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Trip Reports at the Lodge






Copyright © 2004, 2005 Robin Costello. All rights reserved.

Chapter 5, Day1
 ‘Cuz you gotta have friends, 12/8

It was so foggy in my kitchen that I was having a hard time finding my cats’ food dish. Piggy, my cat, kept rubbing against my legs, she was starving. She opened her mouth to meow at me, but the sound that came out of her sounded strangely like my cell phone.

Wait! That IS my cell phone. I wasn’t home in Maine looking for piggys’ food dish, I was in Disney World, sound asleep on my side of the bed at Pop Century.

I sat up in bed in the pitch dark. Lying next to me was a snoring lump. In the bed next to ours was another smaller snoring lump. I got up, turned on some lights, looked into the other room and in each of those beds was snoring lumps.

Well, would you look at what I started? What the heck happened? Did they eat the food they only could stand around and admire at one point then have a group fainting party?

My phone had stopped ringing before I found it. I grabbed it, hit redial and looked at the clock. Oh, NO! It couldn't have been 8:30. We had to be at the Illuminations party in 15 minutes.

Kimball answered the phone and asked “Where are you guys?”

I felt so bad, Kimball went to a lot of trouble arranging the Illuminations Dessert Party at Epcot and we nearly slept through it. “Thank God you called, Kim, we were sound asleep.”

“What? You guys are sleeping? Get up! You’re going to miss the party. Call me when you get to the Boardwalk if you need help finding the party.” Kimball laughed at me.

All I had to do was go to the Boardwalk, find Epcot then France, how hard could that be?

The plan was to park at the Boardwalk, walk over to Epcot for the party and go back to Laura’s villa for a little get-together. The plan also included us to be there on time, and I had already screwed that up.

So, in this chapter, playing the part of Commando Nikki will be Zurgswife aka Kimball.

“Okay, guys, please get up. We are late, we have to get going.” I said to the snoring lumps.

Nobody moved.

“Please, let’s get going.” I said.

Still, nobody moved.


Em sat up and asked what rides were going to be there. When I told her we weren’t going on rides, she tried to snuggle back into her bed.

I was going to have to start slapping these people around. They left me no other choice. I don’t know how Commando Nikki can stand to vacation with us.

Eventually, they started moving. That was good because I didn't know how to get them up if they didn't do it on there own without resorting to violence. Buz had given Commando Nikki an air horn (have I mentioned that? he likes loud sound files, LY/MI) but the non-violent air horn and the Commando were still back in Maine.

We got into the van and drove over to the Boardwalk. I have never been there before and I’ll tell you, the place took my breath away. I kept pointing out different things to the crew that I found interesting or beautiful and they in turn, kept pointing out that there was no twister board or giant big wheel.

Insert dramatic eye rolls, shoulder shrugs and heavy sighs here. Does that make them hotel snobs in reverse?

We walked down a flight of stairs and we were standing on the actual Boardwalk. The Boardwalk that I had only seen on the travel channel from my living room couch.

I was wide awake now and very excited. “Look Del, the Boardwalk bakery!’ I grabbed his arm and jumped up and down. Bea and Em got caught up in my excitement and started jumping up and down too.

Hey, a girl likes her sweets.

Chris asked if we were ever going to get to the dessert party.

Em heard the word ‘dessert’ and nearly had a nervous breakdown. We had just been standing in front of the bakery at that point; I didn't know where we were going. She started pacing back and forth saying “Dessert? Where’s the party? Are we going? I could sure go for some desserts.”

I have to assume that the child thought I dragged them out of bed to stand around and admire a bakery.

Well, it was on the travel channel.

Instead of waiting to see if Em would figure out which way we were suppose to be going, I whipped out my cell phone to call Kimball for directions. “Hi, it turns out I need more than directions to the dessert party, I’m standing in front of the bakery and I need directions to Epcot.”

Yup, that’s right; I couldn't find an entire park.

She laughed and only said “Ahh,…Keep walking, you’re headed right for it” but I know she was thinking ‘you dumbass.’

I was certainly thinking it when we continued walking straight and walked directly to the turnstiles.

I held up our AP’s loud and proud because that hadn’t gotten old yet and passed them out to the crew. The kids and I had no troubles with out tickets or fingers; Del on the other hand, still believed squeezing the hell out of the machine is the only way into the park.

“Now, hurry up. Head for France and find the person with the red flashlight. See you in a few.” Kimball said before hanging up.

We did it backwards, we found a person with a red flashlight and she walked us over to France.

But we made it and that was the goal.

I was so happy to see my friends again, and to meet some new friends. There were a lot of people at that party; I can’t even begin to remember everyone. Zurg was right, not one person looked anything like their clipart.

John (Town Crier) had made name tags and I found them very useful. Chris had tried to pin his to the front of his shirt, but much lower than necessary so people would have to look down to see who he was because he is 20 years old and that is funny to a 20 year old. He earned himself a smack for that.

He’s 20 years old now; it is not considered child abuse anymore.

I had a name tag but with Kimball I didn't really need one. Most people recognized Del, Em, Bea and Chris right away but nobody really knew who I was. She kept pointing at me saying “That’s Delswife” or “Wobin’s over there” to EVERYBODY.

Good gravy, woman! Did you forget I am the SHY one?

Kimball wasn’t allowing me to blend in. She didn't get the memo.

I felt so naked with out my backspace and delete keys.

A side note, I did get a little naked, in the Boardwalk bakery as a matter of fact, but that was an accident and is much later in the story.

Zurg and I finally caught up and for the first time I saw the LY/MI pins. Laura (SuiteDisney) wasn’t far behind Zurg and told me that she had bought the first one. I was having such a hard time trying not to cry because I was so touched, I couldn't say to Zurg then what I wanted to say about the pins.

I wanted to say, “I love them, I mean it. Let’s do something great for Connor, Delaney and Tony with them.”

What I did say was something like “Aww, I,..aww, geesh,..look, Bea.”

The Zurgs had told me before that they were making them. They also told me that after the cost of making the pins was covered I could have the profits.

From a family that exactly ½ of their children are dealing with a serious medical condition not just on a daily basis but on a minute by minute basis.

Bennet, Kimball and Tony, I really love you guys. You never stop amazing me. You are my heroes and I am in awe of the strength in each of you. I feel like the little drummer boy here, all I have to offer you is a trip report. Bar-rump-pa-pa-pum.

I was busy making new friends and forgot about the dessert table until Em walked over with a big hot fudge sundae. Poor Bea, who is never more than an arms length away from me had been watching Em and knew it was her second trip. Em had had her first sundae, went and beat on Chris for a few minutes, then had another ice cream. Bea wouldn’t go over to make a sundae or beat on her brother without me; she is even shyer than me. She put her head on my shoulder and mumbled ‘Ice cream.’

It was only then that I really saw just how beautiful the party was. The decorated table they had set up had a variety of lovely ice cream sundae fixings. (Or fixin’s, there were several people from Texas at the party.)

Bea and I made ourselves a sundae a few minutes before the music for the fireworks began. An unidentified Zurg had put a glow necklace and bracelet on Em, which was a really good idea, because it was dark and she wonders off occasionally.

She either wanders off or she may be trying to escape the rest of us. I haven’t come to any solid conclusions on that yet.

The terrace we were standing on made it feel like we were a part of Illuminations itself. The music and the rumble of fireworks were simply breathtaking. I saw a few seconds of the fireworks, but I was busy.

Watching my family.

Thank you, Kimball. Thank you so much for giving my family an unforgettable first night in Disney World. Thank you for making magic for us on a very special day, the first time I had seen my son in 14 months. You will never know what that meant to me.

Love ya, mean it.



Love Ya / Mean It and Pins

Tony, Delaney, Connor - Love Ya / Mean It

Robin & Del, Kimball & Bennet (aka Delswife & Scuba Steve, Zurgswife & Zurg) are proud to announce two unique limited edition trading pins to benefit research to help find cures for Juvenile Diabetes and Muscular Dystrophy.

We love going to Disney World and writing funny trip reports, after all it is how we became friends.  We care just as much or more about helping these two great causes. All the profits from pin sales will go to JDRF and MDA because, well, Robin thought it would be a fun idea.

So if you enjoy the trip reports please chip in and buy a pin or two. Pins are $10.00 each including shipping and handling (North America.) Send an email to with how many pins you would like and we will get the pins rolling. The pins have sold out. Existing orders are being filled but we can't take anymore pin orders, sorry. There still Love Ya /  Mean it Pins (there were more to start.) 

If you feel inspired click either MDA or JDRF's logo or both and make additional contributions.