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Florida - April 2022 - Day 3

Oh, her eyes, her eyes Make the stars look like they're not shinin'

This is the year of our 40th wedding anniversary and I still get mesmerised by Karen’s eyes – except when she is giving me her evil look and then I just get frightened.

Today we are on the move to the Villa in Kissimmee. The trouble was that we had been told we couldn’t get into to it until 4pm as the previous renters were not leaving until today. The positive view meant we were in no rush to get there.

It was a quite leisurely final breakfast in the Hotel. At least it was until a 16-person squad of rowers came into the area. They were all very tall leggy girls (bar the 2 who we assumed were coxes). No idea what standard they were but I guess they would have needed to take full advantage of the help yourself buffet to maintain their calorie intake.

We back to our room to pack up which didn’t take long. At 10am we were checked out and on the road.

Our first planned stop enroute was Ellenton Premium Outlets which was only about 10 minutes away, even though knew the shops didn’t open until 11am. As I took the turning, we saw there was a Dollar Tree near the entrance which was open and decided to go in there to get the cleaning ‘stuff’ for the Villa. They need to rebrand the shop as everything seemed to now cost $1.25 meaning the shop should be called 'Dollar and a Quarter' Tree.

We made our across the road to the outlets and waited for them to open at Starbucks which was conveniently already open at the entrance. At 11am we wandered around the deserted shops. In the end we only made one purchase which was a fleece for me in the Columbia shop reduced from $40 to $14.

Then we hit the road for the remaining 86 miles. Karen as ever fell asleep. It was an easy but busy at times drive.

It was by now 1.30pm and still too early to get in the villa (although I wanted to try), so instead we went and had lunch sitting outside at Panera Bread in Celebration. It was almost as if we were on holiday. Then we hit Publix for the supermarket shop. It was a big shop as we will be here for 14 days. We noticed that prices had crept here in a similar fashion to home.

Finally, it was time to go to the Villa. It was on Sunset View where we have now stayed several times before. For some reason I had it in my head that we were staying in a house this time but I was wrong. The villa however is very nice and the exact same layout as when we stayed at Sunset View last time.

Exploring the villa, I discovered that the pool was very warm as the previous occupants had obviously paid for it to be heated (we hadn’t as we thought there would only be the 2 of us and couldn’t justify the extra £150 per week cost). So, we decided to take full advantage and spent a relaxing hour in the pool and spa. It was lovely.

We were by now ready for dinner and so we headed out to use my $25 birthday bonus on my Landry’s card at Saltgrass Steakhouse, a place we had first visited last November. The traffic was awful and I started to find it quite frustrating. We have been used to visiting in November when the crowds were much lighter.

There was a wait time of 1 hour at the restaurant for a table which we got around by sitting at the bar. In fact, when there are just the two of us, I prefer it. The seats are comfier, the service is quick, there is always different sports on the screens to watch and the bar staff are usually talkative and fun. As it was still happy hour, Karen started had a margarita. I made do with water. The meals came with honey bread which Karen liked but I found a bit sweet. The salads were good and the steaks even better, really good quality perfectly cooked.

Karen was keen to continue our tradition on visiting Disney Springs on our first night and so we hit the traffic and made our way to the Orange Garage. The whole place was bursting to the seams. We wandered slowly around soaking up the atmosphere.

At the largest Disney Shop in the world (official) we were on the hunt for anything Orange Bird related as Ellie had expressed an interest to have something with that on it. We were pessimistic about our chances but in the end found a smattering of things and once we had narrowed it down, took a photo to check with her that she liked it.

By now though I was in a lot of pain. Much more than usual. Normally its my back that gets me, but this time it was my right knee that was the culprit. I have been suffering from this for the past month. I mentioned it to my osteopath whilst having a service on my back and his 30 second diagnosis was that I had ‘done’ my medial ligament whilst playing golf. I have been trying to protect it ever since and was wearing a knee brace at home but I am still not sure if it was doing more harm than good. My knee feels likes it needs to ‘pop’ all the time to release the pressure. Then it just feels like the lower part of my leg is really heavy and stiff.

Anyhow I find that if any part of my body is causing me problems, then it causes all sorts of problems elsewhere as if the alignment is all thrown out. My body trying compensate for the problem causes strains elsewhere. For the past week or so, my right calf has been throbbing and throbbing badly. Almost like the knot you get after a really bad cramp all the time . Tonight, I was really sore and, in the end, I had to suggest we sat for a while to rest it. Trouble is then I really stiffen up. As we sat there, we could see lightning in the distant sky. Karen was worried we might get caught in the rain on the long walk back to the car. How right she was.

A few isolated drops soon turned into proper Florida rain and we were looking for cover all the way back. Karen was getting annoyed as I couldn’t move as quickly as her but eventually, we made it.

It was not a good time for the drive home. All the people who had been in the theme parks as well as those in Disney Springs all decided to leave at the same time presumably because of the rain. The traffic was absolute nuts and I got quite frustrated and may have uttered a few non-Disney type words as we sat in long queue after long queue.

Eventually we got back after the journey taking more than twice as long as it should have. I vowed not to go anywhere near Disney again until after Easter is over.

Karen watched Shark Tank on TV whilst I wrote the blog before retiring for the night.

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