Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot!
August 25, 2008
Luckily for me, it was in "the plan" for us to have a sleep in day. After the EMH (which lasted til 1am) I never would have made another rope drop. :) So we slept until 8:30 (late for us) and had reservations at Chef Mickey's! Great breakfast, and I'm sure the character interaction would have been better had our kids been willing to cooperate. Katie did take this one picture with Minnie Mouse before she decided she was afraid of the characters, and while we coaxed Alex into posing for a few pics, he was less than thrilled with having his picture taken with a bunch of cartoon characters. Ah well. It was good breakfast fare and Katie did really enjoy seeing the characters (from afar) and the songs and antics they did. They also do something where they twirl napkins in the air for Mickey and the other characters and she really enjoyed that. Sean and I really liked the Contemporary resort too - and if we go back to Disney again, we're definitely going to consider staying there (its on the monorail, which was the one and only thing we missed being at Wilderness Lodge). One note though - we found it really strange that sitting in Chef Mickey's you could look up and see birds perched on these sort of panels that hung from the ceiling - right inside the restaurant! It was near the end of the meal before we noticed them, and they didn't seem to be causing any trouble, but I couldn't help but wonder what might happen if - ah, one of them needed a bathroom break. Icky thought there! Since we were on the dining plan and we used the Table Service credit for this character breakfast, we ate this late breakfast and filled up good and then we used our Counter service credit for dinner (skipped lunch with no problem cause we were still full from breakfast).
So we left right for Disney Studios from the Contempory. We wandered down to the lobby where we asked a cast member for directions to the bus stop. He replied that we'd probably have to wait for a good half hour, but pointed us in the direction. We got to the bus stop and less than 5 min. later a bus pulled up for Disney Studios. Luck? maybe, but we found our experience with the busess to be far better than the pessimisstic attitude that seems to abound regarding them. I think I mentioned before that we never waited more than 10 - 15 min. for a bus all week.
It was probably close to 11am when we got to Disney Studios, so we knew riding the big headliners without a fastpass wasn't going to happen. We wandered over to the new Toy Story Mania ride first, hoping to be able to get a fastpass for late in the day - we were trying to stay the whole day and watch Fantasmic! Unfortunately, all the fastpasses for the day were already gone, and the wait was 70 min. We just don't do waiting for more than 20 min. - even when it is something we really like, so Toy Story Mania was out for us. I did notice that the wait time for the ride fluctuated between 70 - 120 min. throughout the day.
Since no one in our family had any interest in Tower of Terror, and Alex and I weren't sure we wanted to try Rock n' Roller Coaster or not (we decided not for now), we did not have the need to do any fastpasses for the rest of the day. We did most everything in the park and had a great time, but it was HOT. Like melting in the shade right into your shoes HOT. I have never been so hot for so long in all my life. We coped pretty well though - Disney Studios is a good park to be at on an inclement weather day because most everything is indoors and air-conditioned. We did not do Lights! Motor! Action! though because it was outside in the sun and during the hotest part of the day (I think the shows were at 1:30 and 4pm). We did do Backlot Tour which was somewhat warm and in the sun for portions, but it was also on a moving tram for part of it so that was okay. The Muppet 3-D show was great and although Katie saw it last year she didn't remember it at all and thought it was pretty funny this time. This time though she wore the 3D glasses and it freaked her out a bit having stuff seemingly fly out at her. She did pretty okay though and didn't cry or anything.
We also saw the Indiana Jones show which was also outside but in a covered stage area out of the sun. Hot, but not as unbearably so. Alex and Sean are big Indy Jones fans so they really enjoyed the show. Katie was just as excited about the Mermaid show which she absolutely loved. This show also had some special effects that involved simulating cool sea breezes in the theater - very welcome on a hot day! Sean said if I'd let him, he'd watch Little Mermaid over and over again all day! We missed the Beauty and the Beast show - just never lined up with a time it was playing I guess.
One of the best parts of the day was that we got both Katie and Sean to ride Star Tours. AND they both liked it! In fact we did it twice! Sean is a big chicken on anything more than the most basic of rides and this was the first time Katie was tall enough for Star Tours. The pic above is Alex on the rider outside the Star Tours ride. I have to admit to getting the idea for this pic from Erin! Also Alex just wanted to sit on it and of course it was a natural photo moment.
Somewhere in there we had Pizza Planet for dinner, which was okay, but nothing special. Alex really enjoyed the arcade type games they had there though (think Chuck E. Cheese) Toward the end of the day we went in to see the Little Einstein show much to Alex's chagrin. Katie loved it, and sang along and danced and had a blast. Sometime during the show the skies opened up and POURED. When the show ended, everyone just sort of hung out in the theater waiting for the storm to blow over before venturing back out - it was coming down in buckets. We just let Katie run around with a few other kids her age in the theater (they weren't being roudy or disruptive or anything) while we relaxed and regrouped. I really wanted to stay for the night-time laser show Fantasmic! so I was hoping the break would give everyone the motivation to stay for the few hours til the show.
After we had hung out for about 20 min, Katie decided she needed to go potty. She usually never volunteers this information when we are out doing "fun stuff" and I have to make her go every few hours so that there are no accidents. (Remember last year's meltdown - yeah that was at least in part cause I made her go potty) So, I was not going to discourage her even if it was raining buckets. Our ponchos were very inconveniently located in the stroller, which was in the middle of the pouring down rain outside. Luckily the bathrooms were just across the courtyard from Little Einsteins, so I took Katie by the hand, ran to the stroller and pushed it under an awning with my one free hand. I left the stroller there then took Katie to the bathroom. We were both somewhat wet, but not soaked. The important thing though - she went, no meltdown, no accident. Yay! When we were finished I saw Alex and Sean now outside huddled under the Little Einstein awning - we were under the awning on the other side of the courtyard near the stroller. I motioned for them to come over and they did and we broke out the ponchos for the rest of the evening. They were in thier own plastic cases so even though the stroller (a Disney rental - which I loved by the way) was soaking, the ponchos were still dry.
We saw the Disney Animation film after that and wandered though some exihibits. By this time it was getting close to time for Fantasmic! So we walked up there amid announcements that the show MIGHT be cancelled due to the weather. I had a mild heat headache from earlier in the day and remembered that I had a couple advil in my fanny pack (yes I'm one of those nerds!) and I took them. In the end they had the show while it drizzled just a little bit. We watched it on wet bleachers in our ponchos, but honestly I think we were just all glad to be cool for the first time all day. My headache broke just in time for the start of the show, and it was fantastic, um I mean Fantasmic! The foggy drizzle did make some of the special lighting effects hard to see, but I still throughly enjoyed the show and was so glad we stayed for it. The whole family really liked it too and were glad in the end that I nagged everyone to stay for it. No pictures of it cause of the weather though. It was only 9pm when it finished, but we were bushed and got right on a bus back to Wilderness Lodge (again hardly any wait). We didn't do anything else that night but watch Wishes from the balcony again - our nightly ritual while there.