastries.

And settled in to watch some TV and get a decent night’s sleep

Or not

No, definitely not.

The next day is here

Edited at 11:21 AM.
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Old 18 Oct 15, 05:49 PM  
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Great report. The movie spectacular thing looked ... erm... spectacular!
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Old 18 Oct 15, 07:44 PM  
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I must remember not to go to the cinespecatular thing next year

Great report so far
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Old 18 Oct 15, 08:20 PM  
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Great read, we really enjoyed our stay at HRH in July.
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Old 18 Oct 15, 08:32 PM  
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Great read! Shame about the spectacular being spectacularly bad! Food looks good though, Pussycat
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Old 18 Oct 15, 10:05 PM  
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Great read. Hope we don't have to wait as long for our room a HRH when we go.
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Old 18 Oct 15, 11:09 PM  
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Another fantastic day,loving these thank you!
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