In Orlando, we met with a lovely couple of friends of ours (a high school classmate of mine) and their 4-year old son V, who clicked so well with Son that they spent the entire weekend running and screaming in delight 95% of the time. Who has THAT kind of energy in the 100 degree heat? We arrived on Saturday morning and spent a rather noisy afternoon at the main pool of the Marriott World Center. There must have been at least ten thousand people in, around, above, beside, beyond and all over the pool, which meant that I spent a good part of the early afternoon trying to find a couple of lounge chairs only to lose them to a very hairy and rather unperturbed guy when I came back from the pool dripping and holding a writhing Son in my arms. When I pointed out that I had put two towels on the chairs and my shoes were there, he just shrugged his shoulder in his own awesome nonchalant way. I loudly insulted him in Bulgarian pretending to be talking to Son, he languidly informed me he did not understand me and after giving him the iciest look I could muster in the heat, I retreated underneath a massive fake palm tree to sit next to the Diplomat who was lying quietly under the shade. In the meantime, enhancing our pleasure immensely, there was an overly excited MC who kept conducting hula hoop competitions for children, women from various age groups and certain old men (NOT a pretty sight). The result was both deafening and exciting. The next day my friend and I got carried away an actually participated. We did not win. In fact, we did not do well at all. Such is life.
We retreated from the pool waving a large white towel and spent the rest of the day pleasantly in our fabulous suite with our friends P&C, while the children were pretending to be sleeping. P and I went to highschool together not THAT long ago, and as usual, had massive amounts of gossip to exchange. When it was finally time for dinner, around 7 pm, we brazenly got into out cars and got stuck in Mickey Mouse traffic 3 minutes later. Half an hour later, having moved about 3 feet, we started exploring options for dinner at various excellent chain restaurants like Applebees and some local attractions. Upon entering, the invariable waiting time for each place exceeded 40 minutes. With hungry children and slightly irritable husbands, the situation was getting desperate. As it was already pushing 9 pm, we made the executive decision to pick up food at Wendy's, and booze and other interesting refreshments from 7-11. We finally procured some sad-looking fast food. Son was so exhausted (his usual bed time is 8 and it was pushing 10) that he kept clutching his chicken nuggets in the car, laughing hysterically or crying inconsolably but refusing to either let go of the nuggets or eat them. Then, he fell asleep in the car.
When we finally made it back to the hotel, the children woke up, ate, ran around hysterically some more and passed out. P and I spent another fabulous hour gossiping. All in all, I think it was a fabulous day in Disneyland. As a result, the Diplomat and I decided not to take Son to Disney--we reasoned that it was 1) too hot, 2) too crowded, and 3) Son would not care as he was too young to notice.
Sunday was spent pleasantly at the pools of the hotel (much less crowds which makes me think that everyone was at Disneyland), where the kids spent 8 hours pruning themselves in the water. I am proud to say that Son now swims on his own using the floaties! After calling over 10 restaurants to get dinner reservations only to have odd times like 4.30 pm or 11 pm available only, we decided to send the men to procure raw meat and other consumables, and made dinner at the grills near the pool. We had a fantastic time!
So, all was well and on Monday we sadly bid our friends good-bye and dragged ourselves to the airport. And then, as we were about o climb on the plane, a cheerful Son suddenly turned to me and said, "Mama, are we going to see Mickey NOW?" Oops....
In other news, we are on the home stretch here. The Diplomat leaves in about two weeks, and I--in about 3. It is a scary thought. We are frantically preparing and planning and it feels all so overwhelming. In another post I will tell you about all the things that need to be done before moving your life overseas.