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Epcot after dark

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Usually, when I have my family with me on a trip to Walt Disney World, we leave at or before park closing to get some rest.  Since I was travelling alone this trip, I decided to try out the new camera on some after dark shots at Epcot.  I started in France and made my way around the World Showcase toward Mexico.  I was often the only person in any of the countries and when I saw a Cast Member on occasion, they never said a word to me.  I’ll warn you in advance that I’ve never had any photography training, so it’s all just turn off the flash and point and shoot with the Sony DSC-RX100 that I got a while back. I didn’t even use a tripod, monopod or even an ipod.  Click on image for full size view.  

Viva la France!  I shot a few photos right after Illuminations, but most of them were too clouded with smoke to look even fairly decent.

There’s not a lot about the France pavilion that I actually like.  I like the pastries and they have two beautiful princesses, but there’s the guy constantly blowing a whistle and it gives me a headache and I’m not much for French food.  That’s why you don’t see any reviews of Be Our Guest Restaurant on here anywhere.

The next photo includes usage of an actual flash from the camera.  Warning, it may not be for public consumption!

Let’s caravan on to Morocco.

So, I was meeting Aladdin and Jasmine the other day because they were in their winter attire and Aladdin asked me how I travelled there.  Of course I told him by camel.  He said it was his preferred method of travel as well.  I said, “It was actually 6 camels.”  He looked shocked that I could afford 6 camels.  I told him it was a caravan…a Dodge Caravan.  (rimshot)


I think this is where Aladdin left his camel parked.  My camels were in Row 42 about 11 cars down.  Hey, it’s important to remember because Epcot has the second largest parking in the world, not the universe mind you.  The United States parked a few times on the moon, but that’s a really long walk back to the car.   I once forgot to look at where I parked and I ignored the guy giving the spiel.  Don’t hate me, you do it too!  So I was leaving and told the guy I didn’t know where I parked.  He asked what time I arrived and I estimated.  He used his Phone a Friend lifeline and told me exactly where I parked.   Looks like Aladdin forgot to ask.

The only thing keeping people from stealing in the next photo was a rope.  There’s hundreds of thousands of dollars of merchandise and a street rat (thief) named Aladdin running around and all you use on each side of the store is a ROPE?

I think the writing on the building says, “Dumb tourist taking photos after the park is closed.”  That’s the best I can do with the transcription.

Let’s pause for a moment and take a couple of gratuitous photos of Spaceship Earth from over 1/2 of a mile away!

Konnichiwa from Japan!

Things I like about the Japan pavilion include Kaki Gori, Miyuki, Teppan Edo and Japanese candy.  Things I don’t like about Japan include the people banging on drums so loud I can hear them from Hollywood Studios and sushi.  Sorry, I’m not a foodie!  I just can’t swallow a guppie without rolling it in flour and deep frying.

Disney tour guides would tell you that the classic 70’s band Earth, Wind and Fire started here, but it’s not true because Epcot wasn’t completed then.   I do wonder if the Limited Time Magic event in Epcot would have been a bigger success if it were “Boogie Wonderland” instead of “Winter Wonderland.”  It was the perfect opportunity to mix snow covered characters with their love for DJ dance parties!

They tried to tell you the sushi is fresh!

The next photo was one of my personal favorites.

Our journey continues to America.  America, spread your golden wings…

…sail on freedom’s wind across the sky! One of my favorite traditions is to watch the American Adventure.  It makes me feel patriotic and I don’t have to listen to the name of every US President like 8th grade History class.  The Golden Dreams song at the end is a classic too.

Looks like it’s almost 9:50 p.m. now.  I would leave Epcot at 10:32 p.m.

Italy has a few interesting things, let’s visit there for a moment.

Italy has a great restaurant with some delicious pizza.  It also has another talented, yet annoying whistle blowing guy and some sisters dressed in their red living room drapes saying “Opa!” a lot.

I found that moon that was in Morocco again!  That thing sure moved around a lot.

Epcot is very family friendly because this actual statue in Italy wouldn’t be presented in the same way.

Get a reservation INSIDE the restaurant for good pizza.  The walk up window tastes more like Little Caesar’s than actual Italian pizza.

Guten Abend from Germany.  Hallo, ich heiße Kenny.  Wie heißen Sie/heißt Du?  Wie geht es Ihnen/Dir?  Freut mich, Sie/Dich kennen zu lernen.

Don’t you love Google?  I can learn almost anything from there!

I think the guy in the middle is the Vice President of Epcot and the other two guys are just management.

My money would be on the dragon.  He’s bitten off the tip of the Knight’s sword.

This is where Snow White usually meets, but the My Disney Experience app said she was napping.  Zzzzzz

Bis später!

你好 from China!

My family and I actually visited China and Hong Kong for real back in 2010.  Perhaps I’ll share that story and photos with you some day.  When we watch the Reflections of China film, we get to see places we visited, otherwise we would probably skip it like most of the films in World Showcase and Future World.

The Temple of Heaven was actually still open, but I was afraid of entering.  I don’t want to face a lifetime ban.

In China there are many Buddhas.  There’s jade Buddha, wooden Buddha, skinny Buddha, rock Buddha, “reclining” Buddha (I call him lazy Buddha), standing Buddha, sitting Buddha, the world’s largest Buddha and of course chubby Buddha holding objects over the head.  We learned while in China that it is against the law to take any representation of the Buddha out of the country, but they sell him in the gift shop at every airport?

This next photo reminded me of the time we had my daughter’s name printed by a nice Chinese man in Beijing.

On to Norway!

I’ve never visited the real country of Norway, but I know from the pavilion that the Vikings once ruled the world.  That got left out of my history book.  I thought it was all about School Bread, troll dolls with pink hair, perfume, crab fishing in Alaska and a Minnesota Football team.

Why are we always wanting to slay dragons?  What did the dragons ever do to us?  If we hadn’t killed them all off, we might actually have some in the Animal Kingdom instead of a camping area with a show that belongs in Africa.

Hola from Mexico!

That was the only fairly interesting picture I took of Mexico.  I do have some on-ride pictures to share one of these days.  I’ve been to Mexico a few times if you want me to blather on about that too.

Well, the trip is complete around World Showcase.  Yes, I know I skipped the United Kingdom and Canada, but I didn’t want to circle back around for lumberjacks and codfish.  I made my way toward the exit.

From where did that guy on the left come and what is he taking a picture of exactly?  The gates?  Doesn’t he realize there’s this shimmering 180 foot tall geosphere covered entirely of alucabond behind him?   Doesn’t he know if Spaceship Earth were an actual golf ball the golfer would be taller than Shaquille O’neal!  Umm, more than one mile tall!  And most importantly, did he thank the Phoenicians?  Without them we wouldn’t have “Hooked on Phonics,” the Disney Cruise Line or Big Bird.

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