The Traveling Steve's

Catching up with posting, and Columbus Day week Trip to Beijing

Wow – it’s Oct 5th and we’re sitting in the Orlando Admiral’s Club waiting for our 7:15pm flight to Charlotte. From Charlotte we are flying on to Toronto, Canada where we are spending one night, before continuing our journey to Beijing. As we don’t get in until midnight, it will be a quick night’s stay at the Hyatt, before continuing on at noon to China.

I’ve been so busy I have really not had any time to catch up on this blog.

In a nutshell, we visited my parents in Virginia for a week. Then spent three nights at the Grand Cypress Hyatt by Disney Springs (former Downtown Disney) at Walt Disney World.  Over the three day weekend, we met our friends from Canada vacationing there, as well as a friend from work and his family.  

We purchased Disney annual passes once again, which we let expire a couple years ago.  We used to have them every year since moving to Florida, but we found we were using them less and less due to busy travel schedules.  It was fun to once again be part of the pass holder family.  And our photos are still etched in the EPCOT walls at the entrance to the park.  We did this years ago: hint we are on the third row down in the middle.

We went to Magic Kingdom on Saturday, and it was all decked out with the Halloween theme for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween, although we just went during the regular park day hours.


On Sunday we went to the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, which fortunately wasn’t nearly as busy as it usually is this year.  It is a couple weeks longer than years past, starting in late August, and ending in mid-November.  The prices have increased quite a bit too from years past, although the quality of the food and drink does seem to be better, and Disney has definitely gotten much better with line control at the various venues – quick fast actually.   Sunday’s are definitely a better day to visit EPCOT during the Food and Wine Festival than Saturdays, as lots of Floridian groups infiltrate the park for the weekend. They also have wine and beer flights at the festival, which is not only a good value (for Disney that is), but also offers you variety of what you may want to try or not try.

We also made it to Shula’s Sunday night for dinner at the Dolphin Hotel (on the Boardwalk), before heading back to EPCOT for the 9pm fireworks.

Then it was a busy week at home in Orlando with Hurricane Irma follow-up. I’m still trying to get the roof repaired, (along with everyone else), and umpteen phone calls finally got a person to come by an examine the leak in the kitchen, but of course someone else will have to do the drywall work and roof repairs. I’m still waiting on an insurance adjuster to show up.  Here’s a photo post-hurricane with the house still boarded up. 

We did have a fun wine-themed dinner party one night for my neighbors Kenny and Mary, complete with the multi-set of Riedel glasses for the various wines.

We even got a brand new Outback on our neighborhood, as they had outgrown the old one.

I had a quick trip to Tampa this week for work; Monday thru Wednesday, leaving only today to finish up any follow-up items before leaving for China.  Fortunately I had packed most of my things for the trip last weekend, but still had to decide on carry-on items.  I rented this bright yellow Dodge Charger for the trip, and while not my first choice in colors, you could definitely see it a mile away, so I guess that was a safety feature!

But for now, we are in vacation mode, and excited to be going to China. Steve (DOS) used to fly there occasionally, although I’ve never been, with the exception of Hong Kong in 1996.

Don’t know how much internet access we will have while we are gone, but looking forward to seeing the Great Wall of China, although it’s supposed to be very rainy the day we are there. We will be there with our umbrellas and smiles, that’s for sure! Until the next post – thanks for reading, and have a great day!

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