Where was I? Oh, yes, the first leg of our trip around the world. We took our time, taking in as much of the ambiance of each country as we could. We saw O Canada and Impressions de France. I think the Canada movie is more entertaining, but you can actually sit in cushioned chairs in France, so it's hard to say which attraction I enjoyed more. Both made me want to visit the country they represented, so I say both movies are successful. In France, we also had our photo taken with Princess Aurora, better known as Sleeping Beauty.
Julie particularly enjoyed the architecture in Morocco. It reminded her of Spain. We wandered around here because I thought there was a reproduction of a letter to George Washington from some government official from Morocco about Morocco becoming the United States' first ally. But I couldn't find it.
We spent a fair amount of time in the stores at the Japan pavilion. Hannah wanted me to find out how much a kimono cost so that she could purchase one when we return to DW in June. Julie and I ended up both buying a Buddha board. It's a small piece of slate that you can paint on with water. Then as the water evaporates, the picture disappears.
Next was Italy, where there isn't much to do. Julie suggested that we simply find a place to sit for a while, but I said that if we wanted to rest, we should just go next door to Germany and see if our dinner reservation was ready.
Thanks in part to my brilliant planning, we were seated in the Biergarten within a few minutes of checking in. I didn't even have time to go next door and order a glass of wine! We were seated with a family from the United Kingdom who found it charming that we were both Julies and it was both our birthdays.
The Biergarten is one of my favorite restaurants in all of DW. The band was playing, there were people dancing (not very well), there was plenty to eat and drink and everything was delicious! We spent a lot of time here as we would try to sample as many things as we could, then wait a few minutes to be hungry again so we could go back for more! The Bavarian Cheesecake was simply divine. We tried to split bites of the various desserts, but we both had to go back for more cheesecake. MMMMmmmmmm
By the time we finally left, it was nearly 8:00 pm and Julie was concerned because our Fastpasses for Soarin indicated that we should return between 7 and 8 o'clock. I reassured her that they would let us in the Fastpass line even after the window had "expired". But we walked as briskly as our stomachs would allow.
We practically walked on the ride, whereas the standby line was a 75 minute wait. What can you say about Soarin'? You really feel like you are flying. It's simply amazing. We left the ride feeling like we had really experienced all that we possibly could.
By the time we got finished with Soarin', Illuminations had started. Since we had not staked out a great viewing point, we simply meandered behind the stationary crowds, catching a glimpse of fireworks now and then. We decided we couldn't leave the park without one more ride on Test Track so it was back to the single rider line again. At least this time we were in the same car.
By the time we were done there, Illuminations had ended and the great mass exit had begun. We considered leaving, but when I pointed out that there were countries we had not yet visited, Julie insisted she was ready for more -- and I was, too!
We worked our way against the crowds to get to the Mexico pavilion, which has fantastic ambiance as well. Of course we took a ride on the Gran Fiesta Tour.
By now we were into the "Extra Magic Hours" of the park, where Disney resort guests are allowed stay in the parks past the official closing time. So the crowd was thinning, but the wait times on the most popular rides was not diminishing very much.
To be continued....
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