2017 has been a very busy year, at least for the first three months. The Fourth one has been wet, very wet, but more about that later. The first one was good. Diane and I are finding out that retirement and being Snowbirds ain't bad, ain't bad at all.
The First of the Year found us leaving for Dunedin, Florida. We made an exhausting drive from Pembroke Pines to our three week home on a spot in Dunedin RV Resort, A Sun-Carefree park. It is located on Alternate 19, not far from the Gulf Coast. We chose to take 27 north all the way to 60 and cut west. It was a time consuming drive made worse by East Tampa Traffic and a confused GPS. We made it in about six hours which was a bit into overtime, but we did arrive before dark. We were assigned a very nice spot and the next day or day after we were back in Tarpon Springs, a fifteen minute drive away. Hella's and some good food was on the menu! So was a trip to Honeymoon Island.
The people at Dunedin RV resort, both those staying there and the staff were most excellent folks. There were many activities including one of my favorites, shuffleboard. It was played very seriously there. Diane played her favorite game of Mahjong. We made many walks along the Pinellas Trail, and the Honeymoon island causeway. We made a second trip to Tarpon Springs which included another visit to Hella's. We made some new friends, Al and Kathy from Grand Rapids Michigan, who spend the winter in Dunedin. The weather there was great as well. It was a really nice three weeks that ended all too quickly. That was okay, because our next stop: Disney's Fort Wilderness!
It was a short drive from the Gulf Coast to Kissimmee. We arrived on a Friday early in the afternoon, booked in, which included setting up a Disney "Tab" on our Disney Rewards Visa card. We attached our account to the monnogramed Magic Bands they provided us. Great devices, those Magic Bands are, (Yoda Speak). We unhooked the car in the space provided, drove on to our preferred site. The access roads in Fort Wilderness can be really tight and take some fine-gelling to back into. With the help of a staff, sorry, cast member and Diane, I parked our rig right where I wanted it. We set up camp and headed to the Trading Post to buy two Florida Resident three day passes to Disney World. We loaded our passes onto our Magic Bands. We planned to spend the day at the Magic Kingdom the following Tuesday, and Epcot on Thursday. I was like a Goofy kid and could hardly wait to get there.
Choosing to visit the Magic Kingdom on Tuesday turned out to be a good thing. A cold front, or maybe it was a Frozen spell, hit us and it rained for two days and the temperature dropped like a rock. . Tuesday was freezing, the high near forty, with a strong wind with the sun shinning. We drove to the park and arrived as it opened. We would spend about six hours there, catch a bus back to our coach and give Teddy Bear a break. That would have worked out fine except I left the coach keys in the car. I discovered that mistake standing at our coach door. I also discovered that all the windows were locked tight. That meant Diane sat outside in the cold while I made a boat and monorail dash back to the Magic Kingdom parking lot to get the car. It took an hour. Teddy knew that Diane was outside, but never complained. He was mighty relieved when he was finally rescued from the coach. We spent three hours with him. I did a bit of key ring rearranging while there. I had made a bit of a goof but we got over it. Around six pm, with smiles on our faces, we caught a boat back to the Magic Kingdom. .
We had a great time, one of the best since we started to live full-time in our coach. We ended it at the Crystal Palace Buffet. While we were eating we were visited by Eyore, Tigger and Pooh. My hat was on the table and many cast members, just like ones during the day, could not help but comment on it and wanted to know how heavy it is. It really was a magical day. We rested the next day and made sure that Teddy Bear received lots of attention. We took him to the Fort Wilderness dog park. We walked through the whole campground, visited some onsite stores and I went Goofy Pin shopping and trading which is a lot of fun. We visited the closet Wal-Mart and were amazed by the massive amounts of Disney stuff there. Thursday morning, Feburary First, found us in the car and on our way to Epcot.
Without a doubt Epcot is my favorite Disney Park. It is less crowded than the Magic Kingdom, has less strollers you have to avoid. In other words it is better for adults, adults who want to be kids again. Epcot was designed for Disney heads like me! Its fun to think so anyway. There are so many great things there, the Seas with Nemo and Friends attraction with the aquariums at the end of the ride, Spaceship Earth, Living with the Land. They are interesting and fun. Journey into Imagination with Figment is good, but my favorite is Pixar Shorts and Diane's is Soarin. We got very lucky with that ride. We used a morning fast pass which I booked online and loaded on our Magic Bands. We rode it first thing and at the end of the day decided to just hit the stand by line at the same time most people were heading over to the Fireworks area to grab a close view. There was no one in line. We stayed on the ride for almost forty five minutes and rode it a bunch of times without getting out of our seats. I take that back, we got up once to see the movie from a different angle which changes the angle of view as if you were there.
We left Epcot around three, drove back to our coach (with all the right keys this time) and took Teddy Bear for a long walk and a trip to the dog park. It didn't take long for him to wear himself out, so we fed him a snack (which he doesn't eat until we get back, I guess he guards it or something) and headed back to Epcot for fun, dinner, and more fun. I made reservations online for the Akershus Royal Dining Hall Experience. I had no real idea what I was doing at the time. It is an uber character dining thing. Many of the Disney princesses are there including Arial, Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora (Sleeping Beauty) and Belle. With the exception of Belle, who Diane had a conversation with at the entrance to the Dining Hall, all the Princesses visited our table and chatted for quite some time. It was very cool. Before dinner we grabbed a quick ride on the redesigned test track attraction. It started out as a ride about safety with crash dummies, now it is a Chevrolet Concept Car ride. You design your own car, take it on the track and see how it compares to other cars designed by other folks who rode with you. It too is very cool. I enjoyed the new design more than the original ride. Once again we had a great day at Disney's magical world, we were flat worn out after riding Soarin seven or eight times, so we decided to head back home. We made one last stop. I had to check in with my favorite Disney character GOOFY! We found him in the main Character Pavilion and there was no wait. As soon as Goofy saw me, he went crazy over my Goofy Pin Head hat. I told him I am a huge fan and had been for as long as I could remember. We got along great, I don't mind telling you that. I hugged Goofy goodbye. As Diane and I were walking to our car the Fireworks were going off over our heads. This was a great ending to a wonderful day.
We left the next day for Vero Beach. We would make Sunshine RV our home for the next month. Our Florida adventure continued.....
Posted from Deer Creek Motorcoach Resort