Does a visit of a few hours count as worthy of a trip report?
We both took today off and decided about 11:30 am to head to EPCOT. For the first time in a long time we parked at the Boardwalk (we have APs so parking in the parks is free for us, we sometimes simply like to change it up) and walked in through the International Gateway.
As we walked in, Cinderella was there at the foot of the hill. She had a little group of admirers. We could see across the way to France where Marie was holding court.
Alice was in the UK (and later Mary Poppins made a visit).
We headed right, toward France. The "crowd" was moderate. Not crazy busy, but busy enough for mid-day in brutally hot temperatures. France had nothing special going on. Marie had gone away. We did notice that the tables were not filled at the downstairs restaurant (full on lunch time now).
Morocco was moderately busy. We didn't check to see how busy the restaurant was. There seemed to be some new merchandise at the Souk. I do love those long, slit up the side "tops" paired with trousers. Sure wish I were brave enough to adopt the look for my own.
Japan had a goodly crowd milling around too. We did stop at the newly refurbished Kaki Gori stand. It had a lovely stream of air conditioning pouring out of the window. We photographed the menu board. We'll see if I can manage to get it posted here.
America was hot, hot, hot. We talked about going into the show, but opted not to. The DVC both had a very friendly woman who greeted us as we walked by.
Down the little hill to Italy. There was clown type mime there and the music was of the kind Mama listened to on Sundays. Should have gone on by, but no... went into the little shop. There is a nice sale on the large platters (the round ones, each decorated with a different vegetable). There was a lovely collection of Christmas Nativity items, too. That started the struggle. Mama loved Christmas. Then I saw the stupid, stupid, stupid Mickey ears. There is a new series from each country and Italy's is really silly looking. Mama would have laughed, and laughed at them. Her birthday is next month. They'd have made a wonderfully silly present. Several bad moments there, so we left not exploring further. I had intended to nosey around the pizza shop, but not this time.
Germany lured us, past the trains that were running to the caramel shop. Was very surprised to see it nearly deserted. There was this dark chocolate caramel with sea salt that had Herself's name on it, so one carmel heavier, we carried on. I did pop into the other German shop for a moment. Their Christmas ornaments are on sale.
We paused at the little "outback" area that is between Germany and China to take a look at the hats. I tried to convince Herself to purchase a nice white microfiber hat with navy blue Mickeys, but the CM there did this pushy hard sell thing, that is so unusual for Disney, and it scared us off.
We headed to China, and poked around in their large shop. Things have changed much there. No more furniture, and much, much less to choose from. It's not bare looking though. They do have some pretty elaborate necklaces too. Thought about buying a Monkey shirt (as I was born in the year of the Monkey) but in the end, did not.
Norway and Mexico were strolled through without looking too closely at much. We headed up to Future World thinking we would have a light lunch at Sunshine Season's Food Fair. Strollers are no longer allowed on the hilly approach to this attraction. You must leave them at the bottom in the full sun. Hope those little ones don't melt when they are put back in!
It seems everyone thought having lunch at Sunshine Season's was a good idea. Nice enough selections but with the crowd (the most people in one place we'd seen all day) we decided nothing looked too tempting. There were some different choices for counter service though. Things like golden and red beet and goat cheese salad, mahi mahi nicoise style salad, reuben on ciabatta, things like that.
We strolled back down to the World Showcase, and stopped at Canada to read the lunch menu. Everything sounded too heavy so on we went. As we were nearing the UK, the sky darkened quickly, and significantly. We took a chance and asked at the outside podium if they had room for two as a walk up. The CM there was too sweet and handed us a pager! We went into the pub (raining hard now) and waited for the pager to go off. One Boddies pulled later and we were seated indoors at a table for two.
We ordered a scotch egg, bubble and squeak and a burger with cheddar and egg. It came after a bit of a wait, and was quite nice! All was hot (the fries/chips were perfect!) and very nicely done. We took our time over lunch, waiting out what was now a thunder and lightning storm.
Once we were done, and the rain had stopped we went back outside. The "new" band was playing so we went back to the garden to listen. Not so great. Not terrible, but meh. Browsed the shops there as we'd not been in for some time. We got a case of the giggles at one t-shirt saying it was THE t-shirt for next gay days. It was pink with QUEEN emblazoned on the front. The CM must have thought us bats as we giggled about it. There was another one there that said Keep Calm and Carry On. I thought I needed that, but then changed my mind. True to life, eh?
After poking here and there we left and headed back out the International Gateway. We took the Friendship Ferry back just because. Once back on the boardwalk, we stopped by the Screen Door and Wyland Gallery. Nothing new in either!
We slogged back to the car (do NOT believe anyone who tells you it cools off after a rain/thunder storm, it does NOT NOT NOT) and headed home.
All in all, it was a good afternoon at EPCOT.
We'll be back to stay for a few days. Herself asked out of the blue this morning to go to OKW for her birthday, so we've made arrangements to do that. We'll also be staying over for the Food and Wine Festival. We're headed to Vero Beach in November, and yep, Christmas is at OKW this year. I needed to do something completely different than we have in the past few years, so we're doing a WDW Christmas. The boy has never done Christmas on property, so he'll enjoy it. His Da is as excited about it as a little boy, too.
So, there you have it. EPCOT for the afternoon...