Yes – I want to get past I-4 before afternoon drive-time starts I have an early class in the morning, so waiting till after drive time is not an option this time. It’s been a swell visit, Orlando – see ya real soon!
Is it me, or did the Bubba Gump Shrimp used to be cuter?, originally uploaded by Erin *~*~*.
I honk they changed the costume – he’s looking chunky
Good Morning! Taken around 8:00 am today while passing through CityWalk on my way to classes at the Loews Royal Pacific Resort. Weather coolish and breezy. Glad the humidity broke because that might mean running outside later this afternoon.
Just wandering the resort between conference sessions. I found myself near the site of the luau, where stone idols are nestled in the foliage here and there. Yes, I have been to the luau – yes it is fabulous! Great food and fine entertainment, plus the company of good friends all conspired to make it a pleasantly memorable evening *shout out to Joy* 🙂
How I solved the parking problem Loews Royal Pacific, originally uploaded by Erin *~*~*.
I am attending a techie conference at Loews Royal Pacific but staying off-site. The first day, I had to practically sever a limb to liberate my car from the Royal Pacific parking lot. It occurred to me afterward that what I should do is use my Universal Orlando annual pass to park for free at Universa,l and then walk into the Royal Pacific from CityWalk. So that’s what I’ve been doing. Hey, even if I had to pay to park at Universal, it would still be less than parking at the Royal Pacific. Plus, I get to see how great CityWalk looks in the early morning when there’s hardly anyone around yet :). If you look closely at the left of the tower, you’ll see the waning moon.
After my run through the Royal Pacific, the skies turned threatening. I went to Pastamore to grab a light dinner, watched It rain and Shazam’d some tunes while I dined at a table just inside the doorway. Felt good to cool off – had it been overcast, I would not have enjoyed that run in the humidity at all! Glad to have had the opportunity to run through a pretty place.
Done with business for the day. Now I am waiting for the water taxi out back of the Pacifica Ballroom convention center at Loews Royal Pacific in Orlando. I plan to go back to the car and get my running clothes, then use the resort running routes to get in some mileage and burn off some of this conference food!
View from the Conference Center, Lowes Royal Pacific in Orlando, originally uploaded by Erin *~*~*.
On a break from business meetings – not a shabby view of Universal Islands Of Adventure!
This is the SIXTH in a series of “do-over” posts that are being created to make up for the mobile blogging errors that occurred during my last trip to Orlando.
It is a well-established fact amongst those who know me that I have excellent parking mojo. At least, they’ve heard me declare it often enough to believe it might be true 😉 Parking mojo tends to be somewhat less potent in the parks, as the parking attendant CMs are empowered with mojo over-ride. But outside of the parks, my parking mojo pretty much prevails. Therefore, it was no surprise to me that when Joy, Al, and I proceeded from Disney’s Animal Kingdom to Downtown Disney, we found a spot very close to Planet Hollywood without too much searching, and proceeded to Pleasure Island without further delay.
Our chosen venue for the evening: Raglan Road, an Irish pub and restaurant located on Pleasure Island. The place boasts Irish cuisine, music, dancing and beer; indeed, there are four bars! I was soon to discover that the beer makes more than just the obvious appearance on the menu. It’s used to make a glaze for some of the dishes which is incredibly sweet and addictive.
The toe-tapping entertainment began pretty much without delay. Irish step dancers graced the center platform as well as the small stage where a group of acoustic musicians knocked it out of the park with every number. One of the dancers even engaged a small child from the audience, coaching her on the sidelines ahead of time and then bringing her up to the stage to have a go at entertaining the crowd. Of course, the crowd ate it up along with their dinner 🙂
Here’s some of that Guinness glaze I was talking about – well, had I not just about licked the bones clean, you might be able to see it better! The three of us decided to split the Appetiser D’Lirrah for Two. Knowing that restaurants over-serve everything, we figured it would be more than adequate for the three of us and we weren’t wrong. In addition to the ribs, there were also sausages, scallops and “Drunk Chicken”, made with whiskey. I actually could have added a salad to all of that and called it a night, but there was more food coming!.
Ah, dinner – and the only disappointment of the evening. I decided to try something new – colcannon. It’s basically mashed potatoes with cabbage in it, but what I didn’t expect was half an ocean’s worth of salt. I can’t believe how much salt they put in it. I think there were little bits of bacon as well, which only exacerbated the problem. The fish, however, was delightful – Atlantic salmon, baked with a maple glaze. Wonderful!
Here’s the band at Raglan Road. I believe their name is “Creel”. After a short break, they were at it again, full tilt. Although the language frustrates me – could it be any further from English? – I love, love, love Irish music, and the way you can trace a lot of American folk music directly back to its Irish roots. We had a lively discussion at the table concerning the origins of the banjo; I believed I remembered that it was based upon an African instrument and crossed the pond in a sort of reverse commute from America back to Ireland, but Al thought it was the other way around. Fortunately, the world has smartphones with data plans, and I was able to fire up Wikipedia to bolster my cause. Follow this link if you want to know who won that debate 😉
We soon found ourselves waddling out of Raglan Road completely stuffed and following the sound of a classical guitar as though we were rats tuning in to the Pied Piper. We found this fellow, an “international artist of the gypsy guitar”, tossing his instrument in the air like it was a pizza and not missing a note in the process. We were enthralled, wandering away with stars in our eyes when he took a break. Food coma + music coma = bliss 🙂
We tried to get tickets for Characters In Flight after this, but the line was impossibly long and not moving at all, so we decided to call it a night. I drove Joy and Al back to their hotel and bid them goodbye; they flew back to Long Island aka Da Loverly Isle of Long, the very next morning.
NEXT TIME: A blue sky Disney day at EPCOT
© Copyright 2011 | http://MyMobileAdventures.com | CLICK any photo for a larger view
© Copyright 2012 | http://MyMobileAdventures.com | CLICK any photo for a larger view
This is the first in a series of “do-over” posts that are being created to make up for the mobile blogging errors that occurred during my last trip to Orlando.
Intrepid readers, especially those who read this blog via RSS feed or email subscription, may have noticed that during my last trip to Orlando, there were some issues with the pictures that we’ve never had here before. For those reading via RSS reader or via email, my most recent mobile blogging efforts from Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort didn’t display photos – just links or else nothing at all. This wasn’t random – there’s a reason.
This was the first time I used the WordPress app for iPhone to mobile blog an adventure. The photos are stored in a different spot than they were when I was using Flickr to mobile blog here, and I believe the anti-hotlinking settings caused the problem. My bad – didn’t know subscribers were going to be interpreted that way!
I feel terrible that people had to jump through hoops to see the photos, so guess what? Do-over! 🙂 That’s right. We’re going to relive the trip, the good old fashioned way, using Flickr to host the photos. I’ll spread it out in posts over several days, to simulate an actual mobile blogging adventure. LOL, there’s something about that idea that just makes me laugh 😀 Laughter is good for us. So here we go…
The first thing one needs to do when embarking on a 3 hour drive from Fort Myers to Orlando is obtain sufficient fuel for the journey. That’s a grande-no-whip-mocha, purchased at 8:27 AM on Monday February 13th, if the time stamp on the original photo is to be believed. There’s a large heart logo on the cup which can be scanned with your phone using the Starbucks “Cup Magic” app. I’m not going to tell you what happens when you scan it, but it’s cute 🙂
Mickey Ears On I-4 This is one of my famous “point and pray” shots; eyes on the road at all times, aim camera in general direction of target, hope for the best! I usually try to get this structure both coming and going. It’s on I-4, just west of the first exit for Walt Disney World (there are four exits, I believe).
Characters In Flight BONUS: another point and pray shot. I happened to get lucky and see Characters In Flight was aloft as I passed between exits 67 and 68. I was headed for exit 75A, Universal Blvd.
Room With A (Hogwarts) View This was the view from my room at the Four Points by Sheraton, Orlando Studio City. I am an SPG member (Starwood Preferred Guest) and I usually seem to score a Hogwarts view when I stay at this hotel, which I like a lot. It is pretty much always reasonably priced, it’s clean and comfortable and was redecorated fairly recently – maybe within a year and a half or thereabouts. Plus it is right outside the gates of Universal Orlando Resort, and I can stay there free using Starwood points. If you are interested in the Starwood program, click here to read more about it.
Just a stroll across the parking lot of the hotel is an International House of Pancakes. I happened to have a gift card left over from Christmas, and I was ravenously hungry, so it seemed hike a harmonic convergence. Off I went to have one of their “smart” meals before hitting the parks to meet up with friends.
I emerged from the iHop apparently in the nick of time, for an egret had already besmirched the windshield next to mine and had that look in his eye, like he wanted to leave his mark on a Toyota. Um, no. You go ‘way now, ok? 😉
By 1:52 PM, this is where I was standing, waiting for the tram to take me into Disney’s Hollywood Studios. I was about to have some fun and frolic with a pair of old and dear friends (when I say “old”, I do not mean that we are ancient; I mean that we were all once young together 😉 )
Stay tuned, there will be more – we are only just beginning!
A wide piazza stretches down to the water. There is nightly entertainment here, and I saw a few take-out windows so there will be food and drink as well.
Look up. See the skinny pink sliver of a building? See the terrace up top with the dark-colored table and chairs? If I ever stay at this hotel, then that is the room I want. That there is a primo view of whatever is happening in the piazza.
A dark, vaguely romantic and winding staircase leads to the lobby – since I have a boo-boo foot today. I will have to look for an elevator.
The buildings that line the piazza are equipped with long, somewhat meandering porticos, with occasional mysterious stranger taking up residence in random alcoves. Can you spot the shoes? 😉