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Thread: Two cheapskates take on the World

  1. #1
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    Two cheapskates take on the World

    Okay, we're not cheapskates, we're happy to pay big bucks for things that really bring meaning to life. You know, like motorcycles.


    No, unfortunately that is not a museum. That is our garage. My husband passed through the "fan" stage and has been certifiably in the realm of fanatic of all things vintage and two-wheeled for years.

    Along with both of us loving to ride, and my DH Mike loving to collect vintage bikes, it doesn't leave much vacation time or money for "normal" vacations. Fortunately we both love Disney and count on our annual week at the House of Mouse in late January/early February to bring tons of joy and pixie dust to our lives. To make this happen, we have to be frugal. I pinch every penny and watch every sale. We bring our own food into the parks, and we wear underwear twice before we wash them. Okay, we don't do that last one, but everything else is true.

    So, now all the planning and packing are done, we're leaving tomorrow morning, and the only thing stopping us is that minor blizzard in Denver where we're supposed to be changing planes at 10am tomorrow.

    Cast of characters? Me, Pam, 49 year old fat chick who rides motorcycles, hikes, and generally ignores the fact that she's carrying around a few dozen extra pounds.


    Hubby, Mike, 51 year old obnoxiously skinny workaholic who has more energy than a 5 year old, still climbs rock walls with his nephews when he gets the chance:


    No kids, 2 cats, 25 motorcycles, that's us.

    Because I'm cheap, I won't be ponying up for internet access at Pop Century, so my next update will probably be from Tampa next weekend as we're spending a few days there and taking in Busch Gardens before returning home.

    Oh, and if I didn't mention it before....we're going to Disney World TOMORROW!!!!
    Last edited by pfalcioni; 08-14-2012 at 06:59 PM.

  2. #2
    who gon stop me? HUH? josh's Avatar
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    You need someone to uhhhhhhhhh look after those bikes while you're gone?

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    Senior Member nolarookie's Avatar
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    have a great trip! I'll be looking forward to your posts when you get back
    Brandi

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    the bank says yes 4mickeyfreax's Avatar
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    Have a great trip!! Fingers crossed there are not enough weather problems in Denver to screw up your flights!! Nothing makes me grouchier than arriving late to the Mouse...
    edith





    [AKL 11/06 | POLY 9/07 | POLY 11/08 | CSR 9/09 | BC/POLY 7-8/10 | BLT 1/11 | AKV 1/12 | BLT/POLY 9/13]

  5. #5
    wishes he had a pink frolicing llama under his tagline George's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pfalcioni View Post



    Please don't take this the wrong way, Pam, but I totally want to knock those bikes over like Dominoes like Pee Wee did outside the biker bar.

    Looking forward to reading about your Big Adventures!
    http://pic90.picturetrail.com/VOL2150/847827/22364569/379301318.jpg

    Quiet, both of ya! You're gonna ruin Maw's birthday!

    Stupid Judy.

    But Sandy Plankton said...

  6. #6
    double fisting mickey ice cream bars and germany pretzels
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    LOL, George! Pam have a great trip.


    Claire
    2012 WL with DH, DS, DS, DM, DF, DSis, DBinlaw, DCousin
    2012 POLY CL and BWV with DH, DS, DS, FIL, MIL
    2010 BLT with DH, DS, FIL, MIL
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    2007 Offsite - Sister's Bachelorette Party

  7. #7
    rescued daughter from turk - that crazy gorilla! jandeeah's Avatar
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    Have a great trip Pam! Can't wait to read about it!!!
    Andrea

    Disney before Drudgery!

    Read about my trips here


  8. #8
    That is probably the loveliest garage I've ever seen, and I don't even like motorcycles. Hope your trip is off to a great start!

  9. #9
    unsure of the release date for the dumbo anniversary dvd but waiting outside best buy just the same jillyb's Avatar
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    George!

    Have a great trip Pam!!
    Jill & Hannah

    June 2008 @ Pop Century
    November 2010 @ Pop Century
    August 2016 @ Pop Century
    August 2017 @ DoubleTree by Hilton Orlando at Seaworld
    May 2019 @ All-Stars Movies
    August 2019 @ Pop Century


    August 2016 Trip Report http://www.easywdw.com/forums/showth...ip-08-10-08-20[/B]

  10. #10
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    We're back - had an awesome time, and came home with some extra souvenirs in the form of cold virus spores. Bah!

    I am ashamed to say that pic of our shop only shows about 1/3rd of the bikes. And George, I totally agree - every time I see a line of bikes I think of dominoes.

    Our trip started with transportation gremlins, we got in to Denver just fine, made our transfer in the required 1/2 hour, and settled in for the rest of our trip. Unfortunately, the new plane had a weird smell - sort of like hot paper. Not really a burning smell, but not normal. What should have been a quick stop at Milwaukee to pick up more passengers ended up with everyone getting off the plane and maintenance trying to find the origin of the smell. They never found anything wrong, but what should have been a 15 minute stop took almost 3 hours. I'm really, really glad we didn't have any ressies or other plans our first evening. It's bad enough dealing with travel problems, but missing reservations and having to shuffle around plans makes it even worse! On the plus side, we were treated to a gorgeous Florida sunset before we landed.



    After a smooth ride on ME to Pop, we found out they didn't have any King bed rooms available for that night, so we opted for a double with a transfer the next day. The next morning we double-checked with guest services about the stuff we had in the fridge, I've got some meds that require refrigeration so they just said to leave everything in the fridge and they'd transfer it along with our luggage. Cool. Our grocery order was already there waiting for us - We Go Shop came through again with perfect selections and everything we asked for. Love those guys!

    February 5th, Sunday: We headed to Hollywood Studios at the ungodly hour of 8:05 due to the fact that we were about as excited as a couple of kids on Christmas morning. We were 3rd in line, hanging with our original Disney Bear (sorry Duffy) who's travels everywhere with us.



    Although rope drop was packed, the new procedure makes it much easier to arrive at TSMM without the prospect of being trampled to death, which could be a real vacation downer. Way to go DW execs!

    We did the usual "grab FP, ride" for TSMM, then decided to ride again because wait time showed 20 minutes. When we got in line I told Mike it looked closer to 30 - which it was. Not a big deal since we weren't really in a rush to do anything else except shows. By the time we got out our FP window was open and we grabbed a second set, then wandered off towards RnRC and ToT.

    Mike's got motion sickness, so I do the big stuff solo and he enjoys spending time as a homeless person sleeping on park benches. ToT was a walk-on. RnRC showed a 20 minute wait, so I decided to play the odds and use the regular line instead of Single Rider. I always choose the wrong option! 15 minutes later, I'm finally at a point where I can see the single rider line - which is empty. Doh! Oh well, Mike got a nice nap out of the deal.

    After another walk-on ride of ToT, we headed to the first Indy show - which was standing room only! Crazy how this show still packs 'em in after all these years.



    After this, we take in the Muppets, then The Great Movie Ride which was running the cowboy side that we'd never seen before. It was neat to see "Option 2", but I liked the gangster storyline better. After this it's off to our favorite show, Lights Motors Action. By this time it's pretty stinkin' hot and humid, and I'm starting to agree with Josh that this show needs seat backs and some better form of shade and air conditioning.


    Hey, look, a hovercar!

    Still, it's internal combustion engines, nitros, and awesome drifting skills at DW, so I'm not really going to complain. I REALLY like the removal of the stupid Herbie section and the addition of the much funnier Lightning McQueen skit.


    Awesome stealth Gremlin action here.

    After the show we head back to TSMM to use our FP's, we get through the first time, but the second time through are turned back just before loading as the ride breaks down (actually saw them letting people off and everyone walking the track back to the exit). On our way out they give us two "anytime" FP's good until the 15th - score! Oh wait, I'm supposed to get upset and demand an upgrade to GF, right? Dang, forgot that part!

    We hop over to DTD and wander around a bit, Mike finds this gold-digger who seems to take a shine to him:


    He's finally able to break free and we make our escape to Disney Quest, where we spend the evening re-living our teen years on Pac Man (the group game they have is really fun) and Pinball.

    Back to the room by 10pm, we're in bed by 11 with the alarm clock set for 6am and an Epcot rope-drop. I know, late night then early morning - but we don't have kids, so we can be stupid without involving youngsters in our disastrous planning decisions.

    Oh, where did we eat you ask? Lunch was chez Peanut Butter and Jelly, dinner was a fine al-dente pasta with canned sauce cooked in our hot pot which we brought from home.

  11. #11
    proud to keep the transportation forum the most civilized jilly7896's Avatar
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    Welcome back, Pam! Sorry you had a bad start with transportation, but it sounds like you had a great first day!

    Travel Consultant with Mayfair Travel
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    Sept 2010- CBR - Trip Report
    Sept 2011- POP - Trip Report


    1991-offsite * 2003-GKTW * 2007-ASMU * 2009-FW * 2010-CBR * 2011-POP * 2012-OKW, CR & offsite * 2013-Poly, BWI & DCL Fantasy
    2014- WL, DCL Magic, BWI, PBH & CSR * 2015- AKV, DCL Dream, DLH, GCH, RPR & DCL Fantasy * 2016- BWI, GCH, DLH, DCL Magic (Roy Disney Suite!)

  12. #12
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    Welcome back! We were there at the same time as you guys! We were at Universal on the 4th and then at Disney for the week

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    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Great write up and some fantastic pictures! Can't wait to hear...........the rest of the story. I didn't know they had King beds at Pop???

  14. #14
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    Thanks guys!

    Yes Dennis, they have some rooms with single king beds - used to be just the accessible rooms, now they've added more. I'm cool with queen beds, but a double is crazy small. I honestly think any family of 4 who is able to stay at a value resort in a regular double bed room without resorting to bloodshed by the end of a week should be given some sort of medal of honor.

  15. #15
    Senior Member nolarookie's Avatar
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    love the trip report so far!! I can't wait to hear the rest

    Brandi

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    Senior Member AmeliaPond's Avatar
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    We were at HS that day too. Which Lights Motors Action show was that? We were at the 1:20 show.

    Which section of the hotel were you in? We were in the 70's. I had a few room requests but when we arrived, I hadn't been given any of them. (4th floor, King bed, lake view.) But the girl at the desk was able to get me 4th floor and a 'sorta' lake view (I basically just didn't want to be facing a pool) in the end, thankfully. Last time (January 2010) we got all three room requests and we were in a preferred building but had paid the regular room rate. I figured we wouldn't be as lucky this time and sadly I was right. At home we sleep on a queen bed so a King is actually huge to me. We did okay in the Full because up until a couple years ago...that's what we slept on (I'd never go back to a full at home though.)
    ~ Jill

  17. #17
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    Jill, we were darned close to you -we were on the first floor in the 70's in room 6122. We had the same problem with requests this time, and we've always gotten all our requests before. Did it seem busier to you this year? It was interesting that they had some of the Cheer leading squads housed at Pop, I'd always heard that they didn't offer Pop for youth groups like that, they always stayed at the All Stars. Wondering if that's changed with Art of Animation opening soon?

    I think we went to the 1:20 show - I'm decently certain it wasn't the later one. I'm awful with remembering times!

    Sounds like we almost ran into you a bunch during the week!

  18. #18
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention our little “room switch incident” yesterday. Pop was supposed to take all our stuff from the double room and deposit it in our King room on Sunday, including the fridge which held my medication that requires refrigeration – we made sure bell services knew about it, and that the luggage pickup tags had that information on them. We arrived at our new room in the evening to find everything present and accounted for....except the refrigerator and my medicine. Ruh roh.

    I called housekeeping and they told me that anything that had been left in the other room's fridge would have been thrown out. Uh, yea, this is my cue to either pass out or start screaming. Being the kind and sweet soul I am, I do neither. I sic my DH on them (the one who went through SEAL training, the one who never backs down from a fight, yea, that one) and send him down to the front desk.

    After a bunch of crazy communications with:
    1. Lady from housekeeping who doesn't have correct information, makes things up as she goes along, and doesn't care.
    2. Awesome second dude from maintenance who brings us a fridge and goes on a search and destroy to find our original fridge.
    3. Awesome dude at Luggage Hold who finds our stuff and brings it to us.
    We are finally in possession of all our stuff again, and after thanking everyone profusely (except the stupid housekeeping lady who couldn't care less if I died from an asthma attack) we marvel at how many truly awesome people work at DW. Sure, there's always a few idiots in the bunch who are just bell tappers, but the greater majority really kick butt.

    So, on to Day 2, February 6th Monday: Epcot!

    We're up bright and early again, this time arriving at the bus stop about 8:15 after a breakfast of bagels and cream cheese (thanks Wegoshop!) and that stuff Disney likes to pass off as coffee.

    Although I miss the interaction with Mickey and pals at the opening ceremony, entering the park and simply strolling through to Soarin' is really nice.

    After grabbing FP's for Soarin' we wander around a bit – I know this is very anti-planner, but I have a hubby with Motion Sickness who is able to ride only 2 rides in Future World (Living with the Land and Spaceship Earth) so our mornings are sometimes strange. If I'm really jonesing for some thrills, I'll do MS, TT or Soarin, but usually I like to spend a few hours with Mike before leaving him to his park bench nap sessions.

    So, we head to Captain Eo. Yea. Really. We are the only two people in the theater until another couple sneaks in at the last second. Was it worth bringing back? Snore. Oh well, at least we can now cross it off our list of things we need to see once.


    The bear appreciated his own 3-D glasses. We usually make him watch without.

    Every year we visit DW, and every year I find myself taking fewer and fewer photos of Epcot. I mean, there's only so many angles you can shoot from to get a different perspective of a giant golf ball and a monorail, right? So, today I decided to become a duck photographer. That's right. Ducks. Josh is covering the flower angle already, and Craig has taken the “awesomely breathtaking” angle, so what's left for me? Ducks.






    Even some baby ducks. Oh, come on, you know you'd say awwwwww if you saw them walking down the sidewalk.



    This is my "where's Waldo" duck photo. Find the two ducks. Okay, I admit, not very difficult.



    This one is tougher, what the heck is growing from this tree? Pickles?

    We head in to World Showcase around noon, since Mike has this Lefse addiction he really should get help for. We check out clothing in Italy (they have some cool Ducati shirts), some of which seems to be poking fun at America's need to put warning labels and instructions on everything:

    Noted!

    We have a fun time wandering around, and I try my hand at the dancing waters bowl in China – which I can usually do with no trouble whatsoever, but this time I'm hit and miss – don't know if it's the new location or just my hands are more wrinkly that last year or what – anyway, I can only get a nice hum and a few little fountains towards the edges. Later in the week, I can't even get that much out of it. Grrr.


    "Give me some candy, I'll tell you the secret of the dancing water bowl"

    We watch the new (to us) acrobats, and a gree they're much better than the kids. The gal with the table is pretty amazing.

    I don't know why, but their outfits really bother me - the tights fit like "looses" and make the girls look like they've got elephant ankles.

    Heading back to the room about 5pm, we grab some dinner (Progresso soup, cottage cheese, yep we live high on the hog during vacation), then head back to Epcot for Illuminations which we watch in front of the Canadian Pavilion. I have yet to figure our favorite spot for this show – all of them seem just okay, and I keep thinking there's some holy grail of viewpoints that I'm missing out on??


    "Wanna-hock-a-lugie" Oh, wait, wrong park.

    Our return trip included some bad bus karma – a poor lady who didn't know how to drive her scooter and nearly jumped it off the side of the ramp, then everyone worked to get it back on track, and another lady in a scooter with a near-dead battery that wouldn't make it up the ramp (also requiring extra help). By that time another bus arrived so we hopped that one – unfortunately the driver must have been in some sort of competition to be the “World's Slowest Driver”. We were going 25 mph on World Drive, and she was slowing down for green lights so she'd miss them. It was insane.

    Arriving back at Pop, the first bus (with the two scooters) was parked and unloading, and we expected our bus driver to use the extra space that other drivers have used when their regular spot is filled, only to find that, for some reason only known to herself, she would rather pull up behind the first bus and WAIT until they had unloaded before slowly pulling to a stop and letting us OUT. Gah.

    This actually is just the beginning of our bad bus karma for the week – we also had an evening when 5 Epcot buses arrived at Pop without a single bus for MK. Really. I guess this is what I get for saying I really like the Disney bus service and rarely have problems!

  19. #19
    Senior Member AmeliaPond's Avatar
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    We were in 6435. Very close! Haha!

    Yeah...when we were there in 2010 we didn't see any tour or cheer groups at the hotel. This time we did. I did think the hotel seemed a bit busier during dinner and breakfast this time compared to last time.

    I wonder if our paths crossed on other days. My husband is writing a trip report here if you're interested (actual report starts on page 5). I have one in my blog with a million pictures so if you want to check that out, let me know. I'm curious if we made it into the background of each other's photos at all. I once saw myself in someone's Disneyland trip report...haha.

    Did we overlap at any other parks?
    Sunday 2/5 = Hollywood Studios/Magic Kingdom
    Monday 2/6 = Epcot/Magic Kingdom
    Tuesday 2/7 = Animal Kingdom/Epcot
    ~ Jill

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by pfalcioni View Post
    I forgot to mention our little “room switch incident” yesterday. Pop was supposed to take all our stuff from the double room and deposit it in our King room on Sunday, including the fridge which held my medication that requires refrigeration – we made sure bell services knew about it, and that the luggage pickup tags had that information on them. We arrived at our new room in the evening to find everything present and accounted for....except the refrigerator and my medicine. Ruh roh.

    I called housekeeping and they told me that anything that had been left in the other room's fridge would have been thrown out. Uh, yea, this is my cue to either pass out or start screaming. Being the kind and sweet soul I am, I do neither. I sic my DH on them (the one who went through SEAL training, the one who never backs down from a fight, yea, that one) and send him down to the front desk.

    After a bunch of crazy communications with:
    1. Lady from housekeeping who doesn't have correct information, makes things up as she goes along, and doesn't care.
    2. Awesome second dude from maintenance who brings us a fridge and goes on a search and destroy to find our original fridge.
    3. Awesome dude at Luggage Hold who finds our stuff and brings it to us.
    We are finally in possession of all our stuff again, and after thanking everyone profusely (except the stupid housekeeping lady who couldn't care less if I died from an asthma attack) we marvel at how many truly awesome people work at DW. Sure, there's always a few idiots in the bunch who are just bell tappers, but the greater majority really kick butt.
    When I read your original post, I immediately thought, "Uh oh. This is gonna end badly." Glad you were able to get things straightened out to your liking, though! Enjoying your report so far. :)

  21. #21
    Senior Member AmeliaPond's Avatar
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    We were at Epcot that day too! I have a picture of that same family of ducks taken at 12:05 pm - Click Here. How funny!

    I thought buses were worse this trip than previous trips.

    Also...what is the dancing water bowl?!
    ~ Jill

  22. #22
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    This is the dancing waters bowl:



    You rub your hands on the handles and it creates some sort of weird harmonic and the bowl "sings" and the water inside vibrates. If you're really good you can get the water to dance - little fountains spurt up from the edges and sometimes, if you're really good, from the middle.

    And I'll definitely have to look more closely at your pics, we were at HS on Sunday, Epcot Monday, and Animal Kingdom Tuesday!

    Oh, and our baby duck pics were taken at 12:41. We really were following each other around!

  23. #23
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    I LOVE Mike and the bear both wearing their glasses. You can never get enough ducks! Waiting for the rest of the report...

  24. #24
    Senior Member nolarookie's Avatar
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    Did the only other couple to watch Captain EO sit right next to you? That would've been funny.... Um excuse me are these seats taken?
    Brandi

  25. #25
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    Brandi, that would have creeped me out! Had that happen once during an evening swim at a hotel. We were the only ones in this huge pool, there were probably 100 lounge chairs scattered around, and this dude with a hairy back wearing really thick glasses came out and put his stuff on a chair right next to ours. Then proceeded to swim across this huge pool to the side we were on. If his intention was to get us to leave in a hurry, it worked.

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