20th Nov 2012

Christmas comes to Orlando

It might only be the start of November but Christmas comes early to the Walt Disney World Resort. As soon as Food and Wine finished on the 12th the marketplaces were magically removed overnight and replaced with the Christmas decorations and only days later all the music changed to all your favourite Christmas tunes. It feels a bit weird having trees and Christmas music when most days it is 20+ degrees but it all looks very pretty so I can’t really complain.

This week G and I finally got our 1 bedroom apartment and are now residents of Patterson Court. This has its pros and cons. We have a lovely apartment and the walk to the bus stop is shorter than the old walk from 28 but we are a long way from the Commons. So far it hasn’t really been a problem though and it is definitely nicer here than in our old apartment.

With Food & Wine over I finally got 2 days off. The first started with a dash to Disney University to get a replacement debit card from Partners after I somehow managed to lost mine in the move to Patterson. The rest of the day was spent with Kristen, Stacey, Dave and Kieran at Hollywood Studios where we spent the day doing all the rides and the evening seeing the Osborne lights. Unfortunately I forgot my camera but trust me they are beautiful – I will definitely be going back a few more times to enjoy them.

The next day Rich, Stacey and I took Kristen to Universal Studios for the first time. It was really quiet with nothing more than a 20 minute wait. We covered most of the major attractions and I got a lot of photos of Kristen looking super-excited as we took her around the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the rest of the 2 parks. I had to leave fairly early as Dave had bought me a ticket for Mickey’s Verry Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom. I was going to get a cab by myself but the others decided to call it a day early and head back to the Commons which made my cab a little bit cheaper – yay!

Very Merry was amazing, I actually preferred it to Not So Scary. There are less characters but the decoration and the snow on Main Street is unbelievable and the fireworks are pretty spectacular  We also got to see the new ‘Celebrate the Magic’ projection show which replaced ‘The Magic, the Memories and You’ – it has some really cool new effects including a holiday section which is just around until January. We spent a good hour or so in one of the dance parties with Woody and Jessie which was a great laugh, by the end of the night there were only about 10 other people in there!

The last few nights I have really just chilled out. I went to ESPN at the boardwalk for Dinner one night and the cinema to see Wreck It Ralph (it’s awesome) the next. I know I have my Food Running coming up next week so I am trying not to tire myself out too much as I know it is going to be a very intense training period ahead and I want to make the most of it.

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8th Nov 2012

A very busy couple of months at the Rose & Crown

So I think we can all agree that I have been terrible at posting since August. My excuse is that I have been working very hard! I am just going to give the highlights and hopefully in the next few weeks I will be able to finally post a bit more.

September was spent mostly training. There were only 2 trainers left on podium so we both trained 6 days a week for the whole month – which was fun to start with but to be honest by the end I just wanted to come in to work and do my own thing without having to think about other people all the time. I love training but you can do it a bit too much. The end of September brought the arrival of Halloween to Orlando – I went to both Not So Scary at Magic Kingdom and Halloween Horror Nights at Universal. Both were great fun in very different ways – running through the walking dead house with Emily Porter and Dan Underdown laughing their heads off behind me will be one of the things I will never forget about the whole experience.

October was defined by the Food and Wine festival which made the pavilion much busier than it had been for months. The restaurant has stayed pretty steady but Chippy, Beer Cart and the Pub have been crazy on Fridays and Saturdays. I was given the role of Bar Back on those days, helping them with stocking and discounts. It has been a really great opportunity to do something different and it is nice to be really busy, it make the days go very quickly.

I also made a big decision during Food and Wine after seeing some good friends finish their program and thinking a bit about the future. I decided to finally take my pre-service test, 5 months late. After a few days of revision I took my test and passed. I was originally told I would not be able to go in to the kitchen until January but that was then changed to the end of the November – just in time for Candlelight, the busiest time of the year in the restaurant, to begin. I am looking forward to a new challenge and training in that kind of environment is certainly going to be difficult but I am ready to give it a try. I have got to the point where Podium is not fun anymore and I am working so much that I don’t have time to spend with my friends – hopefully going in to service will help solve that problem a little bit.

This week was also full of big news. The first was new costumes for the pavilion  you can see them in the picture at the top of this post, they are still working out a few kinks but overall I think they are nice. It is weird to think that we are the first Cast Members in the history of the Rose & Crown to not wear the yellow and blue. The other big news was that I received a Quarterly Award, I was really proud to have been nominated and it makes working so hard for the last few months feel worth it. I get to go to a reception on the 29th with some of the senior Disney managers which I am really looking forward to.

That is the basic highlights of the last couple of months. I have been working 50+ hours most weeks but hopefully that should drop off a bit in the next few weeks and I am hoping that the regular posting schedule can resume.

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