You know the deal, cut for length…
Ok… Day three was another Epcot day, but first, I was to start off the morning with breakfast at Chef Mickey’s. I’d been trying to get that reservation since I first booked my trip and had only succeeded in getting it, the night before I flew out. Needless to say I was psyched. I encountered a very friendly custodial employee behind Classic Hall, named Raffaelle who was sweeping water into a drain with a squeegee. He could very well have just gone about his work, as many custodial staff seem to float by in their own world, which of course is understandable, which is why I feel he went above and beyond when he instead greeted me with a cheery good morning and a smile as I passed him, asked if I was headed out to the parks, and when I answered that I was headed to the Contemporary to have breakfast at Chef Mickey’s grinned wider and said “You’ll have fun there.” As I passed thru contemporary hall I noted him in my Smartphone for a GSF card.
Coming out the front of Classic Hall, I hopped the buss to Magic Kingdom, and hopped the Monorail to the Contemporary. There were so few people headed out of the Magic Kingdom at 8am, that I thought I’d give it a try to get into the front cab, and nervously walked over to the platform CM near that end of the platform, to ask if it was possible. He said to wait near the front, and he’d check when the train came in to see if it had people in it already or if there was room. A family of 4 came up behind me just a little later and asked the same thing. He told them he could only take 3 because the cabin only fit 4, and I tried to bow out to let them go together, but the mother wouldn’t let me and sent her two kids in with their father.
Thus began my very short ride in the front cabin. The kids were terrified of the driver, and their father was ribbing them to ask him something, so I got in the first question, which was also my last… I’m afraid it might have been an annoying one, so I won’t post it… but soon enough we pulled into the Contemporary and it was time for me to get out. I nearly left without my Monorail Co-Pilot License, not knowing that they handed out those sort of things, and even if I had known not thinking that adults would get them.
So, I was about 20 minutes early for my reservation, since I wasn’t sure how long it was going to take me to get to the Contemporary from, but they seated me after only about 10 to 15 minutes. I declined the picture in front of the plate, since it cost more than I was willing to pay, and was shown to my table, which ordinarily would seat 4. I took the chair near the wall so I could look out over the whole restaurant, was served some orange juice, and introduced to my server Jon Jon, who upon finding I was dinning alone, asked me if I had a camera, and upon receiving an affirmative, assured me he’d keep an eye out for the Characters movements and be sure to be back at my table for each visit, to take my picture with them.
He then pointed me in the direction of the buffet, and left. I sat in my seat for a little while, appraising the movements of the characters, afraid to miss one while I was in the buffet line, and upon ascertaining that they were mostly at the other end of the restaurant, except for Donald, who I’d just seen go backstage, presumably for a break, I decided it was safe to go get food. I took a plate and served myself what I realized after I did it, was primarily kids food. I had a Mickey Shaped Waffle and a Hashed Brown Patty ,then further down served myself some bacon, and buttered and syruped the waffle and headed back to my table, figuring I could go back for more later… I never did. I got so giddy and my stomach was so full of butterflies that it took me until nearly all the characters had been by to eat just that. I had a great time waving my napkin over my head during the celebration.
Jon Jon, true to his word made it back for all the characters, although by the time he’d made it back on Minnie, the neighboring table had already taken my picture with her, in exchange for my getting all 3 of them in the picture with their 2 year old’s favorite character. I got to tell you, even as an adult I found the characters intimidating, and probably made a fool of myself saying things like what an Honor it was to meet them (the mice) and thank you so much for taking the time to see me (Pluto, Goofey), although by the time Pluto came around, I was far more loosened up, which is good, because he LICKED me. I called him a Rascal and we posed for Jon Jon with the camera.
After breakfast, I wandered the main area of the Contemporary, admired the “Share a Dream Come True” sculpture near the elevators, ascended the escalator, hopped back on the monorail. Despite the weather warnings it wasn’t raining yet, but there was a heck of a wind that day, and I took a picture o f the leaning Christmas Tree out the window, before the train started up. I rode to the TCC to transfer for Epcot, and started making my way thru Future World.
I decided since it was still early to hit the Seas with Nemo and Friends before it got too crowded, and after it started raining buckets, wound up spending the entire morning in the Living Seas Pavilion looking at the fish. I did Turtle Talk with Crush twice, and talked to some of the people who take care of the fish up on the upper level, where the little tanks are (I think it might be the Ocean Resource Exhibit… not sure.) There they had some living Conchs and a mated pair of clownfish looking after their eggs. A cast member behind the counter told me if I was interested in mating pairs of clownfish, where to find another set downstairs, so I headed down to the exibit aquariums and found the other mated pair that were in the tank that was split between them and the sea horses. At one I put on my poncho and ran around the pavilion in the pouring rain to the Coral Reef restaurant. Now, one thing disappointed me about that place, and it was the limited menu. I’m a Seafood NUTTER. I understand there needs to be variety, but 50% of the Entrees were not fish… and there’s only 10. Now I understand that you can’t have more than around 10 Entrees in a restaurant… but when I go to France in Epcot… all 10 Entrees are French. I was hoping for Lobster Tails, Crabs Legs, Steamed Clams, various fish fillets which exemplify the tastes of the ocean… maybe a seaweed salad. Of the Fish Entrees, 3 of them involved drowning the poor fish in Chutney or Barbeque sauce…
Now, that said, I was THRILLED with the meal I picked, the Lobster Salad with Lobster Bisque. The Lobster was so finely shredded into it that I was concerned at first it might have been diluted with whitefish, but it was basically a scoop of shredded lobster with a bit of mayonnaise, and made a delicious offset to the creamy piping hot lobster bisque which was TO DIE FOR. I was on the bottom tier of the restaurant with only one two seater between me and the aquarium which made for a delightful viewing experience. There was a scuba lesson while we were eating, and we could see the divers all paddling around in the higher levels of the tank. Two divers came down to the window where my two seater, the one next to me, and a four seater table were, and waved at all of us. One of the divers made Mickey ears over his head with his hands, pointed at me and gave me the thumbs up, as if to indicated that he liked my ears hat. I thought they must be CMs that entertain the guests every now and then, but they were on a mission as it turns out… it was the birthday of the woman at the four seater. They pointed at her birthday card, and gestured for her to hold it up to the glass… when she did, they pressed an 8 by 10 sign against the window which I presume read Happy Birthday, because her husband and children exclaimed that out loud at that moment. I couldn’t read it from where I sat… but it was only 3 words, 2 above 1, so I presume it was Happy Birthday [Name].
I told the waitress I was thrilled with the food but I was full and I was wondering if there was a way to convert an unused desert off table service into a snack. She went back and checked, but they couldn’t… “That’s ok, I’ll still skip desert,” I told her, “I really AM full and I don’t want to loose the taste of that lobster bisque just yet.” She told me to wait just there, and she’d be back with the check… she came back with not only the check, but a recipe card for the lobster bisque. which just made my day all that much more special. I’ve yet to try it… I’m thinking I just might this week, if I can get all the ingredients. I could use a little taste of Disney.
After that I darted back around the pavilion to watch the Dolphin exhibition. I got some great pictures of the one Dolphin who was willing to pose for shots at the end. I wandered back over to the center of Future World, and rode on Spaceship Earth, and at around 5, decided to pack it in early in anticipation of my Keys to the Kingdom tour to start early the next morning. I stopped by Everything Pop wound up making two more pin trades for Figment Emotions series pins with the Merch CMs and picked up a quick dinner at the food court, in the form of a Chicken Caesar Salad to go, with Minute Maid Cranberry Raspberry Apple juice, and a tiny Cheesecake. I laid in bed and nibbled the salad while calling home and watching TV.