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I just drove 10 hours to get to Disney World. I had to see what was going on with all the COVID changes, and y’all, it’s pretty different.
We decided to come here for our 20th anniversary (without the kids!!).
Really, I would have used ANY excuse to come down here, but this is as good an excuse as any!
So, I haven’t even been to one of the parks yet, and here is what I have experienced.
First of all, we are staying On Property — which means we are staying at a Disney Hotel (POP Century, for those that are curious).
Now, there is ALWAYS a security guard that greets you at the gate of the resort hotel. They are usually there with a friendly smile, and a “Welcome Home!”
Today was just a little different. The security guard at the gate wore a mask, a face shield, and gloves. Sure, he was friendly, but it was really sterile. There was no friendly smile. There was no, “Welcome Home.”
He told us we had to wear a mask when we got out of our car. He pointed which way we were supposed to drive to park. That was it.
When we parked and got out of the car, we were hit by the heat and humidity that only comes with visiting Florida. Yes, it’s October, but it’s also still 90 degrees here. *Blechhhh*
I tell you that, and then remind you — we had to (and still have to) wear a face mask in this heat. Like, at all times. Unless you are SEATED and ACTIVELY EATING or DRINKING, you have to have a mask on.
As we walked to our room, EVERYONE had on a mask, which I guess was technically good for social distancing. But, there were no friendly smiles between guests, there weren’t kids running and laughing, there weren’t cast members greeting everyone as they walked to their rooms.
It just wasn’t that Disney Magic that we are used to, and it was just a bit jarring.
Our room was VERY clean. You could tell that they took that extra detail time with cleaning. This particular hotel has taken out the carpet, and gone to a hard-wood laminate-type floor — which just FEELS cleaner to my soul!
Okay, dinner at the hotel was where we noticed the biggest difference. To say that you feel like you are in bizzaro world, is to put it mildly.
Keep in mind, we have been here about 23,409 times, so we kind of know what to expect.
NOTHING is as expected.
You have to order your food via mobile app. There is no going up to the different food stations to order your food.
You can’t stand and peruse all the Disney Desserts. If you have been here, you KNOW Disney does up its desserts, but you can’t even see them.
You also can’t just go refill your mug at will. A cast member has to hand you a paper cup — which kind of defeats the purpose of buying the reusable mug.
Now, we are back in the room, and ready to go to bed. Hopefully tomorrow will be a more magical experience.
I mean, I’m glad I am here, but it’s not the same. They are doing the best they can, for sure. But, it’s not the same.