I knew that with the all of the excitement of boarding and being on the ship that Nick wouldn’t get an afternoon nap, so my plan had been for him to sleep on the drive over. I had hoped that we would leave the resort early enough that we would have time to drive around to let Nick fall asleep, but we ended up leaving at the time we needed to leave to reach the ship for our check-in time. It turns out that we didn’t need the extra time though because the excitement of the morning had worn Nick right out. He was asleep within five minutes. In fact he was asleep before we had driven off of Disney property.
The drive was pretty uneventful. The sky got dark (there was a chance of rain), but we were driving away from it. Nick slept for the entire trip and didn’t wake until we had reached the ship. We had gotten an early boarding time, so things weren’t very busy when we arrived. First we had to wait to pull up to an umbrella stop where a cast member checked Jason’s I.D. and gave us further instructions. Then we drove over to the baggage drop. From there we went to park the car. Most of Disney’s terminal parking is in a parking garage that was built a few years ago, but there is still some regular outdoor parking right next to the terminal. When we were offered a chance to park there we gave a big, “yes!” It costs $20 more, but it’s very close, so you don’t have to carry the bags as far, plus I had heard that there can be some bad backups with everyone trying to get out of the garage. We paid for our parking and went to find a spot. Then we unloaded the items that we were going to carry on (we all had a backpack), and headed into the terminal.
Upon entering the terminal the first thing you have to do is go through security. There we two lines, so the wait wasn’t very long. When it was our turn we made it through the metal detectors, but they had to check my bag. I had tried to so hard to make sure that we didn’t carry on anything that security wouldn’t like, but I had forgotten that I had my sewing, which meant I had my scissors with me (2 pairs in fact). The one pair I hadn’t even realized were in my sewing bag, but the other pair was my special pair that I spent a lot of money on because of my arthritis. The security guard said they have to confiscate large cutting shears, but he felt that a steak knife at dinner would do more damage than my scissors, so he let me keep them (for which I was ever so grateful).
With my goof behind us we gathered our bags again and went to wait for the elevator. I was so excited when we reached the top and walked into the lobby. This was a moment I had been looking forward to. I believe I mentioned before that a favorite video of Nick’s is Treasures of Disney Cruise Line. It shows a family going on a Disney Cruise. The acting isn’t all that good, but it’s a nice visual reminder of your cruise. The family has a little girl named Lisa. One of Nick’s favorite parts is at the beginning when they enter the lobby and Lisa runs to see Mickey (because on the video there is of course no line to see him). Well wouldn’t you know that we entered the lobby and there was Mickey! I headed toward the line ready to give Nick his first character experience, but sadly it wasn’t meant to be. When we reached the line a cast member said that the family in front of us was the last family that Mickey was going to see. I was disappointed, but the thought of waiting at least 15 minutes in line before getting ready to fully board wasn’t really appealing either. I figured we had all week to see Mickey.
Since we couldn’t see the mouse we went to check-in. Lucky for us the Castaway Club member line was almost non-existent, so we didn’t have long to wait. Everything went quickly and smoothly. The only real issue is that they have to take your picture, and getting Nick’s when he was way down in the stroller wasn’t easy (especially since there were so many exciting things to look at). That picture turned out to be more difficult to get than his passport picture!
Before we knew it the time had arrived to head to the gangplank. We went through the big Mickey ears opening and had our cards scanned to let them know that we had boarded. Then we waited in line to have our boarding picture taken (it didn’t turn out that well). When that was done we gathered all of our stuff and stepped onto the gangplank and prepared to officially board the Disney Fantasy.
To Be Continued…