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Florida, the Sequel Vacation: Disney World

Going to Disney World for three days was great for a child, but not enough. In fact, my whole family thought it wasn’t enough. So, in 1992 we planned a sequel trip to Florida. This time around, we went for a week, and spent a majority of our time at Disney World.

On June 7th, 1992 we left for Florida. Dave and I brought a Walkman this time, and a cassette of three different stories from Super Mario Bros. 3. Besides telling three stories, music from the game played in the background. Dave took his turn first, and I took mine second. Dave told me how great it was ahead of time before I listened to the cassette. It was dark by the time I was listening to it.

We made one pre-Disney stop this time. We spent a day at Sea World. We thought it was a short distance away from our lodging. It was walkable, but I arrived tired from the walk. The trip seemed sketchy at times such as walking through an underpass below the interstate. Sea World had a variety of aquatic attractions, as well as a rainforest that could be visited on their property. Shamu was the name of the killer whale that was used in their shows. Mom bought a video that included the Shamu attraction. Since we were there in the evening, Sea World offered various “glow” products to be purchased such as lightsticks and a battery-operated handheld “sparkler” that Dave got.

At Disney World, we stayed at the Disney Caribbean Resort again which is where the similarities ended. This time our room was at Trinidad, which was the building with the orange roof. Trinidad was actually bus stops closer to the theme parks than Aruba was. Also, the Caribbean Resort was a hotel that was close to EPCOT. We started with the Magic Kingdom again. Being in June with the schools being out for the summer, the lines were much longer this time. This year was also Disney’s 20th Anniversary. We decided to start at Tomorrow Land this time as we didn’t spend as much time there last trip. Autopia was a ride that we enjoyed this time. It’s like Disney’s version of Go-Karts.

Want to go to Mars? The ride, Mission to Mars was Disney’s answer during both of our Disney World trips as children. It was a simulator that made the rider feel like they were riding in a rocket heading to Mars. By now the ride has been replaced, but an updated version of the ride Mission Space is available at Epcot which is a similar premise only more modern. The WEDway People mover was like a monorail in Tomorrow Land. Its claim to fame, is that it passes through Space Mountain another iconic attraction.

Besides Autopia, I had an opportunity to go on another “new” ride, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. Last time, it was thought to be too intense for Dave and me. Liking trains, I thought I wanted to ride it, and I enjoyed coloring the picture of it in our Disneyland coloring books that were purchased for us last year at the park. This year we were able to ride it! I was excited. The only problem? Besides being a train, it was a rollercoaster, something I heard about at school, but wasn’t accustomed to riding (I found out it was a rollercoaster after the fact). When I started to not feel good, instead of closing my eyes, I continued to look around. I was feeling terrible by the time I got off the ride. I looked “green” getting off the ride. We went to nearby Tom Sawyer Island afterwards. Instead of being a place with rides, it was a place of exploration, making it a good place to go to allow my stomach to settle. While there, Dave and I climbed through the island’s cave like we did last year. I was feeling a lot better by the time we were ready to leave the island and go back to the rest of the park.

Last time at Disney, the Swiss Family Robinson Tree house was closed for renovations. This time around it was open, so we were able to climb the steps, and explore the house. At the Haunted Mansion, I remembered that during part of the ride, the vehicle turned around backwards, and went down a hill. It turned out that this happened in the room with the “crumpled paper” ghosts.

Mickey’s Starland had a different theme this year. Instead of being Duckburg, it was Toontown from Who Framed Roger Rabbit. One major difference in particular with our time in Magic Kingdom was the long lines. It seemed for most rides; we had a long wait. It’s a Small World was the exception to this rule, as such we rode it many times this time around. Mom remembered seeing this attraction back when it was at the World’s Fair in New York City. As a child, she rode the ride there with my grandma. The ride also was cool and relaxing. However, the lines didn’t stop us from riding a majority of the rides from last time. We skipped the Snow-White ride as Dave was still afraid of the witch, and we didn’t bother to go to the The Hall of Presidents and Country Bear’s Jamboree attractions again either.

When we went to EPCOT, we seemed to remember that we were disappointed in Spaceship Earth, so we skipped it, and started with Journey into Imagination. Now, I remembered from last year that there was a ride in EPCOT that had a dark tunnel with flashing purple slanted lines that I didn’t care for due to sensory issues. I did not know what ride it was on. The likelihood of getting on this ride, was in the back of my mind on and off during the duration of our time at Future World. Besides eating supper at the Food Court in The Land Pavilion, we rode the ride (Living with the Land) that I had spotted last time, at my suggestion. Our family ran into one of Mom’s work colleagues and her family! These people also go to our church. Small world. Pun intended!

We were on our way back to the buses to go to our hotel when we noticed that Spaceship Earth didn’t have a line. It was a ride that we didn’t ride on yet this time, and decided to give it a second chance. The ride told the history of communication. The vehicles went up and around until they reached the top of the structure. Spaceship Earth is also the iconic symbol of Epcot; the building that looks like a gigantic golf ball. Before the first Florida trip, Dave and I had spotted a small building that had a resemblance to this building between Cashtown and PA 234 and said, “There’s Epcot!” Many years later I found out that this building was actually a geodesic dome home. According to Dad, dome homes were a popular fad many years ago. Also, the shape of EPCOT (Spaceship Earth) is a geodesic sphere, hence why they looked similar to me. Anyway, being the only ride left, I thought that Spaceship Earth may be the ride with the tunnel with the bothersome lights. The narrator started to talk about the use of computers. I thought to myself that this couldn’t be the ride, as I didn’t remember it talking about computers. I didn’t think it got that modern. I was wrong. As the narrator was still talking about computers, we went up a little hill, and the ride went to the right. The tunnel loomed ahead. What surprised me was what happened after the tunnel. At the top of the descent there was a neat spacecraft before descending into the ending of the ride. As mentioned in the last blog, there were monitors in the background in this section. What I didn’t remember from last time was that the theme was “Tomorrow’s Child,” and what I thought was an unpleasant sounding song started to play. It lasted the rest of the ride until rounding the corner after the wall with the AT&T logo. The monitors were screens that showed people doing various activities “of tomorrow.” Another thing I noticed from last time was at the disembarkation portion of the ride, some workers were sitting at a desk, and there were more people in a room around the corner beyond the disembarkation point. This puzzled me at the time, but I think what I was seeing around the corner was actually the start of the ride, where people were being loaded into the cars to begin the ride.

At a later point, we also spent more time in the World Showcase at EPCOT. Like last time, we went on Maelstrom at Norway, and El Rio del Tiempo at the Mexico pavilion. One general problem with rides and experiences at Disney, especially in EPCOT, was that everyone wanted the rider to watch a movie. We became “movie-ed out” by the time we were done. We liked the ride at Norway, but sitting through the long movie for the short ride seemed a bit much, to go on it a second time during the trip. We took notice to another family slipping out the door instead of staying for the movie. We decided to ride Maelstrom again and follow suit.

Besides Star Tours (the Star Wars ride) and the usual “sets,” MGM had something new to offer this trip, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The turtles were there last trip, and even walked past us, but at that time Dave and I didn’t know who they were. In the fall of 1991 Dave entered kindergarten, and a friend of his introduced him to the turtles. Dave then introduced them to me, and when our family decided to go back to Disney this year, Dave and I wanted to see them, but this time we had to seek them out. We watched the show, and I had my picture taken with Michelangelo. We also watched a Muppets show while we were there.

In the evenings a couple of interesting things happened. Two of the nights we were caught out in the rain, so we bought yellow Mickey Mouse ponchos. They were nice, and held up well. One time when we needed them, Dave asked when we were going to get out our “nachos.” He couldn’t remember exactly what they were called! We also spent an evening at the Village Market Place again. We arrived earlier this time, and though we went to the Disney Store, we also ventured beyond it to see what else they had.

Towards the end of the trip, Mom and I had an interest in riding Space Mountain, one ride that we hadn’t been on. I thought it seemed like it would be a little scary as I heard it was a rollercoaster in the dark, and at that point, I didn’t think I was ever on a rollercoaster (I didn’t realize at the time the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad was also a rollercoaster). In the end, we decided not to brave it. Mom thought that if I had trouble on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, then I might not feel good on this ride either.

On our last day at Disney, on our way back to the hotel we were all feeling down, as we knew that we needed to leave the next day. We spent this last day at Magic Kingdom. On the way out of the park, was a character walking into the park that I hadn’t seen before or expected to see, Captain Hook. It was cool to have a chance to get our pictures taken with a Disney Villain as everyone else were the “good guys.” I thought to myself, maybe next time I come, they might have Fat Cat (a villain from Chip ‘N’ Dale Rescue Rangers).

June 14th, 1992 was the day we traveled home. This time one of the activities I did in the car during the trip was to read about a new game, Castlevania 3 that I thought looked interesting in Nintendo Game Secrets 2, a video game hot tip book. I thought the game seemed like it would be good from what I read, and eventually on June 26th, bought the game from K and K Toys at the Chambersburg Mall. We managed to get back home the same day this time, so that Dave and I could start our week of Summer Religious Education Classes that started the next day!

Overall, I thought the second trip was equally as enjoyable as the first, though the reduction of line length during the first trip was a plus. The second trip gave us a chance to really get our “thirst” quenched for Disney World. It also allowed us to ride some rides, that we simply ran out of time for during the quick three day stay at Disney we had the year before.

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