Today was EPCOT day! And it was a great one.
More Monorail troubles, however. Knowing that we couldn’t get out of our hotel using the Monorail until 8:30 (we learned that yesterday), we left early to take a bus to the Ticket and Transportation center where we could catch the other Monorail that goes to EPCOT. We got there at 8:30 only to find THAT Monorail closed too, with a sign stating it doesn’t open until 9:00. We had to wait almost half an hour for a SRO bus to EPCOT. *sigh* I write this having had not 20 minutes ago a conversation with a Front Desk rep. When we got back to our room tonight there was a message light on the phone. Disney had read the letter I wrote yesterday and it got results! [Yes, I’m “that guy,” the one who writes letters when he feels customer service could be better. More on that in another blog post soon.] I don’t know if they will change the web site as I requested, but it turns out there is a timetable at the front desk which details the daily schedule for the Monorail, and it’s different almost every day! That would have been nice to know before. The chap I spoke with was very nice–even sympathetic. But that doesn’t change the fact that Disney’s own transportation system seems stacked against the patron who wants to actually BE at any of the parks when they open! We’d have been better off calling a local cab, if they even allow them on the property. But forewarned is forearmed. Tomorrow will be better, now that I have this new information!
Enough negativity. Today “felt” better than yesterday. We weren’t rushed and saw almost everything we wanted to. “Soarin'” was the only thing we didn’t get to, and none of us really cared. Here’s the rundown of how today’s itinerary ended up: Breakfast at Chef Mickey’s, Bus to EPCOT, Spaceship Earth, Mission: SPACE, Living With The Land, The Seas with Nemo & Friends, Turtle Talk with Crush, Lunch at Coral Reef Restaurant, Captain EO; then a tour around the lake of the World Showcase pavilions, including the “O Canada!” cinema 360 movie, the France movie, Voices of Liberty (America), a snack at the Liberty Inn (after which I helped a pollster troubleshoot her tablet which wasn’t working), Reflections of China (also cinema 360), Dinner at the Mexican Pavilion, and the evening capped off by the fantastic “Illuminations: Reflections of Earth” light show and fireworks display.
Some notes: Turtle Talk with Crush was hilarious and probably rather underrated. It uses the decades-old gimmick of a real person who can see the room (but who can’t be seen) voicing the surfer dude turtle from “Finding Nemo,” but what was really amazing is that he also seemed to be able to control the turtles animation, including lip movement. It was like a digital marionette and for an I.T. guy, it was impressive to watch. The entire “Sea” exhibit is incredible. The aquarium is so huge, the globe of Spaceship Earth could fit inside it! Did you know it’s illegal to touch a manatee in the wild? (It’s OK if they touch you, however. I checked.) Captain EO…I had never seen it. I’m not sure I care now that I have. 🙂 The “O Canada” movie has been updated since I was last here. Martin Short now hosts and narrates. Dinner at the Mexican Pavilion was amazing. I love the “outside inside” ambiance of that pavilion! It is eternally twighlight/early evening in there. Very beautiful.
Someone on Facebook today asked about the weather. I’ll admit I thought it was lunacy to come here, of all places, in the middle of July. As a speaker at a conference I recently attended said, “Going to Disney World in July is like going to the surface of the sun, and then going to the DMV they have there.” But we spend almost no time outside! All of the buildings are air conditioned, as are all of the rides. IF a line is long enough to snake outside of a building, you aren’t outside for very long. Even the walk around World Showcase wasn’t bad, as we were constantly ducking in and out of stores.
While in between rides, I discovered that Boar’s Head had noticed my Instagram post from Saturday. I have been asked to call their customer service line to discuss the matter with them. I’ll try and make time for that tomorrow. If not, definitely on Thursday while we are waiting at the airport!