Jambo! That's hello in the African language of Swahili for anyone who doesn't know, and the reason im speaking Swahili, Is because today on our travels we visited Disney's Animal Kingdom, which is themed around the continents of Africa, Asia, and er, Dino Land USA. Robert and I are both animal lovers, even more so since we added our little bun to our family, but I don't think Robert realised (despite the big hint in the name) that Animal Kingdom was going to have quite so many animals. And awesome animals at that!
Our day started bright and early again, with me waking up about 7ish. Robert was still asleep, but I got up and ready (doing my make up on the balcony again) before heading down to the Boardwalk Bakery for a coffee for Robert. There were so many tasty options available, but I had a snack in mind at Animal Kingdom so I went for a banana just to tide me over til then, and a wee milk coz I don't drink coffee or tea.
We had aimed to be at the park for opening, but by the time we got there it was about 9.20. It was already so warm by this time, so walking through the leafy entrance way with its shade and water sprays was lovely. The heat feels exhausting at the time but right now I'd give anything for that beautiful Florida sun on my skin! (I'm currently in the Spanish sun, which is an adequate substitute though!!)
We had 3 fast passes booked for today, but they didn't start until 10.45 so our plan was to head straight to Africa for the Kilimanjaro Safari. We hoped it wouldn't be too long a wait at this time, and also had heard that most animals would be out at this time of day (after a later visit I'm not sure I agree with that) because it isn't too hot for them yet.
Still, we were impressed by the animals we had seen, and I think it set a good first impression of Animal Kingdom for Robert. All through the trip, I was trying to make sure that Robert loved everything, obviously because I wanted him to have a good time, but I also wanted him to love Florida and Disney World as much as I did so we could come back! I'd be gutted if he didn't want to come back.
The best thing about the safari, is how peaceful and "safari like" it is. I know that probably sounds weird, but out on that safari you'd never know there was a bustling theme park, with thousands of people and Disney characters just 5 minutes away. It's amazing!
The Safari lasts about 25 minutes so by the time we got back it was shortly after 10, and almost time for our Everest fast pass. We were feeling a little peckish though, so on the way we stopped for the snack I had been saving myself for - The Jalapeño pretzel!! We got one each from the Harambe Market which was really close to the exit of the safari. It cost $4.69 (according to that link, not my memory!) and it was sooooo good.
After this is was time for Everest, yay! I always enjoy Everest, but when I haven't been on in a while I always underestimate the thrill level - my mind equates it more with Big Thunder Mountain in Magic Kingdom, when in reality it's actually a lot faster, steeper and scarier. It's not up there with the really scary ones like The Hulk, but it's really good, and luckily I don't get the horrible nervey feeling in my stomach before it starts!
We joined the fast pass queue, and within 5 minutes or so we were boarding. We both loved this, just the right amount of scary, some fab theming and a backwards section into the bargain! I thought I had taken a sneaky picture of our ride picture but I can't seem to find it so I must not have.
After this we had one fast pass left, for Kali River Rapids. This time we had 40 minutes to go. I was tempted by one of the shows, but by the time the shows were finished we'd be pretty close to the end time of our fast pass so we didn't want to risk missing it, especially when we weren't sure how far apart they were. We decided to leave the shows until our next visit. We walked back towards Africa, deciding to join the single rider queue for Everest.
This took about 10/15 minutes, which isn't too long to wait for a ride on the park's biggest attraction in the height of the summer. I ended up sitting next to a Spanish lady who spoke no English but communicated very clearly that it was her first time and she was terrified! I felt bad for her coz she screamed the whole way round, but she was smiling when she got off so I guess she probably enjoyed it at least a little bit!
The Kali River Rapids were next, and as we arrived we could see people coming off who were literally drenched. Like, as if they'd jumped in a pool with their clothes on type drenched. Robert seemed apprehensive but never one to be put off by a bit of water, I carried on, full steam ahead. I was slightly worried about my stuff (camera etc) getting soaked but in the middle of the raft they have some little waterproof boxes for you to hide your stuff.
This picture might give you some indication as to how wet we got...
It was about 1pm by this point, and there was football on again at 3pm that Robert wanted to go watch somewhere so we decided to take our little soaked selves back to the car, hoping that the sun would dry us of on the way so we wouldn't soak the seats of the Mustang. But right on time, the sky turned grey and we were getting hit with huge splodges of rain. It didn't come to much, not a full on Florida storm, just enough to stop us drying off.
I tried to chill out a bit, drink lots of water, and took some anti sickness tablets. I dozed while Robert watched the football in the room, but nothing really helped. I still got up and got ready as if we were going out but in the end I decided that I felt far too sick to enjoy such an expensive meal. I went to the front desk and spoke to someone about rescheduling our meal. He informed me it would be a $10 per person cancellation fee, which I had known about. I asked if there was no way it could be waived due to me feeling unwell and he said no.
We then went ahead and rescheduled for the following week, and as I was leaving the desk he said "I've removed the cancellation fee for you ma'am, I hope you feel better soon".
Aaah, I love the Disney Service :)
It was about half past 6 by this point, and Robert was starving so we decided we'd head out to Lake Buena Vista area, with me still feeling a bit worse for wear, and eventually settled on Longhorn Steakhouse. I had my first turn driving the Mustang, because Robert had had a beer watching the football. It was pretty fun to drive!
We were seated right away, despite it being peak dinner time, and our server was really friendly and helpful.
Robert ordered some jalapeño bites to start, but with my nausea I decided to hold off and just have a main. It was hard to choose because I felt sick but I was worried my sickness might have been because I hadn't eaten much during the day, so I knew I had to eat something! The jalapeño bites were nice, but an unusually small portion for American dining!
They also served us up some of this honey oat bread, and my goodness it was delicious. I had to stop myself from eating too much or I wouldn't manage my steak! It helped sooth my queasiness a little bit.
Highlight of the day : Animal Kingdom Safari
Food of the Day : Longhorn Fillet mignon with mac and cheese.
Thanks for reading (or looking at the pictures if you got bored of my long chunks of text!)