Category Archives: The Cubicle Escapee

My Lesson from Hurricane Gustav

I have not had much to report on lately so I figured I would share one of my lessons I learned on a previous trip….

Back in 2008, one of my best friends was getting married, so when she said she wanted to have a bachelorette party on a cruise ship, the first words out of my mouth, were where do I sign up? It didn’t even dawn on me that it was during hurricane season.

our lovely ship

This trip would become one of the “best” stressful adventures (and lessons) I have ever had (thus far)

When it was time to leave I was already very stressed because I had just started a new job and was leaving in the middle of a training segment to go on a (what I thought was) a four-day cruise. I already had my reservations about going simply because I had started a new job and you shouldn’t take off for a couple of days in the middle of training, but my trainer at work was awesome, and told me to go and have a great time and that she would get me caught up when I returned.

Anyway, as I am one of the most accident prone people on the planet and bad luck follows me, of course this trip would have some crazy events occur.

Those of you on the gulf coast know that 2008 was a big hurricane year, we had Gustav and Ike (along with many others) and it caused a lot of issues for the gulf port towns.

The day before I left for the cruise a hurricane started forming and the national weather center called this storm Gustav. We were supposed to go to Cozumel, where I had a fun jungle beach tour but when we arrived at the terminal, we were informed that the cruise would change their port of call, and we would be informed on the ship. No big deal, we were still going to Mexico.

In fact the port of call would change four times on this trip, due to where Gustav was “expected” to make landfall.

The cruise I was on, made national news. I was on a 4 day cruise that suddenly became a 6 day cruise and we were circling the gulf to avoid the violent waves that were occurring in the gulf, plus the port of Galveston had shut down, so we couldn’t dock. There was another ship The Liberty, and during those two days, you would see the two ships circling each other, because they could not dock in New Orleans, and we could not dock in Galveston.

The two boats that made news

The two ships actually made national news, because we were “stuck” in the Gulf.

When the Captain came on the speakers and said that we would have postpone our return, everyone in my group started to cheer and clink glasses.

I however, had a panick attack and I swore I would never cruise during hurricane season again. I was frantic and panicking to the point I started crying. Seriously I was crying, after being told I was going to get an extra two days of VACATION! I knew I was going to get fired, I called my the boyfriend and started panicking and crying, and made him call my trainer and tell her what was going on. I literally panicked, I am pretty sure the 10 girls I was with, wanted to slap me.

(I would like to note that I didn’t get fired and I still work for the company, and ironically, I would kill for another accidentally extended cruise vacation)

Anyway, that is the long story short of the experience.

Looking back I learned a very valuable lesson, not only will I be careful about cruises during hurricane season, I would become more relaxed in “bad” situations from that day forward. I adopted the “it is what it is” philosophy and I make the best of every situation.

Anyway, due to Gustav’s potential of destroying Cozumel the ship had to change their itinerary and go to another port.

So we docked in the Yucatan, specifically near Merida. Everyone I was with wanted to go to the beach, and I wanted to climb some ruins,so when we found a guy who said he could take us to both, we agreed.

So we all hopped onto the bus to the beach and I hopped the bus to the ruins and told them I would catch up after I was done. Where I went exactly I couldn’t tell you. He spoke broken English and I spoke broken Spanish, so communication was an issue. I just knew I was going to see ruins, I was very trusting of this guy, and looking back maybe I should have asked more questions so I could tell every one where I went.

After countless hours of research online, I believe I was taken to Temple of the Dolls, a lot of my pictures look like the pictures online (except lower quality) so I am under the belief I was there, however if you think it is somewhere different let me know 🙂

Anyway, it turned into a great day. I got to climb through history, and afterwards lay out by the beach and drink pina coladas. Looking back, I would tell my 25-year-old self to chill out and just enjoy the ride.

Here are the pictures from the ruins.

me on top of the pyramid (my outfit choice wasn’t the greatest, but alas you live you learn 😉 )

Looking back I learned a great lesson from that trip, that there are forces of nature that I can not control. I can’t control every single aspect of my life, and that if something happens all I can do is make the best of it, and afterwards try to correct any situation that may occur. I wasted almost an entire day of my vacation panicking over getting fired (which never occurred) and I should have just laid back and relaxed because in reality it was something I could not control. If I had gotten fired yes it would have sucked, but it would have been ok I would have eventually found another job. Life is all about enjoying the “accidental adventures” and I am glad I learned that lesson. I am ready to take on the next “hurricane Gustav” that may occur on my little adventures.

Until Next Time,

XOXO

The Most Terrifying Ride at Disney World

In my opinion, Dinosaur is a ride that scares the bejesus out of me. I have to give it to the Disney, they test every ounce of emotion I have on this ride.

This ride is located at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and it is worth trying at least once.

The back story of the ride is, you are taking a trip back in time to save an Iguanodon from extinction. You are on this “unsanctioned” trip, mind you, to save this dinosaur, right before the asteroid is supposed to hit Earth. I mean what could possibly go wrong? Right….

Disney of course does an amazing job theming the line, you are walking in the queue at the Dino-Institute, looking at Dino Remains and fossils.

Then you are of shuffled into a room where there is a pre-show. This pre-show briefs you on the actual safety of the Time Rover, and the mission, should you chose to accept it.

On the ride, well you will have to experience it for yourself, because needless to say, I am ducking, diving and dodging so I can’t really tell you what happens, except that you will have a brush with death when the T-rex pops out, but the gist of it is….

You are in the dark looking for this dinosaur that by the point you find it you could care less about it because, you are in this vehicle that is jerky, taking you in all directions, stopping suddenly for man-eating dinosaurs, that stare you down, and then jerking you around some more when you can’t see where you are going then

BAM a T-rex is in your face, and what does Disney do… take a photo of this terrifying moment, for you to always have the memory.

Notice how I am the only terrified person in this rover?

I really wish I would have bought this instead of taking a photo of the screen, but eh you live you learn.

I am not sure why this ride gets to me, but it just does. Maybe it is the anticipation of knowing that we are going to barely escape the T-Rex.

I don’t have any actual photos of the actual ride, because it is hard to get good photos, and well flash photography is of course not allowed, but I have some decent line queue pics.

What is yo

Leap Day and the Downhill Spiral of My Mood

Original post is on Texas Travel Girl

Hey Everyone,

This is continuing my post from the other day.

If you missed my What I did for Leap Day post CLICK HERE

After our yummy lunch,

We decided to take a little bit of a longer break and ride the train full circle, and then continue to ride it again to Frontierland. We decided it was time to start budgeting a few more breaks, as we had already accomplished a lot, and had realized we had 18 hours to go.

After we stepped off the train in Frontierland, we saw Woody & Jessie out, the line was sorta longer than I liked to wait for anything, but we figured it would be ok, as it appeared to move quickly.

While we were waiting, a “real snake” was coming through the side of the fence, and let me just say, Jessie freaked out, she took of running and grabbed a broom. I am not sure if this was an act or not but needless to say, they moved the photo op, so a very discreet Disney Cast Member Crew could handle the situation.

After our meet & greet, we walked over to the Country Bears as it was about to start in 10 minutes, another show I slightly remember from when I went as a kid. Cute, but not a MUST DO for me in the future.

We walked around a bit, and came up to the Enchanted Tiki Room, and was advised that the show was about to start in five minutes, so we walked in sat down, and watched the show. The show is so animated, I just wish I had a better camera so I could take more photos.

Afterwards, we rode Pirates. A classic. I am not sure why I must ride this ride every single time I go, but I must. I think it just makes me think of going to Disney as a child.

At this time it was time for the 3pm parade, so we found a spot to casually watch the parade, but a cast member that we had befriended early came up to me, and told me that Peter Pan was meeting in Adventureland after the parade and I should go line up, because the line has been getting pretty long and people had already started lining up. So I looked at my partner in crime and he was like “Let’s Go” and away we went! I was able to catch the parade from a distance, so that was ok.

At this point, we were starting to feel it. We had been all over the park, already accomplished a lot, more than a lot of people accomplish in a day at the Magic Kingdom. So we decided that we would go take a break on the People Mover, which we rode twice, but decided to get off, because the line was starting to form and the cast member said we had to get off and get back in line to ride again.

So we decided to get on the Carousel of Progress, that was much needed R & R, I looked around, I noticed a lot of people napping, but I stayed up and enjoyed the show.

We then rode Buzz Lightyear, I love this ride, I think I stay in sniper mode the entire time. Not that I am sniper, but that is what I like to call the pose.

As I said we were starting to feel exhaustion of going nonstop since 4:30am, so we decided to continue our break and decided to grab dinner, after we grabbed a fast pass for Peter Pan for that evening.

None of the sit down restaurants had availability, so we decided to go grab dinner at Pinocchio Haus, which neither of us have really eaten before, we were pretty happy with the place. We were trying to avoid burgers on this trip, and this allowed us to do so.

We took a spin on the tea cups next.

At this point it was approx 7:48 pm and my phone had been dead since 10 am, so I knew I needed to get it charged, so we split up. I went back to the locker to use the charger I had spotted tucked and hidden away and my partner in crime went to go snag a rocking chair in Frontierland.

I watched Wishes and boy how I wish I had a better camera to get the awesome shots of Wishes.

I took a break and charged my phone for about a hour.

BIG MISTAKE! My legs cramped up from sitting for so long, I made the walk back to Frontierland and met back up with my partner in crime, he advised me that he was not moving for a while longer, as he was taking a much-needed break. So I told him I was going to go ride Splash Mountain & Peter Pan as I had a fast pass I needed to use.

soaked from Splash Mountain

After I rode Peter Pan I decided I had to see what the Jungle Cruise at night was about plus I had grabbed a fast pass for it earlier.

I rode the Jungle Cruise, while it was fun, I do prefer the day.

At this point my phone had died AGAIN! So I found a spot by PhilarMagic hidden behind the strollers, sat down next to the three high school kids who were passed out and started charging and people watching

I realized it 10:34pm, and the PARK WAS CRAZY BUSY! The idea that the park would be busy earlier in the day and slower after midnight, was clearly NOT going to be the case.

I met back up with my crime partner, and we decided to take get on the people mover and plan our next course of action.

ummmm the people mover had a 25 minute wait! Let me REPEAT this a 25 minute WAIT! I was stunned! I never wait in lines like this for Disney… NEVER, especially for the People Mover but since we needed to figure out what we wanted to do, we waited.

We decided to just walk around and enjoy the park and look for “special character” greets, since by this point the park had went from moderate lines, to lines on crack.

Lucky for us we had accomplished a lot by this point and we were not too heart broken.

So I ventured over to Tink’s Nook and was told Tink and Rosetta were going to be in there for the next hour, it was only a 30 minute wait so I got in line. I had not met Rosetta so I was pretty excited to add another character to my character album.

I got inside and it was only Tink, I found myself pissed off, like VERY ticked and that was the exact moment I realized I needed to go home but I stuck it out a little longer.

This might have been a mistake.

I knew Flynn, was going to come out at midnight, and it was well after midnight so we walked over to the line. I asked a cast member how long the wait is and she said about 2 hours so I sat in line.

I hate waiting but at this point I was ok to wait to meet Flynn, since my legs were pretty much spent and I found myself with anger issues over not meeting Rosetta, I needed to chill.

It was that exact moment, when I was mentally telling myself to “chill out, you are at the Magic Kingdom on Leap Day, millions wish they could be here” that….

A cast member came over and advised us that this line was actually a 4 hour wait… A FOUR HOUR WAIT. let me repeat FOUR HOUR WAIT!!!!!

Hell No. If I was going to wait for 4 hours I better be meeting Zachary Levi (the voice of Flynn), and not a cast member.

(SIDE NOTE: I have met Zachary Levi at comic con and I only waited a hour so yeah no NOT waiting 4 hours).

We decided to check out the dance party, and other special events that were occurring just to see them and hopefully spot some rare characters that I had already not met. There were none.

It was 3 am, and I told the person I was with, that I wanted to go, there was no way I would be able to stay another 3 hours. It was for the safety of others.

We took the bus ride home, got back to the room, I washed my face, laid down, and woke up at 1pm the next day. I had accepted that not EVERYONE can make it for 24 hours, but hey I can settle for 21 hours 🙂

I do want to say, aside from crazy anger issues that occurred, overall the day was pretty magical and looking back, I would not change a thing about the day.

How I Spent Leap Day

You can read the original post at Texas Travel Girl

Hey Everyone!

I have been in recovery mode from my adventure that occurred two weeks ago. Honestly, things have been crazy busy at work… phone duty, computer systems crashed, phones crashed, dealing with that psychotic attorney and well adjusting claims is a crazy business anyway. Then to top it all off, I came down with a very very nasty bout of the flu, which believe me I am still battling, but at least I can get my bottom out of bed and see the sun shine.

So onto more important matters how did I spend leap day?

Those of you that know me, know I am a self proclaimed Dis-Nerd, so it is not a shock that I fell victim to Disney’s One More Day Campaign, and spent 24 hours at the World.

Anyway, it is time for the very crazy long post about the very crazy Leap Day!

If I could only use one word on how I would describe this experience? Awesome. Without a doubt, it was an amazing day.

We woke up at 4:30am quickly got ready and walked over to our bus stop to catch the first bus of the morning, which didn’t arrive until 5:20 not 5 am.

(NOTE to My future self, when they say buses start a 5 am they don’t mean buses will be ready to take you to the park at 5 am, they mean they will start their routes).

Not going to lie, I was starting to feel a moment of panic that I would miss the Welcome Show, and get a late start on my extra day as I had major plans and I was going to accomplish every single one of them. 🙂

We arrived got through the security line, to get into the park. It really was an amazing event, camera crews, radio Disney, cast members, and 1000s of Crazed Disney Fans all in close proximity of each other, any sleepy-ness I had going on vanished instantly because of the positive energy that was surrounding me.

By time I realized I really was about to spend 24 hours at Disney, the Welcome Show Started.

We waited anxiously for the Welcome Show to end, while waiting we were able to establish the game plan for the first 20 minutes, get in, get a locker, get t-shirts…. get to space mountain 🙂

The count down started… 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1…. Ready Break

we ran over to the lockers, got our locker and then ran to get our leap day t-shirts, that was utter madness, by 6:15 we were done and on our way to Tomorrow Land.

We walked in the fog to Tomorrowland, amazed at how small the crowds were (at this time) it was empty and it was amazing!

We hopped in line for Space Mountain and waited approx 10 minutes, jumped on the ride, and off we went.

Afterwards, I decided I wanted to go ahead and ride Tomorrowland Speedway, I jumped in line and waited for 5 minutes and took off! Needless to say I won, yep I took those 10 year olds on!

ready to race
vroom vroom

We enjoyed Philar Magic Next, I LOVE this show, when I pay 3D premiums at the theater this is the 3D experience I expect, and well NEVER get.

We rode Snow White’s Scary Adventures, I plan on dedicating an entire post to this gem in the future, I am so sad it is being retired 🙁 we waited maybe 5 minutes for this ride, which believes me NEVER happens.

R.I.P Snow White

We ride the Carousel next, sigh, I love Prince Charming, and I learned that Cinderella has a favorite horse. Did you know that?

I took on the Sword & The Stone, clearly I am no King Arthur.

Not King Arthur…

We rode It’s a Small World, and got the lovely song stuck in our heads, because let’s face it, it really is a small small world…

I met Tiana, and she offered to make us Gumbo because the frog that was with me was hungry.

We then decided to walk over to the Haunted Mansion, and take a break and ride the dark ride. The wait was less than 10 minutes, but we decided to take our time and get pics of the line queue. Which is kinda our thing, we love taking pics of line queues. Nobody can stage a line like Disney. I will post these pics a later date, this line is entertainment in it’s self. 😉

Made it through that line and got away with getting one photo in the stretching line before a cast member kindly reminded us no flash photography… he was quick, as we snapped that pic before the doors were even closed.

I know shame on us…

After that we were off to Tink’s Nook, were I was lucky enough to meet Vidia & Tink, both were super awesome and super adorable. In fact I fell in love with Tink’s Nook, and I would return later that evening.

After meeting Tink, we decided to get on Magic Carpets, and according to my ride partner I stink at flying the carpets, apparently you should go up and down, not just stay up, however the photopass guy got an amazing shot of us on the carpets.

We then walked over and I was able to meet Ariel & Eric. Which was a trip, I asked Ariel if I could get a pick with only Eric, which made her sad but when my partner in crime offered to keep her company, she wasn’t sad any longer, and took off, which made for a great laugh.

We walked over to my favorite ride, at the Magic Kingdom, the Jungle Cruise, the jokes are the same they always have been, but they crack me up every time. Hey what can I say, I am easy to please.

The best part, we were asked by the Facebook advertising team to take a photo for the page. We gladly agreed.

You can see the photo here

Our Jungle Boat Skipper

After that we decided to head back over to Tomorrowland and take break and watch the Laugh Floor, and seriously that show is super cute. I have never watched it before. Yeah I know, I am getting my Dis-Nerd card pulled by some of you, but hey normally I don’t have time to do it, today I did, and it will be on my list from now on.

It was now time to walk to The Plaza for our lunch reservation, while waiting for our table we were able to catch the Move It, Shake It Parade. This parade was fun to watch, however by time I caught it for the fifth time that day, I would start to be slightly annoyed… but only slightly (hey I was sleep deprived!)

Oh by the way… it is only 11:35 am.

Stay tuned for tomorrow to see what we accomplished after my yummy lunch at the Plaza