Okay, I didn't mean to leave off with my trip report half done yesterday but it was late and I hadn't even started supper. If I don't fix supper Scott will end up getting pizza or burgers which he's not supposed to have. I love Scott but he has the worst eating habits of anyone I know. We went out for my birthday and I think he was more excited than I was about it. We split a mixed grilled fajita platter. I ate the grilled shrimp and avocado while he had the beef and the pork and the chicken and the cheese and the sour cream and....well, you get the picture. (I made up for it though. I had a beer and two raspberry margaritas and got a tad squishy That would be okay if I didn't get so smart-mouthed when I drink. Scott thinks it's funny when I make fun of other people. He's not so crazy about it when I pick on him.) Anywho, tonight he's having spinach salad, baked chicken and a root-vegetable mash. Don't you wish you were eating at my house ? ;-)
Another thing, Photobucket is driving me nuts! I've been using it for years but lately it just eats my albums after I've spent an hour trying to load the pictures. We'll see how today goes.
Back to the vacation:
I was sitting in the garden in the UK talking to my family on the phone. I was the only one who had skipped the big Easter do. My family is huge on "do's" We have them on every possible holiday. Scott and Sam go for the food. Liz just likes that sort of thing. This Easter she went to two, ours and the one her boyfriend's family was having. I felt a little bit guilty for missing it, but not too bad.
I really wanted to get a beer at the Rose and Crown before I left the World Showcase. I love that place. I used to have one of those refillable half-yard glasses. I loved that too. I'm a Guinness draught girl. My love of Guinness has stood me in good stead over the years. Scott and I went to Vegas once and I found out about this Guinness promotion. You showed up early and you got to see all sorts of Vegas acts for free. I remember Penn and Teller and some hot-shot magician. I don't remember the whole thing because you also got two coupons per person each one good for a small cup of Guinness. Scott doesn't drink dark beer, nor did many of our seat mates. I think I ended up with something like eight beers. Good times. Ordering a Guinness will also earn you a lot of respect at the Renaissance Festival here. The serving wenches make fun of Scott when he asks for his Bud Light. They tell him he's not one of them. Well, duh, Scott has zero desire to be one of them. He just wants his Bud.
I badly wanted a Guinness but had to pass on it. It was time to leave Epcot and pick up my rental car. I was afraid if I showed up at Dollar with beer-fouled breath they'd refuse to give one. That would be horrible because, to be frank, I was getting sick of the Disney busses. Another thing, without wheels it was going be a bit of a walk to Disney World from the condo so I skipped my Guinness this time, poop.
I left Epcot through the International Gateway. The Epcot Resorts area is my favorite. If we could afford it I'd stay here every time. We stayed at the Beach Club a couple of times years ago when my Mom came along to baby-sit and chip in for the hotel. It was wonderful. I could live there.
This time I just walked through the lobby, made a potty stop (The Beach Club has lovely clean restrooms.) and continued on to the bus stop. I was on my way to Downtown Disney to pick up the car. My bus pulled up almost right away and the driver was very sweet about giving me directions to the Regal Sun Resort where the Dollar desk was located. I'm glad my last Disney bus ride was a nice one.
The Regal Sun is right across the street from the Disney Marketplace, maybe a five minute walk. I didn't have a bit of trouble finding it and I get lost a lot. The Dollar desk was easy to locate, as well. There was only one customer ahead of me but he was a doozie. His rental car had broken down and he was thoroughly p*ssed about it.
It gets worse. We seemed to be having a bit of a language problem. The young lady at the desk was Hispanic and she had a bit of an accent. The p*issed off guy was Scottish and he had a major one. They both spoke the English language, just not the same one. It didn't help that the customer seemed to think that YELLING was going to somehow make him easier to understand. I understood every word. That's because I'm sure that, like most Americans, I am quite used to Hispanic accents and I had also once worked with a Scottish lass. (BTW, she was a bit of a sourpuss too. Is that some sort of Scottish thing or have I just been unlucky?) I thought about offering to translate but decided that would just be insulting since, after all, they both did speak English, sort of.
The gist of the argument was that he needed a van. The Dollar desk at the Regal Sun isn't really equipped for spur of the moment requests. It's more of a satellite for the main operation at the airport. Dollar didn't have a van available at the Regal Sun. The angry man was going to have to wait till they could ship one over from MCO. This made him furious. He was actually frothing at the mouth. After getting hit by spittle a couple of times I got out of line and sat on the benches with his family. They didn't look happy either. They were all studying their shoes like there might be a test on them later.
This went on for 15 minutes or so. I don't know what the final resolution was, but it didn't please the angry man. He stomped over to the benches still fuming. I hopped up quickly (I'll admit it. I was a little afraid of this guy. I also felt sooo sorry for his family.) and went over to the desk. I felt sorry for the young Dollar girl too so I smiled my biggest smile and told her to just give me whatever she had. In five minutes I was driving off in my silver PT Cruiser.
My destination was Pop Century and I was just a little agitated as I drove over. When I went to pay for my rental car I realized that I'd left my American Express card in my luggage. I'd left my American Express, my driver's license and pretty much every dime I had with me in my bags back at Pop where just about anyone could get at them.
I'm always doing stuff like this. I'm just too absent-minded. It drives Scott crazy. He's one of those "check it twice and then go back and check again" types. I'm always laying important stuff down somewhere and unable to find it when I need it. I was dreading telling Scott I'd lost my credit card and over $300.
At Pop Century I parked right in front of the No Parking sign. Too bad. I really needed to get to my bags pronto. I turned my claim tickets in, got my stuff and dove into my carry-on. There it was, my wallet with all of my money and things still in it. Yippee, woohoo, yay! I felt like kissing the luggage guy. Thank you so much everyone in the luggage area at Pop Century for not taking my stuff! I know Disney pay is cr*p. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
I pulled away from Pop Century with a light heart and the Smooth Jazz station on the radio. Life is good. It's a short drive over to Cypress Pointe and I was there in no time. It's a nice place, light and airy with a Caribbean feel to it. The guy at the check-in desk was super nice and I got exactly what I wanted: a two bedroom, second floor unit located at the back away from the pool. Pool views are nice but I like my peace and quiet. I grabbed my keys and headed off to my room in building F.
The condo was huge! I'm not good at estimating spaces but it had to be 4 or 5 times the size of my room at Pop Century. It had a large kitchen, a living/dining area with a big-screen TV, a nice-sized Master bedroom with a Jacuzzi (Woohoo!) and a smaller bedroom with two twin beds. There was also a lanai and a washer/dryer in a closet. The decor wasn't really to my taste but here's the thing: All of that space was costing us just over $100 a night. I was thrilled. I lugged my stuff into the room and set off for a few provisions.
CPGV is located right next door to a Winn Dixie. You don't even have to get out on the main road to get there. This is just so great. I spent about $50 at Winn Dixie on food and things for the week. I loved that. The little bit I had eaten at Disney over the course of two days cost that much. I got chicken strips, salad stuff, fruit, yogurt, frozen pizza and a six-pack of Abita Amber. I also bought coffee (triple yay!), laundry detergent and cleaning stuff.
Back at CPGV I unloaded, unpacked and settled in, extremely pleased with myself. I also loaded the dishes into the dishwasher and ran it. In the bathroom I poured cleaner and a bit of bleach into the Jacuzzi and ran that for a while, just in case. I can be a pain in the b*tt sometimes when it comes to hotel bathrooms.
I had just finished settling in and was putting on a load of laundry when Scott called. He had big news, unsettling news. I told y'all earlier that we had begun to look at nursing homes for PawPaw. PawPaw has Alzheimer's and I've been looking after him for years. For the last year or so he's been living full time in our house. PawPaw has always been difficult. When he was younger he was a bit of a bully and a tyrant. I grew up with extremely lenient (probably too lenient considering some of the stuff my brother and I got up to) parents. Paw ruled with an iron fist and disciplined using the punch and kick method. When Scott and I first married I thought Paw was awful and he didn't think much better of me. I was the first woman in his entire life to ever talk back to him. My Mom was the second. There's an almost 20 year gap in the ages of Scott's and my parents and it shows. When my mother-in-law was alive Paw would lie on the sofa in the den and yell for her to bring him the salt. (She'd already served his dinner to him on a tray while everyone else sat at the table.) If my Dad ever did anything like that he would be wearing his dinner.
Paw mellowed over the years, especially after he developed Alzheimer's, but we brought a lot of baggage into our caregiving relationship. I didn't hate him anymore but I'd never love the guy. We bumped along for a few years and his disease progressed as Alzheimer's does. Things got really bad during this past winter and it was reaching the point where I just wasn't physically strong enough to deal with him. Thus, the nursing home thing came up.
We wanted to send him to the Louisiana War Veteran's Home in Reserve, Louisiana. It was by far the nicest place that we could afford. Scott had submitted all of his paperwork but we were told it would be a while before he was admitted. I think he was 50th on the waiting list. That was the state of things when I left for Disney.
Well now Scott was calling to tell me that Paw was going to get into the home in Reserve. He had to report on Wednesday! Wednesday! Two days from now! That's less than two weeks from the time we filled out the papers. We thought it would be months and months.
I was just shocked. I was raised to believe that you don't put your family into nursing homes. It's just the worst thing you can do. I only agreed to the paperwork because we were told it would be a long time before there would be space for him. Anything could happen before his name came up. I just wasn't in any way prepared to put him in this Wednesday and I was frantic.
I really needed to get home. I looked up flights but it wasn't in the works. The cheapest thing I could find was over $1000. I'm the one who deals with Paw and his stuff and now he's getting locked up and I won't be there. Scott was pretty freaked out himself. We went over a list of stuff Paw would need to bring with him and where everything was before we hung up. I just sat there in my huge condo, stunned. Part of me was guilt-ridden and horrified but I won't lie. There was a huge part that was thrilled. I decided to have a couple of beers and think about all of it later.
I was supposed to go do a bit of shopping this evening but decided to blow it off. So, instead of hitting the outlet malls I spent the evening drinking beer, eating a frozen cheese pizza and watching Dancing with the Stars on the tube. That's how I deal.
pix of Cypress Pointe: