You didn't even know I was gone this time, did you? Mom and Dad didn't when I called them from Epcot on Saturday afternoon.
We flew down to Orlando on Friday night - through some pretty nasty weather - picked up a rental car and drove - through some pretty nasty weather - to the Disney Caribbean Beach Resort. We checked in and caught one of the resort buses over to Downtown Disney to have dinner. As we left the bus it started raining - guess we should have taken better notice of the early nasty weather because the drizzle became a torrential downpour. We stopped in a shop and bought a couple of Mickey Mouse umbrellas, but even with them we were soaking wet by the time we got to Fulton's Crab House. It was, of course, packed with other people trying to escape the rain. We put our names in for a table and found seats at the bar where we shared a seafood appetizer and tried to dry out. Just to give you an idea, there were two pools of water under my chair where my pants were dripping.
At any rate, we got a table around 10:00 and had a very nice dinner. Escargots and lobster - yum. By the time we were done - around 11:30 - it had stopped raining, and we caught a bus back to the resort.
The next day we were up early, had breakfast and drove over to Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex. They had umpteen softball games going on, plus a huge Paintball convention, but we were looking for the Disney In-Line Skate Marathon. They had registration for the event on Sunday and an expo in one of the huge convention halls - Gary picked up his registration materials and found a new pair of racing boots that he liked.
After dropping stuff off at the hotel, we took the bus to Epcot and went on a couple of rides and wandered around. We made reservations for dinner that night at the Japanese restaurant, then headed to France for a bistro lunch. It was quite good, with pate and goat cheese salads. It was very hot and we headed back to the resort to enjoy some pool time. While we were swimming, Gary ran into some friends from Philly - as the song goes, "It's a Small World."
We went back to the room to watch the Kentucky Derby - if we had been at the track, we would have won with Smarty Jones! What a nice race - unbeaten horse from our local backwater track (Philadelphia Park) with a nobody jockey and first-time Derby trainer. Good to see. I called Dad after the race to discuss.
Dinner at the Japanese place was OK - sushi, grilled scallops and steak - and we left just as the fireworks began so we had a great view - except it was raining again. Luckily we brought an umbrella so we weren't as soaked as we were the night before.
On Sunday we got up at 4:30 (!) and drove over to the Sports Complex. The Marathon runs over several roads that they were closing for the event. Around 6:30, the races got underway, with the Pro Skaters leading off. Wow, they are amazing. The Open group followed and they skated either a full (26 miles) or half marathon. Gary did the full and finished with a time of 2 1/2 hours - and his feet were mighty tired afterwards. He collected his medal and we headed back to the resort and relaxed by the pool for a while.
We had lunch, rested and packed up around 3:00. We went over to Disney's Westside and shopped for a while, then drove to the airport. We avoided the long lines at the counter by checking curbside and headed to the Hyatt Hotel to have some dinner before our flight. It was very good - Cobb Salad and Rib-Eye Steak. we tried to find the British Air lounge, but it was in another terminal so we headed over to our gate.
Remember those thunderstorms we had on Friday and Saturday? Yep, well, they were back and our flight was delayed almost 2 hours. But we made it home eventually. Next time we'll stay an extra day as we don't have to take a late flight back.
[We packed a lot into that weekend.]
Sad news today. My friend Anne's father passed away over the weekend. He was the founder of AXA Space, one of my clients. He was a wonderful, unique man with many passions in life. He was pursuing one of those passions on his sailboat in the Bahamas, and apparently passed away in his sleep.
[God bless you, Mr. Barrett.]
Quote du jour:
"Men are we, and must grieve when even the shade/
Of that which once was great is passed away."
-- William Wordsworth (1770 - 1850) English poet
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