Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Our Hurricane Matthew Weekend : Part 2

By Nick

Part 1 can be found here:

Friday 10/7/16, Hurricane Matthew

I slept rather fitfully, waking several times during the night to look outside. I really didn't see much.
Finally, around 7 am,  I went for a walk around our floor.

One thing about staying at Pop Century, as we were in an inside facing room, it seemed to be sheltered from the wind to some extent, so when I first went out, it didn't seem that there was much more than a strong breeze blowing. As I walked around however, I did feel some heavier gusts. Still, it was nowhere near the magnitude I'd expected from the news reports the previous evening. And it was not even raining very hard.

Barbie and I had our cereal while watching the news. Matthew's eye had remained offshore, so while the damage was not minor, especially to coastal towns, it was not as severe as had originally been predicted.

I started seeing more and more people walking around so decided to head over to Everything Pop for a coffee. They were serving breakfast! I grabbed my hot beverage, and a couple of tie dye cheesecakes, and headed back to the room.

Barbie and I had our snacks and decided to take a walk over to Art of Animation to see if anything was happening there. Interestingly, they had a much more limited menu. I talked to a Cast Member who said they had run out of food! And their shop, wasn't open!

We walked back to Pop, got back in our PJs and had our salads, expecting to just spend the rest of the afternoon in. We were contacted by Jill and Zach who had decided to come over to hang out with us, and wound up getting a ride from a Cast Member on a golf cart!

Zach broke out UNO, and we spent awhile playing.

Around 2:30- 3, I got a text from a CM friend, Marilyn, letting me know that Disney Springs would be opening at 4 pm! Shortly thereafter, I received a message from the Pop front desk, also sharing this information. I will say, Disney and Pop did a really good job updating us via messages throughout the whole experience.

Zach called us an Uber and we headed over to the main building to wait. Within just a few minutes we were on our way to Disney Springs, arriving at 3:45. We talked to a really great CM who was a New Jersey local, in fact from the town adjacent to where Barbie works. A few minutes before 4, he took us down to the entrance and admitted us. We were literally among the only people in all of DS! It was pretty amazing to get our first look at the just recently opened Town Center section almost completely empty.

We took a walk around, and as we were looking at the D-Luxe Burger menu, a CM came out and invited us to go on in, they were the only restaurant actually fully open at that point!

The 4 of us split 2 different burgers, fries and milkshakes. I'll have a full review in the future, but will say this, we thoroughly enjoyed it!

We headed over to Jock Lindsey's and were lucky enough to snag a table, because within 15 minutes of our arrival, the place was standing room only, with a long line out front!

Service was a bit slow, but this was understandable, because, as it was explained to us by our server, the CMs that were in were not necessarily servers from the particular establishment, and they were very understaffed. Throw in the fact that DS was literally the only game in town, so to speak, and you have a recipe for huge crowds!

We spent a couple of hours eating, drinking, crowd watching and playing Uno before heading out into the masses! We walked through several shops before deciding to head back, as it was going to be an early start the next day, as Disney had announced they would be opening it's parks at 8 am.

We had missed a day and a half at the parks, but we had experienced something that relatively few people have, a Hurricane at Walt Disney World, and only the 4th time that the parks had been closed in it's 45 year history!

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