Category Archives: 2007 Gartner Symposium

The Wednesday Report

My last session ended pretty early yesterday, so I headed down the Boardwalk for Epcot. I had to renew my Annual Pass, which I did at the International Gateway, and then proceeded to take a left through the UK and Canada, where I stopped for a moment to listen to the blistering bagpipe rock of Off Kilter and snapped the pic of the wine t-shirt for Georgia. I took this route because I wanted my first eating to occur in Mexico. I have to say the chilequiles was awesome. The older I get, the more appreciation I develop for Mexican dishes. The wine was wine; I don’t know much about wine, so I cannot comment intelligently on it, but at least it didn’t clash with the chile sauce. Before eating, I did ride El Rio Del Tiempo (no, I can’t recall the new name, and yes, I will likely continue to call it El Rio Del Tiempo for eternity, thus dating myself every time I speak of it).

Onward then we go to Norway, where there was an Ireland kiosk outside. You might ask yourself, what’s Ireland doing in Norway? Why aren’t they in the UK? Well, since they put the Ireland kiosk darn near across the lake from the UK, I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say the kiosk is actually “Republic of”. I had the Irish Cheese Plate here. They give you cheese, which is full-bodied and flavorful, and chutney, and butter. That’s three things to try with the brown bread, which is crumbly and sort of unflavorful until you put one of the above on it. The problem here is that there is not enough bread to go around. I had leftover of all three things. I ended up making a sort of fruit rollup with the extra chutney and cheese, but it wasn’t the same without the brown bread. Ergo, this offering from the “Republic of” kiosk gets only a moderately erect thumb.

While chowing down in Norway, a string group came out and played a little ditty, during which they would periodically stop and yell “hey!”. I thought it was funny, and so did some little kids standing by, who would all yell “hey!” with the string players.

After this, I just did the country walk for a while. It was very hot and sticky on the country walk yesterday afternoon, and I kept having to stop to buy yet another bottle of water. Pretty soon I was in France, which had been the ultimate dessert destination in mind. I partook of the film, as always enjoying the music of the French composers, and then purchased the peach tart in the bakery. Ooo la la! It was wonderful. The glaze was not overdone in terms of sweetness, and you could really taste the peaches. The pastry was very flaky and good. Big thumbs up!

After France, the sky was darkening, and I wandered toward the front of the park to stalk the geosphere. It’s got to be one of the most photographed objects on the planet. I have tons of photos of it myself, but I keep shooting at it. Why? Because now it is NAKEY! Gone is the ugly arm of Mickey with the wand and the word “Epcot”. I always thought it was stupid to put the label on it. It’s an icon, a logo, OF COURSE it’s Epcot. What else would it be?

So I waited through two cycles of the fountain show and tried to get something as good as previous shots, but I don’t think the ball-stalking gods were with me last night, because I’m not really satisfied with the results. So I’ll leave you with one from earlier in the day, when I was messing around with composition and perspective. Hope you like it!

Adding missing pic


I don’t know why but when you add photos to an existing mobile post, they come out at the top of the post, not where you have the cursor. So you have to drag them around to where you want them, which I have. Anyhow, the menu identifies this dish as “Chilequiles – baked tortillas with chicken and cheese” There is a clear-ish sauce with green tint on it (presumably green from the chiles). It is paired with L.A. Cetto Chardonnay.

Event Night at the Animal Kingdom

Robin met me in the lobby of the Dolphin, where we would wait for the bus. I was vigilant trying to figure out where the line would start, and kept dogging suspicious looking groups of folks that did NOT have a tell-tale blue backpack, but DID have their stinkin’ badges around their necks. We ducked outside to investigate one such group, and when we turned around to come back in, the line had already formed.

We got on maybe the third or fourth bus – much better than last year, when the line had snaked its way around the fountain in the rotunda – and we were on our way.

Called Patt and left a message on her cell as we were walking in. A woman named Mary who works for an insurance company fell into step with us, and asked if she could hang out with us, as she’d arrived alone. We were headed toward the ribs in Africa and it was fine by us. There were streetmosphere folks on the way there, looked like some safari adventurers or some such, and there were guys in costume on stilts walking around. Their handler was very small with short legs and she had to trot along to keep up.

The ribs were to DIE for, but still not quite as good as the ones at the Oak Tree in Islands of adventure. They were slow cooked with some sort of chili sauce. Mmmmm! As we were sitting and eating, Mary struck up a conversation with some guy, and we saw her no more that evening.

I went to feed my addiction and as I was passing through the Harambe bar, I ran into Patt and Mr Patt (sorry, I’m COMPLETELY blanking on your name, Mr Patt!). We kinda pointed at each other “ah-HA!”-like, and hugged. We all sat around the table drinking some pink planter’s punch with rum – very tasty! – and blah blah blah-ing the night away. I did take a photo of the punch, but it hasn’t shown up here yet. There were some awesome tunes from a live band, acrobats doing their thing, and tables all in the streets of Harambe with food, food, food, and chefs in a sort of tent setting things aflame.

After awhile we decided to walk up to Asia, and on the way we met the Yeti on stilts, who was boogying to “ah! ah! ah! ah! Stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive….” with a DJ crankin’ out the 70s tunes, right outside of Expedition Everest. I decided I needed to experience it in the dark. Robin waited in the air conditioned gift shop while Patt and her Mr bid us goodnight and walked on.

Everest is AWESOME in the dark, especially the backwards part!

After Everest, we wandered into Dinoland and played games. We’d been given a couple of game passes apiece, and Robin found two more lying around somewhere. I stank at all the games, which is why you see me below with a big fat “loosah” on my head.

Soon we were tired, and figured to head to the front of the park and back to the busses. We rode back to the Dolphin, and bid one another good night.

I’m glad I don’t have an 8:00 am tomorrow – I’m thrashed! Hope the other pics I took show up during the night.

Spamity spam, spamity spam

I had conference spam when I awoke, and conference spam when I returned from my little jaunt to Downtown Disney. I sent photos to the blog, but they did not post, so I shall attach them herewith as evidence of the existence of the conference spam fairy.

Fairly ordinary conference day – inspirational and mind-expanding, this particular conference always raises more questions than it answers. This is a goodly thing, however, for were it not for questions, solutions would not be born.

At lunch, I picked a table and struck up conversations, and two guys from my firm sat down at the same table. Out of the many thousands here at this conference, there are less than a dozen of us from my firm in attendance this year, so what were the odds. I confess I had not really heard of either of them, but one of them knew me; how that happens, I really don’t know. Perhaps someone took my name in vain, once upon a time.

And now for some commentary on the pics from DTD. Chris, the dragon is made entirely of Legos. There are other Lego beings down there too, both life-size and bigger-than-life. As to this particular dragon’s identity, I fear it cannot be the Tink-Ness Monster, for that being lives in the lake behind my house, and it would be a very trying journey indeed. Given that it takes three hours and change by car, it would take an impossibly long time by slither.

The fish and chips got a half-mast “Meh!” because they were a bit too on the greasy side for my liking. I ended up scooping the fish out of the crusty part. The iced tea there is very good – black currant, said the label on the dispenser. It had the faintest trace of berry flavoring to it, and it came in both sweet and unsweet. The sweet was too sweet, so I did a half and half mixture (I have learned to do this since moving to the South; when they say sweet down here, they MEAN sweet!)

I didn’t buy too much down there, just a T-shirt and a box of Mickey fudge. For once, I’m not falling in love with every piece of merchandise I see. I wonder, could it be that I am all Mickeyed out? Jeeze, I hope not.

OK, here comes the spam…..

dang, why does it always insert them BEFORE I write? I had the cursor down here, I swear!

So, Sheena Easton…

She opened with a steamy disco number, and then did a short stand-up routine, which was pretty funny. (paraphrase) “Hmmm, don’t know that song…. don’t know a lot of her songs…. well, pretty soon she’ll do the one about the train… where’s she been all these years? One word – SOCCER. I have an 11 yr old and a 13 yr old. Practice three nights a week. Three nights! A week! Games on the weekend. Oh and then there’s TOURNAMENT weekends. Three games on Saturday, two on Sunday. I’m a bad mom. I am. I sit there during tournament and whisper ‘don’t score, PLEASE don’t score”… I can’t be the only mom who thinks this way! (people in audience raise hands)” I guess she had a soccer mom audience, cause they loved her. And then she launched into “I’m Almost Over You” and I moved on after she almost hit the high note… really, transpose that thing down a half step, and you woulda had it!

Item 2 – Shell Schitt

For my Sanibel-a-holic friends, I saw some shell shit in one of the high-end gift shops at the Dolphin. In another display, they have the usual bottle filled with pink sand that has “Florida” written on it, but all the shells inside are from the freakin’ Phillipines ::lol::

Some phone shots that didn’t post – Item 1

Item 1: The pic that was supposed to tell Mari that she was correct about “where in the World” I was having lunch (and btw – Mari and Chris would get along splendidly, I am sure. Together, they could be the Snark Sistas) ::lol::

As requested – the shrimp were ok, except for the fact that there were only two of them. The “sauce” seemed to be a vinagrette of some sorts, just ok. There was zucchini and maybe some sort of mushroom in addition to the onions. Since I’d already had onions with the buffalo, I left these on the plate. So that’s why this one only got a half-mast thumb. More shrimp, less “eh” veggies would have made it a thumbs up.