Marathon Part III: Marathon Eve

Since it’s so freaking cold out, I thought what better time is there to revisit my warm, sunny weekend in Florida…

The day before the marathon we slept in and planned to go to Hollywood Studios because we always go to Hollywood Studios on a Saturday morning. It’s just what we do. Before leaving, we walked over to the French Quarter hotel for the purposes of getting my favorite Disney breakfast…

BEIGNET

BEIGNET

Amazing. They were amazing. I loved every last bite.

DSCN0225Afterward we got on the bus and headed to Hollywood Studios. We were too late to get a Toy Story Mania fastpass before we would have to leave for lunch, and just walked around doing whatever didn’t have a line: Muppet Vision 3D, Star Tours, the Great Movie Ride (which is indeed great), and randomly watching Voyage of the Little Mermaid. My favorite is Muppet Vision 3D because the Muppets are just amazing in every possible way. Part of me wishes they’d do another show because Waldo the spirit of 3d just detracts from the wonderfulness of the Muppets who need no supporting cast. But I digress. By 12 we started to see more and more people with half marathon medals walking around and started making our way towards the front of the park to get the boat over to EPCOT.

Lunch was scheduled at Via Napoli. I love VIa Napoli because the food is really good, it’s owned by the same restaurant group that owns Naples 45 right outside Grand Central in NY, and they make good food. The funny part of Via Napoli is that I always get the feeling the waiters are a little shyster-like. You know, kinda greasy, kinda slick, like a used car salesman or the kind of guys who’d go out trolling bars on ladies’ night? I don’t know. I could be wrong, it could just be me (God knows they’re the best looking group in the world showcase). Anyone else? No? I’m alone?

Anyway, Claudio was very slick and we ordered rice balls, fried veggies, and I got a pizza without cheese and my sister got this cheesy pizza with truffle oil.

Arancini (Rice Balls with meat and cheese inside)

Arancini (Rice Balls with meat and cheese inside)

PIzza... No cheese!

PIzza… No cheese!

Fried Veggies

Fried Veggies

PIzza with cheese and truffle oil

Pizza with cheese and truffle oil

We each ate about 1/2 our pizzas and took the rest with us to eat later in the room. My sister realized hers was not so good at a later time, but mine was still delicious at 8 when I was hungry again. Via Napoli isn’t cheap, but it is quite tasty and that in my book makes it a worthwhile place to stop. But the reason I keep going back is because they make zeppole.

Now for those of you who are going “mmm, I know zeppole, they’re delicious!” I’m responding by saying you think you know zeppole but these are so much better that you wouldn’t even think of these as zeppole. For those of you who don’t know what the hell I’m talking about, zeppole are usually found at pizza places and at street fair vendors in NY. I don’t know if they do that in other cities but I know they do them in NY. It’s basically fried pizza dough covered in powdered sugar. Fresh out of the frier, it’s tasty, it’s good, I enjoy it but it’s heavy, dough-y and comes with a doggy bag filled with nausea and self-loathing every time. Wait five seconds and they’re just greasy dough balls covered in a grease slick of powdered sugar.

At Via Napoli, they’re made with ricotta, not straight up pizza dough. They’re small, light, and delicious served with chocolate sauce and whipped cream now though they used to come with a berry sauce as well. Get them. You’ll thank me. I know my fried dough, people, and these are great.

Zeppole!

Zeppole!

So after that, it was time to start heading back to the room so I could be my OCD-self: shower, visit the Riverside and French Quarter gift shops in search of a Minnie Mouse bow I wanted to wear but ended up not being able to find, lay out my clothes, and then lay them out again.

We got back to the room and I foolishly showered and blew my hair dry so it would look nice in pictures (that was pretty stupid) and then re-laid everything out.

Everything...

Everything…

Idiosyncratic fact about myself: I never pin the bottom of my bib. I feel it crinkles and creases the bib too much so I never do it. Sometimes the bib flips up so you can’t see it but usually I’ve never had a problem. Anyway, everything was laid out, I applied my temporary marathon tattoo that they gave away at the expo, and then sat in bed drinking water and finishing off my pizza while we watched a Big Bang Theory marathon on TV. I really enjoyed it and fell asleep watching the fireworks show provided by the bedroom headboard and since it won’t let me upload it here…

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