Not Doll Related Orlando Stuff

I was obsessively careful in arranging our trip: limo to airport, flight, pay for luggage, pre-check-in online, tickets to parks, car rental, hotel reservation. It seemed endless but finally came together. The limo arrived exactly on time. We got to the airport with plenty of time for coffee and for the long walk to the gate. Why is it that every flight I take is ALWAYS the last gate in the terminal? So we're  We get through the full body scans without a problem and get to the gate. We were told that the gate on the ticket was still the same gate. Well it wasn't and we didn't realize that until 15 minutes before boarding. Then when we got there, the overhead bins were already filled so they had to take our carry-on luggage in which things I didn't want to be checked had to be checked. Ugh. You can be sure I will not be at the wrong gate on the way home because two Gene dolls will be in my carry-on and no one is going to come between me and those dolls.
The flight was fine. The luggage arrived quickly in un-tampered-with condition. We go to the car rental desk and they can't find my name or Bob's name. I never remember whose name I use for these things. But it didn't matter because we were at the wrong rental company anyway. Embarrassing but pretty funny. Got a car at the right desk. Drove to the hotel picking up our Universal tickets on the way.
Check-in at the hotel was a little delayed as our room wasn't quite ready. The lady at the desk gave me a big spiel about how our room was upgraded and that we were getting free bottles of water because I'm a Hilton Honors member. The room has a very nice view overlooking Universal but other than that, the hotel needs a major upgrade. They are about 10 years overdue for a face lift. It's kind of dark in the bathroom. The bed, however, is very comfortable and clean.
View From Our Room
I can sum up Universal Studios in a few words: go to Disney World instead.  Universal doesn't hold a candle to the professionalism and operation of Disney. We enjoyed a few rides yesterday but otherwise, it's a mess of disjointed buildings and lame employee scripts. Our favorite ride was had to do with the Minion characters from the movie, Despicable Me. I love those little creatures and this ride is a 4D event that is lots of fun. We went twice. The second time I had my eyes open. Ha ha.
The Mummy ride was dumb and not scary at all. Terminator was OK. The disaster thing had an awful narrator who made the wait to get to the real thing interminable. Skip it. The one at Disney is 100% better. The Men In Black 'ride' was cute. No great shakes.
Don't eat at Mel's diner. Ugh.
The patisserie was lovely but all we had there was cappuccino and gigantic oatmeal (delicious) raisin cookies.
Every ride exits through a related gift shop and there's very little that worth buying. They do, however, have several Hot Toy's character figures for sale. But they are just worth looking at for their perfection.
I did buy this little Minion and a Mr. Potato Head type toy that has a Minion body instead of a potato.
Today we're going over to the Universal park that is Harry Potter themed. It should be interesting just for the character of the buildings.

The best thing about Universal is their City Walk. The Disney equivalent (I forget the name) is very tame by comparison.

Disney World is beautiful and big and the rides are memorable, from the spinning tea cups to the haunted house. Universal is a mess - an expensive mess, at that.

Monday, April 15, 2013  at Islands of Adventure, Universal

This part of Universal is much newer. It's divided into several areas each of which has it's own theme structures and rides. It's much more attractive and a little more interesting. The Spider Man ride was pretty good. My expectations were lower so I wasn't disappointed.

I focused on trying to take pretty postcard pictures.

I will post more pictures on Face book.

When I return home, the doll related posts will go up.  Last night Sandra Stillwell and I played with the new Gene,  dressed and photographed her and an IT doll in Sandra's fashions. I also shot nude pictures of three versions of the Gene body. The major difference I see is that the new Gene seems slightly shorter. Everything fits the new body including shoes.


  1. Our first time @ Universal we ate lunch at Circus McGurkus Cafe Stoo-pendous, then started the drive home to Missouri. Fail of epic proportions ensued. ;3

  2. Our family went to Orlando last year. We enjoyed Islands of Adventure because we are Harry Potter fans, but it cost us just as much to go one day to Universal than it did to go 4 days at Disney World.

    Jealous that you and Sandra got to play dolls together, sounds like so much fun!

    Can't wait to see your photos.