Two Americans in China in the USA

So I know I haven’t posted much since we got back home. We have had a really hard time readjusting our sleep schedules, spent 2 weeks without hot water, and had to dive right into a big project at work. So things have been kind of crazy around here, but nothing really to write home about.

But, speaking of home, I guess I can talk a little more about what we did while we were back state-side. To sum-up, the trip was way too short. We didn’t get to eat nearly as much as we wish we could have and didn’t get to see hardly any of our friends (again). We really tried, but I ended up getting strep throat and felt horrible. I also didn’t want to spread my plague around, so we avoided close contact with people outside the family.

We did get to have some fun, though. The first weekend back I went to North Carolina to see my family. There really is almost jack-squat to do in North Carolina, but we did manage to find Tiger World, a tiger conservation and breeding facility not far from Charlotte. It isn’t very big (I think we saw the whole thing in less than 2 hours), but it got us out of the house. I didn’t get very good pics because the animals are all in fenced areas instead of open-air pits. The cages are bigger than the pics make it look, but the fencing just doesn’t make for flattering pics. You can see them all here.

We were in the states in early October, which was just after all the theme parks go scary for the Halloween season. So we hit up Mickey’s Not-so-Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom and Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios. Disney was ok because it is the only park that allows patrons to dress us. We went with Delaney’s Steampunk group so we went kind of Victorian/Steam. Other than that, I wasn’t really impressed with the event. There is candy and a villain show, but for the price (almost the same as a regular, full-price day pass) wasn’t really worth it. But I did get to see the Dapper Dans for the first time. That was cool. You can see all our pics here.

Me with the Dapper Dans
Oh, yes. He is just as good-looking as you think.
The Cadaver Dans!

Then Seth and I went by ourselves to Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios. Now that was scary! You aren’t allowed to dress up, because everyone there in costume is an employee, even the creepy kids trick-or-treating! They have several haunted houses. Since Universal is a real movie lot, they basically have a bunch of large, open, empty sound stages that they are able to turn into massive haunted houses. This is something I think Disney should do with Hollywood Studios since they have basically the same set up and they should do something a little more adult-themed. The biggest attractions were The Walking Dead (it really was like walking through the hospital and farm from the show. I was so scared!) and Penn and Teller’s Newked Vegas. Penn and Teller was surprisingly disappointing. It’s a 3D haunted house (yes, aren’t they all 3D? haha). But they give you 3D glasses for weird lighting effects. Basically, there is too much light which makes it not so scary. The other really good haunted house was Gothic, a Gothic cathedral with gargoyles. We got there as early as possible and were pretty much able to stay ahead or behind the crowds and do everything Halloween Horror Nights has to offer. Some of the rides remain open and they have the Bill and Ted show and a twisted circus show. They also seel booze! To sum up, Halloween Horror Nights was awesome  Definitely hit it up if you are in Orlando this Halloween season. You can see all our pics here.

We finished off our adventure with a trip to Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival. So not only were we in America eating amazing food, we went to a freaking food festival! It was so delicious! Seth was obsessed with taking pics of all the great food. I can’t describe in words just how amazing this festival is and we were so glad we got to go. If you do get to go, remember that all the food does cost extra (plan on about $50 per person) and try to share. You only need a few bites and you don’t want to fill up on any one thing. Also, pace yourself on the drinking 🙂 You can see all our pics here.

Why, yes, that is Mark McGrath from Sugar Ray performing at the Fest.

All-in-all, we had a great trip. We already can’t wait to go back next summer!