Florida ’99

Florida, Nov
-Dec 1999

Day 5 – Islands of Adventure

were up early today and on the way by 8.30am, arriving at Islands of Adventure
about 9.15am. We parked in the multi-storey carpark and walked (a long
way) to the entrance. Already the day was starting to get warm.

First the guys went on the Hulk Rollercoaster,
which they loved and got a fast pass to come back later (though they didn’t
end up using it). They next rode the tower ride, which they went on twice.
We were going to go on Spiderman but there was a 30 mins wait, so we decided
to come back later (big mistake – later wait was 90mins).

then did the wet rides. Did the rapids first – Kev, Leanne and Noel rode,
then me, Kev and Noel. It was nice to get wet and cool down. We all loved
this ride and was a good length. Next the others went on the log ride.
I stayed with Amy who was asleep in her pram. It was nice just to sit and
watch the passing parade. Funny thing was they got wetter on this ride
(and I told them the other ride was the wetter ride – oh well).

From here we did Jurrasic Park. Kevin, Noel
and I went first, after having Churros in the waiting line. Noel had been
dying to go on this ride, and loved it. Kev and I had been on it in LA.
The guys then went on with Leanne, while I sat in the shade (it was very,
very hot) and fed Amy.

We then did Triceratops Encounter, which we
thought was a waste of time, but kids who are really into dinos would propably
love it.

We had lunch in the café about the Dino
Museum. I had a grilled chicken sandwich and chips – which were quite nice.

Next was Duelling Dragons. Leanne opted out
of this one and waited with Amy in the shade. After lining up in the dark,
confined tunnel (can you tell I didn’t like this) we rode Fire. It was
great, awesome, excellent….need I go on. The guys then went on Ice – I
would have if I didn’t have to line up again, and voted Ice the better
coaster. They were totally spun out about how close the coaster pass (I
hadn’t even noticed when on the ride).

By now the park is very busy and extreamly
hot. We tried to see Simbad’s show but Amy is asleep in her stroller, so
we decide to come back later (since no strollers are allowed in). The line
for Posidean’s Fury is 40 mins wait so we give this a miss as well.

As we arrive in Suess Landing Amy wakes up
so we take her on the carousal, which she enjoys. Everything else in SL
had long lines so we continue onto Port of Entry where we get some Ice
Creams and sit in the shade to eat them. We all enjoy this refreshing break,
especially Amy who really loves her ice cream.

Hulk is no longer issuing fast passes and the
line are too long, so the guys miss out on having another ride. The wait
for Spiderman in 90mins so we pass on that as well. Instead we catch the
boat back across to Jurassic Park and go the see the Simbad show. We were
at the back of the theatre but enjoyed this show.

The lines in Suess Landing are still really
long so we decide to wander home, checking out the shops on the way. It
is a really, really, really long walk back to the car and we think they
must have stretched the route since the morning.

We arrive home about 7pm and have tomato soup
and pasta with tomato sauce for dinner.

Day 6 – Kennedy Space Centre

left home about 8am and arrived at Kennedy Space Centre just after 9am.
Amy was hungry so I sat near the playground and fed her while the others
looked through the rocket garden. While we waited for them to come back
Amy played on the slippery slide and bouncy space shuttle, which she really

We browsed through the shops, spent quite a
bit of money, show one of the presentations, then went to the IMAX.
We saw the one of MIR, which was a really good choice. Amy was asleep in
the pram but the attendent let us take it in. I sat near the front, where
I could watch the pram, the other sat further back. We all enjoyed the
film and Amy woke up towards the end.

We had lunch in the café. I had a yummy
Chicken and Veg Pot Pie.

then did the tour. We had to leave the stroller so Amy went into the sling
(don’t know what we would have done without it on this day). The whole
tour took us about 3.5 hours to see everything. The highlight for me being
the launch pad (away off in the distance) where a shuttle was (around
the other side so you couldn’t see it) ready for a launch on the 9th December.

We ended up leaving about 5.30pm after a very
full, but enjoyable day. We did, however, get lost on the way home. We
brought in Pizza for dinner, which was very yummy and I did some laundry
before going to bed.

Day 7 – EPCOT

Our second day at EPCOT was better than
the first. We rode Spaceship Earth first – everyone enjoyed this. Next
we got a fast pass for Test Track, then it was Ellen’s Energy Adventure.
I really, really loved this. Very funny. I think it was one of my favourites,
probably because I didn’t have any expectations.

We then did Body Wars – I didn’t mind it but
didn’t think it was wonderful. Did the baby swap and Amy made friends with
the CM. One thing that really impressed about the Americans was how friendly
they were to Amy. And everywhere we went she was fussed over.

After this we went back to Test Track. Noel
wasn’t feeling very good after Body Wars (he’d ridden twice) so he and
Leanne waited with Amy. Kevin and I loved this. It was really good fun,
especially the part where you go really fast. (In hindsight, I think it’s
best to go on this one before Rock N Roller Coaster).

Amy and I split from the other here. We went
shopping in the Mickey shop (and got the parcels sent to parcel pick-up),
they went to Innoventions, but weren’t very impressed. The fact that they
are both into computers/technology probably didn’t help.

The day was getting warm and we wandered over
to the Land Pavillion. Saw Food Rocks, which we all, except Kevin, thought
was very cute. Amy slept in her sling.

Then did the Living in the Land boat ride.
It was quite nice, though Kev and I have been on a bigger, better version
in Australia.

one of the highlights of the holiday, lunch at the Rose N Crown. It is
so beautifully decorated, and did indeed make me feel like I was back in
Britain. And it is in such a lovely position on the lagoon. It was a lovely
warm day with clear blue skies – talk about magic. To top it off we were
served by a Scottish girl from Strathhaven.

I had Prime Rib with Yorkshire Pudding. Kevin
had Bangers and Mash with Yorkshire Pudding. Leanne had Fish and Chips,
can’t remember what Noel had. We all had something different and all loved
what we had, though the puddings weren’t as nice as what I make.

We even indulged in desert here. I had a lemon
something, which was really yummy. Kevin had the special – a Chocolate
Epcot Ball with choc moouse. Looked great but he didn’t really enjoy it.
It was really the perfect lunch and we all thoroughly enjoyed it.

From here we went to Mexico. The hall is lovely
with all the shops, the boat ride was okay. The resturant looked beautiful
(like the one in Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland).

this we lined up for the 4pm Tapestry of Nations parades. What can I say?
It was so beautiful, spectacular, amazing. Amy and I loved it, Kevin enjoyed
it but not as much as did. The only downside was we were standing in the
sun and it was very hot. We saw some of the parade later in the evening
but were really glad we had seen the day one – the costumes and colours
show up much better.

The Norway ride was quite good, we had a 15min
wait. We looked through the shops in Germany, but it was rather busy so
we didn’t linger. While we were looking at the miniture trains/town a real
rabbit bounded down the train track – it looked pretty funny – like “giant
bunny attacks town”.

We then went to the American pavillion. While
waiting for the show I nursed Amy and then let her have a little crawl
around on the floor since there weren’t many people around. The film was
okay, but not as good as I’d expected.

We lined up for the Candlelight Processional
but only stayed for a few songs. It was okay, but again not what we’d expected
and there was still much left to see to spend time at something we
weren’t really enjoying.

We went through Millenium Village. It was crowded
and we were tired, and not very impressed. The guys really wanted to see
Ice Station Cool (I had told them all about it) but it was closed (it was
about 7pm). We went to Living Seas but I waited outside with Amy (she and
I had had enough and really just wanted to go home). The others went in
but after waiting for quite some time was told the lift was broken.

By this time we’d all had quite enough – it
had been a very long day, so we picked up my parcels and headed home. We
bought in McDonald’s dinner which I ate in bed at about 9.30pm with Amy
asleep beside me.

Day 8 – Shopping & Chef Mickey’s

Had a bit of a sleep in today and met for
breakfast at 9am, then left for the Outlet Malls. The guys dropped us off
at 10am and went in search of Electronic stores, while Leanne and I shopped
for clothes. I bought lots of clothes for Amy at both Osh Kosh (the prices
are sooo cheap compared to Australia) and Baby Gap. We went to one of the
smaller outlet malls and had just gotten around all the shops when the
guys came back for us at 11.30am. From here we went to Belz Outlet Mall
to visit the Disney stores. We were a bit disapointed here though, we had
probably expected too much. I think if you had to buy t-shirts for friends/family
this is the place to come.

Next we headed to the Florida Mall. We had
lunch in the food court – I had a yummy Santa Fe Wrap and curly fries.
I fed Amy, then changed her. We split from Leanne and Noel and agreed to
meet up with them at 5pm. Kevin and I had a ball here. We bought over half
a dozen DVD’s and CD’s in the music shop. I got some walking sandles from
Walking Co, Christmas tree decorations from the Hallmark shop, jeans for
Amy from Gaps Kids, a couple of books in Baldenbooks. We made Amy a Build
your Own Bear which was fun – I’ve never seen anything like this before.
On our travels we met Leanne and Noel and they had already finished shopping.
But not us, we never even made it to the department stores. Amy managed
to have about ½ hours sleep as we shopped and at 5.30pm we headed
back to the apartment to drop off our shopping.

Then it was on the Contemporary Hotel for dinner
at Chef Mickey’s. We arrived in the car park just as the Magic Kingdom
fireworks were going off, and Amy was asleep in the car, so we stayed to
watch them. It was another of those special moments.

booking for Chef Mickey’s was for 8.15pm. We arrived at 7.45 and asked
how long we’d have to wait. Instead of saying we wouldn’t get in to 8.15pm,
they told us to get our photo taken and then sit and wait. It was a shame,
because if they had told us to come back later we would have checked out
the hotel foyer or gone for a ride in the monorail. It was a shame but
we still enjoyed our meal. We had fun meeting the characters – Amy was
very tired and only liked Mickey, when Minnie came over she started to
cry and try to get out of her high chair. Chip and Dale didn’t fair much
better, though as the night wore on she got a bit more used to them. The
napkin twirling was fun and we all enjoyed our food including lamb, yummy
mashed potatoes, vegies, pineapple fried rice, and delicious chocolate
cake. We ended up buying the photos (2 large and two small magnets for
US$25.00). It was a wonderful night, though late – we didn’t leave until
nearly 10pm – goodness, how time flies when you’re having fun.

Day 9 – MGM

arrived at the MGM Studios about 9am, only to find that Leanne and Noel
had forgotten to bring their tickets. So Kevin and Noel had to go back
to the apartment to get them. Leanne, Amy and I went in, got fast passes
for Tower of Terror and wandered through the shops. I was very impressed
with this park – it has a real nice feel to it.

The guys got back about 10am and went back
to Tower of Terror. Kevin and I went on first – oh boy, this was fantastic.
We then went on again with Leanne, who also loved it.

Next was Rock N Roller Coaster for Kevin and
myself. Now this was excellent and I think I’d have to say my favourite
ride. I had wanted to ride again later in the day but we ran of time.

Amy was asleep in the pram so the other went
in to wait for the Beauty and The Beast Show, while I waited with Amy.
She woke before the show started so I put her in the sling and went into
the watch the show. This was cute, but you really need to know the movie/stage
show I think.

The day was getting on so we headed to other
side of the park to the Toy Story Pizza Planet for lunch. Very yummy –
Disney sure know how to make nice pizzas.

then saw Muppets 3D. This is cute and funny, we liked this a lot. It also
brought back a lot of childhood memories. And the pre-show film was excellent.

Next was the backlot tour. This was okay but
nothing special compared to Universal. We also went on the Great Movie
Ride, which was also okay.

Amy and I wanted to see the Mulan Parade (I
loved the movie) but the other didn’t. So we sat curbside. The parade was
okay but not as good as the others. Amy was given a fan, which she had
fun playing with. The problem I had was that I lot of areas were non-stroller
areas so I had to leave the stroller and walk to where I wanted to sit.
Luckily I had the sling for Amy. I don’t really understand why they did

While we were watching the parade the other
did the Drew Carey Sound thing – which they enjoyed. Kevin said it would
have been no good for Amy so I was glad we hadn’t bothered.

From here we went to the Indiana Jones Show.
The first part was great but I don’t know why they bothered with the whole
“making a movie” idea. And the whole thing was a bit predictable.

It was getting late now and we were all a bit
too tired to do the Animation Tour. It had also turned really cold, and
we were not dressed for it (only had light jackets to put on). We went
to get a snack and try and get warm at the ABC Commissionary. We had chips
and hot chocolates. It was nice but the service was unbelievably slow.

another highlight – the Osbourne Lights. They were fantastic. Everyone,
including Amy, loved it. The cold night probably added to the experience
and it meant that it wasn’t too far fetched for it to be snowing. Amy loved
the snow and tried to catch it in her hands. This is a not to be missed

I was so tired by this time and Amy was trying
to sleep but the Noel wanted to ride ToT, since he had missed out in the
morning. So they went off to do that while I walked Amy (now asleep) through
the shops.

Back at the apartment I had Taco Bell again
for dinner (tacos were very nice), Leanne and Noel had KFC and Kev had
nothing. We put Amy to sleep in the bed by herself while we had dinner,
she was so flaked out. The rest of us followed shortly after at 8.30pm.
The long days were starting to catch up with us.

Day 10 – Magic Kingdom

our last day. We arrived at the Magic Kingdom just after 9am. Another very
cold day, we are all rugged up as we catch the ferry across to the main
gates. As a special treat we have breakfast at Tony’s Town Square. I had
the Italian Toast (very yummy), Kevin had waffles, Noel an omelette and
Leanne a bagel with Cream Cheese. We all enjoyed it. And the cimmamon rolls
they bought around were delicous.

it was time for Amy to have her first hair cut in the barbershop. The barber
was very nice and Amy a perfect little angel, she just kept trying to see
what this man was doing behind her. She got a certificate and Mickey ears
with “First Haircut” written on the back, and a clipping of her hair for
US$12.00. It was very special – there won’t be too many children
in Australia who can say they had their first haircut at Disneyworld.

this we had a family photos taken in the sleighs near the barbershop. One
of these became our Christmas cards this year. From here we went
to Fantasy Land and waited 20 mins to go on Peter Pans Flight (not worth
it if you ask me but we’d been on it before). We split up with Leanne and
Noel and took Amy on It’s a Small World, which she enjoyed. We then went
to the Xmas Bear Jamberee (I fed Amy in the waited area), and Pirates of
the Carribean (it was okay, but we like the one at Disneyland better).

We went back to Fantasyland and waited 30mins
for Pooh’s ride. Amy was asleep in her sling (on Kevin) in the line and
woke up just as we got on the ride. I was glad, since we went on for her
as much as ourselves. We all enjoyed this ride – it was very cute.

At 2.15pm we met up with Leanne and Noel. They
had already had lunch but we hadn’t so we all went to Cosmic ray again.
This time I had Chicken and Mashed Potatoes – very yummy.

The others rode Space Mountain again while
I waited with Amy. The day had warmed up and it was nice to sit in the
sun. We were going to leave when Kevin spotted the Transit Authority so
we went on that. It was okay for the view and it was nice to sit and relax.
We took the railroad from Toontown (disspointing compared to Disneyland)
to Main Street. The 3pm parade was on so it was good we hadn’t tried to
walk it. I went to Town Hall to see if my jacket had been handed in (I’d
lost it earlier), and it had so that was great.

We said farewell to the Magic Kingdom for this
trip (we will be back some day) and headed to Downtown Disney for some
serious shopping at World of Disney. I spent US$365. Leanne and Noel
had been going to buy a watch but they were out of stock so they ended
up catching a bus back to the MK. After our shopping I fed Amy in the car
and she promptly fell asleep.

Kevin and I had dinner at IHOP and amazingly
Amy slept in her pram the whole time – poor baby, she must be really worn
out. Kevin had a hamburger and I had Philly Cheese Steak. It cost US$15
+ $5 tip and was really lovely, quiet meal.

We arrived back at the apartment about 7.30pm
and put Amy, still asleep, straight to bed. I started to pack some of our
many souveniers, had some Key Lime Pie (Yummo) for desert, wrote some post
cards and went to sleep about 9.30pm.

Day 11

Up at 7.30am to meet Leanne and Noel for our last
breakfast together, then back to our room to pack. We left about 11am to
visit the grocery store one last time, then went back to Blizzard Beach
(Kevin’s water proof wallet had broken and he loved it so much he wanted
to get some spares). We dropped Leanne and Noel at Downtown Disney and
said our farewells. They had one more night in Orlando before flying back
to Australia. We were on our way to Miami for our Carribean Cruise.

*** I have so many wonderful memories of Disney
and I’m so glad we took Amy – now I’ll always remember what she was like
at 9 1/2 months of age. I’d like to take this opportunity to say a big
THANKYOU to all the people who participate
on the boards at the Disney
Information Station
– you all helped make this trip a huge success.