Tuesday, March 15, 2011

2011 Disney Trip - Day 2 - February 26

Today we woke up nice and early so we could be at Animal Kingdom close to park opening. We opted for breakfast at the Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory Food Court at French Quarter. Although we liked the decor, and the seeming abundance of things to order - we weren’t crazy with the food itself. I went for an omelet. It had been pre-cooked and sitting under a heat lamp for what seems like an eternity based on the taste. Mom wanted beignets, which meant waiting in far too long of a line. Plus, the finished product was very heavy, not light and airy like she was expecting.

Ceiling at Sassagoula Floatworks

After breakfast we made our way to Animal Kingdom and got there just as they started letting guests in. We headed straight back for the Kilimanjaro Safari (doesn’t everyone?). Usually at park open this is nearly a walk on ride. Well it got hung up as we were about 2 cars back from getting loaded. And then they allowed fast passers in, so they took the first couple of cars once it started moving again. Finally we were on our way. I’m not generally a fan of this attraction because I’ve never gotten very up close and personal with the animals on it. That was not the case today! Our first up close encounter was with a giraffe. He walked RIGHT in front of us - we worried he would block the way, but he crossed the road and walked next to us within just a couple of feet of us. As we got further down he decided to graze in the path of the cars. We were too far to see much other than the 4 vehicles caught up behind him - but everyone ended up having to stop until they got him cleared. A little further up we had our second close encounter with the white rhinos. Three decided to take a drink in the water on the roadway. Two were standing off to the side but the third was smack dab in the middle of the road and not showing any interest in moving. I think we sat there almost 10 minutes. The big guy finally started to move off just as the cast members were getting close to coming and trying to move him along. The other up close encounter was not animal related. It was with the HORRIBLE comb-over on the driver of our vehicle. Men, if you are reading this, do NOT do the comb-over. I realize it may be hard to go bald at such a young age. But it if you are that self conscious about it, SHAVE YOUR HEAD. Not only does it look better, but the confidence to walk around with your bald head is WAY sexier (at least to this girl) than your comb-over!


Comb Over

After the safari we hit up our other favorites. We even snuck in a trip to the Festival of the Lion King before lunch. Man is it a hike to get back to that show!

Lunch was first for us - we did table service at Yak and Yeti and it was YUMMY! Mom went for the tempura shrimp which was a nice small portion (good for her) and beautifully presented. I went for the Sweet and Sour Chicken and some wonton soup. Both were very good. Service was excellent.

After lunch we went back to French Quarter to relax for a few minutes and grab jackets for our night at Epcot. We had 6pm ADRs at Teppen Edo so we didn’t have a TON of time, but did get a quick ride on Spaceship Earth, enjoyed some of the topiaries already out for Flower and Garden, and then shopped our way over to Japan for dinner.

Teppen Edo was YUMMY as always. We spotted something new on the menu, pork! So I ordered the chicken, mom ordered the pork, and we shared. I have to say...it was a very nice addition to the menu. We were seated with a Japanese family currently living in San Jose, CA. This made for the most interesting experience I’ve had at a Japanese restaurant as they showed us some of their traditions. For example, folding the paper from the chopsticks into a little rest for your chopsticks to lay on when not in use. The father also ordered a saki sampler and then talked with us about the different saki’s and how they varied.

After dinner we shopped our way towards Italy, where we were attending the special WDW Radio / MEI Mousefan Dessert Party. Once we arrived at Italy we found some other WDW Radio people so we chatted for a while while we waited to check in and head over to the dessert party. Now, I’m not generally a huge fan of fireworks and the nighttime shows like that at WDW. Mom always is amazed by this. I think its because the centennial fireworks at my college were so amazing I just haven’t seen anything that I feel compares. But watching Illuminations from the Dessert Party was INCREDIBLE. First of all, we felt like were were IN the action since we were watching from Italy on a section basically out on the water. Second of all, it was closer than any time we’ve seen it before - so we were actually able to SEE what was on that ball in the center of the lagoon! I had no idea! Oh...and the dessert wasn’t bad either....yummy cupcakes!

After the dessert party mom and I made our way back to the park front (with a shopping stop at the Duffy store and Mouse Gears of course - had to get a Sailor suit for my new Duffy bear to wear on the cruise!) and back to the hotel to repack for the cruise the next day.

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