Day Three dawned with prettier skies and our mission to visit Icon Park! By this point I had become rather obsessed with that giant Ferris Wheel. I wasn't certain if I really wanted to go up in it, but I definitely wanted to see it more closely.
I had reasonable concerns. My fear of heights isn't magically going to disappear just because something looks cool y'know. And that whole 'round and 'round thing that happens with most rides just makes me so dizzy that the enjoyment factor is subterranean. So mostly I just wanted to look at it again. (and again and again)
As we poked around and checked things out we discovered that there was a combo ticket available. We could visit Sea Life (whatever that turned out to be), Madame Tussauds Wax Museum AND ride the Big Wheel at a bargain price. Hmmmm. The ladies behind the ticket counter assured me that the ride was very safe, moved EXTREMELY slowly so there wasn't much of a feeling of actual motion involved and that I would enjoy it. With great reluctance, I agreed to ride The Big Wheel.
But it had to be the last thing we did. If it make me feel oooky I didn't want it to interfere with our enjoyment of anything else! Because that sounded fair and reasonable to us both, we stopped at Sea Life first. And of course, it was an aquarium.
But not just any aquarium. It was surprisingly interactive and very unusual. The very first room was a 360 aquarium. Wowsers! The room was dark, there was weirdly cool music playing and we were totally surrounded by an aquarium full of fish that just spent their entire day, every day, swimming in an endless circle. It was the most relaxing thing. And as a bonus, we were the ONLY people in that room for the duration. Honestly, I would have been fine staying right there in that first room for the rest of the day.
Actually we chose our day and time perfectly because there were very few people everywhere we visited at Icon Park. Here are some of the awesome things that we saw:
When Tim finally pried me away from the fishies, we moved on the Madame Tussauds Wax Museum. Now I've been to a wax museum before, I believe it was in Canada. And it was fascinating. But it was strictly an "admire from afar" kind of place, like an art museum. Which does make sense. It is a kind of art. And that is what I expected to find again. I was wrong. I was not just wrong, I was wrongity wrong. And that is a very good thing.
Yes it was jam packed with wax replicas of famous people but it was very interactive. I mean, they had props available for anyone who wanted to avail themselves for photo shoots. Seriously?? I was reluctant to bring my camera in at all, for fear that I would be scolded and told to NOT take pictures of anything. And instead they were practically begging us to take photos. Take LOTS of photos. And so we did!
At first we were kind of stiff and uncomfortable. It's not as if either of us is especially comfortable having our photos taken at all, and never with celebrities, wax or not! But eventually we loosened up and started having a great time. We were in the wax museum for a Very Long Time.
Eventually, we made our way through the entire wax museum. So Much Fun! And since that means that the Wheel could not longer be denied.
With great trepidation we approached. Because I asked, I found out that the wheel turns so slowly that it takes twenty-three minutes for one entire revolution which is the entire ride. I could see that each.....what do you call it......basket? was enclosed. Whew! There is a relief right there. And because it wasn't a busy day, Tim and I had our "basket" to ourselves.
They don't ever stop the wheel. It moves so slowly that no matter how pokey a person is, they can get in while it's moving. Once in, they shut the door and we began to slowly, slowly, slowly make our way up. Turns out that at the top we were 400 feet up. Holy Cats! That's higher than the Statue of Liberty. Taller than Big Ben or the Taj Mahal. We were at a higher vertical point than the Great Pyramid of Egypt or the Sydney Opera House! And yet, and yet, I wasn't bothered by it at all. What a wonderful surprise!
There were seats in the middle but I moved from window to window admiring the view. We could see the entire city, we saw lakes, we could see the Kennedy Space Center in the distance. It was Awesome!
We were told that if you time it just right and ride the Wheel at night, you can see the fireworks show at Disney. That would be a very cool thing to do another time. We had other plans for the rest of the day.
Tim read about these Swan Boats on a lake somewhere in Orlando. Swam shaped paddle boats! That sounds very fun! So we set off to find them.
Predictably, on the way there, it began to rain. By the time we found the lake it was actually coming down pretty hard so no Swan Boats. Ratz. BUT we drove all that way so we were not inclined to just turn around an leave. No way! I grabbed my camera and Tim brought along an umbrella and we wandered around the lake. While we had to say no to the Swan Boats, we did get to say Yes to actual Swans! I know it sounds redundant but the Swan Boat lake had actual Swans! Way Cool.
Tim, my hero, patiently held the umbrella over us while I took photos:
It turned out to be a terrific way to end the day.
Wow, the time is going by too quickly. Only two days left! Wonder what sort of mischief we got up to on Thursday? Stay tuned!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.