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Trip Report When can we do this again? A Fractal family Odyssey. *COMPLETED*

fractal

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Definition of odyssey:
  • : a long journey full of adventures

  • : a series of experiences that give knowledge or understanding to someone
Not too long ago I had a lot of doubt this trip would ever happen. The financial cost of higher education, the fact my wife Val wanted to go anywhere BUT Disney, the crazy and conflicting schedules of the kids, made the odds of keeping our 2-year WDW trip tradition a large long-shot. But maybe things do happen for a reason...

A great deal came our way and before we knew it we were on our way back to the World. Not without a major sacrifice however as my eldest daughter Alexandra had to miss the trip due to her schooling ( she graduates this Friday as an Registered Nurse!). She is a bit of a kindred spirit to me with a personality closer to mine than the other two, so I knew I would miss her dearly on the trip.

Here she is at Christmas with my Mom (Yia-Yia).



Speaking of Yia-yia; she will join us again at WDW! We had a great time with her on our 2013 trip at the Poly. We would meet up with her, my Sister Marina (here with me)...



and my two nieces; Courtney...




and Mia...



at the Yacht Club on the second leg of our journey. The first part of our trip took us to my in-law's (Al & Sue) who moved to Florida (Tampa - St. Pete area) last year. They would also join us at WDW!

Here they are from a 50th anniversary party we had for them last Winter...



It was early evening Thursday July 20th when we began our Odyssey. My good friend Wally picked us up to take us to the Baltimore (BWI) airport.



Excitement was building for our trip but the real Disney excitement would come later.

Sterg and Toni occupied the back seat. They were almost late for the pickup as they decided a last second Starbucks run was in order. Sterg ended up paying for that about an hour later as his bladder protested strongly.



Val was next to me and could barely contain her enthusiasm.




Not only was she not fully in favor of another Disney trip, she was (rightfully) concerned with the potential problems, complications, and stress of merging these 3 parts of the family together in the already chaotic environment of managing reservations, room assignments, getting to the parks, fastpasses and dinner plans. I had much of the same worries, which were also amplified by the fact Yia-Yia and Al would be using electric scooters during our time at the World. But hey, it's Disney, what could go wrong?
 
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fractal

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
It didn't take long before complications materialized as quickly as spirits in the Haunted Mansion. The strain of the large coffee began taking its toll on Sterg - right at the time we were stuck in traffic with nowhere to "go". He bravely proclaimed he would sweat it out until the airport but 30 minutes later and still 30 minutes away from BWI he was ready to burst. I asked Wally if he would mind if Sterg made use of an empty water bottle in his car...

"Sure, no problem. When you have to go..."

Toni pulled her blanket over her head and a few minutes later the smile returned to Sterg's face.

The traffic came to a near stop which gave us the next worry about making our flight ; that is until Val received a text that it was delayed from 8pm to 9:30pm. Another problem solved! But it created a new one as Al & Sue were scheduled to pick us up at the Tampa airport. Val called her Mom to keep her abreast of our new schedule.

Wally dropped us off and we promptly checked our bags and started the wait in the TSA line discussing where we would grab a bite to eat. As we approached the agent that checks your ID and boarding pass I caught a glimpse of Sterg furiously fidgeting with his wallet.

"Oh crap, I forgot my driver's license." He blurted out.

"What?" I said in true disbelief.

"I was going through my wallet to make it lighter for the trip and my license must have fell out..."

"Are you kidding me?" Val added.

He was not kidding. I had no idea how this was going to work out with TSA. He had to go with a special officer, answer a bunch of questions and do additional screening while we stood watching and helpless. Turns out he got through the line faster than we did.

Another text from Southwest. Flight now delayed until 10:30.

Well, plenty of time to eat (and drink?). We ate at the Diner in BWI which was actually very good. Things lightened up and we had several funny conversations.

Another text from Southwest. Flight back on time for 8pm. "What?!!" We were now boarding in 10 minutes! We scrambled to our gate but something didn't seem right to me. I checked and discovered they moved the gate for our flight! We grabbed our bags and ran to the new gate. We were there in time but a bit frazzled.



It was at this point I started to get the wrath of the rest of the crew. I completely forgot to check-in the night before at 8pm, only to do so after I woke wide-eyed from a dead sleep at 2am. All of our boarding passes had the dreaded "C" on them.

"Chris, how many times did I remind you to check-in at 8?" Val scolded.

"Daaaad. Why are you doing this to me? I don't want to sit alone." Toni added as if I was feeding her to wolves.

"Yo Pops, not cool." Mister "forgot his ID" piled on.

Well, somehow we all survived the flight despite being split up. Al and Sue were prompt on their pick up and 30 minutes later we were at their new home!

Coming up; things start to get better.
 
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MinnieM123

Well-Known Member
It didn't take long before complications materialized as quickly as spirits in the Haunted Mansion. The strain of the large coffee began taking its toll on Sterg - right at the time we were stuck in traffic with nowhere to "go". He bravely proclaimed he would sweat it out until the airport but 30 minutes later and still 30 minutes away from BWI he was ready to burst. I asked Wally if he would mind if Sterg made use of an empty water bottle in his car...

"Sure, no problem. When you have to go..."

Toni pulled her blanket over her head and a few minutes later the smile returned to Sterg's face.

The traffic came to a near stop which gave us the next worry about making our flight ; that is until Val received a text that it was delayed from 8pm to 9:30pm. Another problem solved! But it created a new one as Al & Sue were scheduled to pick us up at the Tampa airport. Val called her Mom to keep her abreast of our new schedule.

Wally dropped us off and we promptly checked our bags and started the wait in the TSA line discussing where we would grab a bite to eat. As we approached the agent that checks your ID and boarding pass I caught a glimpse of Sterg furiously fidgeting with his wallet.

"Oh crap, I forgot my driver's license." He blurted out.

"What?" I said in true disbelief.

"I was going through my wallet to make it lighter for the trip and my license must have fell out..."

"Are you kidding me?"
Val added.

He was not kidding. I had no idea how this was going to work out with TSA. He had to go with a special officer, answer a bunch of questions and do additional screening while we stood watching and helpless. Turns out he got through the line faster than we did.

Another text from Southwest. Flight now delayed until 10:30.

Well, plenty of time to eat (and drink?). We ate at the Dinner in BWI which was actually very good. Things lightened up and we had several funny conversations.

Another text from Southwest. Flight back on time for 8pm. "What?!!" There were boarding in 10 minutes. We scrambled to our gate but something didn't seem right to me. I checked and discovered they moved the gate for our flight! We grabbed our bags and ran to the new gate. We were there in time but a bit frazzled.



It was at this point a started to get the wrath of the rest of the crew. I completely forgot to check-in the night before at 8pm, only to do so after I woke wide-eyed from a dead sleep at 2am. All of our boarding passes had the dreaded "C" on them.

"Chris, how many times did I remind you to check-in at 8?" Val scolded.

"Daaaad. Why are you doing this to me? I don't want to sit alone."
Toni added as if I was feeding her to wolves.

"Yo Pops, not cool." Mister "forgot his ID" piled on.

Well, somehow we all survived the flight despite being split up. Al and Sue were prompt on their pick up and 30 minutes later we were at their new home!

Coming up; things start to get better.
. . . :cautious: Oh my . . . :D Looking forward to the next update! :joyfull:
 

gwhb75

Well-Known Member
It didn't take long before complications materialized as quickly as spirits in the Haunted Mansion. The strain of the large coffee began taking its toll on Sterg - right at the time we were stuck in traffic with nowhere to "go". He bravely proclaimed he would sweat it out until the airport but 30 minutes later and still 30 minutes away from BWI he was ready to burst. I asked Wally if he would mind if Sterg made use of an empty water bottle in his car...

"Sure, no problem. When you have to go..."

Toni pulled her blanket over her head and a few minutes later the smile returned to Sterg's face.

The traffic came to a near stop which gave us the next worry about making our flight ; that is until Val received a text that it was delayed from 8pm to 9:30pm. Another problem solved! But it created a new one as Al & Sue were scheduled to pick us up at the Tampa airport. Val called her Mom to keep her abreast of our new schedule.

Wally dropped us off and we promptly checked our bags and started the wait in the TSA line discussing where we would grab a bite to eat. As we approached the agent that checks your ID and boarding pass I caught a glimpse of Sterg furiously fidgeting with his wallet.

"Oh crap, I forgot my driver's license." He blurted out.

"What?" I said in true disbelief.

"I was going through my wallet to make it lighter for the trip and my license must have fell out..."

"Are you kidding me?"
Val added.

He was not kidding. I had no idea how this was going to work out with TSA. He had to go with a special officer, answer a bunch of questions and do additional screening while we stood watching and helpless. Turns out he got through the line faster than we did.

Another text from Southwest. Flight now delayed until 10:30.

Well, plenty of time to eat (and drink?). We ate at the Dinner in BWI which was actually very good. Things lightened up and we had several funny conversations.

Another text from Southwest. Flight back on time for 8pm. "What?!!" There were boarding in 10 minutes. We scrambled to our gate but something didn't seem right to me. I checked and discovered they moved the gate for our flight! We grabbed our bags and ran to the new gate. We were there in time but a bit frazzled.



It was at this point a started to get the wrath of the rest of the crew. I completely forgot to check-in the night before at 8pm, only to do so after I woke wide-eyed from a dead sleep at 2am. All of our boarding passes had the dreaded "C" on them.

"Chris, how many times did I remind you to check-in at 8?" Val scolded.

"Daaaad. Why are you doing this to me? I don't want to sit alone."
Toni added as if I was feeding her to wolves.

"Yo Pops, not cool." Mister "forgot his ID" piled on.

Well, somehow we all survived the flight despite being split up. Al and Sue were prompt on their pick up and 30 minutes later we were at their new home!

Coming up; things start to get better.
I feel your pain re: the boarding passes. I did that once before too. The mental scars from the abuse I took will say with me forever ;)
 

fractal

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
You know I'm following along :D
Thanks @Ciara !

Following along .
Good to have you @Mr Ferret 88

Drama before you even made it to Florida. Can't wait for the rest.:)
I can't say that was the end of the drama. :eek:

. . . :cautious: Oh my . . . :D Looking forward to the next update! :joyfull:
Thanks @MinnieM123 !

What a start to the trip! Looking forward to following along. Hopefully things settled down for the rest of the trip.
Yes and no... Thanks for following @Jae99 !

Indeed. :)

I feel your pain re: the boarding passes. I did that once before too. The mental scars from the abuse I took will say with me forever ;)
I'm glad I didn't have to go through that. Sterg just shrugged it off and thought it was hilarious that he got through security faster than we did.

Love your trip reports! Hope you guys had a great time once at WDW!
Thanks! We did have a great time...among some landmines.

Count me in !
Thanks @Luarenciaa !

I'm in! What a horrible start to the trip! Can't wait to hear about the rest of the trip and see your pics!
Thanks @TheMouseFan !

The trip hasn't even officially started yet and I can already tell it will be an entertaining one :hilarious:

Can't wait to read more!
Thanks @kaitertot5249 !

Following along. It sounds like the start of your trip was just a little stressful. It can only get better from here. Right?... Right?
Sure...right!

Thanks for following @DisneyJeff !



Sorta like the start of our trip, the start of this report has run into some "issues". My computer is giving me some fits (perhaps do to the 1,000 + high resolutions photos I'm trying to download?). :eek: Or is it the other way around?

So instead of posting an update this morning I spent too much time "fixing" my workstation. Hope to get an update up tonight.
 
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