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Trip Report It's Two, Two, TWO Trips in One! *COMPLETED*

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#64

Tuesday, con't

Woody and I got to the bus stop just as the bus was pulling in. One other family climbed aboard with us and the six of us ended up having the bus to ourselves on the short ride to AK. It was a pleasant spring night and we took our time walking through the Oasis and Discovery Island.

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This picture frame will reappear in a future post. ;)
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Our first FP.....which was unnecessary since there was no standby line....was here:
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Woody rides this for me. He dislikes the jerky movements of the Time Rover and the loud volume of the attraction. Oh and he rarely keeps his eyes open after our vehicle exits the "toaster."

"I don't even know where the camera is since I always have my eyes closed," said Woody.

Proof:
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Okay, my finger pointing at Woody is a bit off. At least I am looking in the right direction, unlike my difficulty with the camera at Space Mountain. (Feel free to insert mocking comment, @lostpro9het.)

At least we got the stomach-jostling out of the way before dinner. I suggested Flame Tree BBQ, solely from the generous portion of deliciousness Em and I had last month. I ordered the chicken, ribs and pulled pork combo platter for us to share, with a side of fries.

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Though it is hard to tell from the picture, the portion size of the meats was much smaller than my previous order. The ribs were tiny and the chicken piece did not have much chicken. Additionally, the meats were dry and overdone. :( Lunch had tasted so much fresher than dinner ~ maybe the meats had been sitting out too long?

We chose a table that overlooked the reflection pond, thinking it would be peaceful.
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It wasn't. For whatever reason, music was being played through nearby speakers at ear-splitting volume. There was no live performance going on; this was a soundtrack. We'd just about finished our meal when the music inexplicably stopped. And then we got the tranquility we had sought.

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Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#65
Our next FP was for the Safari. After my disappointing experience with Em last summer on a "twilight" safari, I did not have high hopes to see many animals. And encountering a crowded FP queue did not raise the bar any!

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"Fast" pass or "Medium" pass? You be the judge.

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Finally time to board our jeep!
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Was all the waiting worth it? Oh my goodness, YES!! It was one of my best safaris ever! So many active animals in plain view. (Except for the Mandrills....has anyone ever seen these monkeys? I never have.)

Giraffes are my #1 fave.
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We saw this rhino RUN!!! I mean, fast! I was thankful he slowed down so I could take a picture. I have never seen a rhino run and have always been skeptical when the guide says how fast a rhino can run. Now I'm a believer!
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Adolescent elephant.
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Though the lion was off hiding, the females were awake.
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Woody and I were happy explorers. :)
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#67
We leisurely strolled towards Asia. The Tree of Life looked gorgeous in the waning sunlight.

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But was it real sunlight? Or artificial illumination coming from this projector? (Likely used for the Tree of Life "Awakenings".)
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We glanced over at the Rivers of Light theater and noticed that though it was only 8 pm, guests were being seated for the 9:15 pm show.

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Might as well scan our bands and find a seat!
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#69
Woody and I climbed down to the second row in the fastpass section. I wondered if the view of the water projections would be as good (or better) from the Asia side as they were from the Dinoland side (where Em and I had sat with our dining package in February.)

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How did we pass the time? We watched a duck build a nest for the eggs she had laid. It was fascinating. She would leave for a bit (not venturing too far) and return with mulch to add to the nest. Periodically she would sit atop the eggs, often standing up to change positions. I wish these shots were better!

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The head of the duck is just above and to the right of the orange flower.

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Though we didn't have a good view of her once darkness fell, the pre-show started and captured our attention. Soon Rivers of Light began.

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(See @sheriffwoody's trip report for pictures 1,000x better than mine!)

Woody said he really liked the show. I did too, though I did not think the projections were as clear from the Asia side. Em and I had seen the Jungle Book show from this side last summer and I remember the projections being very poor. Not sure if that was coincidence or if Dinoland has the better sight lines.

We began the long trek out of the park. AK was now closed.
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#71
It took about 25 minutes to walk from the theater to the All Star bus stop. The queue was mobbed and we were disheartened to see that all 3 All Stars would be sharing a bus. This could take a while.

Or not. We watched a bus pull into the gate while a second bus (which had followed it) pulled alongside bus #1. Bus #1 had to load an ECV. As the driver began the tedious process of preparing to load, guests were instructed to board bus #2. When the ECV was loaded, guests were given the choice to board bus #2 (which was almost full) or bus #1. The queue line emptied dramatically when both buses were full and pulled away.

Woody and I did not make either bus but we were close to the front of the line assuring we'd get a seat on the next bus. Another ECV arrived at the waiting area. This could take a while.

Or not. Five minutes later, two more All Star buses arrived and positioned themselves the same way we'd witnessed earlier. As bus #1 prepared for the ECV load, we boarded bus #2. Our bus completely filled and pulled away just as Bus #1 finished securing the ECV....evidence of the amount of time it takes to load a scooter!

Woody and I stopped in the oddly-quiet food court for a couple of chocolate chip cookies before heading to our room.

And yes, @ajrwdwgirl, we did see this ~
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:p :) :D :geek: :joyfull:
 

Jae99

Well-Known Member
#72
It took about 25 minutes to walk from the theater to the All Star bus stop. The queue was mobbed and we were disheartened to see that all 3 All Stars would be sharing a bus. This could take a while.

Or not. We watched a bus pull into the gate while a second bus (which had followed it) pulled alongside bus #1. Bus #1 had to load an ECV. As the driver began the tedious process of preparing to load, guests were instructed to board bus #2. When the ECV was loaded, guests were given the choice to board bus #2 (which was almost full) or bus #1. The queue line emptied dramatically when both buses were full and pulled away.

Woody and I did not make either bus but we were close to the front of the line assuring we'd get a seat on the next bus. Another ECV arrived at the waiting area. This could take a while.

Or not. Five minutes later, two more All Star buses arrived and positioned themselves the same way we'd witnessed earlier. As bus #1 prepared for the ECV load, we boarded bus #2. Our bus completely filled and pulled away just as Bus #1 finished securing the ECV....evidence of the amount of time it takes to load a scooter!

Woody and I stopped in the oddly-quiet food court for a couple of chocolate chip cookies before heading to our room.

And yes, @ajrwdwgirl, we did see this ~
View attachment 205689

:p :) :D :geek: :joyfull:
I am glad to see the bussing is still top notch for All Star Music. We have stayed at ASM on our two previous trips and again on our upcoming December trip and have found (contrary to popular belief) that the wait times for buses has always been minimal (never more than the 20 minutes Disney suggests).

I am happy to see another @Tuvalu trip report is starting. They are one of the greatest things a person can find on these forums. Always entertaining and completely honest about both the good and bad that can and will happen during everyone's vacation to WDW.
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#74
Wednesday, May 3

We awakened refreshed and ready to start a full Disney day! The sun was shining, the birds were singing.....well, you get the picture!

We entered the food court at what I would consider a peak breakfast time and there was no chaos. There seemed to be enough food service workers behind the counters and enough cashiers to ensure short waits. There were plenty of available tables and the noise level ~ it wasn't noisy at all. So opposite my dining experiences at Everything Pop!

Both Woody and I ordered the kids strawberry waffles. Filling and a good value.
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We packed up upon our return to our room. Today was the move to resort #2. Though I had picked All Star Music for an inexpensive one night stay, we agreed we could have stayed longer. The room and its location was top-notch, the resort was very quiet and the bus service gets two thumbs up! The next time I need to select a value resort I will likely choose All Star Music over Pop Century. (And, for what it's worth, there were groups of dancers staying at ASMu ~ they did not bother us in the least!)

Once we got to Melody Hall I ordered an Uber and the driver arrived in less than a minute! He was a Disney CM (Imagineer, short films) who moonlights as an Uber driver. He and his wife own chickens and his Uber job pays for their upkeep!

Can anyone guess where we were dropped off?

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(C'mon, I'm Tuvalu....it was time for me to come home!)

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We've seen this waterfall before......
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But we would not be staying in my namesake longhouse.

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From a value resort to club level at a deluxe ~ we are equal opportunity guests. :)

We checked in and learned our room wasn't ready (no surprise) and that I would be texted when it was. (And it actually worked this time! I got the text at 1 pm.) We made our way to the bus stop.

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There will be no bonus points for a correct guess as to our destination. ;) :joyfull:
 

Big Hair

Well-Known Member
#75
Wednesday, May 3

We awakened refreshed and ready to start a full Disney day! The sun was shining, the birds were singing.....well, you get the picture!

We entered the food court at what I would consider a peak breakfast time and there was no chaos. There seemed to be enough food service workers behind the counters and enough cashiers to ensure short waits. There were plenty of available tables and the noise level ~ it wasn't noisy at all. So opposite my dining experiences at Everything Pop!

Both Woody and I ordered the kids strawberry waffles. Filling and a good value.
View attachment 205695

We packed up upon our return to our room. Today was the move to resort #2. Though I had picked All Star Music for an inexpensive one night stay, we agreed we could have stayed longer. The room and its location was top-notch, the resort was very quiet and the bus service gets two thumbs up! The next time I need to select a value resort I will likely choose All Star Music over Pop Century. (And, for what it's worth, there were groups of dancers staying at ASMu ~ they did not bother us in the least!)

Once we got to Melody Hall I ordered an Uber and the driver arrived in less than a minute! He was a Disney CM (Imagineer, short films) who moonlights as an Uber driver. He and his wife own chickens and his Uber job pays for their upkeep!

Can anyone guess where we were dropped off?

View attachment 205705
(C'mon, I'm Tuvalu....it was time for me to come home!)

View attachment 205706

We've seen this waterfall before......
View attachment 205707

But we would not be staying in my namesake longhouse.

View attachment 205699

View attachment 205700

View attachment 205698

From a value resort to club level at a deluxe ~ we are equal opportunity guests. :)

We checked in and learned our room wasn't ready (no surprise) and that I would be texted when it was. (And it actually worked this time! I got the text at 1 pm.) We made our way to the bus stop.

View attachment 205703

View attachment 205704

There will be no bonus points for a correct guess as to our destination. ;) :joyfull:
Is that Em? I get so confused in the Tuvalu twlight zone. The Poly is my favorite resort. I even added not enough points on my DVC for it just to say it was one of my home resorts. Also, I would be guaranteed a night or 2 stay no matter what. Oh to be rich and to be able to stay in a bungalow!
 

ajrwdwgirl

Well-Known Member
#76
It took about 25 minutes to walk from the theater to the All Star bus stop. The queue was mobbed and we were disheartened to see that all 3 All Stars would be sharing a bus. This could take a while.

Or not. We watched a bus pull into the gate while a second bus (which had followed it) pulled alongside bus #1. Bus #1 had to load an ECV. As the driver began the tedious process of preparing to load, guests were instructed to board bus #2. When the ECV was loaded, guests were given the choice to board bus #2 (which was almost full) or bus #1. The queue line emptied dramatically when both buses were full and pulled away.

Woody and I did not make either bus but we were close to the front of the line assuring we'd get a seat on the next bus. Another ECV arrived at the waiting area. This could take a while.

Or not. Five minutes later, two more All Star buses arrived and positioned themselves the same way we'd witnessed earlier. As bus #1 prepared for the ECV load, we boarded bus #2. Our bus completely filled and pulled away just as Bus #1 finished securing the ECV....evidence of the amount of time it takes to load a scooter!

Woody and I stopped in the oddly-quiet food court for a couple of chocolate chip cookies before heading to our room.

And yes, @ajrwdwgirl, we did see this ~
View attachment 205689

:p :) :D :geek: :joyfull:
I'm glad you found the Goofy at the Music, I thought it was a nice detail.
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Original Poster
#77
I am glad to see the bussing is still top notch for All Star Music. We have stayed at ASM on our two previous trips and again on our upcoming December trip and have found (contrary to popular belief) that the wait times for buses has always been minimal (never more than the 20 minutes Disney suggests).

I am happy to see another @Tuvalu trip report is starting. They are one of the greatest things a person can find on these forums. Always entertaining and completely honest about both the good and bad that can and will happen during everyone's vacation to WDW.
Thank you for your kind words. I'm confident you will enjoy your next stay at All Star Music! :happy:

Back when AK closed at 5 we would get in the Safari line right before closing. Less people meant fewer vehicles and longer safaris, and once a rhino charging our vehicle! Some of the best safaris we have had. Now there are so many vehicles that the safaris often seem rushed.
Wow, a rhino charging your vehicle must have been scary!

Is that Em? I get so confused in the Tuvalu twlight zone. The Poly is my favorite resort. I even added not enough points on my DVC for it just to say it was one of my home resorts. Also, I would be guaranteed a night or 2 stay no matter what. Oh to be rich and to be able to stay in a bungalow!
Yes that was Em circa 1999.
@lostpro9het can fill you in on what it is like to spend a night in a Poly bungalow. :cool:

I'm glad you found the Goofy at the Music, I thought it was a nice detail.
Me too!!
 

Big Hair

Well-Known Member
#79
lostpro9het, I got goosebumps as I read about your good fortune in your trip report about the bungalow upgrade. I kept reading and had to force myself to stop on page 4. Things to do so I will finish it later. Maybe someday I will get that phone call! Thanks Tuvalu.