Yet, another great read!!
DAY 4: THURSDAY, MAY 10TH, 2007: [Disney-MGM Studios/Animal Kingdom]
We got up relatively early and began our day at the…
BEACH CLUB MARKETPLACE:
Though obviously a cafeteria, the Beach Club Marketplace has some surprisingly non-cafeteria food. Our senses were tempted by freshly made frittatas (like quiche without a crust), pastries, and yogurt parfaits. There was also a large grab and go section featuring more yogurt and fresh fruit. Kellogg’s cereals were also on hand (I ended up getting Frosted Flakes- oh so portable!). Aside from all the breakfast options were other non-breakfast foods, including a gelato bar, grab and go sandwiches, and salads. Made to order sandwiches (served either chilled or toasted) were also available. I also think I saw some sushi in the grab and go case. I just hope it was fresh… The Beach Club Marketplace also carries a large selection of Disney merchandise, including pins, hats, clothes, toys, video games, and DVDs. There was also a good selection of Beach Club logo merchandise such as clothes, key chains, and Christmas ornaments. A Beach Club pin was nowhere to be found though. All together a great place to pick up a bite to eat before hitting the parks, or to buy that special souvenir.
After breakfast we walked as we ate along the path behind the Boardwalk Resort to…
Ahh, MGM Studios- where the stars gather and shine! Soon after entering the park, it was time for another “rite of passage”: The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror!
This time, I was a little less unwilling to go. Needless to say, the themeing inside the TOT is very well done, evoking the feel of an old (30’s-50’s) style Hollywood hotel that had been abandoned for many, many years. The storyline is also very intriguing. The ride itself, fortunately, was not very scary. It just felt like an elevator…that you sat in…that was falling very fast. There was that awkward but spookily awesome feeling of me coming out of my seat and being weightless for a split second. I did take a couple glances of the (astonishing) 13th floor view of the World, but the rest of the time, my eyes were CLOSED. I was glad I didn’t suffer any negative effects after the Tower of Terror. After this we went on to do my favorite thing: Characters!
As you may know, characters commonly appear in great numbers just outside of “The Hat.” They were there that morning in full force, but when we got there, they were just wrapping up. We decided upon the Chipmunks 3: Chip, Dale, and Clarice. At first I asked the Cast Member in line who the third (girl) chipmunk was and she said she was Clarice from a cartoon Chip and Dale were in called “Two Chips and a Miss.” This I never knew, but was happy to find out.
After our fun with the chipmunks we headed towards the Streets of America. On the way there we met Mike and Sully from Monsters Inc. When we got to the streets we got some lunch at Herbie’s Drive In. We got a barbequed pork steamed bun and a soft pretzel with cheese. Mom also got a picture with Herbie, and I cooled off with the raining umbrella. After this a funny incident happened on Mickey Avenue. We were walking along and Mom spots some characters who she thought were the Incredibles judging by the orange and black clothing, but in actuality they were two of the Little Einsteins. Nevertheless, I went to greet them anyway, though unwillingly. At least they were cute. Anyway, after that fiasco, we checked out the Journey into Narnia exhibit…that was nothing more than an old trailer on a big screen. The props afterwards were interesting though. Unless you’ve never seen the movie before, the trailer is pretty much silly. After Narnia we visited the Magic of Disney Animation. Good thing Mushu was funny, because the poor Cast Member who was narrating the show was mentally disabled, and because of this she had an uninspiring monotone voice and pronounced all of the characters names wrong (i.e. Mushu=Mushy). Of course we couldn’t exactly complain, but it gave us a great story to tell when we got home. Poor girl. After the show were the post-show activities. I posed with Mr. and Mrs. Incredible; and I did a little digital painting activity. We also tried out an activity where you inserted your voice into a famous Disney movie scene. We did the scene from Beauty and the Beast where Belle is caring for Beast’s wounds after he saves her from the attacking wolves. I also wanted to try the learn-to-draw Disney characters activity, but we were pressed for time to get to Lights, Motors, Action. We hurried as fast as humanly possible to get to Lights, Motors, Action, but we were still a bit late. The show itself was amazing, with plenty of explosives, fire, ramps, and fast cars. The finale scene was especially cool.
Unfortunately, after the show, I soon realized that my awesome Pirates of the Caribbean pin I bought the previous night had somehow fallen off of my fanny pack that it was on. That began my search for a replacement Pirates pin (same design, of course). After Light’s, Motors, Action, we went back to the Magic of Disney Animation post-show area and met the Bowler Hat Guy from Meet the Robinsons, and then doubled back to the alley where I met Kim and Ron from Kim Possible. On our way out of the park we saw the High School Musical parade. We took a boat back to our resort for a rest before hitting Disney Animal Kingdom. While at our resort, we swam a bit in the quiet pool right in front of our room, and I also got a huge chocolate milkshake at Beaches and Cream, which I had been planning to do even before we left for the trip. After this we went to…
DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM:
Having driven to the Animal Kingdom, this was actually the first time we’ve ever parked in a WDW Park parking lot. Good thing there were trams to the entrance, because the parking lot was HUGE. It felt like some sort of asphalt savannah. We were quickly (thank God!) picked up by the tram, and were quickly dropped off at the entrance. Thus began our safari into the massive expanse of the Animal Kingdom.
While Mom and Dad scurried away to ride Expedition Everest, I strolled leisurely at my own pace to eventually end up at Everest to await their exit. On my way there I stopped occasionally to take some pictures of the flora and fauna. I’ve never really realized how peaceful the Oasis area really is, because usually when you pass through it you’re are in a hurry to get to some other ride or area of the park. Needless to say, it was very pleasant, especially with the Tree of Life theme music playing quietly in the background. There weren’t many people there either, because it was in the mid-afternoon by then and a lot of people had probably cleared out.
When I got to Discovery Island (or whatever it’s called now) The way towards Africa was blocked due to the Jammin’ Jungle Parade coming through (I never actually saw it), so to get to Asia I had to take the newly constructed path from Dinoland, USA to there. Passing by the new Finding Nemo Musical (which we never did see, even though we meant to), Everest soon came into site, majestic as ever (it is the tallest mountain in Florida after all- go figure!)
When I got to Everest I positioned my self near (what I think was) a photo-op area where you could clearly see the ride’s trains coming out of the tunnel, and waited eagerly with my camera. And waited. And waited. And waited, after many failed pictures without Mom and Dad in them (what I did was time the camera so it took the picture just as the train was coming out of the tunnel, and then after it came out I had enough time between trains to zoom in on the picture and check to see of Mom and Dad were on the train). I soon got bored with this and went inside the Serka Zong Bazaar (aka Expedition Everest Exit gift shop) to look around. It was rather pointless to look at Expedition Everest souvenirs when I didn’t actually ride the ride, but there were some interesting Indian/Southeast Asian items as well, and in the end I bought Mom a pretty little Asian looking handbag for Mother’s Day. After my purchase I waited quietly just outside of the on-ride photo area and waited for Mom and Dad, all the while watching the excited multitudes look for their on ride photo. Soon Mom and Dad arrived (Dad a little worse for wear) and we started towards Africa. On the way I presented Mom with her present and she loved it. When we got to Africa, we immediately went to my favorite ride in the Animal Kingdom: Kilamanjaro Safaris! The wait was shockingly short (it’s a little awkward to walk quickly though the loooong queue line with no people in it), and we boarded our safari jeep in less than 10 minutes. Though I already know the entire plot (not script though) like the back of my hand, it was still fun. I didn’t get as many “good” pictures of the animals this time, but I got a pretty good picture of a giraffe (they’re easy) and an Elephant.
At one point I think I could have reached out and touched a giraffe- we were so close! So close that we couldn’t see the top of its head because it was over the roof of the jeep. I tried to take a picture of it but it didn’t come out well. I’ve never really had any problems where the animal was too close to take a picture of! I got a good picture of some crocodiles too, and of an ostrich.
At one point there were a couple ostriches running towards us down a road (not very fast though, more like a trot). Soon the fun ride was over, so we went “hiking” on the Pangani Forest Trail (or as I like to call it: the one without the bats! I despise bats.) on the trail we saw lots of birds, some meerkats (or Timons J) cute, furry rodents like spiny mice (which weren’t really spiny at all, but very soft and cuddly looking) and some type of hedgehog (which was definitely spiny).
We also saw a gorilla. For some reason they always seem to be curled up in a ball up against the glass. Not very photogenic. After the trail we started our way out. As we walked through Africa we passed by the Tusker House Restaurant, my favorite place to eat at the Animal Kingdom. Sad that they’re turning it into a buffet. What are they thinking?! Anyway, we soon made our way out of the Animal Kingdom but not before stopping at Island Mercantile to look around, though we didn’t buy anything. Just after exiting the turnstiles, we saw some characters greeting people. They included Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. I think Pluto may have been there too. I decided to meet the Big Cheese and Minnie. I gave Mickey a picture I had colored earlier and he loved it. It was the only time I really formally “met” the Mouse.
Minnie looked very cute in her safari/explorer outfit. After our meeting and greeting, we headed off to my favorite resort in WDW for dinner:
DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM LODGE:
Here at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, we had a dinner reservation at the mysterious and exciting Jiko and 7:30 Since we arrived at about 6:00; we had plenty of time to look around. First we plopped ourselves down on the lush furniture in the massive lobby to rest a bit after our long day in the parks, and then we ventured outside to look at even more animals. When we came inside we wandered around the Boma/Jiko/Victoria Falls area while we waited for our reservation time. During this time I saw this kid (from above) at Boma getting about 5 or 6 BIG cookies from the dessert station there. Weird. Soon we were ready for dinner and went to eat at…
JIKO: THE COOKING PLACE
I will warn you ahead of time: Jiko is not for those who are not adventurous. Being a combination of African, Mediterranean, Indian, and Asian cooking, there are plenty of things that may not appeal to some palates. These items include goat cheese, olives, lamb, couscous, and foods that you don’t even know what they are, like pappadam, fufu, mealypap, and pepadew. For steak-type people, there is a filet mignon with a macaroni and cheese (of all things!) and red wine sauce. I would have gotten it but I didn’t for fear that it would have goat cheese in it, but upon further investigation (I looked at the recipe for the macaroni and cheese on allearsnet.com) I found that it did not have any goat cheese, which was sort of surprising considering that EVERYTHING else that had cheese in it was goat cheese. That being said, the food we ordered was very good. Good thing there was a kid’s menu, because I couldn’t find anything on the adult menu that I liked. So I got a grilled cheese sandwich, which came with some fresh fruit and carrots and celery with peanut butter. There were also things like grilled meats (chicken, beef, salmon) with veggies and mashed potatoes, and also pizza and mac and cheese. My grilled cheese was good enough, although its been a long time since I’ve had a traditional American Cheese-on-Wonderbread sandwich, so I didn’t really like it. For my appetizer I actually got something from the adult menu: Lentil Pastilla with Sweet and Sour Dipping Sauce, which are phyllo rolls stuffed with (SPICY) lentils and other spices. It was really too spicy for me. We also got the Taste of Africa appetizer which had a bunch of strange dips and some flatbread (pappadam) and pita bread. Again, all of these dips were insanely spicy, and it was too much for me. This is not helpful when you’re on a water restriction (has to do with my kidney failure). The only other bad thing about the meal was that it was unexpectedly cut short by me, since I was suffering from PPDD (Pre-Post Disney Depression). We were already halfway through our trip and I was a little emotional, because that was the last time we’d be going to the World for a while. Like until I’m married while. Oh well. I went off to the Zawadi Marketplace to cool off with Mom. After dinner we drove back to the Beach Club to go to bed, which leads to…
~~CONTINUED IN PART 4!~~
Last edited by Mickey626; 06-14-2007 at 05:37 PM.
Yet, another great read!!
"Most of my life I have done what I wanted to do. I have had fun on the job.I have never been able to confine that fun to office hours." ~ Walt Disney
you should have tried the goat cheese its awesome!.. we have it at our mexian places here and i love it
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I love the photo with Chip, Dale & Clarice! We leave for WDW on July 19th - with my two adult kids, daughter-in-law and 15 yr old! My two older ones LOVED "Two Chips and a Miss" growing up - especially my daughter. We actually had it on RCA Videodisc - pre VCR!! My mother-in-law's name was Clarice, and we got an extra kick out of the cartoon because of that. I hope Clarice is a fixture at MGM, I'm not going to tell my daughter - she will absolutely flip. (She says when she meets Mr. Right someday and has a daughter, she wants to name her Clarice because her Nana was such a wonderful nut case!)
Your trip sounds wonderful! I am totally chomping at the bit - kinda driving my family nuts!
Thanks again for the Clarice photo. I'm amazed that was such an obscure little cartoon! Disney is great!
1976 College Spring Break! With best friend!
1977 Honeymooned at the Polynesian
1978 stayed off site - Main Gate Howard Johnsons
1986 Stayed lagoon view Polynesian - 2 kids!
1988 Hubby and me at Disney Inn (now Shades of Green)
1990-Off site cheapy hotel! With 2 kids!
1996 with friends at their time share-now with 3 kids
2000 took 7 year old on a surprise destination trip-Dolphin Resort
2000 - My son & daugher-in-law honeymoon at the Polynesian
2001 - My daughter Sr. Class trip stayed at AllStar Music
2007 - 30 year anniversary trip with the whole family - 2 adult kids, 15 yr. old and daughter-in-law - Boardwalk Inn
September 2009!!! Beach Club - me, hubby and best buds - no kids this time around. How exciting!
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