As many know, we decided to take a vacation this year during Christmas week rather than in the summer. This was mostly because we had an unused week from our timeshare that we tried to use in the summer and failed and we were finally able to get a week in Orlando during Christmas week. We even got lucky to find a week at our own home resort where we own our timeshare. My Mother-In-Law Sue booked onto a cruise with a bunch of friends for just after the week, so she decided she would come down with us and stay for the first few days. So far so good. The plan was set that we leave right after Shabbat on December 24, stay at a motel in Fredericksburg VA, and then drive the rest of the way on Sunday the 25th. But as the Yiddish expression goes, דער מענטש טראַכט און גאָט לאַכט, “Man plans, God laughs”. The week before we were scheduled to go, I realized I had a kidney stone. Now I have had stones before, and generally, I can tolerate them, but this one really hurt. I finally went to the hospital on Tuesday, found out I had a 6 mm stone, went to the urologist on Wednesday, got scheduled for surgery and had the stone removed on Thursday. WOW! So aside from a little discomfort from a stent that was left in and will have to come out later, so far so good.
Fast forward to Saturday. I am in Synagogue and Marsha comes in much earlier that she ever would generally come, and tells me that Avi has a 104 fever! UGH! I bring him to an urgent care clinic and he tests positive for flu. Oy! So the doctor says that as long as he is fever free, we can travel with him, and by later that afternoon, he had been fever free since we were at the clinic. So we decide to go. I decided that perhaps I should get a flu shot just in case, and I went to a walk in place in town and got the shot.
For the car ride Avi was planning to be in the third row in the car anyway by himself, and he kept basically to himself. We checked him a few times and no fever. We left at about 7 pm on Saturday evening and with only one stop in Maryland we pulled in to the lot of the hotel in Virginia at about 11:45. Got up in the morning and started on our trip south at about 8 am. First great thing of the trip. NO ONE DRIVES SOUTH ON CHRISTMAS!!! We had absolutely no traffic anywhere and we hardly even saw a police car! We decided to stop at South of the Border to eat our lunch that we packed. South of the Border is all closed on Christmas! If you ever want to stop here, don’t go on Christmas! Near us were cars of Hindus, Muslims, and Jews! We found a picnic table and had our lunch. At this point I was developing a bit of a cough as was Avi so we stopped at a CVS for some cough medicine. Within hours, I was already starting to feel a little worn down, and it became clear to me that perhaps I should not have taken that flu shot! Anyway we pushed on, and with only a few more stops, we made it to our resort near Disney at around 11:30. We checked in and went right to bed.
We planned Monday to be not very busy. We went to see Rogue One in the morning. First real surprise. As a treat, we pre purchased the tickets for the AMC theater at Universal City Walk. If you ever to go to Universal, don’t go to the movie theater there unless you are already there, either at the parks or at one of their hotels. The website indicated that parking was only $5 for the movies. We quickly found out that this was only after 5 pm! So we paid for parking and went to the theater. The seats were nice recliners and the movie was fantastic! Lesson learned. We then spent the rest of the day buying supplies and groceries for the rest of the week.
By now, I am still not feeling 100% and Sue is coughing as well. She hardly slept and in the middle of the night got the phone number for a doctor service from the resort. A doctor came to see her Tuesday morning and said we need to go to the ER. Our plans were to go to Universal, but we took her to the ER and after a few hours she was diagnosed with Bronchitis. WE brought her back to the unit for rest and the rest of us went to Disney Springs. This used to be called Downtown Disney, and it is a fun place to walk around and see shops and such. Kind of like a boardwalk. A real highlight was when we went into the Star Wars store. They have an area where you can build your own light saber and the kids had a blast! Walked around, had dinner and then back to the unit.
Wednesday’s plan was Disney Hollywood studios so the kids could see the new Star Wars stuff there. We had a great time for sure. It was a long day but generally worth the time. Over the weekend I will blog about our specific experience here, especially about the Disney disability pass that they offer. Sue stayed back again so she could be well to go to Universal on Thursday and see the Harry Potter stuff. We all went on Thursday and again, I will write about that over the weekend. The park was great and there are many high points to mention and to talk about Universal’s disability pass.
Now it is 11 pm on Thursday. Sue is spending tonight through Sunday with friends in Boynton Beach and safely made it there. Shayna was a little under the weather this morning, but she had a great time at the park, but Marsha and she decided to not do another day tomorrow. Noam decided he did not want to either. He saw Harry Potter world and that was it! So we got refunds for their second day, and Avi and I will hit Universal tomorrow to do some rides that we did not get to hit today.
Despite some health issues and other setbacks, the trip has been ok. I will never plan another trip like this during Christmas week, but we are making the best of it. WE will have a nice quiet Shabbat and on Friday night, a cousin of Marsha is going to visit. And then Sunday it is the drive back home.
Here are a couple of photos from today.
Posing with our new wand!
Shayna at the home of Sirius Black!
Guess where we are going!