Orlando Vacation – Day 1

We spent today at the Disney Animal Kingdom. We saw a ton of animals (it is part zoo, after all) and rode the Safari Train. The Lion King show was an easy one for me to fall asleep in, it was so dark. Expedition Everest was a highlight ride, and Roly enjoyed beating me at Whack-a-Mole.

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Orlando Vacation – V-Day – Vacation Starts

Toby is a bit bummed. The weather forecast has various days of rain next week while we are at the Disney parks. My experience, and what residents have told me, is that the weather changes daily in Orlando, so I’m not going to spend any time looking at weather forecasts farther out than the prediction for the next day. We got out of the AirBnB condo in a weird way. Toby contacted the owner to ask for late checkout (11a rather than 10a) and she said it would be OK and that she would talk to the management company. At 10:10a, the management company rep knocked on the door. Toby explained the situation, and the lady said she would come back at 10:30a, so it was a rush. When we started taking the luggage to the car, the lady and the cleaning crew were waiting in the hallway. It was a bit awkward.

We went to Disney Springs, which is like Universal City Walk and had a great lunch at Raglan Road Irish Pub. They had Irish dancing and music during our lunch and we had a great table. There was a little girl on vacation who got up on stage and did a couple of numbers with the musicians. She wasn’t wearing her dancing clogs, but it was impressive nonetheless. At 4p, I got the family situated in the rooms at the Vacation Village at Parkway Resort. We have a 2 bedroom unit and the Jan Bernards family has a 1 bedroom unit across the hall. The units could use a refresh, but have a lot of space for my brood.

I had to return the rental car that I had while working, so I met the Bernards at the airport and rode home with them in an Uber. Orlando does not let Uber pick up at the airport without paying a protective tariff. So we hopped on a local hotel shuttle and called the Uber from there. Being Saturday night, it took longer than normal for the car to get to us, and the hotel shuttle was returning from its trip to the airport when the Uber arrived. We got a fairly stern glare from the shuttle driver as we pulled away.

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Orlando Vacation V-Day -1

Clear day today. I spent time at the Salem Xulon Press offices and at the offices of the MyRadar app. Matthew Hintzen and I had lunch and caught up. Toby and the kids avoided the Disney properties (her research has led her to believe that Friday’s are very crowded). Instead, they went to WonderWorks, “An Indoor Amusement Park”. We came back together for dinner in the evening and prepared to move accommodations to our timeshare in Orlando.

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Orlando Vacation V-Day -2

It rained most of the day today. I spent the day at the Salem Orlando offices. Toby and the kids used the first of their 5-day tickets to visit the Magic Kingdom. They all slept late and headed to the park around noon. They had brunch at the Disney Contemporary Resort and then rode the monorail into the park. They were not daunted by the rain. The park was not very full and they got to ride/see/do everything that they were interested in. I picked them up when the park closed at 9p.

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Orlando Vacation V-Day -3

We have arrived in Orlando for our longest family “vacation” to date. I quoted vacation because I am working for 2 of the days while Toby and the kids explore Orlando. I’ll visit two Salem offices on Thursday and Friday, then vacation for me starts Saturday, 1/30/2016.

For our flight out from Burbank to Orlando, we had a stop in Denver. We got distracted by the coolness of the airport and were a bit tardy to our gate for boarding. We were on Southwest, and had late-A/early-B boarding passes, but they were boarding the last of the B’s when we arrived. Toby and Roly were able to sit together, Max and Lucy had aisle seats, but I got the coveted middle seat. Yay for me.

It took a couple of hours to get settled into our AirBnB condo at Windsor Hills Resort, and it was about 2a when we finally got to bed. Yuck.