Day 1 of Daytona-Loaded Coronas

Our hotel in Orlando, the Doubletree was directly across from the entrance to the Universal Studios resort/amusement park. We all met up at the hotel about 2 pm on Thursday. After getting settled, we took a walk over to check out the City Walk portion of the resort. City Walk is more or less, bars, restaurants and some shops.

Julie is the best organizer person to travel with. She takes care of everything, finds out all the details and all I have to do is express my preferences and show up and follow. She quickly found coupon books for City Walk once we got there. Guess what was in there? Alot of 2 for 1 drink coupons. I could see where this adventure was going. After an initial walk around the area we hit, NBA City. This was a bar/restaurant/arcade type of place. We grabbed our 2 for 1 drafts and sat outside in the growing heat.  This was a good chance for us to strategizefor the day and let Julie do some research and lay out some options for us. The coupon book also had some nice meal deals.

It was while at NBA City that Julie saw the sight of the day. A rather large woman, part of a family, walked by with a Cinnabon in one hand and an ice cream cone in another. You can’t teach that!

Our next stop was to get some nutrition into Ed. What better place to accomplish this than Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville.  I think this is the largest Margaritaville, I had seen. There were a couple of outdoor seating areas and a huge restaurant inside. Each section was named and themed after a Jimmy song.  We went to the bar. It was a little too hot to sit outside and the restaurant was way dark, so the bar it was and it was a winning choice. Our bartender was Bob. Bob rocked! He moved to Orlando in ’78 and is an avid Alfa Romeo enthusiast, owns four and loves to work on them.  As you can see we chatted up Bob a bit. We dived into some nachos and calimari appetizers. Always a good move. As always, the margaritas were delicious.  Bob taught us a new one though. Ed switched up to a Corona after a rita and Bob asked if he wanted it loaded? We had no idea what that meant. It means pouring a shot of Margaritaville tequilla into the top of the Corona bottle.  After my second margarita I switched over and said why not to the loaded Corona even though I was skeptical. It worked! After wrapping up the apps, we decided to leave Bob and move along our way. Racetickets.com wanted us back to the hotel around 4 to pick up our tickets, goodies, etc.

We made our next stop at the Nascar Cafe. The draw here was they had race used cars outside and we took the chance to take some photos. Included in there was Dale Jr’s old car, the Bud 8 car. They also had a gift shop which we perused. The cafe itself was no great shakes. We had one beer and out. The funny thing was the bar was an oval and had pit stall numbers hanging above the various seats.

We made it back to the Doubletree and met our Racetickets.com hostess.  Not for nothing, but she had her head down on the table and was napping. We thought, ok, here is a party person. They had everything we needed, very neatly organized! Our first interaction with RaceTickets.com was a homerun, we were impressed. After picking up that, we had to walk right by the pool bar. We stopped in there to see what was up with the pool bar. I swear there was a 15 year old girl bartending with her grandmother.

It was back in a cab to Universal for some dinner! We hit the Latin Quarter for dinner. This was a great selection. It was kind of Pan-Latin/Spanish food. I went Cubano sandwhich and was very pleased.  Oh crap, I forgot one step before dinner. We hit the Bob Marley cafe.  They also had a 2 for 1 drink coupon. This had to be one of the odder celebrity restaurant/bars I have been to. It was set up like Bob Marley’s plantation home in Jamaica. Can you really do a Bob Marley place without the ganja?  I met a nice couple from Wales at the bar and had a long and fairly incoherent rugby conversation with them.

After dinner, we ended the night at Pat O’Briens. The coupon here was 2 for 1 hurricanes. This stop was in no way needed. Hurricanes as the last drinks of the night was a very poor selection. Poor Julie had to corral Ed and I out of there after that stop.

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