Tag Archives: orlando

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Photo Scavenger Hunt

A few weeks ago, I posted a Magic Kingdom Photo Scavenger Hunt that I did with my son. This weekend, we wanted to go to Disney’s Hollywood Studios to see the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights, so I put together another scavenger hunt for him for the rest of the day.

The rules remained pretty much the same as last time:

Welcome to Alexander’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios Photo Scavenger Hunt. In this scavenger hunt, you will be documenting your experience with photographs of possibly difficult things to find around the park. If possible, try to capture at least one member of your group in each picture. None of these photos will require you to ride a ride, though you may find some of the objectives in a ride. To be successful, some subjects may require a little creativity, but don’t bring anything from the list into the park with you.

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2011 Orlando Food Truck Bazaar

Tonight was the 2011 (and the first) Orlando Food Truck Bazaar, put on by Mark Baratelli of The Daily City blog, who also organizes the Taco Truck Taste Tests. The event was scheduled from 7pm to 10pm.

I got there right around 7, and was lucky to wait less than 10 minutes for a $5 lobster roll (with cole slaw and potato chips) from the Shipyard Brewery truck. As I ate my food, the crowds increased exponentially.

I’m sure there will be a recap at The Daily City, but it definitely seemed to be a success. I look forward to next year’s event, hopefully in a bigger parking lot with a lot more trucks!

Here’s a few pictures I took just to document it. Nothing fancy. You can see the crowds pick up as the photos progress…

Scottish Highland Games!

Coming up in Orlando on January 15th and 16th, 2011,  are the 34th Annual Central Florida Scottish Highland Games.

Alexander and I have been the last couple of years, and it’s been a lot of fun, even though we are not Scottish. I think we’ll try to go again on the 15th. In addition to the games themselves, which include caber tossing, there’s food and entertainment and activities for the kids. It’s a lot of fun. Check out some of my pictures from years past.

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Renting in Neverland

“If growing up means it would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree, I’ll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!”

I moved to Orlando full-time in December of 1996. I rented a small 1 bedroom apartment for about $500 a month, which was good, because I was only making $6.10 an hour.

This was the first apartment I rented in Neverland.

“There is a saying in the Neverland that, every time you breathe, a grown-up dies.”

I moved to Florida after college, not knowing what I was going to do with my life, stuck between childhood and adulthood, surrounded by pirates and mermaids. I rented apartment after apartment, looking for good deals in convenient places.

Orlando is a neverland, as I’m sure many other places in the world are. People are constantly going, moving, flying, never settling, never landing.

I stumbled into a career – one could question how grown up of a career it is.

“I’m a little bird that has broken out of the egg.”

Eventually, I began to grow up, little by little, breaking out of the egg, and not stopping there. I got married. I had my own child. I got divorced.

But I continued renting in Neverland. My roots remained shallow. The cost of renting went up. The last apartment was a two bedroom for $912. And that was a good deal.

“Dreams do come true, if only we wish hard enough. You can have anything in life if only you will sacrifice everything else for it.”

And now, feeling very grown-up, I am looking at houses. And like the house built for Wendy, they are houses made of roots. Family is here. Career is here. Friends are here.

It’s a crazy process. I still feel very much the child, though, grown up at the same time. Hopefully, I won’t have to sacrifice everything for this.

But it feels good to be buying in Neverland, and growing roots in Neverland.

I still will never grow up. Not me!

All quotes by JM Barrie (Peter Pan)

Taco Truck Taste Test

Mark Baratelli of the blog TheDailyCity.com organizes Taco Truck Taste Tests, opportunities to explore the street food culture we have here in Orlando. Tonight was TTTT #5, and the first one I’ve participated in. Mark is also organizing the Orlando Improv Festival in September. Be sure to check that out at http://www.orlandoimprovfestival.com/.

We met at the parking lot of Tacos Del Rio (9785 South Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando FL 32837), where there’s a string of taco trucks, each with a slightly different menu. Our taco truck expert Jorge Mendoza was on hand to describe the food and the culture and offer up some suggestions. Tacos Del Rio itself is a nice little storefront Mexican restaurant with a big menu, and I’ll be returning there to give it a try. I grew up in Southern California where good Mexican food is available everywhere. Orlando is not as blessed, so it’s good to find authentic Mexican food nearby!

Truck Number 1

There was a pretty good turnout for the event. The locals were a little put off by our crowd, I think, but everyone was nice.

Jorge was a great guide to the trucks and the types of food they had! Thanks, Jorge!

Alexander and I both had arepas con queso, a white corn meal sandwich filled with cheese, because I'm temporarily vegetarian and Alexander isn't too adventurous.

Alexander didn't really like his arepa, and I must admit, it was different than I've had before. I'm used to an arepa that is a pressed with the cheese more melted. And with just cheese, this just lacked flavor.

Jorge explains the menu at one of the other trucks. I'm excited to go back, now that I know what to expect.