The one with the invisible friends We wandered down Mickey Ave but there were no characters out by their caravans; perhaps we were there too early. So we walked through to the New York St area for a quick look and then made our way back to Voyage of the Little Mermaid. If you don’t want to wait forever to see this one you must get a FastPass. By the time they had let all the FP holders in there was very little room left for the stand-by line. And this is the quiet time of year; goodness only knows what it’s like in summer. So get a FastPass. Anyway we hand over our FastPasses and enter the pre-theatre holding area. I find myself next to a family whose son is in the middle of a huge tantrum. It was wicked funny to watch and listen to; I love watching this kind of thing. Here is the scenario. The family are on their first day in the parks. The boy, aged around 10 I guess, has his own spending money and has blown some of it on the first thing he’s seen – a Mickey Mouse waistpack. The boy does not now want to wear the waistpack and wants to put it in Mom’s backpack. Mom says no, it’s a waistpack so it goes round your waist. Dad explains that son should not blow cash in first shop and now he has a waistpack and he has to wear it round his waist. Mom is not going to carry it around all day in her backpack. If son does not want to wear waistpack round waist then son should just leave waistpack on the floor so someone else can have it. Son crying and screaming and stamping feet. It was cool; I felt privileged to be able to witness this extra bit of unscheduled entertainment. I know, I know, my turn will come. We enter the theatre and it’s a full house so we have to move all the way down to the end of the row. Is that instruction really so hard to follow? Or are some people just ignorant? Oh I know, they’ve all got invisible friends who need their own seats. Eventually the CMs managed to get across to everyone that their invisible friends did not need seats to enjoy the show and we could get on with the show – which wasn’t gairy. After this we had a quick shop – as you do – and then made our way out of the park and back to the hotel. We were to meet up again around 6pm to head to the Magic Kingdom. Adrian, Steven and myself went to the food court to grab some lunch. I set Steven up in one of the highchairs there while Adrian went to the grill counter to get our food. He had chicken strips and fries and I had a grilled chicken breast burger thingy with fries. It took so long for Adrian to return with the food that I was beginning to wonder whether they were out in the kitchen plucking a chicken or something. Apparently it was my fault as my chicken breast had to be cooked from scratch. Um, how is all the other stuff cooked then? Anyway never mind the food, guess what I have found? Cheerleaders! Hordes of them, all over the food court, big groups of cheerleaders. What are those crazy things they have in their hair? There was also a group of what we in the UK would call “lads.” A group of teenage boys hanging around the food court trying to look cool. Someone needs to tell them that jeans hanging round your knees and a dishcloth under your cap is not cool. And you’re old enough to be able to tie shoelaces too Buster. God I sound old. Anyway we ate our food then Adrian went to get something from the ice cream counter. I told him to get me something nice and he came back with two huge sundaes. Apparently the server got him before he was ready so he just pointed. He does that a lot. After forcing as much of this ice cream concoction down my throat as possible we staggered back to our room and did a bit of packing. Everything that was now classed as dirty laundry was shoved into the bags, along with as many of the souvenirs and things that we had bought, which we saw fit to pack at this time. This included all of Steven’s plush toys, which meant that Mousekeeping had no toys to play with. We had a nice little bed or window arrangements most days. Oh well, only a couple of days, they can manage without our toys for that long. We then lazed around for a bit watching Resort TV but it just isn’t the same without the Tip For Today. Couldn’t find the Appliance Direct commercial anywhere either so we stuck Steven into his buggy and went for a walk around the resort. We stopped off in Andy’s Room to take a few photos and then headed to the food court for a drink but were stopped on the way by the discovery of Nanny Lesley sitting in Reel Spot reading her book. We stopped to collect her and took her on a tour of the resort. Looks like the Dalmations section was the place to be if you wanted to be with the cheerleaders. The grassy areas here had several groups throwing each other in the air in some ritually cheerful manner, which I assume is the cheerleader way. We don’t have cheerleaders in the UK so this is all new to me. I’ve already learnt that they do not get to the food court early, they have stupid things in their hair, they simply must wear matching shellies at all times, and they must shout as loudly as possible whilst throwing each other in the air. The rest of the resort yielded no further evidence of cheerleaders, and it also turned up a missing Herbie in the Love Bug section. Apparently it was removed because guests kept helping themselves to bits as souvenirs. A quick flit through the Fantasia section where I made the mistake of getting into the hammock there: Adrian thought it was hysterically funny to photograph me as I attempted to exit the wretched thing. Note to self: we do not need a hammock in our garden. We called the elevator to return to our room and the elevator doors opened to reveal Big Steve, Lisa, Ellie and Harry, and a large amount of laundry on their way to do the necessary cleaning. We bid them good luck and reminded them to check all their quarters before feeding them into the machine and went back up to our room. We still had time to kill and chill before going out again so I took the car and dashed up to Goodings to get enough baby food to last till we got back to England. Could have gone to Publix but at Goodings I knew they carried the jars ‘with added texture’ so I grabbed a load of those, and some banana cookies to bring back home with us. On the way back from here I searched desperately for something decent on the radio. Fruitless search. We had, in both cars, been tuned to 107.7 since picking the cars up. Can’t remember the station name but they played Christmas music non-stop. Weird driving along in shorts and sunglasses singing “have a jolly, holly Christmas,” so I tried to find something different. Nothing doing so I went back to my festive fare and pretended it was snowing. Back to hotel, unloaded shopping, rounded up fellow travellers, put them in cars and drove to the Magic Kingdom, making sure of course that they had their Christmas party tickets. I had a Goofy.