Day 3 – Kirsty and Andy

Thursday 16th August 2018

I still have high hopes that we’ve kicked the jetlag but given that Sandy and I were both up and on the couch downstairs chatting this morning from around 3am, despite us going to bed before midnight, suggests our body clocks are still a little out of kilter. We did go to sleep pretty well at around 11pm last night, but I guess our bodies are still fighting the change in time zones. We made good use of the time downstairs. The theme park tickets I bought came with an Orlando discount card for various restaurants and attractions. We spent some time looking at all the places we can put that discount card to good use. Both of us went back to bed at around 4:30am, not long after Jennifer poked her head around the corner because she, too, was having difficulty sleeping, but even though Sandy managed to fall back to sleep without any trouble, I struggled to do so. Instead of lying there trying to count sheep, I got up and went back downstairs again to spend some time on the laptop.

By the time the sun was fully up, I popped out to the local Publix to pick up some bread and a few other things. When I got back, Jennifer was already downstairs and eating some cereals. I figured we’d maybe skip going out for breakfast this morning and instead whipped up some toast, bacon and eggs for me and the kids. Well, it was really for me, but it didn’t take long for the kids to claim most of it. Sandy was content to organise something to eat for herself, which is par for the course.

For the past fifteen or so years, I’ve only worn a particular type of sandal called Chacos. In fact, I haven’t owned any shoes for as long as I can remember. It’s sort of my signature. Everyone knows and comments on how I only ever wear sandals. The reason is that I have a deformity on my right foot, which is quite a bit wider than my left. A shoe that fits the left is too tight and uncomfortable for the right. If I wear a larger shoe size on the right, it tends to be too long and uncomfortable for that reason. Yes, I’ve put up with a lot of shtick over the years as a result, but I’ve learned to live with it. The Chacos do tend to last a long time given I wear them exclusively. A good pair might go two or more years before the soles wear out to the point they start to fall apart. As it happens, the pair I currently wear have reached that point and I doubt they will last a couple more weeks before breaking apart completely. Since we’re in America, I figured it would be easy enough to find a new pair locally, so I called around a few places to try to find somewhere that had the ones I wear in stock. Pickings were slim, and I didn’t fancy driving as far as north of Orlando to get a new pair. Instead, I resolved to pick up a cheap pair of regular sandals somewhere locally instead. This would at least tide me over until I could find somewhere that sold the ones I need and prefer.

There’s a Super Target store not far from here and there’s always the Walmart just up the road as well. We decided we’d try both to see whether I could pick up something. Yes, this did mean yet another retail pounding, but this time is was a necessary evil. Naturally, we couldn’t go in to the Super target and just come out with what we intended to go in for. We were yet another $150 or so lighter for the experience by the time we were through. We’re still relatively comfortable as far as the overall budget is concerned but this first few days has taken us over the daily edge it does have to be said.

Once we were back at the house, Sandy and Jennifer decided to head over to the main pool area where Jennifer was going to get her hair braided. This left Joey and me pottering around. I did receive an SMS from the property owner telling me I should expect a call from his maintenance man. He apparently intends to address the problem of the slow draining bath/shower in the two upstairs bathrooms. With my phone by my side, I went upstairs to have a quick lie down. Big mistake. I was already hitting the tiredness wall by this time and that quick lie down immediately turned into a full-blown afternoon nap. I was awoken by the noise of Sandy and Jennifer returning. She came upstairs after some muffled discussions with the kids downstairs. Evidently, that maintenance man had shown up at the door and Joey answered. The man asked Joey about a slow draining bath and Joey told him he didn’t think we had any, so the man left again.

My niece, Kirsty, and her family are visiting Florida at the moment. They spent a few nights in Vero Beach and today are traveling to Orlando. We will overlap with them here for the next couple of weeks and will even spend some time with them at some of the parks. I spoke with Kirsty and Andy this afternoon and we agreed to meet up for dinner tonight after they checked in to their Disney Polynesian resort hotel. Andy was good enough to add me to their room booking. Naturally, I won’t be physically staying there but adding me to their reservation does mean I’ll be issued with one of the Disney wrist bands. This will afford us free parking at the Disney theme parks and a few other perks, which is a welcome bonus.

Since our discount card gets us 15% off at TGI Friday’s, we decided to eat there this evening with Kirsty, Andy and their two small girls. We met them there at around 6pm and had a thoroughly good time with them all. The food was plentiful, and the service was really awesome, albeit one or two things didn’t come out as planned. We agreed to meet them all at the Magic Kingdom tomorrow morning at around 9am and will spend the day with them in that park.

During the meal, my very good friend and past work colleague, Marc, called me on my new mobile. It was great hearing from him, but I resolved to call him back after a few minutes of chat as we were in a noisy environment and just about to order. If all goes well, we’ll spend some time with Marc and Anna in a couple of weeks. Both Sandy and I am looking forward to this immensely. I also chatted online briefly with Kristy (not to be confused with Kirsty), an ex-neighbour from when we lived in Jacksonville. We will spend some time with Kristy and her husband Dr. Carlos when we’re in Jacksonville, but there’s an outside chance they may come and spend some time with us here at the villa as well, which would be just awesome.

We all had a great time at TGI Friday’s and left with full tummies and content. On the drive back to the villa, both Sandy and Joey declared just how relaxed and happy they were both feeling on this holiday now, which I’m super thrilled about beyond words.

Back home, we engaged the shutting down routine and put the kids to bed. Tomorrow promises to be a long and tiring day. We may or may not spend the entire day at the park. My business partner, Jamie, and her husband and friend are in town and the plan is to have dinner with them tomorrow evening. Despite the fact that Jamie and I have been running a publishing company since January of 2017, and that we communicate with each other daily, this will be the first time we’ve actually met. I do hope we get on well 😉