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Oh the Places We Go, The People We See ...Dream Trip Report

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First of all, I love your reports. I am doing the Magic crossing in May and loved seeing so much of the ship in your other post to get me even more excited. Also, I am an Orlando local and have lived here all of my life. I have seen the skywriting since I was little and the man who currently does it is a bit of a legend. I think he only does it on the weekends now but it is pretty much every weekend.

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First of all, I love your reports. I am doing the Magic crossing in May and loved seeing so much of the ship in your other post to get me even more excited. Also, I am an Orlando local and have lived here all of my life. I have seen the skywriting since I was little and the man who currently does it is a bit of a legend. I think he only does it on the weekends now but it is pretty much every weekend.


Is he a preacher or something? Or just a religious person? I have seen it here and there over the years too and every so often hear a bit about him.

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Before I go on I want to add something that I forgot from the previous day.

While Claire was swimming I pulled out the new journal that was from Carey and Janet. I opened it to start writing and taped inside was a $25 gift card to Disney. They said thanks for all the help, but honestly there was NO need to give me such a wonderful thing. I texted them both and thanked them. I used it towards a new watch purchase later in the trip!

On to…….

Nov.4, 2013, Sunday ~ Day 4

I had really hoped for a good night’s sleep, but sadly it wasn’t meant to be. The time also changed during this night, so we were falling back and getting an extra hour.

I think I slept about 3-4 solid hours and then I woke up and tossed and turned for a bit. I finally just gave up and got up and dressed and went for a walk. I knew laying there with my head full of activity would do me no good, so maybe if I moved around, I would tire myself out.

I believe it was now 4:30 AM in the new time. (5:30 old time)



As I was walking around, I did see an older guy walking as well. I really tried to stay towards the front and on the sidewalk. I surely didn’t want any freaks attacking me.

After a bit, he was walking towards his car and he said hello and I said hi back. He then said he would like to point out some stuff in the sky to me if I didn’t mind. He was from Montreal and he love astronomy. I didn’t get any closer to him, just to be safe. I am sure he was perfectly nice, but crazy maniacs appear nice too. So he pointed out Jupiter and Mars if I remember right and actually told me some interesting info. We talked a few minutes and then he had to be on his way for a convention or something. I walked around the front some more and over near the Burger King parking lot I saw something fairly big move. It was either a HUGE rat, which wouldn’t surprise me one bit, or an armadillo. I am guessing armadillo since we are in FL. But it had that rat like tail. CREEPY. I quickly moved towards the hotel entrance then.


I was thinking about heading in, when I had an afterthought, maybe I should stay out here and see if I can see the Dream pull in, if it hadn’t yet already.

So I looked that way and guess what! She was pulling in, but I only saw the tail end of her before she went out of sight. That of course made my excitement level higher!

I decided to head back in and take some pictures inside. Last year I didn’t get a lot and this was the perfect time to get the lobby area fairly empty.


This is some of the tables to eat breakfast at.


A few things for sale.


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Computer station. I actually ended up using this later that morning. I had 2 folders full of paperwork and plans, etc. And I for the life of me could not find my inline check in form. I was getting annoyed, so I just went to this station and reprinted it.


I don’t think we ever even looked much at this area last year. It was a nice seating area and over flow from breakfast would sit in here as well.




I took a seat for a while then and played a bit with my phone. I think I even went back to the room, which was right around the corner from the front desk, and got my kindle and I read up on a few emails and I think I even caught up reading on a Trip Report or 2.

While sitting there a lady came in. She was the lady who put out the breakfast, so she must arrive early to set up and cook. She was kind of funny talking to a few guys and complaining about the time change and it messing her up.

I then took off towards the bathroom.



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There was a door outside right by the bathrooms, so I went out through that and it led near the pool and pool bar, which is on the left in the picture, but all shut down.


The front desk


I headed back to the room for a bit and charged my kindle while I read some more. I just sat in the living room area. I think around 6:15 or so I went and took a shower and got that out of the way. After I did that my Mom and Dad also got up and took their showers. Claire slept through it all pretty much.

I think she woke up around 7:30ish and we got her dressed.


Dad started looking for his new tennis shoes and of course Mom yelled at him for asking over and over and she told them they were in HER suitcase and she would get them for him. So she pulled her suitcase out and went to a side pocket and it had a lock on it. My Mom was TICKED off. Why would security at the airport lock these after checking it? She doesn’t have a key. I suggested that if we needed to get in the pocket we may have to see if someone else had a key to fit or cut it open. She then went to open the main suitcase to see if the keys were inside and it was LOCKED! My mom doesn’t cuss much EVER, but a few words slipped out at that point in time. We then looked the bag over and that when I asked if it was her bag. It’s orange and honestly I have never seen another like it, but you never know. We looked at the bag tag and compared it to her retrieval tags and it was NOT a match! We searched and found a tag and it had someone else’s name on it and they were from Montreal. OH NO!!!!!

Talk about panic! This suitcase had all my mom’s clothes in it and it was GONE! She was in a tizzy and I don’t blame her. I just kept saying be calm and we’ll work something out, even if she had to go shopping for new clothing.

I frantically searched on my kindle for Deltas lost bag phone number. It kept glitching and taking me to another page, but finally it came up and I called. Guess what, they are closed on Sundays. Seriously? You would think this would be open 24 hours a day, EVERY day.

In the meantime, Mom is trying the number for the Montreal people and it just talks in French and from what she could gather, they were out of area to get the call.

As I am looking on the kindle for other options, my Moms cell phone rings. She answers it annoyed, but soon perks up. It’s Delta. They have her bag! Mom lets them know that she has someone elses as well. Mom handed the phone to me because she was in such a panic and took down the directions on how to retrieve it. The guy was great and said not to worry as the ship didn’t leave till later in the afternoon and we also had an extra hour to play with today.

I told Mom I would run down to Gail and Rob’s room and ask if Rob would drive Dad to airport to make the switch. No one was going to trust Dad to do this on his own and he drives like a snail. If I went, I probably would’ve killed him somewhere along the roadside.

Side note ….my suggestion to you when packing. Pack by day and not by person. Which is something I have started doing the last few years. Just in case a suitcase does get lost, at least you have a couple of days’ worth of clothes in one bag for everyone!

Claire and I ran down the hall to Gail’s room. We knocked and heard Alexis ask who it was. She opened the door and we asked if her Dad was up. Abby piped up, “I go get him”. So she went into the bedroom and jumped on Rob to wake him up. Gail and Rob had a 2 bedroom suite, not sure how they lucked out on that ….. and Gail came out of the other bedroom and asked what was up and I told her and she knew the horror of what must be going on in our room.

Rob got right up and dressed and I headed off back to our room to let Dad know to be ready when he got there.

Dad turned on his cell phone then (this is a sore subject with Mom as he keeps it off all the time and thinks he only needs to turn it on every so often to check messages and save his battery. He wasn’t even going to bring his charger along for the whole trip and Mom insisted he did) and low and behold there was a message from Delta the night before letting us know they had our bags. Yeah, it was a tense moment in the room then. I thought I might witness my Mother killing my Father and I would have to defend her. After all he was the one who pulled the wrong bag off the carrousel and didn’t turn his phone on. The thing I wondered though was how did they get his number? We put everything under my Moms number. My only guess is she had both numbers on her luggage tag.

Dad was ready and I walked him down to Rob’s room. They took off and we let them know if they were late for the shuttle to just drive over to the port and park the van. Rob wanted to get back for a shower too before they went to the port and though we had plenty of time till we needed to head over (thank God for the time change), it did take an hour each way to get to and from the airport.

They were off and Gail made the comment that Rob had said “I am sure glad I am not in ‘that’ room this morning. I can only imagine what is going on.” LOL!

Yeah, I didn’t want to be there either.

We met back up with mom and headed to get a bite to eat to calm our nerves.



We headed back to Gail’s room then and the girls were dressed. Alexis answered the door showing off her lanyard. She asked if Claire had one and Claire panicked a minute. I let her know that we would be getting ones when we checked in for the ship, so we would have them later that day. Collecting pins became a very fun hobby for the 2 girls.


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After a bit of walking around and fooling around we headed back inside. The girls loved this water feature.


We then headed off to our room for a bit.



I believe Gail met us here and we fooled around a bit more. Gail was worried as Abby was pulling at her ear. This is a telltale sign that she has an ear infection. Abby gets them ALL the time. Gail was worried. We would be heading out to sea for 4 days, it could get ugly. She asked about Dr.’s on the boat and I told her yes, but they are very pricey. Then it dawned on me. Katie is a pediatrician! Gail said Katie and Geoff had made a run to a nearby store, so she quickly called Geoff and let him know the situation. Katie said she would write a script and pick it up. Wonderful!

We kind of just chilled a bit and went in and out of the room for a while. I ran back to the room at one point to use the bathroom and realized I had left my phone on the counter. I picked it up and had 2 missed calls and a couple of texts. With all the excitement happening this morning I had forgotten about a Dis meet. Rinky Tinky Tink (she has asked me not to use their names) was getting off the Dream this morning and she said they would stop off at the hotel to meet up. I quickly called her (Or maybe I texted) and she was on her way. I ran back to the lobby and soon they arrived.

She probably thought I was a complete nutcase. With all the stuff going on, I was an utter scatter brain.

We talked a bit and they had a gift for Claire. UGH! I had a gift for Rinky Jr (her daughter who is Claire’s age), but it was left in my room. Luckily our room was the first one around the corner, so I quickly ran back and got it. We talked about their cruise. They were so much fun. Mr. Rinky was so funny. Claire and Rinky Jr. pretty much just eyed each other up and down though. They were NOT about to get friendly in the short time we had.

They told me about the damage from Sandy at Castaway Cay, which wasn’t too bad at all in their opinion. They said a few excursions had been canceled, one being the stingray one. We had that booked and it was all Claire wanted to do and she totally shut down after that. She was fighting tears. I let her know we would check once we got on, as I had called prior to going and it was still scheduled, but she wouldn’t listen to me.

Mr. Rinky also told us they did the jet ski excursion and how awesome it was. They all seemed to love it though Rinky Tinky said it was a bit too fast, Mr. Rinky said it wasn’t fast enough. They suggested us looking into it, and it did sound like a lot of fun.

Some family members had walked by and I introduced everyone. Rinky got a whole family meet with me! LOL

It came time where they had to leave as they were driving home and I wanted to get a picture. Shoot! My camera was in the room. So once again I ran back and got that. I think Claire took our picture. She REFUSED to be in it and so did Rinky Jr.



We talked a bit more and guess who walked in! Dad and Rob!

Holy Cow that was fast! It was only an hour and a half since they left!!!!!

I introduced them to Rinky’s family and they walked on. I think Rob and Dad went off for a bite to eat.

We said our good byes and they left for home after having a wonderful vacation at Disney World and ending it with the Dream and we were just starting ours.

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We joined the family who was eating outside and we got a bit to snack on as well.



We sat there for a while and chatted. Rob told us how he made the 2 hour plus drive in 1 ½ hours. He said NO ONE EVER passed him on the road. LOL! He said he pulled up and told Dad to stay in the van and watch it while he ran in to make the switch. He said it was waiting right where it was supposed to be and YES, the bags were almost identical. He said the only difference was that the one had a silver zipper and the other had a gold one. I sure hope those poor people got their bag back too.

Some of us girls headed off for another walk. Katie joined us this time as well as Gail, if I remember right. Mom stayed back to chat with everyone else.

We spotted a turtle in a little pond nearby.


We watched him a bit and headed off again.



Jude was a wild thing! Katie said that when he is lacking in sleep, he gets pretty jumpy and wild. He was like a crazed little man running all over, but having a great time!


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We tried to get the kids together for a group picture. That wasn’t so easy.

I guess Jude is feeling the music….though there wasn’t any playing!


Another attempt! Abby does not want a boy in the picture.


Ok, this one isn’t so bad!


We all chatted some more and then headed back to our rooms to be sure everything was packed. Rob talked to the bus driver and found out that she could take us over then as there weren’t many Carnival passengers riding. Sadly we couldn’t all get out there before it was time for her to leave, but she would be back shortly for us.

We all just hung out and waited.



After a bit we moved our stuff outside as a few more guests had gathered in the lobby as well.


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Finally the bus arrived. This was a BIG bus, just like the Disney buses. We left our luggage for the girl to load. All the guys insisted on helping her, but she said she had a system and wanted to do it herself.

Claire and I once again got the front seats! Everyone else piled in behind us.



And soon we were on our way to the port.

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Our bus driver was very friendly. The ride is very short over to the port and she announced where to go and how to find our shuttle once we got back.

And soon enough we were all gasping at our view!


She’s just so beautiful and when you pull in and see her you can just see how HUGE she is.



Parking lot shot.




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Soon enough we were stopped and getting off the bus and waiting for the luggage to unload.


A shot of the terminal.


And finally we were off to get in line.


We had to stop here and show ID’s.


Aunt Mary and Geoff were right behind Claire and I.


Claire and I made it through and then started walking. After a bit we noticed that Aunt Mary and Geoff and the rest of the gang was still held up. Claire and I kept going, figuring they would catch up with us shortly.


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We looked back again before entering the building and they were coming, but as they reached a set of stairs they turned and went up them. I guess this is another entrance and the CM had directed them to go that way. Claire was a little worried we wouldn’t find them again, but I assured her we would all end up in the same place.


We went through security and made our way towards check in.




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It was very fast and easy. We got boarding pass number 6 and they were already boarding! You don’t know how bad I just wanted to leave the family behind in the dust and run onto the ship! But we still had to wait for the rest of the family who still had not shown up.

I think at one point I texted Geoff who said they were just going through security. When they did arrive, Mom scolded me for going off on our own ahead of everyone.

While they all got in line, I took a few pictures.



Abby had spotted Mickey and Gail had prepared her for so long about this trip and she just kept saying “I want to see Mickey MOOOOOWSE!”





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Soon Mom and Dad were at the check in desk. They could use the castaway club check in line since Mom has sailed Disney before.


I kept eyeing the ears doorway. I was so ready to make the mad dash there and get on the ship!


While waiting, I took a picture of my cards.



Claire is patiently waiting.


Gail’s family was the last to get checked in and once she arrived we made our way to the ship.


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Abby was not so happy about this. She still wanted to see Mickey MOOWSE! I started to laugh and say how cruel we were. After all we had prepared her for this for a year and got her excited about meeting characters and then the first one she sees we say she can’t.

We made our way on the gangway towards the ship. I was so excited. This was my 2nd time sailing the Dream, but my 3rd time being on her. I was lucky enough to take a ship tour of her in Aug. of 2011.


And we stopped for a group picture, which surprisingly went well for as many people as we had. They took like 3 or 4, but only one actually showed up on the CD my sister bought.


Notice our matching shirts. This was actually my Mom’s idea. When we sailed in March 2011 I had bought us matching shirts for our boarding day. Mom said she would wear it, but didn’t seem overly excited about it. I guess she liked it, as she was excited to have us all wear them on this day. She then bought the girls their matching outfits to wear and I had the headbands made (which Abby refused to wear). Some of our family members who did not sail with us and were still back home were mortified that we were doing such a thing. LOL!

Time to board the ship! Come on you slow poke family! Let’s get a move on!

Needless to say, Claire and I were the first ones to board.

Next came Gail’s family.


And Vicki and Pete were behind them.


Mary and Geoff and Mom and Dad were slowly making their way on as well.



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And finally Katie’s family made their way on as well.


This one cracks me up with this lady looking right at my camera.




We oohed and ahhed over the atrium. It is just gorgeous!

I believe they suggested we head to Enchanted Garden to eat. I said I wanted to go to Cabanas, and Mom did too.


We spotted Donald doing a meet and greet a floor up and Abby got anxious again. We decided we would head up there and see him and the rest of the family was going to make their way towards Cabanas.


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The line wasn’t long at all. Mom sat off to the side with our carry ons.


And then it was announced that Donald had to take a break! I could see Gail’s eyes panic. But they announced someone else would be out shortly! Thanks goodness. We HAD to get Abby to a character or there could be a meltdown.


The girls are waiting patiently.


And I took a few shots while we waited.



And then we saw him!


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Pluto was coming!!!!


The wait for Pluto was not bad at all and soon Gail’s girls were meeting him. I have given both girls autograph books last Christmas. Gail says she had no clue where she put them and search and searched, so at this point they didn’t have any. They planned to buy one when the shops opened.




Abby was not scared at all.



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Then it was our turn. I handed my camera to Gail and went up towards Pluto. No I am not telling Gail she is a loser, though I am sure growing up I might’ve made that sign once or twice ….. but she couldn’t figure out how to use my camera and I was telling her to look through the view finder.








And then we headed off. I got about here when I realized I had left my carryon over by the couch where Mom had been sitting.




I ran back and got it and we headed towards the elevator. Gail, Rob and Abby made it on one and took off and we waited and waited and waited. We were a floor above the main atrium and there was just no way we were going to get an elevator that wasn’t full already. I told Mom that we should go to the aft of the ship and take those up as they go right to Cabanas. OK, that sounded good. Dad immediately said NO! (Dad says this often and it annoys the heck out of us. Usually he has no clue what he is talking about when he says it and just says no for no reason)

What? Why?

We can’t go that way.

Oh yes we can!

No, I am not taking the stairs.

I snapped a bit then. I told him that we all had been on the ship before and knew exactly where we were going. The aft elevators would lead us right to where we were going and that if we couldn’t get an elevator, we could take stairs as another option.

He said Gail and Rob would be waiting for us at the top near the elevator.

I told him that they would soon give up if they were when they didn’t see us arrive.

And then we left him standing at the elevator.

WE slowly made our way down the hall and I took a couple of shots of the girls that would not turn out no matter how hard I tried. I even tried a flash to counteract the sun coming in, but it bounced off the glass and made it 10 times worse.





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Since we were going so slowly, we eventually saw that Dad was making his way behind us.

We got to the elevators but still had a little wait. Though it wasn’t as bad as the midship ones.


In the meantime, the rest of the family had made it to Cabanas and Geoff took a couple of shots off the back of the ship.






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