We all met at Downtown Disney for our reservation at T-Rex restaurant at 6:30. The place was packed. Now I don't mean like there were people standing around the outside of the entrance for their tables, but "Disney packed." There was a line of people, 60 deep, just to put their name on the list to get in. There were 2 lines to get in after you signed in, just to get to the inside hostess stand. And did I mention we had 10 boys with us? All under age 11? And haven't seen each other until now? It was pure chaos. We got them into the restaurant and lined them up against a wall. Now I must note, Nate hates pictures. When he sees a camera, he gets very angry and refuses to smile or even look at the camera. Its awesome. So we were able to capture the progression on film:
The fifth boy from the left. He is initially happy to be with his cousins but just noticed the camera.
Here he gets down to confirm that his picture is getting taken.
Now he realizes that pictures are getting taken. And he thinks about his next move.
And there it is.
And for good measure, Drew approaches the camera complaining about his belly being hungry.
A major theme of this trip was Drew complaining.
Luckily they got us to our 2 tables within a half hour. But for some reason, I sat at the table with my brother and Lindsey and 7 kids! This was another theme throughout this vacation, that I would end up at the "kids" table. I have proof.
Also, please note that Nate is standing. This was his position 90% of the time at dinner. The other 10% was laying down or underneath the table. Did you notice I didn't mention sitting on his bottom? He didn't either.
With a reservation of 6:30, we didn't get food until 8:00. Please refer back to the picture of Drew holding his belly at 6:30 because he was hungry. Now you can see what we were dealing with with 10 growing boys who were forced to wait for food. My kids can not go 1 hour without eating. My boys finish their lunch then ask for a snack 30 minutes later. Needless to say, Zachary got very very hangry.
My brother's kids made their own lightsabers at Downtown Disney and proceeded to get them out in a very crowded restaurant. But it was my kid, Drew, who while fighting, hit a stranger at the neighboring table. That was fun to apologize for.
When all 18 people had finished eating, it was time for desert...at 8:45. All the boys were full and did not want desert, they wanted to leave. So they were all standing or crawling under the table or over the table or under the neighbors table or running to the bathroom. So I ate desert standing up while trying to corral them into a corner where they could be contained. And as the waitress was walking away, Zachary announces "the service here stinks!" He was as done as I was, but apparently you do not get your "mouth filter" until age 9.
While waiting for our check, Nate fell asleep on Lindsey and then required to be carried to the bus stop through crowded and loud Downtown Disney. He ended up waking up at the bus stop while waiting for the bus and just whimpered and cried about not being in bed...right now! So when the bus showed up, we thought out night was almost over. We thought.
The buses at Disney always take the wheelchairs and scooters onto them first, then load the rest of the people. There was an older lady in a red scooter waiting at our bus stop. The bus driver comes out of the bus and announces that he will load the scooter then everyone else and to please be patient. He says this 2 more times to more people before actually beginning to load the scooter. Then he lowers the bus and wheelchair ramp for the scooter. The old lady apparently just got the scooter today because she had no idea how it worked. It was like the scene from Austin Powers putting the scooter in drive then reverse to move 2 inches at a time. But everyone was graceful because she seemed old and really needed this scooter to get around. She finally gets onto the bus, transfers to a seat, then proceeds to get back up to check on her family, waits by the door until they board, and then walks back to her seat. The whole process takes 15 minutes as Nate is whimpering and crying to go to bed. It was magical!
We finally get back to the resort room at 9:30 where Drew and Nate get their second wind and are up till 10. Just what we wanted the night before a long day at the Magic Kingdom. We are the best planners. It seems like Disney is set up to deprive you of sleep from day 1.
So far so good,
The Joyful and Tired Dad