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Trip Report The getting there bit

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by Dawn, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    It's been three years. It takes us that long to save up. I don't know why it takes us that long. Adrian earns very good money to be honest and I have my bit from my school job. It just seems to take us that long. I'm not happy about it but there you go.

    Anyway it's me, Adrian, Steven and Nanny Lesley again and also Grandma aka mother in law. I'm going to come out and state this right now - I am never going on holiday with that woman again. That should cover that subject.

    We were flying out on Saturday 17th but knowing how often the A23 is closed at Handcross Hill due to someone taking the 35mph bend at 6omph we always stay at the airport overnight. We have done the whole Gatwick Hilton stroll to the terminal the next morning thing and last trip we stayed at the Gatwick Travelodge for £23 which was hysterical but this time Steven asked if we could stay somewhere a bit posher, specifically Premier Inn. So I booked that one. Or one of them. There's 6 of them around Gatwick - bear that in mind for later on.

    Friday morning comes and we're up early. The house is spotlessly clean so burglars don't think we live in a tip. Adrian's work laptop has been banished to a dark room. He's been doing some stupid hours this week to meet a deadline. I strip the beds and throw the sheets into the washing machine and put clean sheets on the bed to come home to. Same with towels. A few minutes into the cycle I'm staring at the bottle of laundry stuff thinking something isn't quite right. I then remember it's a "pour into the little drawer" type and not a "stick the container full into the drum" type. I hope the plastic thing won't melt on a 40 degree wash and wander off. A few minutes later I'm back staring at the bottle again. Then I realise what the real problem is. I'm washing the laundry with fabric softener. This time I stop the machine and start over again.

    The hamsterthatlives went off to Steven's friend yesterday and the guinea pigs went off to my dad this morning. Then he came round at lunchtime to collect Lucy and Willow. Then at 3pm I collected Nanny Lesley. At 4pm Grandma and Grandad arrived. They live in Devon so Grandad was staying at the hotel with us and driving home the next morning.

    It was time for the ritual unplugging of everything and we set off through the lousy weather to the Premier Inn. Adrian pulled up in the car park and I informed him that we were at the wrong one. He said that it was the one his printed map had led him to. I said the map was for the wrong one. He got cross and started shouting it was the one his map had led him to. I tried to explain his map was for the wrong hotel but he wasn't really getting it. Anyway the right one was two minutes away and we were soon there and checked in.

    cont...
  2. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    I love how he thinks Premier Inn is posh ;)
  3. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    If I lived as far away, I don't think I'd ever get to WDW so you are doing pretty well :)
  4. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    The hotel had a pub/restaurant next door and I had a table booked for 7pm. There were two buildings so of course we went to the wrong one first. When we got to the right one we were seated straight away. The food was very nice - I had a mozzarella and pesto burger which was really good. I'm not a vegetarian but it sounded nice on the menu. Steven had the gourmet steak burger. We all had desserts too but I don't remember what. Adrian's dad nearly had a seizure when he saw the size of the tip Adrian left. His dad doesn't tip - well he does but it's £2 regardless of how much the meal was and what the service was like. He must never go to America.

    We were in bed shortly after heaving our bodies back to the room. Then we went through the ritual of shouting "plane" every couple of minutes when we heard the engines power up for take off. The runway was just down the road.

    Despite Adrian's best snoring efforts I had a reasonable night's sleep - something that doesn't normally happen the night before travelling. All of us were awake at 6am and we had showers, a pathetically small cup of coffee and watched children's TV until it was time to leave. On the way I phoned the car collecting people and they told us to go to the Passenger Set Down area. I relayed this information to Adrian who immediately took the turning for the Short Stay Car Park. When I pointed this out he did a bit more shouting before I pointed out the sign. It clearly was not the first time this has happened as there is a sign saying take a ticket and go straight to the exit so we did and the barrier let us out. I had to shout at Adrian to stop him doing the exact same thing on our second circuit.

    We got to the drop off area and our collecting person was waiting. As we unloaded the bags from the car I noticed an unused tampon in the road by our feet - this was followed by much pointing and accusations and laughing - which one of us didn't find funny.

    Car handed over, we dropped our bags at the Bag Drop desk for Virgin and then went straight through security (no one beeped which was no fun) and hit Frankie and Benny's for the standard overpriced airport breakfast, and the first coffee for 3 hours. Smoked salmon and scrambled egg bagel for me and pancakes for Steven. On a nearby table there was a large group of men in almost identical suits. We decided they were probably the Mafia and we should not upset them or spill coffee on them.

    After this we had the usual stroll round Duty Free where Adrian bought the usual 3 Toblerones - it's all we ever buy. Then we bought water and snacks for the flight and had more coffee.

    We were then called to our gate - gate 13!!!!

    Everyone went for a last wee and mother tripped over her hand luggage, much to our amusement. Hot Lips was waiting for us, complete with pillow, blanket and headphones on each seat. We had a weird seating arrangement. A row of three for Steven, Grandma and Nanny Lesley and me behind them and Adrian behind me. It worked rather well actually. The plane was one of the newly refurbished ones and was very smart.

    cont...
  5. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    My grandma is almost 87 and all she leaves is $1 for a tip. She gets a pass though as she is elderly. My mother on the other hand is not elderly and she tips poorly. I have to show her how it is done! She sometimes hyperventilates........
  6. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    The plane was full of ladies wearing too much perfume and men wearing not enough deodorant. One woman walked past us about 10 times before being clamped into her seat and she was wearing at least a bottle of some headache inducing scent. As soon as the doors were shut the new inflight entertainment system was switched on. You can use it straight away but you have to use the headphones they supply until the plane is airborne, then you can use your own. Same for landing.

    Eleventy billion films, TV programmes, games, news, skymap and other bits to play with. Grandma was playing Sudoku on her screen - I could see through the gap. I was mentally solving it will we waited to push back. Apparently on board today we had 456 humans and 1 dog. We pushed back 3 minutes early at 11.12 - important when you are trying to beat the BA flight to immigration at the other end. Vic Reeves still voices the safety video and I still find him one of the most annoying people on the planet. The family across the aisle from me proved to be good viewing. Dad and son were messing around the way Steven and myself do and mum was looking on very disapprovingly - the way Adrian doesn. I had Rocket Man playing for take off. Once we were through the clouds I started playing with the skymap. I discovered that we were 8974 km from Guatemala. I noted that done in case there was a test later. Steven was watching Wreck it Ralph by this time. Seriously he is so good at this flying. Once he is in his seat you hardly get a word out of him unless he needs the toilet. He'll just sit for hours.

    Anyway Nanny dropped her glasses case which caused a bit of a kerfuffle while we all rummaged around for them. Then the food came around. The options were sausage and mash, chicken curry or veg pasta. A message flashed up on our screens to say all the sausages were gone - clever but annoying. I had the pasta and Steven had the curry. Edible but nothing special. It killed time though. Then we had a GU lemon thing which was pretty pointless. I watched a Freddie Mercury documentary and then tried to watch something about Anne Boleyn. All this and we're only a quarter of the way into the flight.

    Sam thought he try crawling soldier style down the aisle but his mum put a stop to that. We were then treated to the sight of a toddler running up the aisle holding a plastic knife. Seriously. By the time I'd watched 3 episodes of the Big Bang Theory and laughed out loud many times we were nearly half way there. It felt like we had been up here for months. There were no really amusing passengers to occupy me. Eventually time moved on and soon we were only 1 hour and 15 minutes from Orlando. Which for your information is 9199 miles from Inchon.

    Landing was interesting. The plane touched down and then weaved sharply several times up the runway causing us to grab the seats in front. But...we were down before the BA flight. Yay! We didn't beat the Manchester flight though so several hundred people hit immigration before us. Never mind there were people to watch. The family directly in front were annoying. Every time the line stopped the woman would stop and bend over shoving her ass in my face and proceed to half empty her rucksack. Then the line would move and she'd have to pack it all up again and shuffle forward. Repeat process several times. There was also a group of identically dressed women/girls who went down in size. We called them the Russian Dolls.

    It took about an hour but we were soon stamped, photographed, finger printed and through. Bags were waiting and after the little train ride to the main terminal we were in the garage choosing a car. The man said go to aisle 2 and pick one. I tried a few before settling on a Chevrolet Traverse that we named Sheldon. Managed to get to the villa with not too much weaving and opening of random windows. The alarm on the villa didn't want to be switched off but was fine after a bit of shouting.

    After dumping bags and assigning rooms and stuff we drove up to IHOP for a quick dinner. Steven had a bit of a meltdown - well after 20 hours you would. Quick stop at Publix for essentials and then it was back to the villa. Steven and myself tested the pool and I fell into the bubbly bit - it's deeper than it looks. There were tiny green frogs everywhere. Never seen them before. We went to bed around 9pm. I mended the blind the next morning.
  7. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    Loving this!
  8. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    lol love Big Bang Theory! I could have watched that the entire flight!
  9. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    I think three years is a perfectly reasonable amount of time to save for a major holiday. It's been 13 years since we've been to Ireland. :( Something always comes up. :(
  10. piglet
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    piglet Serious Forum Regular

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    REally enjoying this, next episode please:D
  11. Watchinherskip
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    Watchinherskip Better known as "That Guy"

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    Good stuff! You have a knack for the written word! Can't wait to hear more!
  12. Beccaberry
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    Beccaberry She's beccalicious! Forum Host

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    :) Addicted already...more please!
  13. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Are you somehow related to Douglas Adams? :unsure:

    Tom ( :macwave:... chuckling to himself as the DW looks on with that look that indicates she thinks I've gone quite mad.)
  14. MystikPiglit
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    MystikPiglit Peace, Love and Mickey Mouse

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  15. Deb
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    Deb Serious Forum Regular

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    Love it :) Looking forward to see if you actually bring Grandma home with you or just leave her there :lol:

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