Well, we had no wake-up call at all this morning. Of course, we were awake at 7:09.
Breakfast was going to be a counter service somewhere. We decided to check out one of the moderate resorts to see what they are like. Coronado Springs is close, and the pictures we've seen all look beautiful. We walk out to the bus and, yep, snap, the MGM bus was there. This was a woman driver, probably in her late 40s or 50s. Since it was early, there were only a couple of families on the bus. Again, we sat near the front, and I talked to the driver some. She was nice…it was funny because we had her for several other rides throughout the trip. We got to MGM at the Coronado Springs stop (though she was heading back to Pop). I think she radioed in that we were waiting, because 4 minutes later, and empty bus pulls up. Us and one other family hops on, and awwwaaaayyyyeeeee we go!
I've taken to talking to the bus drivers for some reason. They seem to appreciate the change and the break in the monotony. He mentioned about the cops on the resort and told of a speed trap that nailed a BUNCH of CMs at the MK toll booth yesterday.
Well, that explains what we saw there yesterday.
We do the rounds at Coronado until we get to the main lobby and hop off.
Definitely carries the southwest theme well!
We look around a bit and find the Pepper Market. The setup is definitely different there, though most of you probably know this already. They seat you and take a drink order (a counter service, remember). Then you get a ticket, and, as you get something, they stamp it. After you're done, you take the ticket to the registers, where they'll ring it up and add an automatic gratuity. We both got the breakfast platter. Typical counter service breakfast food, but the atmosphere was good.
We walk around a bit more and then head to the bus stops. The bus stops there are a bit different, too. The WDW buses also serve as the internal buses for Coronado, and there's only 1 bus stall by the lobby for all the buses – you have to make sure you're getting on the correct bus. We saw more than one family start to get on a bus and then realize it was going to a different park than they thought. After about 6 minutes, the MGM bus comes, and we're there just a few minutes later. We missed the opening by about 10 minutes, but we've seen it before on our last trip.
Now, this is our third time at WDW, and the previous 2 times had us at MGM fairly late in the vacation. To both of us, this is our least-favorite park of the 4. We are going to try hitting this park earlier and try to take in the atmosphere a little more. I've heard that the streetmosphere characters really add to the park, so we look for them upon entering.
We do assault a Photopass picture taker camera person, and we did get a couple of really good ones…too bad the link has expired…nyaahhhh!
We figured we'd be in the mad rush to get to RNR and ToT, but we were shocked to find a walk on to RNR. Seriously…it's only 2 minutes, and we're in the sound room.
(insert Wayne's World homage here)
Yeah, we like.
We head out of there and look at the wait for the Tower of Terror. Sheri said she'd ride it "once" just for me. It was listed as having a "13" minute wait. Cute. We hop in line and notice that there's a 4-5 year old girl that's in front of us who will likely be in the same elevator as us. She was saying that she was scared as soon as they got in the building. The CMs were doing very well "this elevator will take you to your doom…I mean your room!" The girl was near hysterics. Then we got on the ride, and she was beyond hysterics. Now I know some kids need some prodding for rides that they otherwise would not, but when the kid is screaming that she wants to go home (not off the ride, not out of MGM, she wanted to go back home), something is wrong, especially when the parents tell her to quiet down. Disney has the child swap option for a reason. The ride ended, and they asked her how she liked it. In between sobs, she said again that she wanted to go home.
We walked out, and we had about 40 minutes or so before Beauty and the Beast started. We hit the bathroom really quick, and I watched some of the streetmosphere characters (found 'em finally). This group was a couple of girls…one was dressed in green and pushing a duck on a stick.
We got in the theatre for the show and saw what I consider to be one of the highlights for MGM…Four For a Dollar (a.k.a. Return 2 Zero). I'm a huge fan of a cappella music! After they performed their three songs, I sat back and just relaxed. Sheri was about to deck the guy behind us for berating his wife. Then the musical started.
I think Sheri took enough pictures of it that, if you collate them all together and flip through it, you'll see the whole show animated for you. I'd comment on how nice some of the dancers' legs were, but Eric (SyracuseWolvrine) probably knows them.
We decided to make our way over to One Man's Dream. On our way, a CM in blue popped up next to us after seeing our Anniversary pins, congratulated us, and asked how many years. We talked for a minute before I realized he was a member of the famed "dream team." He then pulls out two slips of paper and gives them to us in honor of our celebrating our anniversary. They were Fastpasses for whatever ride we wanted to use them on!
We got to One Man's Dream (after a detour…I forgot to turn left at the Little Mermaid) and took the time to really go through it. We never realized the struggle that his family went through. We both really liked it and have an even greater appreciation for the Disney brothers.
After exiting the attraction, we looked for the Little Einsteins. We saw Leo and Annie, and Sheri commented that their heads weren't as big as she thought they would be (compared to some of the other characters). I think she was concerned they would freak Eric out (Eric the son, not Eric the CM, though he may just get freaked out by them too). We also saw Jojo and Kim Possible (nice abs). They also had characters from Meet the Robinsons in that animator's area. You have to admit that they are good at promoting their new things. One thing I noticed, however. The Mickey Mouse Clubhouse has been out on the Disney Channel for over a year, but I still see those characters all over the place at every park. Talk about overkill! (feel free to groan incessantly for this one…even I consider it bad, by my tastes).
Time for lunch! Now, the initial plan for today was to do MK in the morning and then MGM in the afternoon. We got so much of MK on day 2 that we decided to just go to MGM and take our time there. Still, we wanted to eat at Pecos Bill's for lunch. Sooooooooo…bus from MGM to the TTC and monorail over to MK. We got to Pecos Bill's, and I ordered while wifey found and defended a table. I brought the food and immediately knew I had the better job from the look on Sheri's face. "Everything okay?" I ask.
"Fine…just too much 'family drama' around me."
I looked around for screaming kids and/or pools of blood and found neither. She gave me an "I'll tell you later" look. I sent her to the fixin's bar, and then I headed up there when she got back. Apparently a family magical gathering was getting a little too gather-iffic (meaning they had seen juuuuuuust a bit too much of each other). The mother in a family of 4 was apparently in a shouting match with her father-in-law, and he ultimately told her in no uncertain terms to F-off in a voice that the Crystal Palace could have heard. The husband/son apparently was caught in the middle of it and played ping pong with his head back and forth between his wife and his father. This happened before I got there. While I was waiting for Sheri, the F-I-L comes back rather meekly and asks for his cigarettes. The D-I-L (civilly, I might add, as I had no knowledge of the fireworks that happened just prior to this) acquiesces, and all is well.
Moral of the story: Tobacco heals all wounds.
Part 2 can be found HERE.