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Trip Report Treat Yo Self! (within reason) LIVE-ish! **COMPLETE**

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
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Day 4- Rhino O’clock

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Tour consisted of 14 people. Mostly couples. I was probably the youngest participant in our group. All CMs involved were super friendly and knowledgeable.

Walked offstage near the Safari and over to a minibus. Minibus took us to the rhino backstage area. 2 keepers took over the tour. Gave a lot of good information on rhinos in general and specifically about the ones at AK too.

It was made very clear before and during the tour that just how close you get to the rhinos depends on their mood which I totally get and respect.

One keeper talked some more while the 2nd tried to get rhino Kendi into petting position. She wasn’t feeling it. Keeper tried several things before remarking that today might not be a touch day. 😔
Then the keeper had one more idea- change out the rhinos! Kid rhino Kiami to the rescue! She was 5 years old and highly motivated by snacks (aren’t we all?).

You could see right away these rhinos had distinctly different personalities. Kiami was all about the snacks and attention.

We all went up in groups for a touch. I had previously heard their texture described as “like a hairy basketball”. That is pretty accurate. Very rough and thick but also bristle-y.

They showed us some other training things like how they signal for Kiami to open her mouth. Lastly they brought the first rhino Kendi back in the enclosure too. Kendi is the mom of Kiami. It was interesting to see the rhinos interact with each other.

I had always assumed that the AK animals were well taken care of. This tour just just really reinforced that. You could tell that all of the keepers truly cared for the rhinos and that the facilities and protocols were top notch.

Got back on the minibus, were driven back to the parking area and then walked back onstage.

Great tour. Very glad I booked it. Would highly recommend.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 4-afternoon

Back to Everest. Working now but super long line. Had another appointment soon so didn’t want to risk it. Did the Maharajah Trek and the Discovery Trails.

Then lunchtime for the 2nd treat yo self activity of the day. Tiffins for RoL dining package.
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This was the first time I ever ate in a restaurant with a waiter by myself. Wasn’t as weird as I imagined. I was in the corner of the main dining room with Jorge was my waiter. He was great. Made me feel very comfortable

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I started out with a Tempting Tigress. Excellent. The best drink I’ve had all week.

For an appetizer I took my waiter’s recommendation- the charred octopus. Very good. I had to keep telling myself not to think about how cute and smart octopi are. Sorry little guys- you’re tasty.

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For the main course I figured- go big or go home. Surf and turf. I come from a family of lobster lovers though I’ve never been sold. The previous time I gave it a serious try as an adult I didn’t like it but was told that wasn’t a ‘good’ lobster.

Well. I’m still waiting to try a good lobster. Or maybe lobster just isn’t for me. It was kind of chewy and didn’t have a lot of flavor.

The steak was great though. (Also the potatoes- but aren’t potatoes always great?)
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For dessert I did the Tiffins Trio. I didn’t take a picture mostly because by now there was a party seated next to me.

All three desserts were really good. I would rank them 1. chocolate ganache 2. Cheesecake 3. Guava mousse

Overall a great experience. I would come back here again.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 4- afternoon continued

After lunch I walked Gorilla Falls until it was time for my Kilimanjaro Safari FP.

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Very good safari driver. It was the hottest part of the afternoon so lot of the animals were smartly hiding in the shade.

Back to Everest again. Regular, FP and single rider lines all looked long. It was pretty hot out so I decided to skip Everest and use that multiple attraction FP for Dinosaur instead.

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(I’ll admit it. I like Dinoland U.S.A. Especially the campiness of it)

Then walked around Pandora until my FoP FP time. In full disclosure I have only seen 10 minutes of Avatar. In fuller disclosure I don’t plan on seeing anymore of it.

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The land looks neat. I had done the Na’vi River thing last trip. With many reservations about motion sickness I decided to try FoP this trip.

Review: 🤷🏻‍♀️It was good but I don’t understand waiting hours for it (as multiple people in my grouping stated they had done multiple times.

Motion sickness-wise. About at the level of Soaring for me. That dirt smell didn’t help.

Perhaps because I not an Avatar fan I thought all of the preshow stuff seemed especially contrived. I did think the ride system was well done.

I just wanted a little something to eat so I mobile ordered on my way to Flame Tree. My first time eating her but I’ve stopped by before with family.

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Fries with pulled pork and cheese. I love the seating area at Flame Tree. It was especially empty and beautiful that evening

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Next stop- crossing another thing off of my trip list- Dole Whip!
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Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 4: evening

I was supposed to be to the dining package seating for RoL at 6:30.

At 6:10 I decided that I was going to try a Dole Whip.

Cut behind the Tree of Life.
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Oh hello tasty guy.

There was quite a line at Tamu Tamu. This gave me a lot of time to mull over my choice of Dole Whip. I went with a Dole Whip float with dark rum.

Glad I tried it. Probably won’t try it again. Can I still like Disney if I think these are just ok?

My drink/dessert and I booked it to the Nemo theatre area. No picture as I was on a mission. Got there about 6:45 No issue getting a seat.

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I really enjoyed RoL. Can’t wait for my nephew to see it in May. He’s not a big fan of loud noises so a fireworks-free show like that will be perfect for him.

After RoL I made my way back to Pandora.

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Even prettier at night. A little tricky to navigate with crowds and darkness.

Got right on a combined bus for PORS/FQ. FQ was the first stop. I then checked into hotel #2.

My suitcase arrived safely from POP. I never did get a room ready text for either hotel and I didn’t get the email for POFQ until 7:30pm.

Check in went fine. My CM Rich was super chatty and goofy which was fun and would have been more fun if I wasn’t so tired

I had booked a poolview only because the standard wasn’t available. What did I get?...
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A corner poolview

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And river view!

Very nice room. After a through Clorox wiping it was time to relax. DH and I watched Brooklyn 99 together from our respective hotels (he’s at a conference) and then I showered and went to bed
 
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Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 4 Wrap Up:

Day 4 Bonus:

(Me talking to DH in the evening, recapping the day and my guilt about the octopi)

DH: They’re so smart they can do puzzles and unscrew jars, right?

BES: Yeah. But I’m trying to focus on how this one wasn’t as smart because he got caught.

DH: Too soon! Too soon!

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Fancy pigeon from AK.

Hamburgers: 0
Boozes: 2
New attractions: RoL, FoP, Rhino Tour
New food places: Tiffins, Flame Tree
Song of the day: Doug Judy’s song to Rosa from Brooklyn 99

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Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I can’t beli how blue the sky is in some of your pictures! Gorgeous 🙂
Thanks. The weather has been fantastic! The high tomorrow at home is 24*F. 😩🥶 the transition back is going to be tough.

I am loving your report! You definitely get some mileage in everyday!
Thanks! DH and I walk a lot (weather permitting) at home. I’m finding I’m putting in more miles here solo than on a family trip.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 5: morning

Woke up on my own, before my alarm. Sadly retrieved my Tragical Express envelope from the door. Leisurely got ready and went down to the POFQ food court.
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Room view in the daylight

First impression-POP has a better laid out food court and seating area.

Waited a while in the bakery line. And I got a cinnamon roll. It was worth cream cheese molasses or cream cheese maple. It’s not that I don’t remember which. The screen menu and the physical tiny sign in the case said different things. Regardless it was delicious. Also it was free. The lady behind me in line treated me to it as she was trying get rid of 15 snack credits.

I walked to Riverside and hopped on a bus there. I love walking along that river.

I do like that the moderate resorts have covered bus stops but i also like having the corrals in the values. Makes for a more orderly early rush.

Today I was back at Epcot.

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My earliest FP started 10:45 so I just walked around for a while. Grabbed some coffee from the Canadian Joffreys. It was great and the staff were all really friendly. Got to use my AP discount for the first time.

Walked around WS to France. Was amused/dismayed at the number of katiebugs that were not pleased that all of WS wasn’t open. As one of my former coworkers said during a staff meeting: “👏🏻 Reading 👏🏻 is 👏🏻 fundamental. “

(I can totally understand why someone would be confused about 1/2 the park not being open yet but every time there’s a a problem easily solved by reading I think of that coworker quote. Yes- she did the claps too 😂)

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In France. It cracked me up.

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Also in France. Loved the easel.

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This was the only time in my trip that a sight line bummed me out. Perhaps it will look better later?

Eventually made my way back to Future World and rode JII. I don’t remember the original ride but do have fond memories of the light tunnel and the original Imageworks.

Next was my FP for Soarin’. It was my first time with Soarin’ around the world. I liked it. I also liked that they kept Rob Riggle*.

I had just a little time before my next activity and I needed a little something to eat. I booked it back to one of the closest festival food booths to get sometimes I spotted on my morning meandering.

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Chocolate stout and chocolate peanut butter pretzel crunch. Both were really good. I had my sunglasses on so at first I thought the sauce was orange in color and was surprised to find out it was strawberry flavored. It doesn’t look crunchy but there are plenty of crunchies inside.

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Mural at beginning of the day.

* correction- Patrick Warburton (thanks @Tuvalu )
 
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Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 5: afternoon
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Oooh. My first Mr. Nasty of the trip. That’s what my SIL calls them. I think they are adorable though.

My next scheduled thing was the Behind the Seeds Tour. Our tour guide was great. I want to say her name was Madeline... but for sure she was a senior at BYU studying environmental science.

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The tour was really neat. Got to see and hear about some cool plant stuff. Got to eat a Disney grown cucumber slice too.

This plant, Stanley, has a special trick.

Before touch:
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After touch:
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We got to feed some of the aquaculture tilapia too.

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If you like science or gardening I think you’d like this tour.

On the tour got this pic from my mom who was kind enough to watch doggo while my husband was at the conference.
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She looks comfortable. A little too comfortable. 😂
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 5: afternoon

Back to WS In search of food and to check out some of the countries that I hadn’t fully explore yet.
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Canada- $4.45 for a coffee crisp? I’m glad I have other sources. And no Canadian smarties?!? No ketchup chips?!? I would be outraged but I have too much Canadian blood to actual get outraged about much. In fact I’m sorry that I even looked for them. 😉

Lunch at Tangerine Cafe. So so good. Got the lamb/chicken combo platter.
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And for context my one reservation about trying this is that I have access to a lot of great middle eastern/Mediterranean food at home. Only regret- not ordering more tabbouleh.

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Morocco was just a pretty during the day. Loved the colors and design patterns.

Off to America for beer! This was a MI milk stout. The guy at the register was confused about it being on the menu. The CM at pick up said it was a hidden gem and she was right. Superb. Way better than the earlier stout.
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Next I did the American Adventure show for the very first time. I really liked it. I thought the show mechanics were really good and the show was surprisingly uplifting. ‘Merica!! Yeah!!

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Italy fish may haunt your dreams tonight. Sorry.

Stopped by Germany for a $900 cuckoo clock.
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Just kidding! It was for caramel corn. So good. I somehow managed to stop myself from eating it all to bring some back to DH.

The Jeweled Dragons were performing as I walked past China. Stopped to watch. Really neat.

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Disney was kind enough to make a statue commemorating doggo and her ball.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 5: evening

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Mural at the end of the day.

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One last thing before I left Epcot. I watched the Pixar shorts in the Magic Eye Theatre. All three shorts were great. Loved that they used the theatre’s special capabilities to enhance the shorts.

Don’t know how often they change the films currently one of the three playing is “Piper” one of my favs.
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I got back on a bus- to PORS. Yeah. I know where I’m staying. Had a tasty chicken flatbread and walked back to FQ.

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A sneaky camouflage Mr. Nasty on a ceiling in a stairwell.

Rested in my room a bit and decided it was time to take full advantage of being at FQ. Beignet time! No line and I took mine outside to enjoy with coffee.

I am sad to say that I don’t care for the new beignets. I remember the pillow-shaped thinner ones being a lot better. Sigh. The Mickey shaped ones just aren’t the same. Good news for my butt I suppose.

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Showered (mostly to clean all of the powdered sugar off) and off to bed.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 5 Wrap Up:

I’ll say this now so I don’t forget- my favorite thing about POFQ is that lobby smell. When I checked in I thought it was just a good smelling lady around but when I smelled it today I realized that it was just the POFQ smell. I definitely walked through the lobby more than logistically necessary just to keep smelling it.

Hamburgers: 0
Boozes: 2
New attractions: Behind the Seeds Tour, American Adventure, Pixar shorts
New places: 0
Song of the day: One Little Spark
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 6 morning.

Very leisurely morning. Got up a bit later than I planned. Got ready and packed up. Did my walk of shame down to luggage services and stored my bag.

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Got some kid’s french toast. Perfect portion. Loved the grapes and water too. I may never order and adult breakfast again.

Hopped on a bus to MK. That’s my favorite park to end on.

Security and band scan was the quickest of the trip. The pass holder line was longer than the regular.

Passed by the Dapper Dans. They had just finished though. Adventureland was my first stop but as I entered the Hub there was some sort of Mainstreet USA dancer performance so I stopped to watch. Neat.

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First stop was the Enchanted Tiki Room. My dad thinks we’ve done it before but I don’t remember it at all. I’m counting it as an new experience. I really enjoyed it.

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Barnstormer next as a FP. For what it is I like it. I don’t think I’d ever want to wait a long time for it though.

Off to Tomorrowland for a final time this trip. Rode CoP, not for the first time but perhaps the first time as adult. I really liked the positive take on the future and change/progress.

Next up another spin on Buzz. Managed to beat my non-existent seat mate but my score was nothing exciting.

Got some coffee and although I wasn’t super hungry I figured it was now or never. Time for a Cheshire Cat Tail.

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Delicious! I hope these are still around in May. I would describe it as a mix between a croissant and a warm gooey chocolate chip cookie.
 

Back!Elbow!Shoulders!

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Day 6 midday-ish

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Another trip to HM. The initial CM was much better than my first visit. He did a good balance of being spooky but also giving clear directions.

We did hold in the ante room for a sec before going into the stretching room.

As soon as we entered the anteroom a kid started freaking out. He seemed genuinely distressed.

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The stretching room didn’t help. More panicked screaming. “I want to get out. I don’t want to do this” It made my heart hurt a little to heard this. Luckily after the stretching room the kid and a parent exited. I’m so glad they didn’t force him to ride.

On a happier note- this trip I noticed the shadow on the ground in the beginning at the empty piano. Nice touch!

As I was exiting HM I saw that it was a perfect time to ride the Liberty Belle. Another WDW first for me.

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While on steamboat I managed to book another FP for my final ride of the trip.

One final ride on my favorite flying pachyderm- Dumbo! I loved the old Dumbo but I love the double Dumbo even more.
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You might have noticed today’s pictures are a lot cloudier. It was quite a bit cooler and windier than the rest of my trip too. By now it was flirting with a sprinkle.

Time to head back to the bus. Almost time. I wanted to check one more spot for the only souvenir that I wanted.

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Success! I knew the Emporium wouldn’t let me down. Got one of the new reusable bags too. Very cute and sturdy.

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Actually yes. I will see you real soon 😉 Thanks for the reminder Mickey.
 
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