Mark Terry

Friday, April 10, 2009

Okay, More Disney

April 10, 2009
Back by somewhat popular demand, Day 3.

This was Saturday. We had a slightly later wake-up call--~7:10--and got on the buses at 8:10 to go outside the park to the Golden Corral for breakfast. The Golden Corral is an all-you-can-eat buffet along the lines of The Olde Country Buffet, and my impression was we did, as a matter of fact, eat all we could and definitely more than we should. We also had the first whiff of people complaining of nausea and I had a cold moment where I was afraid we might have a Norwalk virus going through the group. It didn't spread and it seemed to be mostly lack of sleep, eating too much food and going on amusement park rides, and what I suspect is a bit of drama to get attention (something of a recurring theme among some kids).

We rearranged groups to accommodate the afternoon schedule, then headed off to the Magic Kingdom. We met up again at 1:00 and headed over to Epcot. Now, I like Epcot reasonably well, but it's not a great park for a bunch of teenagers because it's short on thrill rides. This was a largely family day for us--we didn't have Daniel with us, so it was just the four of us. Ian decided, for whatever reasons, that he'd rather hang with us than with friends (probably because we merely ask the kids what they want to do and then do it; with friends it's a constant negotiation). We immediately rushed to Test Track and got on in a reasonable time, then went over to Soaring and made the very wrong decision to not get a fast pass. It said 70 minute wait, but it was probably closer to two hours and unlike most Disney lines, this one didn't seem to move. It exhausted me for the rest of the day, just standing there for two hours.

After we finally got out of Soaring we took a ferry across the lagoon to Italy, then ate lunch/brunch/dinner--it was now about 4:00 in the afternoon--at the US pavilion. When we got out there was actually a skywriter flying. He started out with a smiley face then started writing Jesus Loves You and there was more but I stopped paying attention. Plus I'm bemused that we spent half the time going, "Jennie? No, Jessie. No, oh, Jesus. Some hispanic guy? Oh, Jesus. Got it." Then we went to Norway and rode the Maelstrom, then wandered back to the front to catch what used to be called The Living Seas, but is now called, uh, I forget, but it has something to do with Nemo and Friends. Basically a large indoor aquarium. They've added a super cheesy clamshell ride where you watch clips from the movie--I was momentarily depressed that they'd eliminated the aquarium, but they haven't--but otherwise the aquarium is pretty cool.

After that we hung out and met up with other people from the group and watched Illuminations, Epcot's fireworks and laser light show, which for my money is the best one at the park. Then 15,000 people or so rushed for the entrance and our group met up again and found our bus and went back to the hotel. I believe this is the day of one panic attack. Also one girl apparently wrenched her knee. She seemed to be making much more of this than it deserved (another common theme, to take aches and pains and bumps and bruises and turn them into major medical catastrophes).

Oh yes, my moment of hell. This was the day we had too many people on the bus. Two or three of us ended up sitting in the aisle--adults for some reason--because the bus driver wouldn't move if anyone was standing. It was hot and airless and totally unpleasant and that 20 minute bus ride seemed to take forever. This was also the pinnacle of kid crabbiness for some reason. Day 3 was catching up to everybody and Epcot probably didn't have enough diversions for them, plus this is when we started really noticing the kids getting sick of each other in their usual groups, which were reforming.

We ran into a young woman alone--a friend of ours, actually--who had a fast pass to Soaring. Being alone is one of the no-nos. She said she wasn't with her friends because they'd annoyed her, but she did have friends to hang with, would it be okay to ride this ride alone. We gave her our phone number, told her to go ride, and if she didn't hook up with her friends afterwards to call us. She didn't and we saw her later with friends. But I think that was typical. People were hanging together, then they got tired and hot and got into an argument and went off with other people.

A few of us headed to the bar afterwards for a drink and to discuss the various crazinesses of the day. Wake-up call on Sunday was going to be 5:45, so staying up past midnight maybe wasn't a great idea.

Mark Terry


Anonymous Eric Mayer said...

I arrived at the park late today but at least it wasn't closed up. One of the many things I've never done is go to a big theme park, but I have enjoyed more restful, small local parks I've been to. Sea Breeze in Rochester was right by Lake Ontario, a nice setting and Knoebels in Pennsylvania is kind of in the woods. The water slides wind around trees. Plus, there's a first class roller coaster.

8:37 PM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Well Eric, one word I've never heard to describe Disney theme parks is relaxing or peaceful.

7:16 AM  

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