Actually the frustration sensation begins before I even get to the Magic Kingdom.
I left the apartment at 7:53 a.m. and parked at the Transportation & Ticket Center at 8:18. A perfectly normal 25-minute drive. My first mistake, though, was to take the resort monorail to the Magic Kingdom instead of the ferry.
Monorail Green cooled its heels at the TTC for about 8 minutes before leaving for the Polynesian, where it idled another 10 minutes. At the Grand Floridian, we sat there for a good 25 minutes listening to we-apologize-for-the-delay messages and ominous announcements about how we were waiting for switches to be set so that another train could be brought on line. You’d think that after 47 years they would have figured out how to do that without causing a major disturbance in The Force…
They finally told us that we could stay on board and continue waiting if we wanted to, but that buses were now available to take us to the Magic Kingdom if we’d like to “disembark” and proceed to the Grand Floridian’s bus stop.
Well, I had sat on Monorail Green long enough so I joined the exiting masses and retreated to the grandiose lobby of the Floridian. Wherefrom I descended to ground level where it “felt like” it was going to be a scorcher:
This was just twisted.
The purpose of coming out here was to peek at the bus stop, where there were major crowds, of course, so I decided to suck it up and just take the boat from the GF to the MK…
On my way out to the dock, I paused to capture this glimpse across Seven Seas Lagoon and to wipe away the combo of sunscreen and sweat that was already stinging my eyeballs.
It’s now 9:24 a.m. and the queue for the boat stretches back past Narcoossee’s.
We don’t make it on to that little boat, naturally, but thankfully the next one to come along is a much larger one, of the kind that usually only serve the Magic Kingdom-Wilderness Lodge-Ft Wilderness loops. The people in line next to me aren’t too happy, though, when I tell them that we’ll be going to the Polynesian before proceeding to the Magic Kingdom. (This is not my first time at the rodeo.)
But of course we all find it hilarious when we see Monorail Green departing the Grand Floridian heading out to the Magic Kingdom. “That’s the one I was on,” I say to my neighbors. “Yeah, us too,” they reply.
When we dock at the Magic Kingdom, we have to go through security again, even though we did that at the Trial and Tribulation Center. We had exited the secure zone when we got off the monorail at the Grand Floridian.
Thus it was 10:40 a.m. when I finally made it past the Passholder tapstyle and entered the Magic Kingdom, a mere two hours and 22 minutes after I had parked at the TTC.
So I missed my FastPass+ window for Splash Mountain, which was 9:20-10:20. But–the Mountain was down at that time so I received my alternate, which would let me either ride Splash via the FastPass+ at any time once it (if it) went back on line, or experience any other attraction (except for the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and Peter Pan’s Flight) at any time during the day. Nice.
Stopping in at Harmony Barber Shop I was able to be penciled in for 11 o’clock. This gave me a little time to wander through The Emporium, where the usual trio have been decked out in their seasonally patriotic finery.
No waiting at the barber shop when I return to undergo tonsorial treatment at the hands and clippers of the charming and efficient Diane.
On the way to Liberty Square for my Haunted Mansion FastPass+ (10:55-11:55), I take time to admire the out-of-my-price-range offerings of Crystal Arts.
Four Princesses: Cinderella, Aurora, Rapunzel, Snow White…
…and the classic assortment.
“Get mad, baby!”
After joining my fellow foolish mortals for the tour and reminding myself to bring my death certificate if I decide to join the 999 happy haunts of the Mansion, I report for my lunch reservation (12:15) at the Plaza Restaurant, where I get my usual table next to the kitchen door.
As I sip my iced tea and await the arrival of my salad, a citizen of Main Street with a strident, booming voice busts in to announce the selection of a lucky youngster as honorary mayor of Main Street.
During my enjoyment of the always delicious Strawberry Chicken Salad,
a second citizen enters to announce that the honored 100th guest of the restaurant today is Pathetic Smee himself. I humbly and gratefully accept this chocolate memento of the memorable moment.
After my meal, I spot the kind lady on Main Street as I head up to the railroad station.
From within said railroad station you will admire this view.
I decide not to take the train but to hoof it back up Main Street, staying in the airco of the shops on the east side for as long as I can.
In The Chapeau, the wall phone, whose cord to the ear piece had been cut and was just dangling there for many months, is now missing both the cord and ear piece.
So you still can’t pick it up to listen in on the party line. Harrumph.
Although they still call it The Main Street Cinema, it’s really just been an Art of Disney store for several years now. (To be fair, they still show a loop of cartoon shorts on the one remaining screen.)
This could enhance my apartment’s décor for a mere
A Stitch in Tiki
You can buy a lot of trouble for
There’s always somebody with a red umbrella trying to obstruct your view of the tuba player,
who doesn’t care.
If you don’t love the
you are dead inside.
FastPass+, 1:50-2:50 p.m.: The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.
Heffalumps and Woozles!
But Hooray! All ends well.
On my way to Splash Mountain, I think how waiting for the return of the Liberty Belle seems to be taking forever…
Hopefully the next shipment of freight will include a spelling book.
At 2:22 p.m., Splash Mountain’s FastPass+ line is short and my plunge into the Briar Patch is satisfactually refreshing.
But at 3:31 p.m., I’m gettin’ outta here…