Jay and I started the day at our favorite breakfast restaurant, and then he announced a full day of theme parks ahead. I was every bit the excited tourist as we entered the forty-acre theme park. After quickly finding a parking spot, we headed for the entrance. The lot was enormous, and I was very glad we had gotten there early. Ready for a new adventure, we eagerly walked into the park. Once inside, I stopped in awe of everything there was to see. Beautiful storefronts lined the streets, with tall palm trees marking the way. We wandered through, coming into a life-sized Star Wars world. Weaving through the shops, Jay came to an abrupt halt seeing the millennium falcon. All but bouncing up and down with excitement, he pulled me towards the ship. We got into line and slowly made our way into the ship.
Soon after, we were put into small groups and guided through the spaceship. Suddenly herded into a small pod with four others, Jay and I were assigned to be pilots and strapped in. Hit with the realization that we were not simply on a tour, I frantically tried to remember the instructions the guide had given me. Suddenly through the windows, I saw that we were in some kind of ship bay as the pod started to move. Lights flickered across the console, and quickly following the rhythm, we started off. Jay called for me to pull up, and the pod shot forward with nauseating speed. We flew through a scenic path, soon chasing down pods that the draftees behind us quickly shot out of the way. I tried to keep my sea legs as Jay and I piloted the ship forward. The exciting rush was then over, and like anyone with severe motion sickness, I awkwardly made my way off the ship. Jay, on the other hand, couldn’t wait to go again. Relieved to be back on solid ground, we continued through the park. After seeing Cars, Toy Story, and Rock and Roll, we arrived back at the entrance. Ready for more, we hopped on the Skyliner and slowly made our way to the next stop.
Stepping onto the platform, we had arrived at Epcot. This park was rich with culture from around the world. Constructed in a large circle, we toured each section stepping into new worlds. It was hard to pick one with so many choices, but we finally settled on the Japanese restaurant. After a short wait, we took our seats around the hibachi grill. Our chef arrived with a flare of flamboyant skill. We watched as he artfully cooked each dish like a painter working his canvas. The food was amazing, and we took our time chatting with the other guests. Finally, our plates and glasses empty, we headed back into the exhibits. Scattered amongst the shops, local artists lined the streets showing their work. We walked along, pausing to admire the artwork and wandering through different cultural displays learning about their history. As the day came to a close, we took our seats on the friendship boat, watching fireworks light up the night sky. Hollywood Studios and Epcot made for the most epic birthday surprise I’ve ever had.