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Old 24 Aug 20, 01:50 PM  
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Andy C
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The Quest For Toad - The No Queues Trip 2019 - Day 3, EPCOT - the Quest Begins

Friday is the second Park Day, and we’re off to EPCOT.
It’s always been our favourite park. It seems to be rather marmite for many – either you love it (like us), or find it boring.

(This is where all commenters tell me they can take it or leave it, I guess)

The day dawns cool and pleasant, we go to Denny’s for breakfast, and by the time we come back out, we’re slammed by a brutal hammer of heat.

Oh well, we knew what we were getting in to.

In this case, an air conditioned car.

We got to EPCOT bright and early (RESPECTING THE PLAN), and headed towards Soarin’ Around The World to get there before any queues (total wait time: 15 minutes).

It had been updated since we last went on it, and we were looking forward to it. We decided to try to get The Lad onto it, sure he’d enjoy it if he tried it.

And, for 95% of the ride, he did. The fireworks thing at the end, though, really put him off it.

On to the Living With The Land boat ride, and we had to do a lot of convincing to get The Lad onto it, but he did seem to like it when he was on it.

On his first trip, many years ago, The Lad had become obsessed with the Figment ride. To the point where that damned tune rang around my brain non-stop for days afterwards. We’d assumed he’d want to go on it again.
We’d assumed wrong.

Oh well, we wouldn’t fight that. A welcome salvation for our sanity beckoned, and we walked past and turned right.

This was the bit we most liked: World Showcase. Bringing the “theme” and the “park” into “theme park.” Enjoying the ambience, soaking up the atmosphere, looking around the shops, restaurants, theming, the live entertainment – actually, I now think that the varying views of EPCOT depend on what you expect from it coming in.

We see it as a welcome place to recharge batteries, enjoy the sights, sounds, smells, and shapes, and immerse ourselves in the theming. And treat it as a park, but the ultimate in parks.

If we’d gone in all intent on the rides and the thrills, then yes, it would have been rather disappointing (although Soarin’ and Test Track would put up a fight).

Anyway, we got to World Showcase as it opened, and this time, we went around it to the right instead of the left (most of the crowds seem to head leftwards first.) We always seem to go past Canada quite quickly, but we wandered the street of the UK Pavilion...

... lingered in France (and checked out the menu on the restaurant), immersed ourselves in the Morocco pavilion (the back streets and the atmosphere) before diving into the shops in Japan.
Where they have amazing sweets. And The Lad fell in love with a Yoshi backpack.

I tried on another hat.

("Andy, that's not a hat"

"It is if I want it to be")

Basically, we thoroughly enjoyed the ambience. We spent some time in Italy, where DD2 enjoyed a virulently coloured concoction of some description

Basically, a great wander around the lagoon was had by all, and we ended up back at Future World for our Fastpass windows. Into The Seas for the Nemo ride (one of The Lad’s favourites)

And over to Mission Space. For the Green ride (DW and I had done the original version, which is now tagged “Red” back in 2006 on our first visit here and we’d only just recovered.
As rain started, we went around the Lagoon to a bakery place.

And into Maelstrom Frozen Ever After

We enjoyed the Serveur Amusant in France and came around the lagoon again to Future World for our Test Track Fastpasses.

Disaster struck when The Lad’s Yoshi backpack broke a strap. Replacing it wouldn’t work – he was attached to this, so we took it back and spoke to a Cast Member. Who “repaired” it (well, replaced it, but don’t tell The Lad!).

But now we started the Great Quest for Toad. He loves his Mario Karts characters, and Toad is his favourite. So we were searching for a big stuffed Toad for him.

Of course, Toad is the only one you can’t flipping find anywhere.

A great day was had by all. To Ponderosa for dinner to compare buffets. And, to be honest, Ponderosa is probably the better one, but we would need to run some more comparison tests...

Ponderosa has a mahoosive gift shop attached to it. Surely we'd find a Toad in here?


, and then a poke around the gift shop-supermarket attached to it, with a hope of finding a Toad (Nope. Everything except Toad) and back to the villa.
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Old 24 Aug 20, 05:03 PM  
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Another good day

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Old 26 Aug 20, 12:21 AM  
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Looks like a hat to me
Thanks for sharing
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Old 6 Sep 20, 02:05 PM  
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Palm trees
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Fantastic day. Epcot is my favourite park too!
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