Tuesday, May 24, 2005
Last night, I planned on doing a mixture of productive and relaxing things then going to bed early. I succeeded in the first two, but stayed up too late watching Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy on my computer and snacking. I went to the gym for the first time since before my family arrived, and I could tell I hadn't been in a long time. Hopefully I'll make it back there again. The gym is boring, but there aren't a lot of appealing alternatives here and I want to stay in the decent shape I got in from bike riding last year at school.
I still haven't seen the new Star Wars movie. I am tempted to just download it since I don't know when I'll get to the theater to see it, but I wasn't overly impressed with Hitchhiker's Guide and wonder if it was because it was so tiny on my screen. I find I'm not really motivated to even see it, or excited about it. Do I just not want Star Wars to end for me? After I see it, that's it. Nothing new from the Star Wars after that, unless I track down that Ewok movie or watch the animated series or start reading those cheesy novels again.
Maybe I just don't want to spend 7 dollars or however much a matinˇe costs now. I feel like I've been such a consumer lately, and with my attempts at shaving and makeup-wearing falling by the wayside, so has my desire to go out to eat and buy things. It's like all of these temptations are being flung at me and it's an overload to the point that it isn't appealing. I'm full, Disney. I resolved to have fun while I was down here, but spending money isn't having fun. Spending time with people is what is fun. And I have made friends to have fun with. That surprised me. I was worried I wouldn't really connect with anyone. Maybe I haven't; I've had few intimate conversations with my friends here. But that is probably a good thing. I won't be set up for disappointment, and it will be less of a heartache going home.
Home. While my family was here, I thought a lot about home. Here is fine for now, but it isn't what I want for the rest of my life. I want to live in a place where I can go outside without the bend of my arm sticking under a film of sweat. I want the option of driving two hours and being at the ocean, the mountains, or another country when I feel like getting away. I want to live a place with sidewalks, with bikes, with nature. I haven't seen a single park since I've been down here, and I miss that.
Yesterday, I worked from 8:45 to 5:15. I was at the express wheelchair register for the first three and a half hours, and it was actually pretty entertaining. I watched the characters parade out on the train and the rope drop. Just as many people ran over to me to rent EVCs as people who ran into the park! It took about an hour and fifty minutes to run, out then the typical reactions began: the grunting, the shoulder dropping and sighing, the loud complaints about how much they pay to get in and how they aren't strong enough to push so-and-so around in a regular wheelchair. One lady really let us hear it. We supposedly told her we'd hold an ECV (electric cart) for her, so when we didn't have one she told me that her friend should take priority over everyone else who wanted an ECV because she was an annual pass holder. I offered a complimentary wheelchair, so then I got to hear about how the friend was legally blind and too big to be pushed around in a wheelchair.
"Well, you'll have to do something about this," the woman said. I could only find the area manager, who really let her hear it. She told him she should take priority over everyone else because her friend (who was nowhere to be seen this whole time) was disabled and they were Florida residents. She wanted him to call the other parks and have them bring an ECV over for them! He told her we have 200 people (hah) who say the exact same thing as her that also want ECVs.
I felt kind of light headed at the end of my shift, like I was overly hungry. I had been snacking on my breaks so I shouldn't have been, so maybe I was just dehydrated. I had been forgetting to take my vitamins, so maybe I was just low on iron. (I think I have anemia.) I have been having leg cramps in my sleep lately that my mom says is caused by a lack of potassium, so hopefully getting back in the vitamin habit will help. Maybe then I will finally have my period. I haven't had it since I've been down here, which is kind of annoying because I'd finally gotten on a regular schedule without hormones back home because I was eating well and exercising.
My aunt Patti wrote a recap for her trip down here. She gave me permission to post it, so here it is. I thought it was hilarious!
First Class was weak -- especially on the way down. Liz and I ordered a Madras (aka "Dirty Mattress"). When our bretfast arrived, we asked for red wine and the flight attendant said, "You aren't going to get silly on me are you?" I could tell he did not want to serve us. That's the problem with early fights - they think you don't want to drink. He did serve us ... but only offered up one refill for 5 hours. Food was weak, too.
Arrived at the airport to find our driver holding up a sign that said "Wetzel" -- Terri thought I saw someone that I knew .. but it was our personal driver to our hotel. We made the driver stop at the grocery and likker store so we could stock up on bevvies.
Hotel was very nice. We stayed at the Shades of Green which is a Military hotel (much better than it sounds). It is on Disney property which is a huge plus. Our room overlooked the golf course. Hotel had 2 pools, 2 restaurants, plus a snack bar. Cocktail lounge right by the pool. It also had their own busses which took us wherever we needed to go (no charge). Our room was huge, plenty big enuf for 5 people.
The first night we went to the Magic Kingdom (think DisneyLand) to visit Ariel and Liz got busted for booze in her purse! It was too funny ... They did let her in and just said "don't drink it". There are 6 parks on Disney property and we hit all 6 in our 7 days - some we went to twice. Magic Kingdom, Epcot (which I loved), MGM/Universal Studios -- whichever is run by Disney, Animal Kingdom (yes, even an animal lover like me -- enjoyed it), and two water parks: Blizzard Beach (fake snow and toboggan rides) and Typhoon Lagoon (more of a beach theme). Loved the water parks - both had lazy rivers that took us throughout the park and one park had a huge wave pool. Best of all they served frozen cocktails. Also went to Pleasure Island (think theme park for adults -- with different lounges such as a comedy club, 8Trax (70's disco), the Board Walk (an actual board walk around a lake with restaurants and shops - Liz and I took Konner to ESPN), and Downtown Disney (more shops and restaurants on a different lake). Also walked around most of the smaltzy hotels on the property.
All the parks except the Magic Kingdom serve booze. At Epcot they have booze vendors everywhere. Italy and France had fancy wines, Mexico had all sorts of flavors of Margaritas. It was great -- just get your drink and walk around the park and enjoy.
Crowds and weather were great. Kids still in school so not too crowed except for the last day. Also, temps in low to mid 80's with no humidity. Only hot on the last day. We saw an alligator on the hotel property. We did some pool time (not lots) and spend the last day at the pool before going to back to Epcot.
Some of the rides seemed cheezey and dated (Small World, Pirates of the Caribbean) but most were fabulous. I did all the scary rides (with Konner and Ariel) -- Terri and Liz were too scared. They have a thing called "baby swap" which worked great on the rides that Kate couldn't go on. She did great -- she was trooper and loved the characters and the baby rides such as Dumbo and the Magic Carpet ride. They also have a thing called "Fast Pass" where you can get a ticket to return at a certain time for a ride and you don't have to stand in line. Worked great.
We ate all our meals 'on property' either at a park or at hotel. Most were good, some were OK. Food and booze expensive except for at our hotel since it was military it was cheaper.
We were on the go everyday ... No CF's to speak of ... everything went as planned. Liz was the Julie on this trip and it was wonderful to just go where I was told ... didn't have to do any planning.
Great to see Ariel. She works in strollers at the Magic Kingdom. Most 'cast members' (i.e. Disney employees) were polite, upbeat and positive, but you could tell some hated their job and were surly. I didn't think that was allowed at Disney.
All in all a great trip, but need a vacation to rest up from the vacation!