Thursday, April 24, 2014

Day Seven - Epcot (again!)

The kids decided this morning that they wanted to go to Denny's again for breakfast, which was fine by me as the French toast is rather good there!
While they were eating their pancakes, Luis 'The Balloon Guy' came to our table and asked if they'd like him to make them a balloon.
I was expecting him to make the standard sword or dog, so when he listed off loads of film characters and superheroes for them to choose from, they were pleasantly surprised.
Charlie opted for Spiderman, and after Rosie had seen it, so did she! She wouldn't be persuaded to have a different one, so we walked out of the restaurant with TWO Spidermen bobbing along in our wake!
We caught the bus from the hotel to Epcot and spent a leisurely few hours wandering round.
Charlie was given a special passport thing for a Muppets secret mission, and he enjoyed looking for all the clues along the way.
The Nemo ride was fun - albeit a lot more slow-paced than the one at EuroDisney (thank goodness!) and there was a big aquarium to look around when we got off it.
The Soarin' ride was another big favourite with Charlie. (Rosie was too little to ride so she stayed outside with Pete and ate her Goldfish crackers!)
Soarin' was a simulator to make you feel like you were hang-gliding (something Charlie probably couldn't do in real life) and it gave you the experience of flying over numerous different areas - pine forests, orange groves, cityscapes and oceans. The scent of each location also appeared in the air, so we could smell the pine trees as we flew over them, sniff the zesty citrus scent and inhale the salty tang of the sea. All very clever!
We wandered around all the different 'countries' within Epcot, meeting various characters on our way.
Charlie was most amused to find the UK section, with its (allegedly!) traditional pub, chip shop and 'Ye Olde Shoppe'.
His reaction... 'I don't think whoever designed this place has been to Britain lately, do you?!'
Tucked behind a bandstand, we found the place we had been looking out for - a chance to meet Tigger (and Winnie the Pooh as an added bonus!)
It was a lovely, private meet and greet, as each family was taken in separately to a big, cool room.
I was chatting to the photographer as the kids were running around with the characters and mentioned in passing that we all have a soft spot for Tigger because he's on Will's headstone.
The characters spent a lot of time with the kids, did some dancing with them and had lots of pictures taken.
We said our goodbyes and walked out, happy to have finally said hi to Tigger.
We hadn't got more than five steps though, before the photographer came running after us, saying Tigger wanted us to come back.
Following her back into the room, we found Tigger and Pooh signing their names on special placards for Charlie and Rosie. They gave one to each child, but then Tigger handed a third one to me. The photographer smiled and told me 'That one is for your eldest son.'
Well, I'm not usually that emotional but I really lost it. It made me so happy that Will was acknowledged, and was a part of our holiday too.
We had lots more hugs and squeezes from Tigger before we finally bade them farewell.
I think the people waiting in line outside wondered what on earth had happened as they watched me, blubbing helplessly, come stumbling out of the 100-acre Wood...
I appreciate how daft it might sound, to be so overwhelmed by a man in a tiger costume, but as I've said before, for us, Tigger will always be linked to Will.
That small act of kindness from the photographer and that particular 'Tigger' really made our day.

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