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Within reach Ok, if I can reach Sunny Florida, so can you.

Greetings from the Savannah outside my villa window. After a bumpy ride from Rochester to Orlando and perhaps an overly long time between meals, we finally arrived at the Kidani Village Resort, part of the Animal Kingdom lodge.

One of the cool things about booking a Disney resort is that you have access to their "Magical Express" service, which whisks you (relatively speaking) from the Orlando airport to the door of the hotel. Your suitcases arrive magically within a few hours of your arrival, delivered right to your room. No baggage claim stuff, which is arguably the worst part of air travel.

So no rental car, no baggage worries, and smiles all around. Is this a perfect scenario?

No. Disney is, above all, the consummate marketer, doing its best to keep patrons within the property. Although the transportation system throughout the property is efficient, friendly and clean – it is ALL within the property.

For instance, we plan on visiting Universal Orlando on Thursday. Yes, we are Harry Potter freaks… We found our escape through a travel agency in New Jersey (of all places) who offers a package that offers, besides park tickets, round trip transportation from our resort to Universal and back to our door. More on that next week.

Now just because you are booked in a resort, don't make the mistake of thinking there is no walking involved. It is a full quarter mile of hallway between the lobby (or the pool) and our suite. Good walking shoes are a must, even within the resort. A tram of some sort would be appreciated, but that's not happening right this minute…

Perfection doesn't exist. There was a minor screwup with our "Magic Bands", and one of our suitcases was searched at the airport (we found out when it was delivered) and the suitcases arrived at different times. In all, very minor issues. Through it all, the Disney cast keeps smiling and maintains a helpful attitude no matter what. It's their job. Really. It's a firing offense to be cross with a guest. This policy has given the the Disney conglomerate the nickname of "Mouschwitz" by some disgruntled ex employees…

I wonder if they were 'ex' because of being disgruntled, or disgruntled because they were "ex"?

But from our point of view, a smiling attitude can soothe even the worst of problems. The people are uniformly helpful, and if they don't have the answer you need, they go the extra mile to make sure you have the right info. Another guest remarked "Sometimes they are too helpful – just tell me yes or no, and let me go…"

Disney world is massive. It is a property roughly the size of Manhattan Island, and less than 10% has been developed, leaving immense room for growth. But you already know it's big, you already know it's the "Happiest Place on Earth", and you know it's got the best name recognition on the planet.

What don't you know?

You may not know about the Rainforest Café in Disney Springs - used to be known as Downtown Disney. Dinner this evening featured Swordfish steak. Never having had Swordfish before, I can't tell excellent from fair, but it tasted good to me, cutting and feeling like beef, but with a gentle taste of fish – dipped in a brown sauce that they keep quite secret. Top it off with Key Lime pie. They had to roll us out to the bus.

As with everything Disney, the décor is the thing. Rainforest Café fits in perfectly. With restaurants in 11 states, it is an entity to itself. Combine it with the Animal Kingdom and the Disney Aura, and you have not only a fun restaurant, but a great experience.

So much more to say - including comments about "The Polite Pig", but The Harry Potter Experience at Universal Studios is tomorrow. Gotta polish my wand.

And again, if I can get here, it is within YOUR reach!

'Within Reach' highlights the food, wine and fun of places 'within Reach' of Lansing NY.  Of course, your reach extends exactly as far as you want it to. I am Monroe Payne, Uncle Monte to some. Come with me as I visit, taste and play in our own back yard, the beautiful Finger Lakes of Central New York.

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