Saturday, October 04, 2014

Epcot Food and Wine, with Small Child.

We arrived at Epcot around 10 a.m., and left around 4. We actually considered staying longer, but a totally un-child related reason (GRRR - I'll explain later) forced us to leave. It was crowded, it was hot, though not as hot as the last Disney visit it was still in the 80s, and when the sun was out it was intense.

It was my first time at the event, and I really enjoyed it and would definitely do it again. Surprisingly, we didn't eat ourselves sick! When we crossed from Future World to the World Showcase, the Greek food stand was the first thing we spotted. It had two items we wanted to try - vegetarian moussaka and a grilled cheese with pistachio nuts - so we both had to stop. Servings are small, it's a sampling, not a full dinner. They generally cost around $4. I think the calculation is that the average person will sample four or five dishes, and spend basically the price of a good restaurant meal, and it's pretty darn reasonable.

I only sampled two dishes - the vegetarian moussaka (delicious, and you definitely didn't miss the meat) a bite of the fried cheese, and a bit of grilled mahi with jasmine rice - Indonesia? I'm not even sure what country that was. A wedge of baklava from Morocco for dessert, bottled water, and I was done. It was too hot to want to eat that much. My daughter didn't overdo it either, though she did have some sort of lemony slushy billed as an "Italian Margarita" that was, as she told Miss D, "a big girl drink," she couldn't sample. I tasted it; it was delicious, but I didn't need the dehydrating effects of alcohol in that heat.

We stopped in Italy (when you visit the World Showcase, this is how you talk - "Let's grab lunch in Italy, then I want to go back to that shop in Japan!") for noodles. Miss D lives on fruit, vegetables, and noodles. She is not being raised vegetarian, she just naturally prefers these foods. She will choose pasta over any other form of main dish, and she did get cranky and hungry, so sustenance she would appreciate was in order. A sample sized serving of cheese ravioli made her calm and happy again, and she got to eat it sitting on the steps near the water, surrounded by other tourists doing the same, people watching, while feeling the sunshine and a cooling breeze from our approaching cold front (yay!), with music playing in the background. It really did feel a wee bit like visiting Italy. Just a wee bit. It banished her grumpy moment, and she was ready to rock on.

My daughter made the excellent point that restaurants at the theme parks should offer $4 small portions of kid friendly grownup dishes, like this "sample size" ravioli, all the time. It was the perfect preschooler portion, she ate it all, and it's a better option than the typical "kid's meal" fare of burgers, chicken fingers, and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Epcot really has made an effort to be more kid-friendly, and has character visits in appropriate countries. Aladdin and Jasmine were in Morocco, but the wait time for a meet and greet was 30 minutes. Even Delaney didn't care that much, so we moved on, and ran into...Mary Poppins!

It was a lovely one-on-one meet and greet. Miss Poppins, who had a lovely musical voice and British accent, talked to Delaney at length about her parasol, let her hold it, and generally took a suitable amount of time with every guest. It always amuses me how many grownups wait to pose with the characters WITHOUT children in tow! I kind of wish I had that level of imagination, but for me, these character moments are for the children.

Back in Future World, we visited with

Old friends. And just in case you aren't quite believing how this three years old next week child can hang, here she is laughing with Mommy while waiting to meet Mickey, Minnie and Goofy, nearly six hours into a hot day:


I'm walking around the park with my glasses sliding down my nose, and I figured it's because it's hot, maybe a screw needed to be tightened, etc. I took them off and looked at them, and noticed that the left arm of the frame was hanging out a bit wide. Again, annoying, but I figured that they just needed adjusting. Soldiered on - I'd brought my prescription sunglasses, so I wore those more than half the time anyway. But an hour or so later the loose fit wasn't the biggest annoyance - they now were sitting cockeyed on my face, normal on the right, splayed out loose on the left. I took them off again, the left side looked very stretched out, and I dreaded spending tomorrow at LensCrafters, getting them fixed, but I had my sunglasses, so I could at least drive home..

A few seconds later, the left arm/earpiece of the frame broke loose and fell off. I didn't tug it, force it, twist it. It just broke off as I was closing the glasses to put them back in the case.

These frames are, what, six months old? They were NOT cheap. They also contain my fancy expensive prescription lenses, the ones I need to, yanno, SEE, and do my job at the office.

So any thought of partying on at Epcot was abandoned; Grandma needed to get these broken glasses to the store, stat. Fingers crossed that either they could be repaired, or they'd have another pair of frames in stock and could just transfer my lenses to a new frame. My prescription has changed so much from my last glasses to my new ones, my old glasses don't really function as a spare pair.

No, they couldn't be fixed. No, they didn't have another pair in stock. They did stick this busted pair back together with a fancier version of electrical tape, so I can wear them until a new frame can be found. The store manager waited on me, and called around to find a replacement frame, but in the meantime, I'm wearing taped together frames, and oh, yeah, the other side had the same sort of "gunk" or "corrosion" or whatever she called it, in the joint.

I am at a loss - I know this can't be me. I live and work in air conditioning, and I wear my nearly as expensive prescription Ray-Bans at the beach and the pool. These RL frames have never been exposed to any sort of hardship, other than the normal hardship that is oh, walking the dogs in Florida, and are well cared for. The store manager said that sometimes it's "body chemistry," and I politely called bullshit immediately - the "corroded" part is in the joint of the frame, a part that sits away from sweat, makeup, bodily oils, and is not visible to the naked eye. The rest of the frame looks like new. I did not make this happen with my body chemistry. But, I'm going to get another of the same frame, because my expensive progressive lenses are cut to fit this frame. But now I'll be mistrustful of the frame. The honeymoon is over. And yes, I'll be buying a spare pair in my current prescription ASAP, and probably somewhere else.

I miss wearing contacts. I really do.


Gae, in Callala Bay said...

I remember a friend having similar problems with so-called 'body chemistry' caused corrosion. Forget the brand of specs, but they were pricey. Developed a peculiar patterning that looked something like corrosion, a bit mouldy, and a tad leprous. Again in a part of the frame that did not have any direct skin contact.
But, of course, it is never THEIR fault, is it?

Gae, in Callala Bay

Catherine said...

Interesting, Gae! This corrosion happened in the joint of the frame, not on the surface, which still looks like new! I've worn glasses since I was 8 years old, and this is a first for me. I'm hoping it's a freak thing and the replacement frames don't do it too!