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Old 19 Jul 19, 12:52 AM  
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:) A Mi11ion Dreams = 2018 - Day 28/29 and 30. The Finale! - Our Long Walk Home.

Welcome to the end, the very end of our 2018 trip - thank you for reading all of this and even if you didn't post a reply - just like my lovely Scarborough lurker,who does read and who appeared in all of this on day 7 This just serves as a amazing trip in which a Million Dreams became an absolute reality.

Amidst a myriad of other stuff happening, I'm delighted to be able to say - this is the finale 2018 is about to be completed - and not before time too I hear you mutter

Told you - I would be finished before the next one started

As always if you click on this for the first time - head back to the index of 2018 - you might enjoy a 28 day + trip report now it is complete

If you missed yesterday - Day 27 is here

The index to all the stuff we have enjoyed and embraced before is here .

The pre trip report as to the future 4 week of our lives, is just a click here away.


Before I even begin to post all of our final day - I have been a bit spooked

Without knowing until 20 minutes ago - all of our final days for the past 6 visits have had a Long Walk home moment.

From Washington airport in 2013 and with every report since

I'm sure you don't need to know all of that but now 4 out of the last 5 trip reports have the same title...

Today was once again our Long Walk Home - not literally though for information.

For long time readers - A Springsteen moment seems to follow us

Click on the video as a background to your reading and enjoy !

Welcome to The End of - A Mi11ion Dreams =2018.

DAY 28/29 and 30

Starting with …

DAY 28
Wednesday 22nd August

All our bags were packed and ready to go, but we still had time for a bit more fun, however it is strange that cameras, phones and all means of recording a final day seem to cease on the last day.

That desire to keep everything charged to the limit, and to pack the camera away so that when you get to security at the airport the complete contents of your hand luggage don’t appear across the hall.

We snacked on all that was left in the house and patted ourselves on the back for an expensive but highly welcomed way to end the trip.
We also delighted in knowing we left the place spotlessly clean

We had booked an extra night which we would not be staying, it avoided the 9.30 am villa cleaning company knocking on the door, it also meant we had a civilised end to it all.

Pool time, sunshine time and then, once fully packed and ready to go – we had a bit of chill out time too.

We were ahead of schedule and that was a good thing!

Everything we did was at a relaxed pace and without the thought of where did I put this or that – we had time to check, to double check and in the instance of tickets and passports check again!

We had enjoyed the most fantastic time at this villa- once again a lot of work put in prior to the trip has ensured a wonderful stay.

I have to say that as we left , this was a place we would gladly live in, quiet cul de sac, no traffic and lovely sense of privacy and security too.

As with previous Villas, we have found them already booked for the following year and so thoughts of next year dissipated quickly.

Lovely place to stay and a great owner who had an excellent management company, you may need to read back a few days for that - can't speak highly enough of Villa owners who have a great management company - they are the ones who make your holiday trouble free and we did make a point of making a mention of the management company to this property - might seem a small thing to do , but if you go back to our first day here they nipped it right there and then - quality service

We packed up and left another of the most lovely places we have ever stayed in the Disney area - we have debated this throughout the 11 months of our return and it currently lie sin 2nd place to the villa we stayed in 2017 - and that is only on the pool outlook!

That drive away is never a good feeling, but we had Springsteen FM in the car and it knew exactly where we were at!

The drive away resulted in - Someday (We’ll be together)

As we arrived at the airport our long standing Bruce follows you home song came on - Long walk home.( see above )

So poignant, so lovely to listen to and possibly the reason we as a family, all listen to Bruce, times in your life are marked by his songs – as mentioned above that seems to be every time we go home – I’m sure we are being told something!

We dropped the car off at Hertz without any incident – and headed to check in with our extra bag that we had booked online with Lufthansa – as with everything with them , it was absolutely spot on.

Great service and just how I would love to travel each and every time.

We took time to visit Lids, have a beer that was left in the fridge in the Villa and say hello to my favourite person in MCO!

More baseball spends here! - you can really pick up a bargain if you get to the back of the shop and have a search

We also had a wistful look at the Hyatt hotel , where we had enjoyed a first night stay a few years ago.

Once through security - we had that moment - We’ve done it!

I'm still haunted by this pre security pic though

This was the final curtain call and nearly the end of the greatest show.

We grabbed that photo opportunity on the MCO monorail with a darkening sky.

We had planned for a bit of food at the Outback Steakhouse, at first finding the counter service closed and then being told that they were in fact shut for the day for the main eating area!

Three huge planes leaving the airport in the next couple of hours and they were shut!

Burger King , were rammed and to be honest , from a business side of things they were really coining in more business than was possible.

We then took that Burger King option, despite the wait in the queue. The boys don’t really do airline food as a rule, Alison never knows if there will be any cheese in the meal, so a quick food refuel at the airport is often welcomed. I just await the wide range of food coming my way on board!

The sight of four planes at their gates, Virgin LGW and MAN, BA to LGW and our 747 to Frankfurt and the number of other people going home served as a reminder that we were not the only family suffering the Orlando departure blues.

The Gatwick flight was on the other side.

Virgin into Manchester won the push back race tonight and amidst the calming rain that had burst after our arrival at the airport we settled and readied ourselves for a long night.

Films on, and a that glum feeling that the last 4 weeks have been so memorable. All of us grabbed a snooze , except Joe , who once again did not sleep throughout the flight.

It was a great experience and I have to be honest, if I could fly with Lufthansa every year I would be happy.

Great staff and an insistence that every recliner sat upright to eat, for the benefit of the person behind.
They really did us proud and they are top of my list of all airlines for flight experiences.

Food was good - sleep was too Except for Joe who needs one of those little tablets on our next flight

Thursday 24th August

We arrived into Frankfurt just as the Miami flight was departing (info thanks to the flightradar app)

We had a bit of time here, before heading to Manchester but were happy to explore and then found this lovely suntrap overlooking the runway and apron of the airport, at which point you recognise what a busy place this is.

We took a walk around too, just to become aware of what a vast airport it is too.

The connection was easy and as the sandwiches were handed out onboard, so came our snooze fest – that probably involved 4 people snoring all the way to Manchester.

I awoke on touchdown and have no memory of the flight at all- such was the need to sleep - Joe probably did not sleep again, but I was beyond being a caring parent! GET to sleep

All of our bags were quickly off the plane and we then headed….

NOT home

This was a masterstoke – of Alison’s making.

Rather than try to get the train home today and arriving home around 9 pm, with the adrenaline buzz kicking in , along with the need for a bit of food.

We had booked a room once again at the Heald Green Premier Inn, a bargain when booked but a bit of a great way to end the holiday.

We were there around 4 and in time for a bit of a freshen up and in need of a walk and some fresh air.

That was then followed by the Premier Inn coming into its own.

A place to have a relax, a chill out and an end to travel day for today.

Except for this - I will delete the swear words ….


We had a meal, regardless of the festive advise and were luckily still in food photo mode and then had a blast recounting what we had just achieved.

We then took to adding copious notes to my phone to record a view from us all and a fitting ending to all of this!

The following was as typed whist enjoying our evening meal.

Favourite meal of whole holiday

Joe Sci Fi diner / chef d’ France
Alison Chef d’France /yak and yeti
Me. Chef d ‘France/ Sanaa

Fav park this year only

Joe - AK
Josh-HS Toy story and Fantasmic
Alison- Epcot – after all this time she acknowledges that she finally ‘gets it’
Me- AK for Pandora and flight of Passage like nowhere else on the planet!

Favourite ride

FoP unanimous

Highlight of the whole holiday

Joe Halloween party
Josh Halloween party
Alison St. Augustine
Me The Alarm in Clearwater and St Augustine

Best thing you bought ?

Josh Baymax ears
Joe. Banshee plush and fish are friends top.
Alison -glow with the show ears that cost $5 that Joe nicked for every Fantasmic and HEA show - worth it for the look on his face. Halloween ears too.
Me- Shirts from JC PEnney but most of all a banshee flight tee shirt from the outlets, it gets noticed everywhere and I have to admit - I keep quiet on the outlet price

Funniest moment of the holiday

Joe and his amazing ability to engage mouth before brain!
“That menu at chef d France looks a bit iffy - poison is on there.”
French lesson needed!

“Do ducks fly...?”

Does cheese melt ?

First/ second and third world problems? - best not to ask

Amongst many others on a nigh on daily basis! Thanks Joe – we love you for it! xxxx

One night of sleep later…

Friday 25th August 2018

That night’s sleep was the masterstroke, we all slept well and were ready for the final part of our journey home.

We got back on the train and headed home.

When booking I had found a bargain upgrade to 1st class - first time for everything!

Our Airport train connected in Huddersfield – back in Yorkshire brought a stark realisation that the great British summer heatwave was as over as our holiday.

By lunchtime -We were home.

A Mi11ion dreams fulfilled and more!

A most incredible journey from Miami to St Augustine to Orlando to Clearwater to home.

To those who shared it with me - THANK YOU, this was such an amazing trip and could not have been the same had we not watched Dale Winton on the tv
And possibly all of the days that you need to read before - no highlights reel here !

For those we met -Sivako!/ Ay up and thank you

Was great to find out that people read all of this and are willing to say hello when they see us – totally appreciated and valued. THANK YOU.

For those who have read all of this, day after day after day – THANK YOU.

Your comments, support and sheer enjoyment of all I have typed has been of a huge support to get to the end of such a long trip report.

It sounds a great idea trying to type up all of this but it has, as always become a labour of love, one which does take up copious hours of time and I have to admit I’m delighted/relieved that I managed to get you to the end.

If there was anything that we got from the whole trip it is this…

Dreams? You can’t count them – you need to go and live them, each and every one – in each and every day.

We really did fulfil more than a Million and for that can only thank the three people who are my world.

Love you xxx

See you all real soon for 2019 – Going out in a Blaze of Glory – pre trip report is just a click here away.

Thank you for reading until the very end

…and that my friends is where the magic lived in 2018.
I'm a Great British Mickey Waffle Podcast presenter.
Hope you are a Listener

Going out in a Blaze of Glory- Our Summer of Sorcery 2019 - click here to read a trip report in progress

All of our previous Trip reports and escapades can be read here.

Edited at 02:00 AM.
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Old 19 Jul 19, 05:54 AM  
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Great end to a fantastic holiday.
You definitely come back down to earth with a bang when you get back to the British weather.

I'm off to read your new pre trip report now and I'm looking forward to reading all about your plans.
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Old 19 Jul 19, 06:13 AM  
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What a great trip report! Thanks for posting and giving us such an insight to your holiday.
Hope you all have a great holiday and looking forward to the next TR.
I’m about to pack my bag and leave Dubai with the realisation that this time next week I’ll be in the USA!
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Old 19 Jul 19, 06:23 AM  
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Lovely trip report. Enjoyed reading it all.
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Old 19 Jul 19, 06:44 AM  
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Thank you, thank you, thank you - I love your trip reports. You sound like such a great family and had such an amazing time. I only remain gutted that we were there at the same time, including in the same location on at least two occasions (probably more - I will have to go back through and compare to our itinerary for last year!), and didn't spot you!

Hope your forthcoming trip is just as good and look forward to reading the trip reports.
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Old 19 Jul 19, 06:55 AM  
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Thank you so much for your report. I’ve enjoyed every day & picked up tips along the way. I’ve already read the Pre-trip.
Now impatiently waiting for the report.😊
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Old 19 Jul 19, 07:31 AM  
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Promise fulfilled you did in fact get to the end, I congratulate you on your perseverance and determination to get it all done by the next one. I have thoroughly enjoyed each and everyone one of your reports. I hope the Blaze of Glory trip is jam packed to the rafters of more magical memories. Hope you all have a fabulous time.
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Old 19 Jul 19, 08:15 AM  
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Magical report! Thank you for sharing your holiday. I hope you all have the best time again this year. Not long now!

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Old 19 Jul 19, 09:38 AM  
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Great report, very entertaining. Making me think I really must make it to St Augustine sometime.

Have a great 2019 trip!
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Old 19 Jul 19, 10:30 AM  
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What a fantastic trip report. Been following this from the beginning, written in true walt4it style! Your trip reports have been an inspiration for my very own trip, which starts in 7 days! Thanks for all the time it must take for you to write your epics.
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