It’s trip report time again! Read all posts in this trip report here.
And it’s another crack o’ dawn aka 7am wakeup call to start the morning! This time I was after one of those elusive Rise of the Resistance Individual Lightning Lane spots again. Which actually seem almost weirdly easy to get? I mean, I’m sure spots grow scarce the longer you wait, but it’s nothing like the crazy virtual queue days of old where milliseconds counted. That’s something anyway.
I snuck in a quick shower before dragging Pat out of bed, and we headed over to the Skyliner. We stopped for coffee at the Joffrey’s by the entrance on the way – how brilliant a location is that? I doubt the Joffrey’s around the park are franchised or anything, but whoever owns that spot got a plum position.
Anyway, we took the Skyliner to the Studios, immediately taking a place in line for Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. This is fun ride, but not in my opinion worth paying extra for an Individual Lightning Lane, hence the early morning priority. I think we ended up waiting around 25 minutes? I finally got to see the pre-show, too! The context really helps. Also “Nothing can stop us noooooow!!!!” sang in my head for like an hour after.
Our Rise of the Resistance ILL had initially been for 10am, but the ride broke down during our window. It wasn’t down for super long, but we still wound up with one of those all-day passes for the ride, which was nice. Instead we headed over to Rock ‘n Roller Coaster to see if I couldn’t get a song I know for once. I did: “Sweet Emotion!”
We were still feeling a bit of the tequila from yesterday, but that didn’t mean we had any less of a 10:30am reservation for Oga’s Cantina. I only tried one new drink, which I’ll talk about in my Random Food Reviews post, but this round at Oga’s was more about ambience for me.
For starters, it was so much nicer to have a full bar again! (Thanks, vaccine booster. <3) My last time at Oga’s was lovely, but it just not the same without a big crowd of people leaning into the theme. We were seated at the bar on the opposite side from DJ Rex, which was a shame, BUT we got to see that whole shtick where they bang on the machinery to get it started again, which was a delight!
Our bartenders, Chris and Jose, were interesting, in that both did an excellent job but with different approaches. Chris was ALL IN on the Star Wars theme and went out of his way make in-universe references in conversation. Jose was also down with the backstory, but in a more chill, relaxed way. He wasn’t cramming Star Wars references into every sentence, but he was the one to tell us about the Adopt a Porg program.
What’s the Adopt a Porg program, you ask? Well, basically you’re just buying your drink in a souvenir porg mug. Pat and I both ended up doing this so we could give them as presents for our nieces. Of course as it turns out you can totally just buy them on shopDisney, but the cost in Oga’s with the drink was reasonably fair.
Bonus: one of the bartenders gave Pat a free Jet Juice for the road. Not sure if it was in thanks for a good tip or just an accidental extra, but that was pretty awesome!
We took the Skyliner back to Caribbean Beach at this point to stow our new porgs and hang out for a bit. After our recharge time, it was right back to the Studios! (God I love the Skyliner – back in the bus days that would’ve taken 3, 4, even 5 times as long.)
Tragically, our return arrival to the park coincided with one of those freak Florida rain showers. Rather than proceed directly back to Batuu, we hustled under the covered seating at the Backlot Express counter service restaurant. This is hardly exciting dining, but there was literally no waitlist availability at any bar in the Studios. What can ya do. We ate food and it was fine.
Happily the rain lessened after lunch, and we trekked over to Galaxy’s Edge to finally use our Rise of the Resistance ILL reservation. It was another successful venture. Lieutenant Bek’s closing dialogue played this time and everything!
Since we were more or less in the neighborhood anyway, we knocked out a showing of MuppetVision 3D. I am endlessly impressed with how well this show holds up. I get the urge to replace it with a new Muppet movie, but if the current iteration stays 30 more years I won’t even be mad.
In Florida’s way, it had rained off and on all evening, so we took another trip on the Skyliner to our resort. I managed to find Friends on TV; I’m not even a huge fan, but there’s something about watching it in a hotel room that really works for me. I honestly can’t explain it.
Anyway, after the Friends block ended, we journeyed back to Old Port Royale just to nose around a little – first swinging through the gift shop, then for a few drinks at Banana Cabana. Yeah, again. We were pretty buddy-buddy with our bartender Cathy by the end.
She tried to convince us to stay and have dinner with her, but alas, we had a reservation at Trattoria al Forno on the Boardwalk. OR SO WE THOUGHT.
Step one: hop the Skyliner to the Boardwalk. Step two: check in at the podium, which requires wading through a sea of cranky people. Why? Trattoria is running a good hour behind schedule. Step three: wander around the Boardwalk for said hour. (Not a bad use of time by any means, really.) Step four: go back to the podium, only to be told it’ll be another 20 minutes. Step five: fearful the Skyliner will shut down before we can take it home, cancel said reservation, go back to Caribbean Beach, and wind up having dinner at Banana Cabana anyway.
So, a bit of a sad trombone ending to the evening. And yet! As they say, a bad day at Walt Disney World is better than a good day anywhere else. It really is true, too. We had a fun conversation with the family in our gondola on the way over. We got to explore the Boardwalk. Pat checked out the inside of the Swan, which as a fan of Michael Graves made him happy. It all worked out in the end.
Thus our evening ended with bar food, more TV, and bedtime. In the morning, more WDW! Who could be mad about that?
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