Monday, August 29, 2011

Stranded in Disney World

I know, it's every Disney fan's dream, mine included, but this is the tale of how it happened.

First of all, I know a lot of you are waiting for a post about my daughter's wedding, which is why we are here in the first place. That will come soon - when my exile to Disney's Boardwalk Resort is ended. (Okay, I can hear all the sarcastic groans out there!!!) Let me just say that while the weather was hot and humid, the day went beautifully and I will post a fuller report and pictures when I am home and can do it properly.

But here we are, days after we were supposed to return home. In that time my home neighborhood has experienced a hurricane (rare) and an earthquake (much rarer)! My flight home has been canceled and the soonest flight available to return home was 4 days later!

Originally we had fears that Hurricane Irene might put a damper on the wedding day here at Boardwalk, but it missed Florida and headed up the east coast. A few days before we were to return home I was checking my flight status and found that it was posted that my flight was eligible for a free change due to the expected hurricane in the NYC area. The original flight ended up being canceled by the airline. Since neither my wife nor I had any commitments back home, we rebooked. We had hoped to book a flight for Tuesday, staying an extra 3 days - 2 past the anticipated hurricane - but by then the earliest available flight was on Wednesday morning. We booked it, changed our reservation with Disney's Magical Express, and extended our (nicely discounted) huge room at Boardwalk. (Disney was later discounting rooms for guests who were stranded like me, but with my daughter's discount we were already in good shape. I have gone ahead and put in a claim on my trip insurance for the expenses. Now just hoping it gets approved. [NOTE: It was!] )

To make things better, a pair of Annual Passes come with a Disney Fairytale Wedding, and naturally, my daughter and her new husband don't need them, so my wife and I inherited them. Now we don't have to wait for her to pass us in to the park, we can go on our time schedule.

Happily, since the reason we were here was my daughter's wedding, my son, daughter-in-law and my grandtwins were already here as well, and also had to extend their stay. As it turned out, though my house was not in a mandatory evacuation zone, my sons house, which is just minutes from me, was. (Note: as of now we have heard that both of our houses are okay, so we can end our stay here by enjoying our time in Disney World.)

So it has been like 2 separate trips to Disney World - the first for my daughter's wedding, and the second one where it is all about visiting the parks. I sit here in my room at Boardwalk writing this, having been in EPCOT this morning, and returning there later for dinner and Illuminations. We have been watching Illuminations from the balcony of our room most of the week, but tonight we hope to actually be in World Showcase to see it for the first time this trip.

Being stranded is never a good thing, but if you must get stranded, Walt Disney World is the place to be!


  1. That would never happen to me! I hope you are having a wonderful time.

  2. You are absolutely right! And your daughter looks beautiful; so happy the wedding turned out to be a fairytale!

  3. So wonderful that your daughter had a beautiful wedding day in WDW and that you were lucky to have a few days extra vacation as well. Thank goodness your home was okay so you could relax and enjoy yourselves! Your grandtwins are beautiful!