Cruising with Mickey

Today we’re sailing on the Disney Fantasy. We’ll visit St Thomas/St John and St Martin along with a stop at Disney’s Castaway Cay. This will be our third Disney Cruise, but our fist 7 night cruise.

Just a quick post. I’ll see about adding more when we return, with pictures. This is my first time blogging with an iPhone and iPad.

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Only 4 days till Lotusphere 2010

So I’m getting antsy to get down to Orlando.  As much to start the geekfest of Lotusphere as to also get in some warm weather.  It looks like the freeze in Florida is about over and the temps will be in the 70 to 75 degree range during the conference.  This will be my first year staying at the Dolphin.  I’m not sure what to expect being closer to the action, although I’ve been at the Boardwalk Villas the last 7 years, so I wasn’t THAT far away.  It should be nice to just drop down for breakfast in the morning.  I’ll miss the free internet though.  I don’t think that the wireless will make it all the way up to a room, so I’ll have to hit one of the wi-fi spots downstairs for updating the iPod Touch apps and such.  Staying at the Boardwalk Villas as a DVC member allowed me free internet access.  Very nice.

So I bought a Belkin surge protector, the same one that Rockey Oliver reviewed in his blog .  Allows me to forego the charger for my phone and iPod, as well as providing 3 protected outlets for laptops and battery charger.  I also bought two 6-outlet powerstrips to share the all too scarce outlets in the session rooms.  It’s always a hunt for the floor outlets and they now police the sessions to yank anyone’s charger out of the wall outlets.

My session planning is done (well, as much as it can be ahead of time).  I can access my schedule from a mobile device, or without connectivity, I’ve downloaded and imported the .ics calendar file into my work Notes calendar.  I’ll have both my personal BlackBerry and my bank BlackBerry with me.  I only have data on my bank BB.  And my personal BB has all my personal email access.  In addition, I loaded my schedule on my iPod Touch.  Of course, since it’s a personal device, there could be no synching with bank system.  And since iTunes will only sync with Outlook, I had to *gasp* use Outlook to import the .ics file and then synch to the Touch.  The Touch DOES present the schedule the nicest of all the devices.  The only problem is I can’t change the schedule now unless I go through the whole process again, and my personal laptop has Notes 8.5.1 running on Ubuntu.  So I’ll really have to use the browser in one of the devices to access the Lotusphere Online schedule if I want to have the current schedule and make changes to it real time.

So . . . power access – CHECK.  Confusing scheduling options – CHECK.  ScottEVest jacket  to carry all this stuff – CHECK. Owner’s Locker scheduled for delivery – CHECK.  Too many receptions and such to attend – YEP.  I’m gonna need a vacation from this conference for sure.

Lotusphere 2010

Can’t wait. Only 11 more days to go. So much to attend this year in addition to two certification tests.

This will be the first time that I’ve stayed at the Dolphin. Usually, Pam accompanies me and we use our DVC points to stay in a 1-bedroom or studio villa at Boardwalk Villas. This year, Pam decided to stay home since I’ll be attending more evening events and we won’t be able to spend much time together. Just as well, since she usually spent a lot of time at the pool reading and it’s been COLD down in Orlando lately. Hope it warms up soon!

We’re going on a cruise!

I’ll come back and edit this, but wanted to get this placeholder in now.  Pam and I are going on a 4 night Disney cruise to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary next May.  We will go to DisneyWorld on May 19th and stay there until Sunday morning when we’ll head over to Port Canaveral to board the Disney Wonder for a cruise to Nassau and Castaway Cay.  This will be our first cruise and I’m REALLY pumped to go on this.

 

More later.

Friday & Saturday

Took quite a while to pack.  FILLED the Owner’s Locker tub up to the top and still had stuff left over.  I’ll take out the dividers when we go back down and see if I can get it all in next time we’re there.  I think we’ll have to get a second locker.  I wanted to go over to Hollywood Studios to get an AP Limited Edition Star Wars pin for Chris at work, but we were just too late in leaving to make it over.  Sorry, Chris.

The ride home started off nice enough.  A little overcast in parts but the rain didn’t really come down until Pam started driving (as usual).  I took a nap and then we drove until we needed fuel again.  43.7 mpg – gotta love it.  Check out the little FUELLY widget on the side to see what my average MPG is.  We stopped for the night at Holiday Express again.  I didn’t tell the clerk that we wanted a regular room so . . . we got a suite.  Only $10 more per night I think, and we were too tired to go back and argue.

Got a pretty good night’s sleep and we were back on the road at about 8:00am.  Rolled home around 3:00pm and called to see if we could pick up Teddy, but there was no answer on the home phone so we left a message.  Should have called the cell phone, boarder always has that one with her.  Finally she called back around 6:00 and said to come on over and pick him up.  He was glad to see us!  Funny, but it didn’t take him long to zonk out on the floor . . . I guess the anxiety left him and he finally really relaxed.  Also, with no other dogs to play with, I’m sure he felt like just winding down.  That made THREE of us

Only 76 more days until next trip!

Thursday night – Magic Kingdom

Went over to Magic Kingdom once the rain came through.  Lots of people leaving the park when we got there.  We went over to Pecos Bill’s and had a quick dinner.  Then walked on Pirates.  No line at all.  Went into Tiki Room.  Last show of the night I think (8:00).  Went to Haunted Mansion, walked right in and when we got out of stretching room, not a soul in sight.  Walked on to Small World as it was raining a little and we needed some cover.  We then got some popcorn and sat down to wait for the fireworks.  SpectroMagic parade had been cancelled because there was still some rain.  It was only about 9:15 and with 45 minutes until Wishes, we decided to see if Buzz Lightyear was a walkon.  It was, so we did it 3 times in a row.  Walked out and stood in front of the castle for Wishes.  I wanted to stay for the Kiss Goodnight since I hadn’t heard it yet.  Once the crowd cleared a bit we saw there was a guest lying in front of the castle with a couple of people around him/her.  It didn’t appear that the person was in much distress, and as we turned around, 2 paramedics and an officer arrived with a stretcher.  We walked down Main Street and heard the Kiss Goodnight.  Waited quite a while for a bus, and got home at 11:00pm.  We’ll pack tomorrow morning, too tired tonight.

Our plan is to pack, then go over to Hollywood Studios and ride Toy Story Mania one more time.  I want to see if I can pick up that Annual Passholder’s Limited Edition pin for Chris at work.  Then we’ll start our way back home.  We hope to make it up to Virginia before stopping for the night.

Catch you all again when we get home to Chalfont.

Thursday – Diesel Fuel at DisneyWorld

Today I decided that I should fuel up for tomorrow’s ride home so I didn’t have to look for a station selling diesel and could just get on the road.  I had already stopped at the Hess station by the Boardwalk, but they didn’t sell diesel.  I went online and there was a report of diesel prices for the Hess station at the Car Care Center by the Magic Kingdom.  I’m sure that there is a place closer with lower prices, but I know where that station is so we headed out and sure enough, that Hess sells diesel fuel.  Filled up and on the way back, we decided to drive over to Epcot and use our Fast Passes for Soarin’ that we got in our D23 packet on Sunday.

When we got into Epcot, we went on Ellen’s Energy Adventure (Stupid Judy, Stupid Energy).  You can really tell they refurbed the sound in there.  It’s been several years since we went on that attraction.  We then went over and walked on Soarin’.  We got the last row, so we were lowest.  I don’t remember being in that row before.  I really like the first row where you’re up high.

We decided to come home and have the leftovers from yesterday’s lunch at Olivia’s and then go over to the Magic Kingdom for the night.  But once home, I started working on these posts again and Pam put on her bathing suit to hit the pool.  I said I would be right behind her, but before I could even get changed, she was back saying there was a lot of thunder, so she’d read on our balcony.

AH . . .  all caught up with posts.  I’ll post an entry on the boards to point here for those that want to follow us, and then I’m going to join Pam on the balcony for a bit.  I’ll catch you up later.