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- standing in line for a theatre entry at EPCOT, a woman next to me shouted "Marco!", trying to reel back her son who had run off in the dark.  About 20 people around the crowd returned "POLO!" and I busted out laughing.  I gather this had been happenning to them a lot.  Between the woman glaring at me and the kids asking what was so funny, I just couldn't stop for several minutes and by the time it was done I had tears running down my neck.  (I found the woman after the show and apologized profusely).

- as much as being pummeled by imagery and theme music and GIFT SHOPS EVERYWHERE bothered a certain part of me, I have to really hand it to disneycorp as the purveyors of the Frictionless Vacation.  Everyone, EVERYONE, is super friendly and helpful; access to whatever you want is easy to figure out, and the whole place is very spacious so even when you are engulfed in crowds on a hot Saturday afternoon you don't feel like you are in a cattle pen.  [I realize this is only april, but still...]  All the standing lines have eye candy so you're not just standing there annoyed to be waiting in line for 30 minutes to ride a magic carpet for 30 seconds. 

- more specifically in this vein, putting charge access on your room key is handy because you don't need your wallet [just don't lose your key!!] and if you're on the meal plan that's all on your card too.  seamless!  I was shuddering a bit at the thought of managing the meal plan ten or fifteen years ago, with booklets of little coupons to keep track of, but the current system was pretty goofy-proof.  [I just need to figure out whether we lost money on it...]

- the fastpass program is sheer genius and we squeezed it for all it was worth.  We rarely waited 20 minutes for ANYTHING and with the fastpasses we generally strolled right on to whatever ride we were ticketed for, including those most hotly in demand.  (Our only failure was that we didn't get to Hollywood Studios until halfway thru the last day, and the Toy Story passes were already gone, with a 90 minute waitline.  We'll have to save that one for next time. I was constantly baffled at the people who would stand in front of a ride with a 60 minute waitline and a 90 minute fastpass time, look at both signs, and get in the waitline.  Do these people just like to stand around, or can they not do math?

- at the Port Orleans resort where we stayed there was a doorman in a wild mardi gras outfit with top hat and lots of ribbon and bling, and he would VERY ENTHUSIASTICALLY greet you every time you went through the door, coming or going.  I realized my brain was getting a bit melty when I stood there for a minute in order to get my turn to be greeted.

- the theatre presentation in the France pavilion totally blew my lid off and made me fairly desperate to go back to Europe; I've been leaning on the kids ever since.  The current understanding is that they will consider it if they get to eat the pastries they saw in the movie every day and don't have to stand in long lines

- speaking of having my lid blown off, the Star Wars tours ride at Hollywood Studios is an absolute BLAST.  If I had seen this as a ten year old kid, my head would have popped off in a puff of smoke, rotated around 270 and landed back on my neck while wearing an expression of dazed glee.  The gift shop sold build-your-own lightsabers, where you get to choose the grip and the bling and the light colour and a few other things.  When you turn them on and off they go bbzzzRRT and ZZzzrrrnt, and when you hit one against the other they buzz and zap.  Holy moley, I would have been the God of my block with one of those, as that ten year old kid.

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haardvark

November 2015

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