Jill runs (or walks) a lot of 5K and half-marathon races with her posse, the Sparkle Sisters. (See A few times each year, she’ll go away for a weekend at Disneyland or the Space Coast or even at the nearby Disney World resorts with her friends.I stay home alone with the cats and the dog, and I take advantage of the time to tidy up and tackle some home projects.

This is the first time we’re doing it the other way around, though. She and her friends ran the Pro Bowl 5K at the ESPN Wide World of Sports this morning, and they’re running the Celebration half-marathon tomorrow morning. So Jill and seven of her friends are staying at the house … and I decided it was my turn to get away.

I looked for a cast discount at one of the Disney resorts. When Jill and I get away we usually get a one-bedroom suite so we’re not stepping on each other (and so we have a kitchenette), but this weekend I didn’t need anything too fancy; a studio is fine for me. Ignoring the bottom-rung All-Stars rooms, I searched the Hub and found a good rate at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, on something it calls a “Pirate Room.” Well, a good rate’s a good rate, so I went with it.

Last night I spent about twenty minutes throwing some clothes in one bag and my laptop in another, and I came over to check in. Back when I was working on the Disney web sites, my team was responsible for adding the Online Check-In functionality, so I know all about that … but I decided to avoid it, and check in at the front desk. I haven’t actually checked in to a hotel for a very long time (Jill usually handles that detail) so I figured it would be good to practice.

Turns out, the computer system was down. The guy behind the counter pulled out a binder labeled “LILO DOWNTIME KIT.” Ah, Lilo…

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is laid out like an apartment complex, with several “villages” around a lake. Down a road away from the lake, apart from the other villages, are the Pirate Rooms. They hide this inconvenience behind a slightly higher price, so you think it’s special. Well, no real problem; and I got a first-floor corner room with a view of an offshoot of the lake. On the far shore is Florida wilderness that’s set aside for future expansion. I love future expansion.

This room is actually rather cute. The two beds look like pirate ships – cannonholes down low, a prow at the foot of the bed, and the headboard has a wheel and rigging. The dresser looks like crates with the East India Company logo branded into the side of them, the minifridge is hidden within a barrel, and the bathroom area is hidden behind a curtain with a Pirates of the Caribbean movie logo. All in all, it’s quiet and comfortable.

Last night I walked to dinner at the Old Port Royale food court. It was about a ten-minute walk (I’m glad I had my jacket!). The jerk chicken wasn’t bad. By the time I finished dinner and walked back to my room, the front desk had apparently worked out their computer problems, because now my MagicBand worked to unlock my room. I’ve been carrying around with me the key card from our week at Vero Beach last November, and it’s linked to my Disney account, so I tried that too and it also worked. That’s kind of neat.

Afterwards I went to bed early and slept in this morning – something the puppydog at home never lets me do!

Today I joined Jill and her cohorts for a late brunch at the Cape May buffet at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, then I came back to the room where, since then, I’ve been going through all the “Look Into This When I have Time” lists of all the things I’ve jotted down in the past several months. It feels weird to run away from home for a weekend … but it’s nice to have a change of pace!

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