Adult Dad/Daughter Trip Resort 2/21-2/27

Trip Report!

Background: my Dad (DF?) and I @BenF12400 did our first Daddy-Daughter trip in 2016. After a fun, but at points…interesting…trip in 2013 with our 4 person family we determined that Disney trips are better suited for the two of us (sorry not sorry Mom and brother). We are both type A planners, early risers and just work really well together. I only learned about RunDisney two years ago and had determined that a race would be my bucket list item. This time last year I noted that the Princess Weekend 10th anniversary happened to coincide with my 30th birthday and approximately 2 years since our last DD trip and therefore it’s fate, so we began planning.

Getting there: I fly and my Dad takes the auto train. He usually gets in on a Thursday around 10am and I try and take one of the first flights out of DCA to arrive around the same time. Since I knew we were going in February and there is always a chance of snow coupled with knowing I don’t do well waking up at 3am multiple days in a row (like I would have to for the Thurs 2/22 flight and the 2/23 5k) I decided to fly out Wednesday night and have a solo evening until meeting up with him at BC. The airport hotel was $300+ that Wednesday night and the value resorts were crazy cheap so I booked a night at All Stars Music.

Day of: After a super stressful couple of weeks at work and personal life I decided to same day change my JetBlue flight and left a few hours earlier which was SO WORTH IT. I was originally getting into MCO around 6pm and somehow thought I could easily make HEA. No way. So, I worked a couple of hours, took the metro to DCA, flew out around 12, landed at 2pm and got in line for DME (literally trains, planes and automobiles). It was quite a wait. As in…20 minutes waiting to board then sat on the bus for another 30, plus the 40 minute drive to the resort. If that had happened with my original flight I would never have made HEA.

In DISNEY(!!):I already had received my room ready text so I just went straight to the room to change and hit the pool for 45 minutes. I was in the Country building so it was a bit of a walk from the lobby, but my room was an easy distance from the second, more quiet pool. While lounging I decided to perfectly plan my evening adventures. I wasn’t sure what the bus situation was like at ASM so I added some travel padding, which was wise. I ultimately decided I wanted to go to the bar at California Grill, grab a cocktail or two, a small meal and stay for HEA. But before that I wanted to roam around GF, because to me that is the most magical place. So, I went back to the room, got myself ready and headed to the bus area to pick up a MK bus and waited. and waited. and waited. and waited. and realized there was no way I could stop at GF before CR. The bus finally came and I got off at MK, had to go through security then took the path to CR. I arrived to the lounge around 5:45pm.

I hadn’t been to CG in years and forgot how beautiful it is and how much of a “real” restaurant feel it is. As in, this could be a restaurant in DC…and people were actually “dressed up.” My DF always gives me sass for being overly dressed in Disney, so I was right at home. I sat at the bar, told the bartender- blanking on his name- “I want a cocktail, but nothing super sweet, what do you suggest?” So he made me a delicious Side Car. So good. Then he convinced me to get the Spicy Kazan Roll. He was so on the money. It is sushi with crab, shrimp and tuna with the rolls in a circle, then in the middle is a spicy sauce with scallops mixed in, so you scoop some spicy scallop sauce onto your roll and devour. Then I convinced the people around me to order it as well. My favorite part about CG is that it was a total scene. At one point a young, seemingly low key looking couple came in and the staff was simply crawling over each other to roll out the red carpet for these people. After watching the show for 20 minutes or so I finally asked the Bartender and he told me that they own a vineyard or something like that, and the woman’s last name is the name of the bottle they were drinking. Meanwhile, the bartender gets a call from downstairs alerting him that one of his regulars is coming up, so he scrambles to find two bar seats together, puts out the plate/ water display, throws napkins over the seats to save them, only to have 2 different people seat themselves instead. Then he has to ask them to move and I am really now thinking to myself “wow this is like DC.” In the span of 10 minutes he has 3 other groups of people try and sit in the napkin reserved seats so I order another glass of wine.

7:50pm rolls around, lights are dimmed and they start to prepare us for HEA. Then at 7:55pm the first magic of my trip happens: HEA. It was my first time seeing it and it was BEAUTIFUL. I think everyone needs to experience Cali Grill at least once and the bar/lounge area is such a good option. I believe they have the same menu and you don’t need a reservation, but you do need to get there before it fills up or they won’t let you up.

I have to cut it off here as I’m late for my 8pm dinner. More later-


continuing night 1:

After watching HEA I closed out and decided I wasn’t quite ready to head home and wanted to see the Electrical Water Pageant since this was the only night that would likely be possible. I hopped on the monorail…which was packed…and hopped off at Poly. I walked right out to the beach and the Pageant had just started. I simply love this. Great memories. I will be devastated if it ever goes away. I wasn’t feeling another drink, but if I was I would have stopped at Trader Sam’s. Instead I walked over to Grand Floridian. I really like the walk from Poly to GF. My Mom and I did it a few times during our Mom-Daughter Aug '16 trip and it’s really relaxing.

GF this time of night is actually my favorite. It’s oddly quiet in terms of people traffic…like the place shuts down, but the Orchestra was playing. Whenever we have stayed there or just visited during the day it is always crowded with folks and sometimes without anywhere to sit. Then, once night hits, it totally empties out. I wandered around a little, took in all of its splendor…as I said before, to me GF is so magical. When we were kids we always stayed at GF, then the family transferred us over to YC/BC. Remember when there were actual birds in the bird cages at GF?

I popped into Summer Lace with zero intention of buying anything. So naturally I was drawn to the dainty jewelry section and bought something. I have been wanting a small (dainty) piece of jewelry related to Disney…something that a person would have to look twice at to see it’s actually Disney. I thought that would be earrings until I saw these thin open bangles with mickey and Minnie on either side etched in rhinestones. With the sidecar and glass of wine in me I said let’s do it! Some $$ later and I still haven’t taken the bracelet off.

I started to get tired from my trains, planes, automobiles, busses, monorails, walks and called it a night. Called a Lyft to take me back to All Stars Music and was in bed within 15 minutes.

ASM: bed was uncomfortable. Really uncomfortable. The room itself was fine, but I don’t think I could be with more than 2 other people in there. Walls were SO thin. I had some unruly tweens outside my door yelling or something and I had to “you kids get off my lawn” them which was more like…opening my door and smiling. They scurried away. I must be scary looking in PJs sans make-up. Slept OK.

Overall…as a personal preference I don’t think I would stay at ASM again.

Half Day 1…Fin.


EDay 2: Let’s see how far I can get before heading to the Caps game.

I officially woke up around 9am, knowing this would be the latest I would sleep in the entire week. My Dad had texted me that they were delayed overnight (auto train) so he would be another hour and a half to two hours before entering into the world. I checked and responded to some work emails, got myself ready for the day, packed up my suitcase and headed to grab breakfast. I was genuinely excited to have breakfast at ASM because I knew it would be the only time I would get a Mickey Waffle. We were doing CL at BC and eat our breakfast (and sometimes second breakfast) there and they are sans Mickey Waffles. I scarfed down my delicious mini waffled and bacon, wandered around the shop at ASM and got a $5 bottle of water (I hate the taste of the faucet water ick) and some Rose Gold ears then sat outside with my suitcase waiting for my chauffeur to come. I called my DF no fewer than 3 times finding out his ETA…I was REALLLLLLY ready to hit the parks. He scolded me for not taking advantage of Epcot’s EMH that day and I reminded him that I was waking up at 3am the next day and I needed my sleep in day.

While waiting for him I chatted with some Disney Princess runners, one of which (correct grammar? idk) is actually a liner and recognized my liner pin on my bag. Then he arrived and went in the opposite direction of the circle, unable to turn around, so I sprinted over to him instead therefore blocking the magic kingdom busses from getting to their pick up destination while I attempted haul my overnight bag into his packed car. It was a great start. We recovered though, don’t worry. The people waiting in line for their MK bus? I doubt they recovered.

Off like a herd of turtles, we made our way to BC and got the room ready text! This was probably around 10:45am which was great! We got our stuff in the room, changed, I bossed my DF around to get ready faster, we needed to get to Epcot, he had to call the people who were in the process of removing flying squirrels from their attic at home, I tried to control my impatience and finally we were off! I am not sure of the squirrel status, maybe @BenF12400 can chime in.

We got into Epcot via International Gateway (ugh I love BC and how close it is to Epcot!!) and headed to our first FPP for Spaceship Earth. The FPP line was so long! The standby line was insane! I don’t think I have ever waited so long for SE in my life. My Dad asked “who are all these people? Don’t they have school? Don’t they have jobs?” “I have a job Dad.” This would not be the first time he said this during the trip. The FPP wait ended up being around 20 minutes. We gave our thanks to the Phoenicians, attempted to send our postcard home which didn’t work, as it does 50% of the time. We hopped on Nemo next and that’s when our TP failed a bit. The Land and Figment both had 40+ minute waits and we needed to do lunch and get to our FEA FPP so we decided we would come back to those another time. We did Tangierine Café for lunch which was divine-we split the chicken shawarma platter. Then we went over to FEA for our FPP. I like this ride but I feel like there are a few areas where they could have added more. There is one bit where I think it’s Olaf and Anna on the right and on the left is an entire blank wall for an entire scene. I think my DF liked it? This was his first time and my third. Our picture was horrible. I took my photo with the troll situation in the gift shop, as I have been doing for the past however many years. We decided it was time to head out of the part and over to the Expo to get my bib, but before we made it out I saw the Anna & Elsa meet and greet had a 10 minute wait and convinced my Dad to do it. It was cute, I don’t interact very well with the characters, I just feel awkward and laugh. I like watching the interactions with the little kids before us-it’s so darn cute. Hopefully one day…

The Expo. WOW. My first runDisney event. My first expo. I drove us over there because I didn’t feel like taking the bus. I have never been to ESPN Wide World of Sports, it is incredible!!! Ushered from building to building I finally got my bib, shirt and bag. My first ever Disney fail: I naïvely thought I could just pick up a runDisney mug or something. HA! HAAAAAAAA! Walked into that building, winded around the random corridors for multiple minutes only to come to a massive 45 minute long wait. Now I get what these people are talking about with the lines at the Expo. I was thinking the entire time “huh, no wait for my bib, no wait for my shirt, I’m good at this!” Any way Why they couldn’t tell you what the wait was when you first entered the building is beyond me. I guess get you in and show you glimpses of the merch so that you will stand in line for 45 and buy things. Needless to say, though a shopaholic, I didn’t need any rundisney stuff enough to warrant a 45 minute wait. I later found out that not only was there a line to get in, but there was an hour wait just to check out!

We got back to the hotel, showered and whatnot then decided to cancel our dinner reservation at Via Napoli and eat dinner at the CL instead. They had a great spread that night. I liked our decision. Plus we had just had a bday dinner at a Neapolitan pizza place a few days prior in Georgetown. After our early bird special dinner, we headed back out to Epcot to finish what we came for. The LAND. The Land is my favorite ride. I love it so very much. I love Behind the Seeds tour. It was dark this ride so I knew we would have to come back and check it out at day. We decided to call it a night after The Land because I had an early morning wake up for the 5k.



:joy: I think I would get along with your dad. This is what I say whenever I take a day off and see a lot of people out somewhere.