Good news all around today. At long last, Wi-Fi internet has arrived at many Disney resorts. Standard and Poor’s reiterated a “Strong Buy” rating on Walt Disney Company stock. We still have over a year until the 2012 apocalypse.
Disney is offering Wi-Fi at no additional cost at the following resorts:
Animal Kingdom Lodge
Beach Club Resort
Coronado Springs Resort
Grand Floridian Resort
Old Key West
I hesitate to use the word “free” because we’re paying for it in one way or another. Magical Express isn’t “free,” it’s included in the cost of the resort. In fact, if you don’t use it, you’re just subsidizing the cost for others. The same is true for “free” Wi-Fi. If you don’t use it, you’re still paying for it. That said, I’m very excited to see it – particularly because it’s wireless. It’s rather difficult to plug an ethernet cable into a tablet or cell phone. It will also be nice to do away with that stupid cord strewn across the room. Let’s have a look at how it works:
It’s pretty simple. All you have to do is connect to the “Smart Spot” network on your device. There may be a few others available, but “Smart Spot” is currently the one you want. From there, you’ll need to open up a web browser.
Unfortunately, we’re just on my phone here. When you open the browser, it will come up with a screen that says it’s locating your computer. Once it figures out which server to put you on, you’ll get this screen. It says: “To start using this service, click the “CONNECT” button. Once you click connect, you’re golden. That’s it. Wi-Fi Internet should be available in all rooms, the main lobby, and generally around the resorts listed above. When I used it at 6:15pm at the Beach Club earlier this evening, it was extremely fast. I ran a speed test and it came back as 11,419kbps, which translates to 11.4mbits. As a comparison, most “cable internet” connections are 10mbits, so it was faster than your usual cable internet connection, much faster than most DSL connections, and way faster than any dial-up connection. Now, there probably were very few people using the network. Once people start using it, particularly during “peak” usage times, speeds may be much slower. We’ll see. Anyway, this is really nice to see.
That’s enough real news. On to the nonsense that this website is known for.
Today, we’re sampling Key West Sunset Ale, which is available at the “Craft Brewer”s” booth at the Food and Wine Festival:
At home, because I’m not paying $5.00 for something available at the supermarket in a 6-pack for $8.00. I think, without hesitation, I can tell you that this is the worst beer I’ve ever had. And you’re talking to someone that likes everything from Steel Reserve to Stone Ruination. If you like the taste of carbonated metal you would really like this though. Just to be fair.
Generally speaking, the further down you go to the right, the shorter the line for the turnstiles. Further to the left, there were easily 10 people in ever line. Not a huge wait by any stretch of the imagination (unless there are “issues”), but you might as well head to the turnstile with no one.
Inside the Art of Disney store. This caught my eye, but I couldn’t tell you if it’s for sale. It seemed too fragile to pick up, there was only one, and I didn’t see a price tag. Really neat though.
I think this shirt is new, but my memory isn’t what it used to be. It’s not made of cotton – some sort of polyester material.
Not cheap either – $27.95.
Larry Dotson was signing artwork. I don’t know who that is.
I feel like they’re bogged down. Get it? Because it’s a cranberry bog? Never mind.
Epcot was a dream earlier in the day, but the World Showcase is always going to be busy in the evening during the Food & Wine Festival.
Over to Canada to try the Chicken Chipotle Sausage with Sweet Corn Polenta ($4.00) and baby-size Moosehead beer:
And the Canada menu:
While I like the Cheddar Cheese soup, I can’t bring myself to pay $3.75 for what amounts to four bites. Maybe some day. Anyway, this is another item that’s getting rave reviews and very similar to what’s served as an appetizer inside at Le Cellier ($9.99). The sausage was nice and spicy and the corn polenta added a bit of sweetness to the dish. Recommended.
A look back in the other direction. The Canada booth is on the left.
Up into the United Kingdom. This is the busiest section of World Showcase during Food/Wine.
A look at France from International Gateway for no particular reason. As I was walking, some poor woman asked the cast member at the International Gateway entrance/exit how to get to Morocco. I almost died.
I feel like this space could be used for something. Avatar Land 2?
Over to Beach Club to test the Internet as described earlier. I was just going to walk to the Polynesian from the Ticket/Transportation Center, but I figured this gave me three opportunities just in case they looked at me cross-eyed at Beach Club.
Beach Club is doing a marshmallow roast similar to the one over at Wilderness Lodge. They also have movies nightly on the beach. Hocus Pocus is one of my favorite movies of all time. You might see me there tomorrow. Spooky Buddies and Mars Needs Moms are new-ish too.
Marina rental prices. And a larger, readable version: https://www.easywdw.com/reports/marina_prices.jpg
Surrey Bike rental. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if the Orlando Sentinel reported tomorrow that these people killed someone.
Over to the BoardWalk:
Atlantic Dance Club. One of my goals in life is to have more people come to my funeral than show up at the Dance Hall on any given night. That is to say, I would really like for more than four people to come to my funeral.
Jelllyrolls. Friend-of-the-site Deb lives here.
The other side.
I’ve never eaten here before. I feel like I should have. Maybe tomorrow. Their beer is okay.
It’s not real obvious, but these are carnival games. There’s a basketball toss and a couple of other “traditional” games.
Big River’s outdoor seating area. Very pleasant on a nice October evening.
The Screen Door. The “BoardWalk Inn Resort” doesn’t have dedicated restaurants or a general store like the other resorts. You’ll find them out on the BoardWalk promenade.
The freezer and cooler inside:
A special prize awaits anyone that can name every other location on Disney property that sells Hot Pockets.
And double or nothing on Red Baron pizza.
Full size: https://www.easywdw.com/reports/mmmmm.jpg
Full size: https://www.easywdw.com/reports/mmmmmmmm.jpg
Like any resort store, expect to pay about twice as much as a regular supermarket:
I’m lazy, so I buy these things by the case. A decent price in store is $1.50 and the regular price is around $2.00. Amusingly, I forgot to “tear two inches to vent” last week and the package exploded in the microwave. Serves me right, I guess.
Wine. Full size –https://www.easywdw.com/reports/boardwine.jpg
Not a bad deal, really. This would run about $12 in a “regular” store.
Duffy. We are close to Epcot, after all.
More more stuff. And a creepy mannequin.
This is the room of my dreams. Nothing would bring me more pleasure than dropping water balloons on people from this very location. Should you ever be “put here,” please invite me over.
The Surrey Bike rental from earlier.
I hope it comes with insurance.
Funnel Cakes – Tasty Sensations. Say the name out loud and I guarantee you’ll giggle. If you don’t, you can have all of the site’s revenue from the last year ($0.00)
One expensive funnel cake.
Wyland Galleries. If you’ve made it this far, you can’t afford anything in here. Neither can I.
I don’t know who this is either, but killer mustache.
Seems nice, but it sort of feels like the kind of place I would be tazed if I entered.
Caricatures, something I can get my head around:
Considering the booth, I feel like he should give fortunes too.
Flying Fish, an odd juxtaposition between the fine and casual.
The current menu:
The cropping isn’t my fault – that’s how it looks.
BoardWalk to Go:
No dining in, I guess.
And Seashore Sweets:
Good for breakfast. Lunch and dinner is at “your own risk.”
I’m not sure I’ve met a pizza window that I didn’t like.
Have to return here too. I almost ordered a slice, but daylight was at “a premium.”
Not nearly big enough for the weekends. People would buy glue for $20.00 if it meant they could watch their team play on Sunday.
One picture of Hollywood Studios.
Cars 2 topiaries welcome guests to the Studios. They might look familiar (Flower/Garden Festival).