Day 4, Part 1: First Day in the Magic Kingdom

OK! Day 4! Can you believe we aren’t even to the first day of the D23 Magic & Merriment event yet? This trip report is taking forEVER!

Today was our Magic Kingdom day, but first we had to check out of the BoardWalk and into the Beach Club Villas, which was appropriately (and blurrily!) decked out for Christmas…

The first unit they gave us turned out to be an “accessible” room, and I didn’t like it! I had Patrick take some reference pix while I called the front desk and asked to be moved.

Accessible shower

Lower kitchen counters

They found us another studio. I always get nostalgic for our honeymoon when we stay in these! I dunno why we take pictures, though, since they all look alike…

I have to say, checking into Beach Club Villas was kind of a letdown after the relative luxury of the BoardWalk Inn. We’ve been staying in the Disney Vacation Club units so long, we didn’t know what we were missing til we stayed in a real Deluxe hotel room.

The loneliest sink – where’s your mate, lil’ fella?

OK, this part isn’t much different.

Ho-hum view.

Judgement having been passed, we set out for the Magic Kingdom!

Yep – still there!


That morning we were scheduled to rendezvous with PassPorter author Cheryl Pendry. She and I worked together on PassPorter’s Guide to Walt Disney World for British Holidaymakers and Passporter’s Disney Vacation Club Guide but had only met twice—and that’s pretty impressive, considering she lives in England. It’s funny how the Disney parks bring people together, though: I’ve now seen her more times in the last two years than I’ve seen some of my friends in LA!

Sometimes I think cell phones actually make meeting up take waaaaaay longer than it used to back in the Dark Ages when people picked a landmark and a time and just met there. We played phone tag for 20 minutes as each party messaged the other to say “We’re just going on this ride – where are you?”

“We’re just going on Haunted Mansion…”


“And now we’re just sitting on the porch staring off into space…”


Finally we managed to both be in the same place at the same time….

….and it was not this place, but I’m throwing this shot in here for illustrative purposes….

Cheryl and her husband Mark very gamely agreed to go see The Hall of Presidents a second time because we hadn’t seen the new show yet.

Something Patrick must’ve liked…

We really enjoyed the new show – it’s compelling and moving and not too jingoistic (Cheryl and Mark begged to differ – tee hee!). But, I have to say, the Obama-matronic is darn creepy-looking.

“Dude, what happened to that guy?”

After that we decided to be dwarfed by a *massive* castle!

I like how it looks like the vines are climbing up the castle…

I also applaud whoever thought up the idea of printing images of the buildings on the tarps they use to hide renovations.

Does anybody else try to pry these out of the ceiling at the Snow White gift shop?

Mmmmm…..Sparkly….

So it turns out Mark is a HUGE Donald Duck fan, so we got to stand in line for a character meet ‘n’ greet for only the second time in our lives. Very exciting!

I guess Donald is dressed as a Christmas tree salesman, but I call it his “Floyd R Turbo” look…

After that a few members of our party took a pot-tea break…(ba-da-bump!)

Finally we had to leave for our date with Nathensey at the Plaza Restaurant, and Cheryl and Mark had to dash off to the Grand Floridian for high tea (unless that’s the Brits’ go-to excuse when they want to ditch Americans… hmmmm….).

On our way to the Plaza, I asked  Patrick to shoot some reference pix of the Swan Boat Landing wedding location.

Whatever you do, do NOT refer to the Swan Boat Landing as a “dumpy” ceremony location on a public message board, or you’ll instantly get an email from Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings!

They set the chairs up in the path leading out of the landing, facing the castle….



…which is over here.

And then we went here!


Meanwhile, Nathensey were (was?) making their way to the Plaza to meet us. Behold…

Patrick looooves these window displays. The ones at Disneyland are super old and off-model…

Ahoy there, mateys!

So… is it, like, Christmas or something…?




…And then they saw some obnoxious woman making loud demands at the Plaza hostess station…



…And then this crazy guy…




Even the hostess was excited!

Almost on cue, the moment we sat down, the mayor and his one-woman entourage showed up. They show up EVERY time we eat there (who knows – maybe they’re scheduled at 15-minute intervals, but I like to think they’re stalking us…)

He does *not* look happy to see us!


“Ha-ha.”


“Oh, Mr. Mayor. You’re so funny…”


“….Sooooo funny…”


“Laugh it up, Fuzzball…”


As usual, we were not picked as Family of the Day. However, when the mayor spotted Nathan snapping pictures, he asked him to take a photo of the Family of the Day meeting the Mayor with their camera. Little did they know, they were about to get the best shot of their entire trip!

And then Nathan took a picture of Patrick taking a picture of Nathan – figure THAT one out!

And THEN our milkshakes arrived!

Yes, that’s totally a peppermint milkshake in the front – I hope it was for me!


This is how you get that shot


I think we all got bacon-cheeseburgers…

Somehow Nathan missed the Festival of Sauce shot, but luckily we got one for you. Whew!

OK, I’m gonna wrap up this installment, but I will leave you this to contemplate:

Up next: 58 degrees, eh? Why, that’s just two degrees shy of WATER PARK WEATHER!

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2 Responses
  • Kaylin
    September 12, 2011

    i always try to pry those gems off the ceiling too!

    • lurkyloo
      September 12, 2011

      Free money, right?!!

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