Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Vacation Day 4: Animal Kingdom
Let’s just say 5:55am came very early that morning… but up we got and headed out for our last Disney day this time at Animal Kingdom. I’d specifically planned AK for the last day because it closes early and I’d made ressies for dinner at one of the resorts. I also figured with it being the Saturday of Presidents Week/end, any park we chose would probably get really crowded in the afternoon.
We arrived at rope drop and, based on what I’d gleaned from the touring plans available on the net, hit Dinoland first. This was good advice because there was absolutely no one over there! G rode the dinosaur themed Dumbo style ride (I think it’s called Triceratops Spin but I could be wrong) three times in a row without having to get off. She was in heaven! I was ready to move on.

Because she was tall enough, we also took her on the Dinosaur coaster. G likes the idea of roller coasters but does tend to get frightened. OMG I felt terrible during the ride because she was squeezing my hand so hard I could tell she was really scared. When we got off she wasn’t crying or anything but was adamant that she didn’t want to go on that one again. I assured her that she did not have to go ever again.

After that we moved on to the Safari ride, the Lion King show (which is fantastic) and the Rafiki area. We were shocked when we returned from the Rafiki area to find that the park was mobbed! I could barely push the stroller through the crowd. It was about 1pm and G was getting super tired so I got her to lie down in the stroller and nap while we walked around a bit. The wait for the Everest ride was at 90 mins. Crazy! We decided to watch the Nemo show which is amazingly well done IMO and then call it a day.

Its hard to believe or even understand how happy it makes Georgie to visit with the characters. She knows they aren't real but she just LOVES them! These pix of her with Minnie are pretty typical of the experience. Look how giddy she gets while Minnie signs her book :-)

Then they danced a bit...

and finally the official photo!

We had a dinner reservation for 5:10 and, although it was only about 4pm, thought we’d leave early and not have to rush. Well, heck, that turned out to be a good idea because when we got back to the car it wouldn’t start!! That’s right, dead battery. How annoying. Luckily Disney is well prepared for this occurrence and has security people around with these little jumper things. BTW, anyone reading this, do NOT use EZ car rental. When I called them to report the problem they were complete jerks, basically said tough luck and blamed us saying we must have left the headlights on or something. I finally just hung up on their “customer service” rep. I was so not going to let a dead battery and some jerks on the phone dampen our fun.
Dinner was the Happily Ever After meal at 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian. What a beautiful hotel! The meal was a buffet, nice enough, but the real attraction was the characters: Cinderella, Prince Charming, the evil stepmother Lady Tremaine and the step sisters Anastasia and Drizella. Cinderella was a bit snippy to me when I suggested a different spot for the picture with G but otherwise the whole thing was a hit! I’d been coaching G to shake her finger at Lady Tremaine and tell her “you should be nice to Cinderella” in a disapproving tone. She actually did it and in response Lady Tremaine said nastily “questionable parenting” and brushed past us. Haha!!! Georgie told Drizella (or maybe it was Anastasia I get them confused) also and the stepsister assured G that she would start being nice. It’s so cute because G knows the characters are fake and that they’re just playing with her but at the same time, she mentioned several times later that night and even the next day that “the step sister is going to be nice now cuz I told her to.” LOL!

And there you go. The Disney portion of our vacation was over. Even with the car issue and the few very minor setbacks, it was still a great 3 days. Due to the fact that we bought the premier passes we’re definitely planning a return trip in the extremely near future.

Tomorrow: Going on the big ship…

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