Monday, September 29, 2008
Today, Steve & Liz met some friends over at the Animal Kingdom (AK). Darrell, D-Tag and me decided to sleep in a little and meet up with everyone for lunch in the AK at the Flametree BBQ. We arrived a few minutes early and walked down to the Expedition Everest Gift Shop to look around. I took my “must” yeti pictures of Darrell.
Lunch at the Flametree was great. The food was good. The company was good. The seating was exceptional. To look at it from the front, you think it was going to be a hunt to find anywhere to sit much less getting 8 people to sit together. Looking closer, you notice there is a pathway that leads behind the Flametree into a maze of paths and sitting areas. We found plenty of sitting with the most amazing view of Expedition Everest in the background.
After lunch, it was off to Epcot. We all went for a fast pass for Soarin’ and then went our separate ways. Darrell, D-Tag and me cruised around the Land. After that, we noticed the clouds were getting dark. I wanted to try the free Disney Visa Character Meet & Greet at Innovations West, and headed in that direction. The bad news was line was long and took awhile to get through. The good news was it was poring outside. At least we were in out of the rain.
The Meet & Greet was pretty awesome. Your party gets a private audience with 2 Disney characters. What they won’t tell you in advance is which characters are behind the blue curtain. When our turn came, we were pleasantly surprised to see Mickey, Minnie and Goofy waiting for us. There were hugs all around. We took individual shots and group shots. It was great to be able to pose and play without the pressure of someone giving you the “get a move on it” look. D-Tag picked-out a great shot of him with all three characters and Darrell and I did the same. A free 5X7 is a great souvenir. I think we are going to check it out on Friday too!
The rain wasn’t stopping so we darted across to Innovations East to the Mouse Gears gift shop. We looked around and played with the potato heads.
After that time killer, it was time to ride Soarin’. Soarin’ is wonderfully relaxing ride. As we were leaving, we saw Steve, Liz and there party boarding the ride. We waited for everyone at the exit to re-group.
Since it was raining and D-Tag and I needed to pick-up our free photos, we decided to take the bus to the Boardwalk resort rather than walking back to France. Well, unbeknown to us, there is no bus to Boardwalk. We re-entered Epcot and walked over to Boardwalk. We arrived at Spoodles 40 minutes late and wet! The dinner was good but the noise level was crazy. It was louder than Chef Mickey’s. We couldn’t believe it.
After dinner, we Quickly scampered through Epcot hoping to get to the bus back to the Pop before Illuminations was over. I think we barely made it. Luckily our bus was not packed and it was a fun ride home singing ‘YMCA’ complete with arm letters!
Since we were back to the resort at a decent hour, Liz, Steve, Darrell and me decided to go for a swim. All I can say is that we laughed and laughed and laughed! It was a great way to end the night.
Some random Day 3 photos. There is always time for funny hats and Baloo!