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  1. #1
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    Feb 2002
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    Default Ft Wilderness - Nov 1-8, Part 6.

    Nov 7th

    Another very nice morning - we got up a bit early, since we had to break camp and get ready to leave early the next day. The sun was out and after a leisurely breakfast we hooked up the truck and took down the banners and lights we'd decorated our campsite with. We'd done this enough times, and a half hour later we were ready to head over to the Magic Kingdom for the final day with everything set for early departure. Just dump and rinse the tanks in the morning, put the stinky slinky away, pull power and water, and... go.

    Sigh. 6 days at Disney almost over already? How did this happen?

    We headed out of the loop to catch the bus, but right as we got out of the loop we looked to the left and there were a trio of wild turkeys just hanging around. We almost expected them to start singing - and we wouldn't have been terribly surprised if they had!

    There were just a few 'must rides' at Magic Kingdom today - Haunted Mansion and It's a Small World. We had a late lunch-early dinner reservation at Cinderella's Royal Table, and we intended to work our way around to it through Adventureland and Liberty Square, just taking our time and enjoying the park. It really helps that we didn't feel rushed, or that we HAD to go all out to get to the attractions.

    As we approached the entrance, a Monorail roared overhead. I missed that sound. I'd have loved for us to take a Monorail ride over to Epcot and back, like we did with the Skyliner and ride in the front like my son and I did a long time back before they stopped that practice. (Anyone else notice that there was only the ONE collision? And then there was no riding up front again, ever. Now, you can't even get a ride to Epcot. Blasted Covid....)

    Once inside we stopped for a moment. The Dapper Dans were doing a show on the train station platform, and we laughed for a few minutes at the really bad jokes they were telling. Then we headed over to 'Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom' to get a starter pack. It seemed a kind of silly thing to do - but why not? We're just kids stuck in adult bodies after all - and we'd seen a video about it so thought we'd try it. (It was a bit of a shock to hear this week they're discontinuing it. It was a fun diversion!)

    We headed on into the park after getting our cards and swung left. Our first quest was to get a snack - and we ended stopping at the Sunshine Tree Terrace where we got some Dole Whip and an Orange Bird confection. That thing was so cute it was almost a shame to eat it. We got in line for the Enchanted Tiki Room and it was just like when I went through way too many years ago. I think there'd been some changes at one point to modernize it, but they rolled those back - and the current way it is suits me just fine. Not everything has to be modernized, does it?

    After the Tiki Room we got in the line for the Jungle Cruise. It was a long wait, about 95 minutes or so. It was Christmas themed at that point - and the jokes were just as corney as ever. It's nice to see that the cast members are carrying on 'hallowed' traditions.

    We thought about going on both the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse (which... wasn't that themed to Tarzan, and then shifted back?) and Pirates of the Caribbean, but neither really grabbed up and the Pirate line was about 120 minutes so we wandered on around.

    For a low-capacity day (due to Covid) the park seemed remarkably crowded. It's all due to social distancing and keeping the actual queue areas as empty as possible, I guess - but... well, it was also a Saturday so that was also a bit of the problem.

    While searching for the first Sorcerers of the MK stop, a Cavalcade passed through - the first of THREE we saw on that strip bordering the the empty Riverboard channel over the next hour and a half or so. We weren't in a hurry and just went back and forth, trying to 'defeat the Villain' - and eventually managed to do so while enjoying a Christmas cavalcade, a Princess cavalcade, and a Character cavalcade that had Clarabelle the Cow baking Christmas cookies. As her float passed, you got a good whiff of the baked goods, too! I really like the attention to detail that Disney puts into everything...

    We rounded Liberty Square towards Haunted Mansion, and the line there was quite long. We ducked into Peter Pan's Flight which was oddly almost a walkon, then discussed whether we wanted to go through It's A Small World. The line was long-ish so we decided to catch it later - then went to Mickey's Philharmagic. It was... um... slow. While in line we apparently got caught in a cleaning cycle, and it was about an hour before we managed to get seated, though the line didn't look long at all. We'd seen this when it first opened - and it was just as enjoyable this time through.

    Then it was time to head to our reservation. It wasn't far at all to the entrance, and we were quickly seated. (Finally, eating in the Castle after all these years!) The dinner was delicious, though the portions seemed a bit small... But that was fine - we still had the rest of the day to get through. We sat through two Princess Sightings and watched a number of children go quietly nuts.

    After dinner we headed to Tomorrowland. The Laugh Floor had been closed down for Covid, and Stitch's Great Escape has apparently closed for good. Space Ranger Spin was down temporarily - I'm sorry we missed that. But we got in line for Carousel of Progress - and I'm glad that hadn't changed since the last time we were there. It's a striking reminder that time passes and things change - even if we'd rather they didn't sometimes.

    After that, we set off across the park for Haunted Mansion. The queue was showing relatively short - and... it was, pretty much, in that the line was moving quickly. In the gathering gloom (an overcast moved in) I was able to get some good shots of the Mansion. I was really rather sad seeing the River drained for repair - and the queue wound through where the Riverboat entrance would have been.

    We stopped at Memento Mori afterward, my lovely bride was looking for a new clutch but didn't find one that suited her. Then we headed on back for the last ride of the day - It's A Small World... and I was shocked when she took a look at it and went 'You know, with the façade up covering the front, I'm just not feeling like staying in line for it. Let's go on Space Mountain."

    Okay, you don't have to tell ME twice! It's pretty much my favorite ride, but we haven't been on it in a long time. We trudged over there, and the queue was quite short. It wasn't quite a walk-on, but maybe 20 minutes? And then we were going through the loading queue, into the car - and off into the stars.

    Afterward we browsed through the Gift Shop (it's a state law, after all) - then headed out of Tomorrowland. I've always loved the way this area looks at night - to me it exemplified the future, all clean and shining.

    We stopped for a while to watch the Castle's changing appearance. Whoever came up with the idea of projecting decorations ought to be given a crown as King of The Imagineers. (A temporary thing - because there's ALWAYS some amazing new thing coming along!)

    One final drift through the gift shops, and a few more pins... (I'm fine. Really... Hardly any withdrawal at all... just ignore the twitching...) and it was back to Fort Wilderness.

    Walking through the darkness, back to our campsite just seems a perfect way to end the day. You can relax and unwind, then just sit outside for a bit until it's time to go to bed. It'd been a marvelous vacation.

    The next morning was overcast - kind of gray, kind of gloomy, kind of sad - and it was rather appropriate as we started the long drive home.

    She looked at me and said.... "Same time next year?"

    I got on-line and checked... then made a reservation.

    "Yep."
    July '66, Disneyland.
    Aug '73, Mar '82, Sep '97 - Before Mr. Boo..
    Feb '02 - With Mr. Boo, age 4
    Oct '03 - POR! Forget the sun, let it RAIN!
    In 2009? March for a day - EPCOT! July - Ft. Wilderness!
    In 2020? Ft. Wilderness, Nov. 1st through 8th.

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  4. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
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    Florida
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    Hopefully, next year will be more "normal" than this past year was!!

    As I recall, the treehouse in California was rethemed to Tarzan but not the Disney World one.

    Thanks for all your reports!!! And...only twelve more months before you can buy some more pins!!!
    Linda aka: Faline
    INTERCOT Staff: Vacation Planning,Trip Reports and Disney Camping
    faline@intercot.com

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