Sea World

We decided to skip school and go to Sea World today. When I bought the tickets for Busch Gardens the chick said I could pay an extra dollar or so and get a second day that could be used within the next 60 days, and that sounded like a great idea, so I did. She didn’t tell me the ticket could be used for Sea World, but it was printed on the ticket, so Ted called Sea World to see if we could use the tickets there, and how long until they expired. She told him we could go to SW, but that the tickets expired the next Monday (today)! I kept saying that was crap, and not at all what the Shades of Green woman told me, but Ted said well, that’s what the SW woman said and it doesn’t say anything on our tickets about when they expire. It was supposed to be hot and rainy today which was why we didn’t want to go, but we figured even if it started raining and we had to leave at 2pm (when it was expected) we’d have gotten our dollar’s worth; so we headed out. Of course, standing in line Max pointed at our tickets which read that we had 6 months to use our second day! Oh well, we’re already here and it would seem so mean to pack up and go back home to do school now!

Last night we planned the top 5 things we wanted to do. I don’t really know much about Sea World and figured if we only had a limited time we shouldn’t get there and wander around and waste our time, so we had a plan. We walked in and went right to Pets Ahoy, a show with cats and dogs who do tricks. We figured it was right up Jack’s alley, and boy was it! We all loved that show! I told Ted I’d watch it again today and he said he felt the same. The show started out with a mouse running from one side of the stage to the other, then a cat follows his trail. There were a couple of small skits, like a woman said this dog was having trouble with his girlfriend so she told him to call the girlfriend and sweet-talk her, get money at the atm, buy her flowers, then drive to her house and pick her up. So then the dog ‘does’ all those things in order, and then drives into the house, and next out they both come in the jeep the boyfriend is ‘driving’ and the girlfriend is holding the flowers in her mouth.

Another was a typical Friday night and it had lots of animals going from one place to another, getting groomed (there was a fluffy cat that went into the groomers and then a hairless cat came out), and then hanging out. Some of the tricks were a black cat and then a white cat climb into a basket and then 2 black and white kittens come out. There were other types of animals, too, including a skunk,

a flock of ducks (or 2 flocks, I think), a cockatiel, and at the end was a pig. It was so fun to watch, several times they had cats climb straight up a 5″ diameter rope, and once a cat crossed a rope about that thick upside down! I was amazed at how each animal did what they were trained to do: there were treats placed all around the stage but (as far as I saw) none of the animals ate their treats until they’d performed their trick. All in all it was a super start to our day.

Next was Mako, Orlando’s tallest, fastest roller coaster. Max and I went first. After Shikra the other day I don’t feel as super scared at the thought of the big drop in Mako. I’m also not dwelling on it, so that helps. Mako was really fun! It seemed really long, and I was super scared on it, but it was a fun kind of scared, not a dreadful kind, which was nice. I rode it next with Ted (Jack was too short for the 3 rides we picked out to do here). Then Ted and Max rode it, and then Ted and I rode it again. Heh, it was that good! We never got a parent pass because the line was so nonexistent that we just walked on every time.

Since Jack had waited all this time I wanted to do something for him, so Ted and Max headed off to Kraken and Jack and I headed to the playground. On the way Jack wanted to chase a bird so I told him he could. Of course it flew off as soon as he got close, and then he yelled “Get back here bird!” which made me laugh. When we were almost to the playground I saw a cafe and asked for an ice water and was able to fix my own from their freestyle machine. That’s so nice! I really like being able to travel light in these parks; today I even left my purse and just brought my phone (which has my ID and credit card in it) and chapstick. Jack loved the humongous playground so I let him play until it was time to go see Shamu.

We hit the bathroom and then found some seats and I texted Ted our location. I know we came to Sea World years ago with Fran and Teresa, but I didn’t remember any of it until we sat here in the big stadium. The show was awesome, of course. Watching those huge, graceful animals swim and jump and dive was amazing. A couple of times they swam up on the platform and spun in circles.

After the show we were heading to lunch, but we accidentally took the long way around and ended up where we started. Max realized he lost his sunglasses almost as soon as we got in here, so since we were at the Pets Ahoy place again Max and I went in to check for them. No dice. We headed the right way to the restaurant this time. Max had asked earlier if we could eat at the big restaurant here where every table has a great view of a huge aquarium, so we did. It was super pricy, though! Max had pasta with muscles, shrimp and scallops; he ate all the seafood first so he could enjoy his ‘mac and cheese’. Heh. Jack had fried fish with fries and applesauce. Ted had ahi tuna cooked perfectly, with mashed potatoes and spring veggies. I had the catch of the day which was grilled swordfish (super tasty), polenta (pretty good) and cooked spinach (good with extra salt). Oh, we got Italian rolls at the beginning and I could taste the awesome sun-dried tomatoes, and lobster bisque which was so creamy and wonderful. All in all it was a great meal, and we got to see such beautiful sharks while eating their friends. Heh.

After lunch we headed over to Manta. After Mako was so awesome I didn’t feel the need to ride any more roller coasters. I didn’t think anything else here could measure up to Mako, so I was good with taking Jack to wherever he could have fun. Ted, however, had seen that Manta had you laying down, so he was convinced we should do it. I figured I should do it just to say I had, so off we went. This roller coaster has the very thing I’m most fearful of. I keep saying I’m most fearful of facing the earth on a roller coaster, and I think the reason why is that then you’re relying on the moving parts of the seat to keep you safe. I never worry about the car coming off the track (maybe I should start?!), I worry about the safety harness failing. This coaster has you sit in a seat, a contraption comes down over your chest and locks, and then all the seats pivot until you’re facing the ground and the whole ride is ridden that way. This is the true test of my fear! So I rode it. I was worried, I have to say. The first time I rode Mako with Max this morning I screamed and laughed the whole way through out of a fun fear. This ride I was silent and thinking about the safety the whole time. It was fine, but I didn’t enjoy it. I rode it again with Max to prove that I wasn’t scared of it and I didn’t hate it, but I still didn’t enjoy it. Oh well, you can’t win them all. Ted said earlier that we wouldn’t like him when he was younger because when he went to an amusement park back then he wanted to do nothing but ride the big rides. When he got hungry he’d buy a cheeseburger that he could eat while he walked to the next ride. I really enjoyed riding the rides at one time, and I enjoy them now, but I’m also happy to take Jack somewhere to see the animals, or ride the train with him, or just watch him while he plays on a playground. Max likes the rides a lot, and even bullied Ted a bit to hold his hands up on Mako, but he really wanted to go to the sit-down lunch we had. It takes all kinds.┬áTed and Max are second from the left in the top two seats.

Oh yeah, after we got in line for Manta I realized that we had just enough time to get to the last show we picked. So we got out of line, grabbed the boys and hot-footed it over there. That was a mistake. This show was everything Pets Ahoy wasn’t; it was too full of cheesy story-line and not full enough of cool animal stuff. There were sea lions and otters, and at the end a giant pink walrus. Overall though, I wish we had skipped Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High.

After Manta we headed to the water flume for Jack but it was broken and closed for the rest of the day, so we split up and Jack and I headed back to the playground. On the way there I saw Ted and Max riding Mako again so we waited to talk to them, and then Ted asked me to take some pictures. I got one of him, but I started my photo burst too early and just barely got him behind a sign. Sigh. I’ve asked for help getting pictures on this blog and it’s on his list to do, so I may add some from this day later.

Finally Jack and I got to the playground. He had a little over an hour to play and enjoyed himself immensely.

I chatted with a woman from Kentucky who was there with her long-time German friend. The German woman had been a foreign exchange student in her home when they were girls, and she had gone to Germany for a time, basically they visit each other when they can over the years. Sweet! At 5:45 they called for people to head to the gate so Jack and I packed it in. We stopped at the Lost and Found to check on Max’s sunglasses but they hadn’t been turned in. When we met back up with Ted and Max they said they’d ridden Mako a total of 13 times today! Crazy boys! I’m so glad we came today and had so much fun! We were all so hot and sweaty we headed to Wal-Mart to pick up some ice cream for supper. We saw someone near there with a huge TV in the box strapped to the top of their car…the box was overhanging the car on all sides!

When we got home we all had showers and threw all our clothes in the washer; it’s a tight fit, but all our clothes from one summer day fit in 1 load. I don’t think all our winter clothes would fit. I dished up the ice cream while the boys set up the TV and turned the dinette into a bed and we watched BFG while I tried not to think about how much ice cream and chocolate chips Jack was spilling on his sheet. Guess I’ll wash that tomorrow!

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