Monday, 29 August 2011
Saturday, 7 May 2011
Firstly I made it into service. It was a little rocky for me during test day, but in comparison to what some people have had to go through since, I think I did rather well considering. My food running week went swimmingly; I really enjoyed my actual food running shifts. My bar day was useful but simply confirmed that I have no desires to go onto the bar, which from what I can tell but the amount of people talking about getting onto the bar is rare at the moment, so a good time, for sure! My culinary day in the kitchen was also very helpful, but I did do my culinary day the day before the menu changed over, so whilst a lot of the dishes were the same, there were a few that changed the next day. It was quite amusing thinking as I was making some of the dishes that I needn't remember the recipes past 3 hours' time!
Next I hit my service week and I found it a lot less worrying that I had thought it would be! I found the nature of serving coming back to me very quickly, so the basics were easier to get back into the habit of than I'd thought. I really enjoyed the desserts tasting that you get to do as part of the training though, and had myself most of a chocolate scotch cake and bakewell tart all to myself. No need for lunch that day then! The service test itself is the bit that everyone dreads and mine was going fine until I couldn't find the chef for one part and then I just lost my train of thought completely. They passed me, but asked me to stay on for the evening just to fine-tune my service standards, which I did and I have now been serving my own fully-fledged tables for about 3 to 4 weeks or so now! :)
I've also been re-selected as a trainer and now train servers, which is quite an acheivement having been in service such a short time! I really enjoy it and I feel like I might be able to help people, so that's a really rewarding thought. We shall see in time! My first trainee was ironically, Vikki, (who is now also a server, so we're in the money) and although it was strange moaning at her and trying to encourage her to prioritise she says my training helped, so I feel like it was definitely worth it! :)
We've visited a couple of different restaurants in the time that's passed since then, including Ohana, which is a fantastic meal! I would seriously recommend a trip there. We also visited Tutto Italia in Italy at Epcot. I had the lasagne, and although it's definitely a little pricey, I would love to go there again.
Katie and her family came over to visit right after I passed my service test, so I got to see my best friend and we went for dinner at T-Rex as well. So I've been eating out a fair bit recently! I got to see my best friend again, which was wonderful and they brought me a load of chocolate over as well so British chocolate has spoilt me quite a lot. The chocolate here just isn't great! I've also taken to buying Heinz beans from the import aisle at the supermarkets as beans just don't exist out here!
I could have used some beans on the Royal Wedding day, though. Me and Vikki got up very early (5.30am) to watch William marry Kate, and it was much more understated than I'd thought it would be. Lots of guests have been asking about it at the restaurant, and I thought it would be a good idea to watch it! We got to work for a UK pavilion photo at 8.30am the same day! I had so much fun with my friends and we get to keep a copy of the official photograph as well; I can't think of a much better memory! After the photo we all headed round Epcot for a bit as a group, and 21 of us went on Soarin' then Test Track at 9am! Me and Arran had to head back to work for 10.45am starts and then served the lunch period before heading for food and cinema in the evening!
I'll try to keep this more up to date now, but you know what I'm like. I know I've missed loads from this anyway, but if I don't go and get ready for work now, then I never will!
Thursday, 24 March 2011
At some point in the last few weeks I was chatting to Vikki and realised, barring an extension, I am half way through my programme. This was quite possibly the most depressing thing I have thought of in such a long long time! Still, this kind of stirred me into action a bit. I applied for Disney Trainer (as the interviews conveniently happened to be at this time and I've wanted to do it since I arrived) and spent three solid days learning the (now old) menu. I did my trainer interview and took my pre-service test. Both of which I passed fairly well. As a result, I am now a Trainer (yay!) and I am going into service on Sunday!
I've done a couple of training shifts already now, and I'd forgotten how much I enjoy training people! I always enjoyed it back in the UK, hence the reason for the training manager position that was given to me in the Hut, but this is so much more. It's incredibly difficult to become a trainer here; you have to go through and interview, take a class or two and all sorts. It's nice to be able to make a difference for cast as well as guests and I am enjoying every second of it! My last trainign shift, providing I pass my service test, is on saturday and I actually think I get to rip off a few 'earning my ears' ribbons! Exciting!
I start my food-running week on sunday, which is very exciting. I can't actually wait to go in now. I wasn't ready to leave podium for a long time, but I think it's about time for me to get into something different on my programme, and I certainly won't miss not having any money! I just really hope that I pass now!
It was really weird on Monday as I hung up my assigning board. So now, unless I get pulled from service one day or I fail my service tests, then I won't be assigning again. That's a very weird feeling, if I'm honest. I really enjoy assigning, and I know I'm fairly good at it. I guess I'm kinda worried that I might go into service and be utterly rubbish at it, but hey, you gotta try these things.
I've been going to Lasses regularly for a few weeks now and I'm really enjoying it! It seems kinda strange that I wasn't really into it in the beginning, but things have changed a little now, and it works a lot better for me. I'm really liking meeting up with all the girls and getting the chance to see all the merchies as well as the f&b lot that I work with all the time. On monday I'll be getting my t-shirt and I'm a little worried about what my name with be, but I'm hoping it won't be too mean! Anna will be getting hers with me, as well as a lot of the other girls, but I think we're both a bit intrigued as to what they have in store for us!
Well, I'm off to work now. Hopefully I'll stay off of Beer Cart today and get to break the assignor. Fingers crossed, right!?
Saturday, 19 February 2011
Assignor training was funand surprisingly a lot easier than I had originally thought. It has it's challenges around 7pm, but I managed to take walk-ins for most of that period on my last day of training, which was much better than I'd originally anticipated. I did manage to take a few too many walk ins on a short wait, but I got them in, which was the right thing to do.
It's been nice having a few days off in a row now though, as it was beginning to get me just a bit too tired. A few of us went to Typhoon Lagoon yesterday, which was really good fun. The weather's much much nicer than it has been, so it was perfect.
Still, it was supposed to be a movie night tonight but everyone's bailed. I hate commons.
Wednesday, 9 February 2011
Dan came to visit for the last two weeks, and even as I write this, he is winging his way back across the Atlantic to home. It's been wonderful to have him here and be part of his first Disney visit, but I won't lie - there's a part of me that's glad to go back to my life here. We've seen a lot, and he's certainly acheived a lot, but I'll always be glad of this opportunity and I like that it's mine. I like that I chose to share bits of it, but not all of it, and for that it really feels like something special. Saying that, it doesn't get much better than having your friend come and share the most magical experience you'll ever have with you, even just for a little while.
It's easy to get back into the swing of things, though. Even though at first it feels a little odd, and you feel as though you may very well have misplaced something important, the feeling fades quickly and the steady flow of pavilion life sets back in. I've missed the Rose and Crown and I'm glad to be back. Certainly, it won't last forever, but I'll secretly always enjoy it.
Still, I think it's time for bed, and aside from the parks and the time spent with Dan this past fortnight, most things have been normal. I've still worked and played. Perhaps now though, I can sleep a little longer. :)
Wednesday, 19 January 2011
The last ocuple of days have been rather interesting. I was supposed to go to the Magic Kingdom with Anna on Monday, but we were hit by some pretty nasty thunderstorms that meant that the parks were practically empty and we were hardly up for heading out if we didn't really need to. Alas, we have not completed Magic Kingdom, but we are very much looking forward to doing so. I am thinking that there definitely needs to be some Carousel of Progress initiations done. I wasn't feeling too great and combined with the rain felt it best to get domestic goddess things done. Vikki came home from work with an ER though, so we headed out in the (fairly) dry evening to visit Coronado Springs for dinner. We visited a lovely little Quick Service dining area called the Pepper Market, which works similarly to a market. You can collect whatever you want from various different counters and then pay for what you've had at the end of your meal. I found it thoroughly enjoyable and think it might be a location that I will take Dan when he comes out to visit...
...which is in a week today! I'm quite excited by the prospect, and am currently trying to sort out shifts for me and Vikki to make lives easier when Dan and Jon arrive. We have lots of things planned but I'm not sharing them on here until they happen because I simply want them to be a surprise!
Yesterday I drew my second hopscotch. This time around, it was Pixar themed, so there was different layers involving drawings such as the house from UP!; Princess Atta from A Bug's Life; Lightning McQueen and Boo from Monsters Inc. It was pretty good - I even saw one person photographing the house from UP! pretty intently as I was leaving after the close. Winner! So, that's a Cars hopscotch and a Pixar hopscotch... I really need to think of a different theme now!
Now it's 1am and it's the 20th January, which means two things are happening today...
1) It's Alberto's birthday.
2) James arrives in Orlando.
And now folks, I think on that note, and the fact that I do indeed have a day of Chippy tills tomorrow, that I will bid you adieu for a night with my not-quite-a-duvet. :) xxx
Sunday, 16 January 2011
After that me and Vikki went for a wander around Boardwalk and discovered a little shop which is full of all sorts of wonderful curios we haven't found in any other location! I spotted a little dining locations guide to WDW, which I fear will become a permanent addition to Vikki's handbag. I have also now had a walk through the gorgeous white sand that forms the beach part of Beach Club. It's beautiful. We then took the stroll to Hollywood Studios past the lagoon stream that runs through the Epcot resort area. It's genuinely a lovely walk that I would suggest that you take if and when you visit Disney.
Once we reached Hollywood, we went for a bit of a look round the shops before watching American Idol and Disney Channel Rocks, at which point we were enjoying Mickey shaped ice-cream foodstuffs. Yummy. Unfortunately, Vikki had to head back to Epcot at this point for her shift a little later. However, I met up with Arran, Dan, Anna & co just at the same time, so that was pretty well timed!
We watched the Pixar Pals Countdown to Fun Parade which is the new Studios parade. I quite liked it, but I shan't spoil it for you as it's much more fun that way! After the parade, everyone left to spend the evening in Fort Wilderness, apart from Anna and me. We had a lovely afternoon completing various bits of Hollywood that we haven't done since we arrived in Florida, including the Backlot Tour and Voyage of the Little Mermaid. I'm really quite excited because tomorrow we're planning on getting a lot of Magic Kingdom done! Snow White's Not-So-Scary Adventures, Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin and Peter Pan's Flight being part of the list...
I'll let you know how it goes! :) xxx
Thursday, 13 January 2011
Beer Cart yesterday was pretty cool though, all things considered. I managed to get chatting to a few guests as it was so quiet and get my real job done. That is - culturally representing the UK. I ws explaining the Rose and Crown crest using the War of the Roses, and even managed to explain the four countries and how the governmental systems work to another. Very interesting.
Today though, I haven't really been feeling it - I'll be honest. I've had a fairly slow day, with some interesting muck-ups and it didn't help that it was really slow because it was so cold. I don't want to dwell on it though, because it's done now. I've had a very nice evening to balance out my fairly bad day - dinner and laughs at TGIs.
For now, though folks... time for sleeping! :)
Monday, 10 January 2011
So the last couple of days have been fairly normal for me. Mainly just working with little excitement. However, the evenings have been a little more fun. As of this week I’ve started to get some better shifts. As the new people settle into their role more, then they get all the closing shifts and the rest of us get the day shifts. For example, I worked my first AM Beer Cart shift the other day (still hate it because of the wasps), which meant I was out a lot earlier than most people!
On Thursday I took a trip to Cowboys with some of the others, and the night there was absolutely hilarious. Most of the new arrival group was there, and Vikki came along, so I spent most the evening with them all. Was very exciting to do as I haven’t been anywhere quite like that before. It’s a line dancing bar, so we watched the locals do line dancing in front of us. We also had a little try of doing it ourselves towards the end of the night and we were definitely all appalling in comparison, but at least it was fun. I still don’t understand how the dances are set though!
Yesterday was the first of my two days off and I spent it doing lots of things I haven’t done yet! I went with Dan, Callum, Arran and Dawn to Gospel Breakfast at House of Blues, which was a truly unique experience. I was an all-you-can-eat buffet style breakfast with soft drinks included, whilst a gospel group sang! It was really fun and the food was exceptionally good. I can’t believe how much I ate. After that was over the five of us headed to Old Key West, which is a beautiful resort. I think it’s a little out of the way though, but if you wanted something that is enclosed and encapsulated in it’s own little world, I would think that might be a resort high on your list! Unfortunately, Dawn and Callum had to work later on, so we left them there to get a bus to Epcot, whilst Dan, Arran and I headed to Magic Kingdom.
Once there, Arran and Dan headed to get a haircut at the Barber Shop (after quickly meeting Pluto for a photo), and I watched the parade whilst waiting for them. It’s quite interesting to watch it from that spot – an entirely different perspective than anywhere else, so that was fun. Once they were all neatened up we ended up getting pixie-dusted in Fantasyland, and met the fairies and the princesses before heading to Hollywood Studios. On the way out, we headed down Main Street and I dragged everyone into the bakery for a Sugar Cookie… YUM!
From there, we headed to Hollywood Studios, where we met up with Jane and headed to Sweet Spells. Once there we all got cakes and brownies and apples etc, before making our way to Beauty and the Beast at Theatre of the Stars! I love that show – I’ve seen it every time I’ve been to Hollywood Studios for the day, I think. our aim for the evening was to see Fantasmic! as Jane has not yet seen it and the others of us LOVE it. After we’d seen the Beauty and the Beast though, we headed to Tower of Terror (which I didn’t ride) before going to Fantasmic. Unfortunately it took a little longer than we’d thought, so we missed the start of Fantasmic and decided to wait for the later show. We met some characters whilst waiting though, so Woody and Buzz and Sorceror Mickey are also now in my autograph book after yesterday.
Fantasmic was just as incredible as it was the first time and I had an immense amount of fun watching it!
After that we just headed home, where I found out one of the new arrivals had got into her apartment and so we met up with a few people in Arran & Callum’s so she could meet some of the pavilion. Much laughing, fun and crisps later, we ended the evening. What an awesome day that was!
Now I’m off to run some chores and meet up with Steph to do her first Walmart run. x
Tuesday, 4 January 2011
The last couple of days have both been eventful and not so, depending on your perspective. I am at last beginning to feel like I am not on my own really, which is possibly the nicest feeling that I have had since I started out here!
The last few days have seen some new experiences for me. I’ve noticed that I’m being asked more and more questions, which is a good sign that I’m picking up more information than I had realised. It has also highlighted to me more than ever that I would love to become a trainer. I think that training people here would be an awesome thing to do – who wouldn’t want to say they were a service trainer for the number one hospitality and entertainment company in the world?
At work today I didn’t actually close greeter, which was quite a revelation. I have closed chippy a couple of times recently, which has been particularly nice. Although I think I’ve learnt my lesson and will check the condiment carts myself before I call a manager, regardless of what is said.
On Sunday I visited House of Blues for the first time, which was really good fun. The music was up and down in parts, but the company was awesome and I had a lovely time dancing and drinking. The outside porch bar wasn’t too crowded, and the drinks were quite cheap for out here (alcohol is expensive in the US) so all in all it was a very good night. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I learnt quite a lot about my pavilion friends too! (Hi!)
I can also safely say that we have successfully found an awesome Chinese takeaway out here. The food is lush and the portions are fairly big! All the meals come with plain boiled rice as well, which is great, but I don’t really like the plain rice and think that egg fried would be much better. Not sure quite how, but we always seem to forget the Prawn Crackers as well.
I’ve managed to Skype home quite a bit over the last couple of days, which has been nice. I spoke to Mum, Dad and Ryan for a reasonably long time the other day and glad to hear they’re all doing well. Obviously I talk to Dan almost every day, but it’s nice to keep in touch and have longer catch ups from time to time. Also, I managed to talk to Auntie Jackie and Michael the other day, so hello to all of you who may be reading. It’s nice to talk to you all and keep you up to date with the day to day antics on here.
The weather is getting better and better at the moment, which is good. Although in fairness the rain did hit for a few minutes earlier this evening – still, hardly cold! Looking forward to the end of this month when Dan is out as I think that it could be a very nice temperature!
Still, I need to go and grab my washing out of the dryer and then grab some sleep, as I intend to sign up for a behind the scenes Haunted Mansion tour bright and early.
Night all xxxx
Sunday, 2 January 2011
Happy New Year! I had a wonderful new year at work this time around. I got paid to spend my new year watching fireworks and having fun with my friends out here in Floridian-land. I won’t say too much about the fireworks set up in case you haven’t seen it and might like to at some point in the future. Rest assured you won’t be disappointed!
New year hit the UK at 7pm out here, which meant that I was definitely working. I was Seating for the first part of my shift, which was great, because Holly stopped seating people ready for the 7pm celebrations in the Rose and Crown. The weird part was knowing that friends and family across the globe were celebrating the new year then, and I was still 5 hours away from mine. That is definitely the weirdest thing about the whole time difference scenario. Still, Emily did a shout-out just before 7, so were able to get the guests in the restaurant involved in the countdown to UK new year. That was awesome, because they were clearly thrilled to be involved in an early celebration. There was much hugging that ensued! Was lovely to be in the UK pavilion at that point though, because you knew that the people you were with were all in similar situations, feeling similar things. Was more magical that way, definitely.
By the time midnight hit, I had had my break and I was closing Greeter (which I seem to be doing every day) so i had to man podium at all times. The blessing was that most people that had finished, or were still working were congregated in the podium/beer cart area, so we had a lot of podium staff and servers in the area for midnight. It was awesome – an experience I’ll never forget. Thank you to all the people there that had a massive impact on that.
Today I worked from 4pm, so I was able to have a lie-in this morning, and tomorrow I am off also, so more sleep time is possible. Work is getting easier and more fun, surprisingly, with each passing day. I quite enjoy working, which is refreshing and helpful as I need to make as much money as possible for when Dan is here in less than a month!
Not much else to report, troops… I’m to bed… Terri xxx