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2023 - November - Florida - Day 10

And so, it was Christmas in Florida. As we were to discover after the radio kick off everywhere seems to have moved into full Christmas mode overnight.

This morning yet again I had another call with Apple. I am getting to know Chris from Arkansas quite well, although yet I don’t know the names of his 10 children (and counting). Today he concentrated on the battery drain on my phone. In the end he suggested that I apply more updates which he thought would cure that issue. He thought the health app recurring issue may not resolve itself until we got back to the UK. I was not convinced.

At 10am we were all sitting by the pool trying to watch the Norwich game on the laptop. The ‘stream’ gave up after 15 minutes and so we switched to listening to good old Radio Norfolk instead. The first half was not pleasant to hear.

At half time we all got ready to leave to visit Disney Springs for lunch. The place was heaving through being a Saturday and Veterans Day and the first day of the Christmas Tree trail. We parked on the surface ‘Watermelon’ car park and walked through. There was already a lot of power in the sun. Annoyingly my sciatica came back not far into our stroll meaning I had to sit for a while. Then after that it disappeared for the day. It is very annoying and painful.

Whilst walking we got the alerts telling us that Norwich had turned the game around and had won. I had 'always' thought that Delia knew what she was doing when giving the manager the vote of confidence.

We went to Blaze Pizza for lunch. We were pleased that they now deliver the food to your table rather than the scramble waiting for them to be cooked at the counter. The pizzas were excellent and even better than the ones I cook in our pizza oven. I tried to forget about the calories involved and just enjoyed it, although I decided I had better forgo anything other than fruit for the rest of the day.

After amicably wandering again we ended up at Ghirardelli where I secured a table whilst Karen & Neil got themselves an ice cream treat. Controversially there were new tables and chairs in the outside seating area, which Karen liked but I wondered what had happened to the old ones. The previous metal chairs used to be the heaviest ones in the world to move.

It is a great place to people watch. Disney really does seem to attract people of all shapes, sizes, class and colour many of which seem to crying out for fashion advice from the always sartorially elegant me. Why wear long socks with crocs? Why when it is 31c are you wearing Jeans? If your tummy is that big – buy a bigger T Shirt. Should you really be showing that much flesh on a Disney holiday?

On the walk back to the car we sat outside the back of Starbucks overlooking the Lake so that Karen could have a coffee before we headed back via getting some petrol and some more fresh food from Publix. Neil convinced me to try my credit card in the garage fuel pump. It didn’t work and caused us to be there 3 times longer than it should to try and get it sorted out.

We were quickly in and out of Publix and loaded the car with the fruit and other bits and bobs.

After just over an hour back in the villa we headed back out again to visit Sea World for one of their Christmas evenings. As to be expected there was a lot of traffic on the roads and it was dark when we eventually arrived.

Sea World had really gone to town with Christmas again this year. I may be wrong but I thought I read on the Lake there were 6 million lights alone. The whole park was beautifully lit and had a real festive feel as we went in.

We wandered around slowly taking everything in. The first proper attraction we visited was the Shark Reef which is where you walk under and through their tanks. Disappointingly none of them were wearing Christmas jumpers or hats.

Then we headed for the parks big Christmas show ‘A Wonderous Story’. Neil decided to join us in the Nautilus Theatre. The pre-show entertainment was provided by Mark King who has obviously taken his career in a different direction since his time in Level 42. This guy who just played sing a long Christmas song on his guitar was amusing and had the whole audience singing along with him – including some audience refrains to Rudolph the Reindeer that we didn't know all the Americans did.

Then the show began, and what a show. It was a retelling of the Nativity story told from the animals’ perspective with some energetic singing from the cast of various Christmas songs. They threw everything they had into the performance. It culminated in various live animals walking through the audience onto the stage, including the well-known participant in the story of the Christmas Llama (as Neil pointed out from the wrong continent). It all nearly went wrong when one of the 3 camels reared up as it walked up to the stage.

It had to be seen to be believed. We think we really enjoyed it, Neil less so.

We walked back to the Snow Village area where it was now snowing. Adults and children and us had big smiles on our faces as we were all soon covered in the snow ‘foam’.

Then we walked over to ‘Pipeline’ which Neil rode before taking our seats for the Ice Dancing Show and Firework finale. The Ice Skaters were very good (boring though was Neil’s verdict) and the fireworks very loud. I worried they might wake up Shamu the Whale. The fireworks were set out in conjunction with the Christmas tree light display on the Lake and fountains.

The drive back to the villa was straightforward and we had a quick hot drink before going upstairs to bed.

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