Paging Mr. Morrow, Mr. Tom Morrow

So, Tuan is in Peru and I'm staying with my grandmother, Mama Sue, for the week. I absolutely love it here. Spending time with Mama Sue is nice, but as a bonus there are two guest rooms. I have a lovely, wonderful bed with cable TV and wireless and the house is so kid friendly. I've been watching Jon and Kate + 8 tonight (finally!) and reading blogs.
I'm disappointed when folks don't update their blogs, but I am way behind, too, so I thought I'd get cracking.

We went to Disney World in early December. I had never gone before, but had obsessively watched this Disney promotional video as a little girl and was just longing to actually visit this wonderful place. When we found out CCCA (the camping/conference organization that Tuan is a part of) was going to have their annual conference there, it just made good sense to go on and plan our trip around that.

We flew out of Jackson on Monday with Andrew and Zack. I was kind of hoping to see WDW from the plane, but didn't. The "magical express" service whisked us to Coronado Springs which was where the conference was held. CS was a really lovely, beautiful place. The main conference center sat on a lovely lagoon and the rooms were all around it. There were also hammocks in various places around the lagoon. The pool was really neat, too, but there was no time for swimming. I was giddily, giggly excited to just be at a resort. By the way, if you're thinking about going to WDW, I highly recommend staying there--it's so nice and easy to get around!

Monday night was a welcome banquet and worship/general session. I wasn't planning to attend those meetings, because the spouse fee for the conference was steep. However when Matthew ended up going to the Urkaine, I got his place and was so glad I did! James Ward led the singing portion of the worship and was just great! Then, a fellow named Stuart Briscoe spoke. He was a wise, humble deliverer of God's word and I felt so blessed to have attended the session! His wife spoke the next morning, but I missed out on that because . . . .

I was heading for the Magic Kingdom!!! I'd already purchased my ticket, not knowing that I'd be able to attend the conference. Okay, so I was an absolute nerd--I bought a great guidebook: Mini Mickey by the folks at touringplans.com. It gave you specific plans for touring each park so that you could get as much as possible done in a day. Per their instructions, I caught the bus and arrived outside the MK at what I thought was an hour before opening. With the time change, I was actually much earlier, but was so hyped up on adrenaline and giddiness that I didn't care.

While waiting for the opening, I met a woman who blogs for Disney--that was cool. Disney is like the south: you talk to everyone there. Or perhaps my southern-ness was just magnified by Disney, because I talked to everyone there and met so many folks!

Well, the gates opened and Mickey Mouse arrived on the train with lot of my favorite characters--very fun. He sang and danced and we all go to go in. Following the plan, I busted it to Fantasyland, racing past racing moms with strollers who were trying to get somewhere. The strollers at Disney are insane! In retrospect, I'm not even sure how I found Fantasyland--somehow I got there and was so excited that I was there early and could just walk into any ride that I dropped the plan completely and hopped on Peter Pan's magic flight. It was strange, but fun and then I ran over to It's a Small World. That was just wonderful blissful happiness there! It's a Small World helped me re-focus and I stuck to the plan after that. I highly recommend it. The park attendance that day was very slow and I finished most everything I really wanted to do before two o'clock, which left ample time for rambling. Here are the rides I hit (in a rough order) and my thoughts:

Peter Pan's Flight: very dark and hard to see, but fun

It's a Small World: Out of this world fun and total eye candy for the visual junkie I am

Winnie the Pooh: ho hum. I think if I loved Pooh like some, I would have enjoyed it more.

Snow White: Scary!

The Haunted Mansion: Super fun! I think I did it twice on that day!

Splash Mountain: YES! YES! YES! It's actual, it's factual, it's satisfactual!

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: One of my faves--so, so , so, fun!

Pirates of the Caribbean: Fun, fun.

Swiss Family Treehouse: very cool--realization of a childhood dream, for sure.

Jungle Cruise: First time I rode it, the line was illogically long given the crowd. My guide felt awkward. The second time was a
blast! (at night)

Country Bear Jamboree: Loved it

Enchanted Tiki Room: Bizarre. I actually wanted to get out of there in the middle of it. Once was enough for life.

Mickey's Philharmagic: Very fun and remniscent of Jr. High: there were great Disney sing-alongs

Mickey's Toontown Fair: quite fun! Just toured Mickey and Minnie's houses--they're great.

Tom Sawyer's Island: It's a really cool place, but I realized once I rode over that I really wanted to do other things more and felt frustrated at having to wait for the raft to get back.

Space Mountain: no. It was horrible (for me). I got on it with no pre-concieved notions and once it started realized I'd made a
mistake. I basically held my neck steady, closed my eyes and clutched the car and prayed for it to end soon. Yep, I'm a wuss.

Walt Disney's Carousel of Progress: Cheesy, but catchy and worth seeing.

Tommorrowland Transit Authority: one of the best kept secrets of Disney. It's basically this open car you sit in and you ride all over Tomorrowland in it. It has this great narration, you go inside of Space Mountain and you get great views of the castle. There's also no wait and the folks working it let me ride it over and over. It's the perfect place for a rest and zone out. I loved it and still have the narration stuck in my head.

Well, I somehow got bogged down in Tomorrowland--the TTA notwithstanding--and wasted a lot of time there. Still, I was able to get back to some rides like Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain and It's a Small World again. : ) Thanks to the touring plan, I had lots of time left and meandered to Main Street before closing for some Ice Cream. Of all things I ran into a lady from our church: Cindy and her son Warner at the ice cream parlor! We got to snack together and I left the park soon after.

In the bus back to our hotel, this man noticed my Twin Lakes shirt and asked if it was the same TL as the one in MS. Then, we started talking and found out he was from Franklinton, LA and worked with one of our former maintenance guys! Small world (after all)!

At the hotel, I cleaned up and went to find Tuan. The walk from the room to the conference area was long--nearly a mile-- and I went the wrong way, but was pleased to find a hammock along my path. I gratefully stretched out in the hammock, rested my aching feet and enjoyed the balmy breeze and night sky. It was a great end to a most wonderful day!


guitta chaiban hogue said...

you make me want to go back!

Caroline said...

What a happy post!

David said...

I want to go back, too. Reading about your visit to the Magic Kingdom makes me tired. You almost have to train for all the walking you have to do.