Florida - May 18 - IOA


Another day. Another early start. Another theme park.

Are we getting too old for this? I think the fact we still get excited about going and that we push ourselves with long days in the parks answers that.

As before we were on the road at 7.50am to the Universal Parking Lot. Now for all you collectors of Car Parking spots we ended up in Jurassic Park 401 again, how disappointing is that?

We swiftly walked to the Islands of Adventure entrance but this time were held at the entrance until 8.50am. Our first destination was the Hulk rollercoaster. I had no desire to ride this again so Neil did so alone and was off again before 9am. The 3 of us then walked straight onto the Spiderman ride. Our ride vehicle did not have the sound working which made for an interesting experience, especially with a brat of a kid who whinged about all the way round. As we got off though we were ushered straight back onto another vehicle and rode again, this time with sound.

Then we went to the Harry Potter 'Forbidden Journeys' ride. The land itself was already chaotic. We however found no queue at all in the Single Rider queue and managed to get consecutively. We really like the Single Rider concept. Its not as though we want to have a chat whilst we are actually riding. This is an excellent ride and done extremely well. The design and technology is just so good.

From here we walked back to ride Jurassic Park. Karen & I both put on our Rain Jackets and it was just as well as we would have been very wet afterwards from the large splash at the end of the ride.

By now the sun was out and it was getting hot. Neil & I decided to do the really wet water rides. We had brought swimmies with us and changed into those. The Popeye log flume ride was ridiculous. I think at times it goes under the water rather than through it. It doesn't help with people spraying you with cannons at the end either. We were absolutely soaked.

So we went straight to the Rapids ride, which I think is the best one of that type I have ever ridden. though we had changed we still stowed our trainers in the waterproof centre of the tub when we boarded. I hate having wet feet all day even more than having wet pants all day!

Again everyone is guaranteed to get drenched. It is a lot of fun and some of the drops are huge. If the splashes don't get you then the torrents of water from overhead will. After this we stood in the sun for a while and then got changed back into dry clothes.

By now 'Kong' was open. This is another new ride and one we had seen being built on previous visits. It was very good. Similar in style to the 'Fast & Furious' ride which is obviously making us of the latest technology. The vehicles are similarly driverless and not on tracks. Our animatronic driver was very realistic.

By now we were getting hungry and thirsty, but decided to ride 'The Cat in The Hat' before lunch. This really is a children's ride but always makes us smile.

We ended up at some Rotisserie Chicken place for lunch in the Jurassic Park area. It seems to me they have put all their process and design effort into the rides and forgot about the restaurants. It was inept. We queued to get into a queue. Then it seemed to take forever. Essentially they were just serving Chicken & Chips with some variations. However they waited until you got to the counter before plating up each order individually. I wanted to jump behind the counter and sort my own out for them. To be fair, the food quality I had was quite good. Karen had the chicken wrap and left half of it as it was too spicy for her. Being an ever so easy going person, she never mentioned it nor let it get to her.

Neil then decided to go off and a do a couple of rides again, whilst we headed off to Starbucks to get Karen a muffin and some caffeine to make up for her lack of lunch. By now the sun was really hot and we baked for a while whilst having our drinks.

We met Neil again as arranged outside the Poseidon adventure which we hadn't done for many years. I thought it was rather enjoyable and fun.

Black clouds were now gathering on the horizon, so we decided to go over to Harry Potter again whilst it was still dry. Again we went in the Single Rider queue but this time had to wait almost 5 minutes before we were all on. By the time we had exited the ride, the heavens had opened. This time it was torrential Florida rain. We sheltered until it eased a bit and then amused ourselves by calling in a few shops as we made our way to the exit.

Neil chose that we would eat tonight at the new NBC Sports Grill at CityWalk and a jolly good choice it was too. It was a bit similar to the ESPN zone we had eaten in at Disney previously but the food was much better. For dessert, Neil had some frozen yogurt from Menchies and Karen had an ice cream from Cold Stone Creamery. The queue for Voodoo Donuts was today 30 minutes long - why?

We were then home relatively early, where Neil & I watched in amusement on TV the NBA draft lottery. It was a strange spectacle and seemed to be full of double deals and trickery.

There was then a good basketball match between the Cavaliers & Celtics which we enjoyed.


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