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Trip Report Clappy Clap.....Welcome Back!! The Many "World Firsts" TR

Hello all & welcome!! I'm so happy to finally be able to do another TR!! It feels like forever since my last one--probably b/c it has been(at least that's the way I feel)!! So, I don't want to dwell on the negative b/c let's face it, we've all had a crappy year. 2020 has not been kind to us. But, along with the obvious I had 3 relatives pass within 3 months of each other. Then I knew I was losing my job of almost 28 years in July. We had a Disney trip booked in May that never happened. E rescheduled for June(I couldn't b/c of work) but we all know what happened there--access denied. I knew I wouldn't be able to go until August so she & J booked for then. Since I no longer had an existing reservation she figured she would add me on to her's. Little did we know that nothing would be that simple....

I'll fill you in on the drama as we go along....

WHEN: Tuesday, August 11th - Tuesday, August 18th

WHERE: Saratoga Springs(Spoiler--we really ended up enjoying our stay there. Of course, it's not our beloved Riverside but we agreed it had kind of the same "vibe". Being on the Sassagoula kind of helped with that also.)
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THE DRAMA THAT WENT ALONG WITH IT:

E & J may have had a reservation but there was no room at the inn for me. E purposely got a 1 bedroom villa & thought it would be easy to add me to the reservation. Yeah, that wasn't happening. They were not accepting any modifications to existing reservations. It was getting down to the wire. She was able to make park reservations & I still couldn't be added on. Finally, all's well that ends well. After many weeks of trying she was able to add me on & I was able to get the same parks. Never fear though, as a few of my magic friends know I had a "Plan B" ready as a backup but fortunately didn't have to go that route.
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Then there were the many flight changes Southwest kept imposing on us. Here was one they did for me that was particularly scary. What happened to Pittsburgh to Orlando? :oops: They had my return flight correct but that didn't mean anything b/c it didn't look like I'd be making it there to begin with!!
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The loss of my job was weighing on me all year(I've known since January). Here's my desk during my final days.
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The reason for the dates was I knew I would be done with my job by then. I figured I'd take a few weeks off. One week to get situated then the next week to go to Disney. After that I would come back and search for work. Sounds like the perfect plan, right?
While still employed the new company taking over was encouraging us to apply. I did but didn't think it would really go anywhere for a number of reasons. Lo & behold they made me an offer on July 30th & asked me if I could give them an answer the next day. They were planning on reopening the store August 16th--while I would be away!! I broke the news that I would be away then. The company was very receptive to it when I explained why I had planned it the way I did. I also figured I should totally come clean & mentioned that I had an October trip booked also!! At this point I thought for sure they wouldn't want me. I called the next day & accepted their offer. Originally the plan was that I would start on the 19th when I got back. They called me on the 1st & asked me to start on the 3rd so I could get some training time in before I went away. I was fine with it & did it but was scrambling to pack etc.

I'm happy to be back in the place I've worked all my life that is so much a part of me. I'm still learning to do things the way the new company does them but overall I'm happy with the way things are going.

E & family were very sweet to give me a good luck present when I started my new(old:hilarious:) job.
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With not much time to pack I made sure to do it early. I actually packed 6 days before the trip. That's amazing for me!!
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I also made sure to bring a large supply of masks. They would get gross in a hurry!!
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THE TITLE: I have to start out by giving credit to @Rista1313!! I got the "Clappy Clap" part from a comment she had made in my last TR. So many magicians loved the saying & I thought it was quite catchy. The "Welcome Back" part is b/c I truly felt like we were really welcomed back by the CM's. They seemed genuinely happy to have guests there. Also, that song had been in my mind for quite some time. Has anyone seen the Applebee's commercial with that song in it? The first time I saw it I had tears in my eyes. It's very fitting & says a lot with little words. And, there were many "World Firsts" you'll see as we go along!!

WHO: I'm sure you've figured it out by now but we're back to the "same old" crew!! My sister E, my nephew J & myself, Patti!!
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No, I don't really care for pictures of my backside but I did think this was a neat picture--minus the castle colors. I'm still not a fan!!:cautious:


To all my friends out there reading, "Welcome Back"!!
 
Last edited:

Minnesota disney fan

Well-Known Member
Riverside, so, so glad you are back, and that your job situation worked out:). You are right, the airport looks kind of creepy, and things just don't look "right"!. I know you will have a great time at WDW:)
 

TheMouseFan

Well-Known Member
Yay! I'm late to the game, but I'm here now and can't wait to hear about your trip! Congrats on the job! And I agree with J, too much salt on those pretzels!
 

riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
I'm in! and first?
Yes--& very fitting since you're a part of this TR!!:)
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Yay for another new TR!
Thank you for your enthusiasm!!
I'm so glad you're here my friend!!
And fourth because I am THAT excited!!!
🤣🤣🤣
And I'm THAT excited that you're here!!
Count me in too!! Am I fourth or fifth?? It's hard to tell...
:hilarious::hilarious::hilarious:
Good one!! Glad you're here!!
That is a ton of salt on those pretzel rolls. I would have been scraping the salt off too.
I would have too!! It really was a bit much!!
So glad to see your TR! Also congratulations on the new old job!!!!
Thank you!! Maybe there was some pixie dust floating around for both of us!!
A new @riverside TR?

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Welcome Back!

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Love it!! Glad you're here my friend!! Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back....
Can't wait to hear all about your adventures!
The detailed version!! It was fun chatting with you in "live time"!!
Awesome! Congrats on getting your job back and somehow intuitively knowing you were by pre-planning two Disney trips!

I'm in!

And btw, @Darstarr I believe this is cheating.
Thank you!! Hey--I figured I should just get it all out in the open right away & I'm glad I did b/c I'm not eligible for vacation until July 2021!! But, my wheels have been turning--I get 2 days off a week. So, I think there will be a few times between now & then that I'll need Friday & Saturday then Sunday & Monday of the following week off!!🤔
Just had to do the math to see when your next trip was 😂 We’ve had a heck of a summer between The Rona and moving so I’ve been hypothetically planning some trips out...I need some magic even if it is covered with a mask! 😷
Not going to lie--the masks got very annoying at certain points but it's still better than not being there at all!!
Next trip is October 27th-November 3rd!!:)
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I am so glad to hear you got your job “back”. Hope the transition to the new company’s way of doing things hasn’t been too difficult.
Thank you!! It hasn't been too difficult but frustrating b/c things that I could order in before(b/c we were an independent) isn't as easy now(b/c it has to go through corporate & I'm still trying to pick up on that). The customers are used to me being able to do that & me saying that it will be there in a few days. Now it takes weeks. It's just something that we all have to get used to. I'm very thankful that I was able to get a job this quick!! And happy that I'm in my "comfort zone" so to speak. I'm not big on change!!
I'm in and can't wait to see what the rest of your trip has in store for you all!
Thank you!! I promise you lots of fun!!
I spy a toiletries bag from thirty-one gifts! ;)

Congratulations on the new job! I'm so glad it all worked out for you! And that you still get to go on your trips! That's pretty awesome!
Yes it is!! One of my sisters had a party once & I bought it. I love that bag!!

Thank you!! I'm salaried so I was afraid that it was going to be a huge issue so that's why I figured I should be upfront & open about it from the start!!
"Clappy Clap, Clappy Clap!!"
Yay!! Look what @Rista1313 started!!
Are those light purple flowers tulips? They're beautiful. I've never seen ruffley tulips. E did a great job on the bouquet. Good luck on the new, old job. I hope the new company is even better than the first!
I'm not sure what they are. The flowers were beautiful!! It's such a bummer that they don't last long though. Thank you!! The last company was awesome & I was so sad to see it end(even though there were, like anywhere, a lot of rough moments) but I'm looking forward to this new chapter!!
Yay! Can't wait to follow along!
Thank you!! Glad you're here & I hope you have a wonderful time!! Enjoy the low crowds!!
YAY! Feels so weird for @riverside to not be at Riverside! I am also so happy for you that you were able to get a job offer with the new company
Yes, it is very weird esp b/c there is no mention of an opening date. I'm sure it won't be for awhile☹ But the way E & I are looking at it as it's forcing us to try new places that we normally wouldn't have!!

Thank you!! It has helped that I know the building/equipment/customers etc. It has made things a bit easier!!
Yay! I'm feeling very spoiled now that there are riverside, fractal, Tuvalu, ajrwdwgirl, Darstarr & k8einwdw TR's to follow along with all at the same time!!! Y'all are seriously making up for lost time!
I've been dying to go back & couldn't wait!! That is so kind of you to say!! I feel honored that you put me in a category with all those fine TR writers!!😍
I'm in too!!! And I also agree that it's great to be reading trip reports again! I don't get anything done, but I have a smile on my face while it's happening :joyfull:
Thank you!! You can always put things off & do them later--we all deserve to smile more than ever!!
And a clappy clap to you too! So happy you're back!!!
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Thank you--I'm so happy to be back & so happy that you're here!!
Riverside, so, so glad you are back, and that your job situation worked out:). You are right, the airport looks kind of creepy, and things just don't look "right"!. I know you will have a great time at WDW:)
Thank you for both!! I'm thankful for a few bright spots in these crazy times!!
It was very creepy. I don't care for crowds but without them it does feel like something is "missing" & that includes WDW!!
Yay for a new report!! So glad you were able to go. Also very happy for you for your new (old) job!!
Thank you!! It's funny b/c that's what everyone keeps saying--my new/old job!!
What a roller-coaster! I am so excited to see you back home, then so sad about your job and then so happy about your new job! Can't wait for the rest!
Yes--this year has been one heck of a roller-coaster for sure!! Thank you!!
I’m in and not too terribly late!
Not at all!! Glad you're here as I know you've been quite busy these days!! I hope all is still going good!!
Yay! I'm late to the game, but I'm here now and can't wait to hear about your trip! Congrats on the job! And I agree with J, too much salt on those pretzels!
Not late at all--just getting started!! Thank you--it hit me the other day that I probably have 20 more years to work(hopefully a little less)!!
That was waaaay too much salt!! Even though E took the salt off that was still his excuse for not eating them all. Somehow though he managed to still eat his Dunkin Donut!!
 

riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

We went to Dunkin Donuts to get drinks for the plane since they are only serving water now. J(who could barely eat his salty pretzels) just had to have a donut. E went to check the stroller in while he & I looked for a car.
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While he was looking I noticed that my nails matched the pink on the bag almost perfectly.
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See the pilot there? He was so kind. While J & I were walking to the gate he was also and started talking to us. He told J he'd see him onboard. J asked me who he was & when I told him he was the pilot he was so amazed that we talked to him. He was excited to tell E that he met him!!
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They said there were either 54 or 56 people on the flight(I can't remember which one).
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E & J did family boarding. I forgot to check in 24 hours prior to the flight & didn't remember until 6 hours later. I still ended up with B1. I knew the flight was going to be empty for sure then!
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Out of Pittsburgh we go!!
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I still couldn't get over the emptiness.
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While on the plane E received the "room ready" text. We brought up the map to see where we were but our heads were spinning. SSR is pretty big!!
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One of the flight attendants thanked J for "reading" the safety instructions!! 🤣 :hilarious:
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Not trying to point anyone out but(I'm sure you can see who it was) there was a woman on the flight that was complaining to the flight attendant that there were people sitting around her. Not in her row but in front of her, behind her & across from her. What did she expect--she picked the third row to sit in. "Move then" is what I was thinking. The flight attendant explained that it's open seating & people have the right to sit where they want. She wasn't having it so the flight attendant told her she would get a supervisor for her. She simmered down & said not to.:rolleyes:

No surprise as to what I watched during the flight!!
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Minnesota disney fan

Well-Known Member
Looking at your flight pictures, I am getting less and less afraid to travel by plane. It seems they are doing all they can.
I always brought wipes with me to clean up the tray, armrests, etc. I can't help but think that the airlines are doing a good job keeping the planes as clean as they can now. I hope they keep it up when all goes back to normal.
Loving your report, and J is so cute reading the flight instructions. I bet he was the only one on the plane doing so:)
 

riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

At 3:38 we were on our second "monorail" ride of the trip!!
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I'm pretty sure we were the only ones!!
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Welcome Back!!
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We went to pick up our luggage which was waiting for us when we got there. I really do miss that service though.
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Whoa!! What's going on here? Pretty much everything looked to be open in the airport so I was shocked that this wasn't!!
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Just like Pittsburgh, Orlando was very empty also.
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I was so happy to see this!!
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You can't tell from my pictures but there was NOT. ONE. OTHER. PERSON. THERE.
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It was nice yet bizarre. I felt like I was in The Twilight Zone.
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riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
Looking at your flight pictures, I am getting less and less afraid to travel by plane. It seems they are doing all they can.
I always brought wipes with me to clean up the tray, armrests, etc. I can't help but think that the airlines are doing a good job keeping the planes as clean as they can now. I hope they keep it up when all goes back to normal.
Loving your report, and J is so cute reading the flight instructions. I bet he was the only one on the plane doing so:)
Personally, I wasn't afraid in the least. A few days before our trip Southwest announced that they would no longer be wiping down the plane between each flight. To us it was no big deal. We just brought our own wipes & did it ourselves. Before the flight even took off they came around with a garbage bag for all those who had wiped down their area so they could dispose of the wipes. I believe they still clean them at the end of the day though. I have no problem doing it myself(that way I know it's done right;)).

Thank you!! J has been "reading" them for years every time he gets on a plane. It's hysterical!! I would bet that you're right--I know I wasn't looking at them!!
I'm not making fun, but goggles? What are the goggles supposed to do? Maybe I'm behind on safety protocols. :bored:
I'm glad you said it, not me!! But, I agree:cautious: To each their own, I always say & if that makes someone feel more comfortable than more power to them but I just didn't get it. It's not like the CDC or WHO has ever said to wear them. They just tell you not to touch your eyes. What really irritated me was how she wanted everyone to clear out around her. None of us were having an issue so if she was then she should have moved. Truth of the matter is that she was acting like she deserved her own section of the plane & the people around her were all beneath her.
 

riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

There were 2 other groups on the ME when we got on. I was anxious to see if any modifications were made to the video.
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What video?? There was a brief snipit of it in regards to the safety part. Otherwise, it was all about social distancing & hand washing. And that part only lasted a few minutes.
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I was a bit disappointed. I thought they would have done a new video but hopefully this will all be short term & we can go back to the original soon!!
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Clappy Clap!!! We're Back!!!
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We drove past AoA & J got excited. He reminded us that we stayed there last time.
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Not sure how this picture turned out like it did but we passed by Pop Century next.
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The Skyliner was up & running!!
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Everyone got off at Caribbean Beach.
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It was very quiet there.
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J loved this Figment bus!!
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Zipitidoda

Well-Known Member
I'm glad you said it, not me!! But, I agree:cautious: To each their own, I always say & if that makes someone feel more comfortable than more power to them but I just didn't get it. It's not like the CDC or WHO has ever said to wear them. They just tell you not to touch your eyes. What really irritated me was how she wanted everyone to clear out around her. None of us were having an issue so if she was then she should have moved. Truth of the matter is that she was acting like she deserved her own section of the plane & the people around her were all beneath her.

Unless she was traveling due to an emergency I say if your that worried then maybe you shouldn't be traveling.

just seems.......(enter your own opinion here, I'll keep mine to myself)

~phew! where'd that come from. Sorry. Getting back into my Disney happy place.

 

riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

In no time at all we were arriving at SSR!!
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This reminded me of the entrance to POR.
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I had been here once before to do a DVC presentation but I never explored the grounds.
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The golf course.
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Other than the CM's there was not a single person around.
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Then I noticed the lady in the background.
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A CM helped with our luggage & said he would take us to our room.
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I was grateful for the ride. It would not have been fun dragging all that luggage & trying to figure out where we were going at the same time!!
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riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

We departed the main area rather quickly.
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I was doing my best to follow which way we were going but I was getting confused.
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Once we had our bearings we realized that we weren't really that far from the main building.
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Skies were looking a little dark.
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A few days later E had to explain to J what the tees were all about.
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I noticed quite a few Disney buses but wasn't seeing any people.
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This bus stop, The Grandstand, was a stone's throw from our room.
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The CM told us to take the elevator to the third floor & he would meet us there.
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The more I looked at the resort the more I was thinking that it felt like POR to me!!
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riverside

Premium Member
Original Poster
TUESDAY, AUGUST 11TH

The moment we had been waiting for!! BTW--E had an issue--Access Denied!! Mine & J's bands worked though so she never bothered to get it fixed.
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Always have to take this picture--it takes me a day or so to remember the room number!!
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This entry area was great!! There was quite a bit of room there. It was the perfect place to put the stroller & not have to fold it up. The plus was that it was totally out of the way!!
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This seating area was nice.
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The living room area was huge. We definitely had more space than we would need for 3 people!!
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The kitchen area was nice also. I can see where this would really come in handy if you wanted to cook something. Me though, I don't cook!! I forgot to mention but E had ordered from Garden Grocer & we got that before we had made our way to the room.
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Self explanatory.
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The door to the left is where the "self explanatory" toilet was.
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The shower was nice & big but a bit awkward. First, you can't see it but the towel hook is to the right. So you physically have to step out of the shower & turn to your left to be able to reach the towel. Second, there was something odd about stepping into the shower. It felt awkward & was very slippery. Yes, I know it's a shower & it's going to be wet but something wasn't right. I heard E holler the one day. I told her I thought she fell in the shower & she said she almost did.
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This closet housed the sheet, top sheet & pillows for the pullout bed. The iron was in there also but that was of no concern to me, right @DisneyGigi? ;)
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