We left home at stupid o’clock to get to Gatwick Airport in plenty of time to clear security (and yes, once again I lit up the metal detectors and had to have a proper check). We got on board a Virgin Atlantic 747 and I have to say we had a lovely flight over to Orlando International.
The stewardesses were brilliant. They fixed the speaker hole thingy on my seat and I was so impressed that I almost proposed but the thought of getting down on one knee persuaded me otherwise as I’d never have got back up again. Even clearing border security in Orlando was a breeze. Car hire was quickly sorted and we had sat nav to guide us to the house we were renting. We have been to Orlando on several occasions and without fail we get lost. This time, courtesy of Mr Garmin we arrived at our house without any problems. We opened the front door and entered the alarm code into the keypad. Alarm duly went off. Wrong code. By Christ it was a bloody noisy alarm. PIL eventually figured it out. A knock at the door. Polk County Sheriffs Deputy checking to see if we were robbers. We’ve been here less than ten minutes and already the cops have come knocking on the door!
She was very nice. Thought about proposing again as nothing quite like a woman in uniform. Decided not to as knees still knackered but more importantly, she was packing a pistol! Sorted out bedrooms, distribute bags, went to the nearby Publix supermarket and stocked up with essential items – beer and donuts plus some other bits and pieces that PIL insisted we got. Went to bed ‘cos we is all knackered!
Where we are staying is a golf resort so once breakfast was eaten, Ed and Greg were going for a round. The rest of us joined them, scooting around on the buggies. This is the first time I had actually seen my sons playing golf and I have to say I was very impressed with how bloody awful they both were. We allowed CJ to drive one of the buggies until she took out a big bush and was heading towards someones house before managing to stop just in time.
After golf, we jumped in the huge vehicle and went off to indulge in some retail therapy at one of the many outlet centres dotted all over Orlando. It’s been five years since we were last here and it has to be said that things ain’t as cheap as they were back then. However, clothes shopping can still be a lot cheaper than back in the UK. For example, I bought a pair of asics trainers, two pairs of shorts and two tee shirts from American Eagle plus a Nike running vest for a total of 120 bucks! Thats probably over 200 quids worth back in Blighty. Then we decided it was time to eat and we found the most incredible place in all the known Universe. The food came in such large portions that, for the sake of the health and well being of everyone else on the planet and particularly those of you back in the UK who will overload the NHS with your obesity, I have decided to keep The Cheesecake Factory a closely guarded secret and not reveal its name. If I were to tell you about The Cheesecake Factory, you would all descend upon it and end up as a fat bastard just like me.
Despite our massive vehicle being overloaded with fat bastards we managed to get home without totally destroying the suspension. After storing the doggy bags safely in the fridge to scoff another day, we waddled off to bed.
Our first visit to a theme park and we trundled off to Universal Studios. Our advise: Get “Express” passes. They cost a bit more but they save you huge amounts of time. You still have to queue but for nowhere near as long as the poor plebs without them. They don’t apply to the Harry Potter rides but they do on everything else so get them unless of course you enjoy queueing, in which case you are barking and probably won’t be allowed to enter the USA in the first place. We all had an absolute blast. PIL isn’t too fond of roller coasters but there are plenty of rides that she went on and enjoyed: MIB, The Simpsons, Despicable Me and The Mummy. In fact she enjoyed MIB and The Simpsons so much, we’re going back on wednesday when we do the other part of the Universal park – Islands of Adventure. There was one curious thing about the Universal Studios theme park. I thought it was illegal but perhaps the law doesn’t apply here. There are signs up all over the park that I am sure will be of particular interest to at least one regular reader of my blog: After walking many, many miles and with sore legs and feet we made our way home and went to bed again. Carrying all that extra weight certainly doesn’t help.
Greg has recently passed his driving test. He has still to decide what car he wants. Actually, he has decided what car he wants. PIL and I have just said “No”. Greg has decided, especially as he has seen a number over here, that he wants a Mustang. Not just any Mustang but a Roush Mustang. For the non petrol heads let me explain. A Mustang is an American “muscle” car. The sort of car that Bruce Springsteen sings about. However, as with all things like this, there are “tuned” versions. Mercedes have AMG. BMW have “M” Sport. Mustang is usually tuned by Shelby which is great in a straight line but if you want it to go round corners as well, you pay a bit more and get one from Roush.
As we were still cream crackered from our visit to Universal, we decided today would be a rest day. So we slobbed around the pool, played around with the “GoPro” camera and then we shot off to another shopping outlet centre for yet more retail therapy. I need to get a hat if for no other reason than to stop the top of my bloody head from burning. Could I find the one I wanted in my size? NO. So not only have I got to contend with having a big arse and a big gut, I also have to contend with having a big head! Having said that, we did have a jolly nice time wandering around all the shops, poking about, trying stuff on, getting in other peoples way, buying stuff and getting bargains. We’d spotted PIL looking in the Michael Kores handbag shop when we first arrived but she didn’t go in. So the kids, bless ’em, dragged her in there before we left. She was handed a 40% off voucher when we walked in as it was 4th July Sale Week . She got herself a really nice bag that we all know has plenty of space for her to lose her keys, phone, laptop and all the other useless crap she, like all other women, carries about in her bag. We have now returned home. We have eaten. The boys and I have drunk beer. We have downloaded our many hundreds of photos. We have made our plans for tomorrow. I have written this. And now, a very happy tribe of people are staggering off to bed, getting some zzzzzzzeds and resting before a nice early start to the next day of our holiday.
Have a great day.
More Dick soon.