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Disney Death March

Ah, honeymoons! You’ve stressed out about dresses, flowers, which relative not to seat next to, well, anyone. It’s time for you and your beloved new husband to get away from all the craziness now that the ceremony is done.

After our fantabulous Tudor wedding at Scarborough Renaissance Festival, my husband and I had to continue working at said Renaissance festival for the next two months. Oh, but did we have a dream honeymoon planned. First, we would fly to Dublin; spending six glorious days exploring the Emerald Isle. Then, we’d hop a ferry from Belfast to Scotland, making our way down to London. Well, that was the plan, anyway. That was, until my uncle called. He and my aunt had just returned from seeing her family in England.

“Wait to go to England. Your aunt and I just got back. Everything is really expensive right now with this recession starting.”

“Okay, we’ll just have to wait. Thanks!”

Two months later, we heard about one of Disney’s special offers. I had been to Disneyworld’s Magic Kingdom and Epcot but my husband had only ever been to Disneyland in California.

“If we time it just right with Labor Day coming up, we’ll only have to miss one day of work!”

“And, since we can’t see full-scale Europe this summer, we’ll just have to see quarter-scale Europe instead!” said my husband.

“Excellent plan, honey.”

A few weeks later, after precision planning, of course, we arrive at the Mecca of family vacations…Disneyworld! After checking into our Caribbean Beach Resort room, we headed over to Downtown Disney. I booked us a reservation at Wolfgang Puck’s for dinner, so we had a few hours to kill. Let’s just walk around and see what’s here. Neither of us had been to Downtown Disney. Man, this place is huge! Tons of shops to see. Oh, look, giant Lego sculptures. You’re never too old to enjoy Disney!

While we look around, let’s just find out where the restaurant is. Here we are (far right of the map), and here is Puck’s (far left of the map.) Huh, not too bad. The map’s only a foot long. What’s this? Looking at legend at the bottom of the map, every ¼ inch represents one mile. That’s not…too much walking. We have plenty of time. We’ll just take it slow. Florida heat too much for you? We’ll just pop into one of the cool shops to check it out.

We started out near Disney’s Days of Christmas, guarded by the fantastical dancing brooms from “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.” Nearby, kids played in Disney’s version of the lawn sprinkler. Downtown Disney is peppered with wonderful shops, such as World of Disney, Disney’s Design-a-Tee, Once Upon a Toy, and LEGO Imagination Center. LEGOS! Look, honey, every color imaginable. Of course, I had to stop and photograph every single thing, and step inside every single store. Of course, I ran out of battery for the camera. But we stopped into a souvenir shop where the very friendly saleswoman from Oklahoma City took great care of us.

It’s a while before our reservation. Let’s eat at Cap’n Jack’s! My husband and I naturally gravitate to anything piratical, so naturally, we had to get our Glowing Character Punch drinks with the light-up Captain Hook straw. How cool is that?! Very cool, matey.

Okay, now that we rested, we continued walking. Oohhh, music store ahead. Good, they probably have a restroom. We followed that with several more shops. Maybe we should check where we are in relationship to the restaurant. After all, two hours had already passed. Huh, we’re only half way through the map. Keep chuggin’!

Eventually, we made it to Wolfgang Puck Café. Just in time because our feet were starting to hurt. Now, we could enjoy sitting in the cool air conditioning and looking at the vista. Being at a Wolfgang Puck restaurant, we knew we would be eating quite possibly one of the best meals ever! Naturally, the pumpkin ravioli was to die for! What’s that you say? It sounds like the scene from “When Harry Met Sally.” Can’t imagine what you mean. It might have been the dessert.

After dinner, we headed back to the bus stop. Of course, Disney has some of the most organized transportation system ever. The bus took us right to our part of the resort. Just a short walk back to our room, and the first day of our Disney honeymoon was done. Time to rest our feet before hitting the Magic Kingdom!

Erika L. Durham

12 August 2012