There are few things more embarrassing than being in Orlando over spring break.
Day three found us at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure - the only place in the world that is actually designed to force you into confronting your own geekiness.
Apparently everyone under the age of 28 received some sort of exclusive manual on how not to look like an absolute fool at this place.
They are all dressed in tube tops and hot pants (not that they all should be if you know what I'm saying - but still, my quick-dry T-shirt and hiking sandals, practically scream Saturday Night Live skit).
And they all know exactly when to smile, or flash the peace sign, or moon the world or whatever when the camera goes off on those ride photos. I always look like a terrified Joan Rivers caught in a wind shear. I didn't pay $15 for those when I looked good in them - not gonna start now - no matter how much Punk begs.
Then there's the fact that I am a full-grown-adult headed to Harry Potter's Hogsmeade Village. If that don't make you shout "dork", then the fact that I'm wearing a green plastic poncho will. We were caught in a gale force storm, and had to huddle in the "owlry" with 200 other muggles until it blew over. Kooka was still young enough (and smart enough) to not care how she looked. Punk, on the other hand, immediately discarded his upon learning the threat of imminent hypothermia had passed.
And to add insult to injury - I got jumped by a dancing bush. But this time it wasn't just the park cameras that caught me in all of my glory - it was the video crew from the Ellen show. If you haven't seen it by now, I'll repost the link here. But suffice it to say - it was most hideous. This is how it went down: Rico had been talking up the Jurassic Park ride, and nobody but he and I wanted to go - everyone else was scared (smart kids). One of us had to stay with the kids, so he asks the attendant if there is a single rider line, so I won't have to wait for 80 minutes. The attendant directs me to his left, where I begin walking down a jungley path.
If you see the video, you'll notice that I am looking down. The reason for this, is because the last ride we went on had 5 lizards and one long-ass snake slithering across the path. So the whole time, all am thinking is that this walk is a thousand times scarier than anything that could possibly be on the ride.
I was right.
So I am minding my own, snake-searching business, when all of the sudden my worst nightmare becomes reality. There is a loud hiss from my right and the lower part of the hedge starts moving. My brain just keeps telling me "if that things on the ground, then you don't want to be" (hence the hysterical jumping). After about 4 jumps I realize it's a dude, and simultaneously realize how ridiculous I must have looked. Then I start thinking about what a cool gig that guy has - that somebody actually paid him to scare the crap out me - I want a job like that. So by this point I am equal parts terrified, laughing and jealous.
I am met at the end of the line by the film crew who asks me to sign a waiver (which I did - you're welcome). They said they had been filming all day and hadn't seen a reaction quite like mine - that mine was the most athletic. They asked if I could come to the show taping - but they couldn't let the kids on the set, so we didn't. Regardless - apparently 12 seconds of my 15 minutes of fame have been spent.
Yoda rode the Dr. Suess Carousel. We visited the Street of the Lifted Lorax (from one of Punk and Kooka's very favorite stories); rode the journey through Hogwarts (the lady escorted us right past the 90 minute wait line to the front thanks to Yoda); Punk and Rico rode Spiderman; Kooka choose a magic wand from Olivander's; we strolled through cartoon alley; ate dinner at The Three Broomsticks; went for a spin on Storm Force Acceleration - and finally headed home.
Day 4 was our day "off" and we were all looking forward to it.
|Even Yoda had a butterbeer moustache.|
|I've seen him walk a dog - it looks pretty much the same.|
|my killer green poncho|
|Kooka picks a wand, (She chose Neville's)|
|Punk at a Harry Potter shop|
|Moving walkway to the park was one of their favorite rides.|
|Kooka at the Lorax house.|
|Punk at the Street of the Lifted Lorax|