Florida 2019 – Day 3 – Seaworld

Sound a bit ‘lightweight’ but we’re having a day off today. Travel, body clock adjustments, weather forecast, a brilliant first couple of days & remembering it’s supposed to be a holiday, all meant we decided to take a break from our Florida holiday!

No really firm plans, as such. I do now know a sports bar that happens to be at the end of our road, who may or may not have been contacted by an ‘anonymous’ City fan enquiring if they would be showing the game.

After that, I promised I’d take Jane for a nice meal, which in Janes terms means lobster. So that’ll be us at Bone Fish Grill tomorrow.

But what about yesterday?

A planned 10am meet-up at Seaworld (pantomime boo, again) was almost met. Tardy performances from some of my team aside, and the F’s doing a quick “Denny Detour” on their way, so 10:08 at the gate would have to suffice. Must try harder.

“Bag Lady” Jane assumed the position, as Charlie and I made a dart for a quick razz on Manta (rollercoaster), whilst waiting for Mrs F’s pancakes to settle.

The queue sign said 45 minute wait, but as seasoned pro’s we know we could knock 10 minutes off that. And we did. By queueing. In an orderly fashion. Some of the queue signs show times that are there to move crowds around the park and even the demand out. At least that’s what I assume. And if they don’t, then I’m available for consultancy work.

A quick non-physical ‘high five’, as we got to the front of the line in sub advertised time, and celebrations were cut short. “Thank you for you patience” is a message you don’t want to hear. Lip-reading (which I cant do, so the next bit is all conjecture & I admit is likely to be total bull), one of the safety switches on row 6 was a bit flakey so they switched it off.

Anyway, that led to a 25 minute delay, before we got on the ride. Manta is a “flying rollercoaster” (you hang underneath it), where you go through an inverted loop and at some point pull 3.7G.

I hate the inverse loop. Everything is backwards. Which I know, is in the name, but having your two-boiled-egg breakfast rammed backwards up your throat Isn’t something I want to get used to.

So the first ride took an age. But at least it meant that when we got back the F’s were semi-digested & ready for action. Everyone’s a winner!

Next ride…shut, temporarily, due to an issue. So we swiftly moved on to “Kraken”, another wicked, head banger of a rollercoaster. Which, as we got to be front of the queue, stopped. They then announced a delay whilst they got another carriage (is that what they’re called? I doubt it) onto the track. Another delay.

It’s a twisty, turny, loopy, g-forcy, smash-your-head-against-the-headrest kind of ‘coaster. Which was good. Although admittedly, I was focused heavily throughout the ride on my two-boiled-egg breakfast, not for the first or last time that day.

We did a water ride/log flume thing next and got wetted down, prior to Charlie announcing his hunger. Due to raising out of bed 120 seconds before he needs to leave the house to do anything, he’d had some haribo sours for breakfast.

The F’s, still processing a Denny’s, weren’t as hungry, so we went for lunch in the Antarctic cafe, whilst they sunbathed in the 30deg heat.

Lunch, (defined by me today as that time between leaving and rejoining the F’s), was eventful.

My food was over-priced, appallingly handled and paltry in volume. All for the princely sum of $15. Yes, I’m aware in an

Antarctic-themed canteen, but you don’t meet to be so authentic that my noodles were as cold as a penguins feet.

The annoying thing is, I ordered the same meal last time here and it was great!

But the bigger story from lunch was…

An old bloke lost control of his mobility scooter and ran over an old lady’s leg. He then reversed into another old lady in a wheelchair. Having seen that we saw him, he raced off at 2mph, effecting the slowest getaway ever, without an apology!

It turned out to be quite serious. Once the medics turned up, as they wheelchaired her due to a suspected fractured ankle.

Drama over, we met up with the F’s. The kids wanted to go on Mako, a relatively new rollercoaster that’s the tallest and fastest in Florida, so we headed off in that direction.

Before we got there however, Jane decided to buy herself a full-sized Penguin ‘suit/blanket’. Each to their own, I suppose!

It’s seeming quite quiet in Seaworld, so the queues weren’t too bad. So much so that they fired around Mako three times consecutively without a hitch.

I said I’d cover off my views on Seaworld and the negativity that their brand has associated. I watched the Black Fin documentary, and taking into account it was putting forward a single sided perspective, it did trouble me.

Since we first came here, though to today, it has seemingly changed. There’s less and less emphasis on the “show” and more on the conservation research and rescue work.

I’m not wholly comfortable with the larger mammals being here in captivity, but at the same time, Knowsley Safari Park, for example does the same, but doesn’t incite the same feeling.

Yes, it’s a big money making machine, but they aren’t wholly reliant on the captive animal element of Seaworld Park, and they are clearly scaling this back.

My negative feelings aren’t strong enough to stop me coming and enjoying all of the other great elements. Sorry, if that offends.

After a few more ‘coasters and an absolute soaking on a new water ride, we were all knackered, so headed out for tea at Outback.

The food there is superb, and my steak & ribs combo was sublime.

We were served by a real character called Pete. Welcomed us, chatted pretty knowledgeably about ‘soccer’, recommended a sports bar that would be showing the game, and had superhuman hearing. At one point Mr F leaned over and quietly told me the beer was good and he fancied another. From the next table, Pete shouts over “No problem, coming right up!” and another pint was delivered!

And after that, the day was done. As were we!

‘Til next time!

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