Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Your state's healthier than mine

Did any one see the article in Business Week titled, Health Of The Nation State by State?

These things always crack me up. They almost always rank Florida some where awful because of the death toll....gee, do you think it could be that every other Northerner retires and moves down here in the twilight of their lives? Didn't think so. Granted, we are a state that can't drive but, we haven't taken to picking that many seniors off yet. I wish they would figure a better way to come up with their statistics.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Weekend get away

Lori booked a two bedroom suite at Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa for Friday night since Dan and Joyce both wanted to attend the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot on Saturday. Judging from the amount of complaints on the last outing about how much the couch hurt Dan's back, we knew we needed the two bedrooms. However, Lori wasn't able to book the second night in the same room (I still don't understand this) but, was able to book a one bedroom for Saturday. Same resort. Said she didn't think there would be a problem if when she went to check us in, she asked to keep the first room a second night rather than switch to the one bedroom which she had already reserved. This sounded plausible and the kids were okay with this.

That having been said, Lori, Joyce and I were to get up early and head out by ten Friday, arrive around noon and hang out at the pool while the room was getting ready, then go in, grab a bite to eat, get Jullian dressed in his little bear costume and go to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom. Dan was coming up after he got off work but wasn't going to the party. He said to let him know as soon as we could about the second night. If we couldn't get the two bedroom, he was going home after work to pick up the memory foam off their bed for the couch on Saturday. If we could get it then he would leave work and come straight there.

First snag in the above plan came when Lori said she was going up to the store to buy some soups, luncheon meat and snack stuff for us to have in the room as well as come back and feed the dogs before we left. Second snag came when she said we had to run by her work to pick up the Halloween Party tickets before picking up Joyce and Jullian. Now, these two stops are by no means quick stops. In fact they are in the opposite direction from each other. Work is heading North on I-75, Brandon is heading South on I-75. Destination is I-4 which is East of I-75.

We got to the kids place about eleven. So much for the getting up and getting out early part. Third snag; when we picked up Joyce, she said, do you mind stopping at the office so I can drop off the rent check? No problem. Did that. Gets back in the car and says, can we stop at Walgreens? I need to pick up Jullian's medicine and pick up a few things for Dan. Great. Okay. Finally we hit the road around noon. We won't have to kill time at the pool now, waiting for our room to be ready, since the room will be ready BEFORE we get there.

Finally, we arrive and check in. Due to the fact that we were getting a room at a cast member bargain, they weren't able to give the approval for the second night and said she would have to "CALL" in to the reservation desk like it was a new booking. By the time all of this was over with, Joyce and I were starving. We decided we wanted food from Animator's Palate- the restuarant at the resort. Twenty six dollars later we realized we should have just gone to the room and made sandwiches....but, whatever.

We get to the room, unpack and put the baby on the floor on a big blanket so he can roll around and stretch. Lori says something about taking the Halloween tickets up to get her discount refund. We aren't sure what she is talking about. Apparently since this event sells out so fast, she had to book them on line and pay full cost for the tickets to make sure we had them but, if she takes them in, she can get her employee discount applied and get a refund. Okay, both Joyce and I were under the impression she was heading up to guest services to do this. We thought we would relax a bit and unpack while she was gone and then head to the pool when she got back. An hour passes and no Lori. We walk (a considerable distance I might add) up to the check in at the main building to look for her. She is NO WHERE to be found so we come back to our room thinking she may be there by now. Nope, not there. Meanwhile, Dan calls asking about the need to bring the memory foam and telling us he is getting off work early. We have no clue what to tell him so we just guess and tell him to bring it. We start to wonder. With her sense of direction she could be wandering aimlessly just about any where but, of course she didn't take a cell phone with her so we can't call her and she can't call us. Then my phone rings. Only it isn't Lori or Daniel, it's the alarm company calling to tell me my neighbors alarm has gone off and asking me to respond or they are going to dispatch the police. Good Lord, dispatch the police I'm thinking. I replied, I'm not in Tampa, I'm in Orlando. Okay, I forget that these security systems must be in another state because she has no clue what I just said to her so she says, "Does that mean you aren't going to respond?" Uhm, yes mam that's what that means. I'm in another city about two hours away and I have no idea what is going on over there. Okay then, thank you I am now dispatching the police. That is crazy! I think they should be the ones contacted. Only they know if they just left and didn't get out quick enough. In the time it took her to have that conversation with me, then dispatch the police, a novice crook could walk out with a nice bundle. So, after those two phone calls and waiting for almost two hours for Lori, we decide to put our suits on and head for the pool.

Now, a funny thing occured while we were waiting for Lori. The temperature dropped. Not just a little. Quite a bit. So here we are at the pool....we are discussing the weather which up until then had been hot, sunny and breezy. Now it was cloudy, overcast and very windy. No problem, the pool is heated. All the literature says that. Well, guess what? It wasn't! Not enough for us Floridians. Joyce got in and sat on the steps with the baby and he splashed. Then she bundled him up in about four towels and we left. I never even got in.

We get back to our suite and guess who is there? Lori. Turns out she had to go to Downtown Disney to change out the tickets. She said she told us that but, neither of us heard that. Plus it makes no sense. We could have driven her there. Instead, she took a bus there and a ferry to get back. Can you say, retard? After much nashing of the teeth and pulling of hair, Joyce and I took a vote and decided to let her live. Still, she hadn't dealt with the whole two bedrooms vs one bedroom issue. She picked up the phone and called two seperate places. Still, we got the same Which by this point, we didn't really care. We were ready to go have some fun. Which we did!

If you get a chance to go to this party, do so. It was so much fun! Adults can wear costumes too and you will haul in the candy. I mean, my bag (and I don't eat the stuff...ahem.) was filled to the brim and it was heavy. I'm talking, snickers, three muskateers, kit kats, peppermint patties, taffy, chocolate, candy corn, gummy worms, etc., Oh! And the kids were so cute too. We saw one family dressed like the Incredibles and they were incredible! That mother had a pair of ..... but, I digress. Another woman was dressed like Cruela Daville and her two daughters were dressed as Dalmations on leashes. As wrong as that sounds, it was priceless. We saw Edward Scissorhands, Beatlegueise, lots of Jack Sparrows, Snow white, Peter Pan, a few Cinderella's; or were those hookers? Ghosts, goblins, care takers, grave diggers and these were the adults!!!!! The whole park is transformed by the lighting that is set up. They have speakers with halloween music playing and the voice of the guy that does the haunted mansion. There are ghosts flying up the buildings as you go down Main street. I did a video which I will try to create a link to in the next post. It was so much fun!! I love the ghosts. Also, they upgraded the Haunted Mansion and it is so much better. I won't tell you what they did because I don't want to spoil it. But don't worry about it not being the same. They kept everything as you remember but added more to love. The thing ended at midnight and we caught the bus back to the resort exhausted. Little did I realize that we wouldn't be getting any sleep for another three hours. Which brings me to the fourth snag.

We arrived back at the resort and I had every intention of taking a hot shower/Lori wanted the jacuzzi tub, and hitting the hay. I went in to unpack my CPAP machine only to find I had left the power cord at home. How this happened I don't know. If you don't know anything about these machines, they are for people like myself who have life threatening obstructive sleep apnea. We aren't talking snoring here. We are talking about periods of time where you stop breathing all together. I had like 72 episodes when I was tested, where I stopped breathing and sat straight up because my chest felt like a boulder was sitting on it and like I was choking. So there is NO WAY I could sleep without it. Lori looked at the back of it and realized that the power cord was shaped like the power cord to a PC. She called the front desk. They were so clueless. They told us there was a Walmart about .3 miles away and they would give us written directions if we would come to the main building. I'm not going to go on as to what happened because this would be so long it would be unreadable. Let's say, they gave Lori the wrong directions, had us driving as far as Kissimmee; which after 15 miles of seeing nothing but trees, I turned around. I stopped at a Walgreens in downtown Disney to see if they had anything I could rig but, nothing. They then gave us directions to Walmart which was about five miles from where we were. Got there, got the cord, came back and went to bed around three thirty. Totally exhausted!

Got up the next morning and realized (fifth snag) I only packed one of my blood pressure pills.... I still went to the Food and Wine and drank. I mean, people do it all the time on less so, whatever. I had a good time and didn't suffer a mycardial infarction like Lori thought I would. We packed our bags and put everything in the cars so that when we got back, we could move to our one bedroom suite which turned out to be identical to the two bedroom only minus that one room. Yea, it sucked for the kids but, we were set. We had a lovely time in the jacuzzi and another lovely time....well, never mind all of that. We had a GREAT time.

This morning we got up, had breakfast, got them in to the Magic Kingdom again and left. I took Lori to work and came home to find that Dane's friends had eaten up a $5.00 bag of Halloween candy. Good thing I had my stash from the party... not that I eat that stuff or anything....heehee