Day Three: Magic Kingdom, Studios, Yachtsman Steakhouse

I woke up and headed for the bus for the Magic Kingdom, which took quite awhile to arrive for some reason.  When I arrived at the park, we still had 20-30 minutes before the opening show and I just sat quietly and watched people.  Folks were quite friendly, wishing me a Happy Birthday and making small talk.
The music hit, the park was opened and instead of rushing to a ride like I normally would I just sauntered into the park, got out of everyone’s way, and enjoyed a crossiant and chocolate milk at the bakery on Main Street.  After that, I walked into Adventureland and rode Pirates.  Sitting in the front row alone is cool.
I walked over to Frontierland and there was a PhotoPass guy by Splash Mountain, so I had him take my picture.  It turns out he is from Fairfield, Ohio which is a northern suburb of Cincy so we chatted for a few minutes before I started over towards the Haunted Mansion.  On the way, a man walked up to me and I could tell as he got closer he realized I wasn’t a cast member, but I was able to help him anyway.  I can’t remember what he asked me, but I did know the answer and his family was grateful.
I saw Frontierland Donald out for pictures so I got another photo taken.  Donald was looking over my lanyard pretty good and I was fearful because I didn’t have any Donald pins on . . . but my Annual Pass had his picture on it, so he was satisfied.
I walked on to Haunted Mansion and enjoyed that – it didn’t stop once, which is a rarity for me!  Then I went into Fantasyland and Peter Pan only had a 10 or 15 minute posted wait time, so I decided to wait.  Then I saw Phillharmagic and walked over to the bridge by Liberty Square to watch the Dream Along with Mickey show.  I knew it was time soon to check in for my flight (24 hours ahead of time on Southwest is crucial to get a good boarding position) and I was able to do it with my Nokia E71 phone.  I then walked over to the hub and got my picture taken in front of the castle and Partners statue.  The Photopass lady was wonderful and said that she had seen the new “Move It, Shake It, Celebrate It!” parade 6 times and she was very hopeful they didn’t come get her for her break before it was over.  She was right, it was infectious!
During the parade, I sat on a bench and watched people enjoying themselves dancing in the streets.  I looked over and saw a quasi-celebrity; Tara, the woman who had directed the Pirates and Princesses Party Parade (as chronicled on my OnDemand channel’s 10 minute episodes about a guy named Tristan trying out for the parade), was standing with some other management types watching the show.
After it was over, she noticed me and looked at my birthday pin and started making small talk.  I told her that I knew who she was and asked if she choreographed this parade, too.  She said she had directed it and seemed very humbled and embarrassed that I knew who she was.  She was truly a joy to talk to and I will treasure that moment as one of the best on my trip.
After the parade, I went to Pecos Bill’s for lunch and used my last remaining counter service credit there.  I was full and tired and headed out of the park and back to the room for a quick refresher before heading over the Studios.
I was in the room for maybe 90 minutes, took a brief nap, and woke up refreshed.  I got on the bus, which again took longer than it should have I thought, and made my way to the Studios.  I immediately headed for the Animation Building in search of more characters.  I’d never been in this building before and it was very nice!  I skipped the tour for now, and browsed the museum setup.  Bolt and his buddies were there, but I’ve not yet seen the movie so I bypassed him and headed over to Sorcerer Mickey for a picture.  Then, on my way out Mr. and Mrs. Incredible were just coming out so I got my picture made with them, but there was no Photopass person there so the cast member graciously took my picture.
I walked over to the American Idol show, went right into the theater and found a seat.  The show started about 10 minutes after I got there and it was very well done. The singers were above average, I thought, and I was very entertained by this whole thing.  I left the theater and walked over to Star Tours and rode for the first time in a long time.  I didn’t get motion sickness like I did sitting in the back row in Disneyland, so maybe that was the problem.
After this, I headed over to the Tower of Terror and walked right on it, as well.  It was fun and I had enough time to head back to Idol and line up for the next show.  I got to see the pre-show this time, too, which was fun, and I’m really impressed by the way this has been put together.  There were three different judges, whom I liked better.
I left the theater and decided I wanted to see at least part of the finale show before I had to head over to the Yacht Club, so I went and got my picture taken with the hat in the background and then I sat on a bench and waited.  The show finally came on to the big screen outside the theater and it was well produced.  I watched 3 or 4 of the 7 singers but decided I needed to go catch the boat.  There were only about 15 people standing outside the theater watching this, so I wonder if everyone just left at 7 or what happened.
I walked on to the boat and stood over to the Swan and Dolphin, and after folks disembarked I found a seat until the Yacht Club.  This is a nice hotel, but the lobby was full of conventioneer types and it felt too businessy for me.  I found the Yachtsman Steakhouse and checked in. I had to wait a bit before I was seated, but eventually I was taken to my table.  My waitress took her time coming to my seat and when she finally got there she was not all that friendly, which was a shame.  She was matter of fact and not rude, but she was not very personable.
I ordered the Porterhouse and fries and it was amazing, though not as good as the New York Strip from Le Cellier the day before.  I had the Banana Napoleon for dessert and it was great.  After I tipped the watiress, she brought me another dessert – a strawberry chocolate mouse, and it was quite yummy.
I caught the bus back to Downtown Disney and transferred to Pop Century. While on it, these three college kids were chatting and the girl sitting closest to me said she didn’t feel well all of a sudden.  I gave her a Pepto-Bismol and she was saying how generous I was; I told her I just didn’t want to get puke
d on.  I made friends with these folks and enjoyed the trip back to the resort.
I packed all my stuff and went to bed, knowing I had to leave the next morning. 😦

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