We awakened before the crack of dawn on Tuesday the 7th of January to a crisp -21C (that's damn*d cold to you folks who use the other temperature system). We took the hotel shuttle to the airport at 0500 (that's oh-dark-hundred for you military types). Check-in went without a hitch and WestJet was not the least concerned that we were right at the weight limit for each bag allowed. We changed planes at Toronto and cleared through US customs with little more than a nod from the good folks at US Border Security. Now the worrying about potential lost bags began because from this point on the good folks at Walt Disney World were in charge of getting our bags to our resort hotel room. We were on-time into Orlando airport and a clear and sunny day. They have a fantastic people mover type system to shuttle to the main terminal and plenty of kind souls to direct us to the Disney area where we boarded our air-conditioned bus for Walt Disney World.
The kid in us was beginning to take control as we approach the Magic Kingdom. Our bus took the grand tour through each of the resorts (Polynesian Village, Grand Foridian and finally our stop at the Contemporary Resort).
Wow the Polynesian Village looked great and the Grand Floridian VERY posh: so much so that we were beginning to have doubts that we might have selected the wrong resort. Oh well, we may be staying at the older original resort and in a mid level room with a view on the
wrong side but we comforted ourselves that we were in the hotel that Jim the train nut wanted to be in (with the Monorail running right through the 4th floor lobby) and we were really central to all of the venues. Well, you can imagine our surprise when we stepped up to the front desk and found out that the resort gods at Walt Disney World had decided to present us with a little upgrade..... no, wait, a huge upgrade! We were moved to the front of the building (with a view of the Magic Kingdom) and up to the Concierge level. This is where one needs a special pass key for the elevator; where one gets nose bleeds if one is height sensitive; and where one's every whim is attended to by staff dedicated to our every pleasure. Talk about the royal treatment. I think it took the better part of the next several days to wipe the silly grin from my grizzled old face.
Our next stop was Epcot and the icing on the cake was to be ushered into the front car of the Monorail. Whoohoo!
For the next few days (27-31 January) our time was fully occupied doing all of those things one traditionally expects one to do at Walt Disney World: ride the rides, consume much more food and drink than one should and put a lot of shoe rubber on pavement. On Wednesday we had lunch with the Mackina's (Maureen and Terry)
from Victoria, BC at the Epcot Teppan Edo and with them again that evening when the Rossow's (Maureen and David) from Perth, Australia also joined us for dinner at the Big River Grill and Brewing Works: good food, cool beers, and great fun solving all of the worlds problems. After dinner our happy party took the shuttle boat back to Epcot for a spectacular fireworks show before parting company until our next meeting on-board the good ship Splendor.
Being somewhat worried about a potential trip delay due to our ever reliable weather, we decided to head south a few days early. Sitting in a hotel, waiting for our cruise ship to depart, seemed a somewhat inefficient use of valuable vacation time so we decided to add a little extra waiting time and put it to good use by tickling the "kid in our id" at Walt Disney World. This will be a short visit but long enough for us to fill up our Epcot tank.