By agreeing to return to World Showcase at Epcot, my group of friends informed me, I could participate in a tradition inspired only by those Goofy enough to accept the challenge. Drinking Around the World.
Eleven countries – eleven celebratory adult beverages. First stop Canada!
Seriously, if they were starting the celebration in Canada, how could I not be there for the meet and greet. I opted-in and was waiting at 11am when the showcase opened for the group to arrive. This is when I met John and Heather from Texas, Eva and Scott from New York , Maddy and Darryl and Matt from Florida , and Gina from Oregon.
The Canadian beer offerings were either Labatt Blue or Moosehead. Gina not being a beer drinker opted for the bright red Torontopolitan and set her theme for the rest of the day – Drinking Around the Rainbow.
We also met of group of three Brits’ who were also wearing their race medals and working their way around the world. I heard probably the best suggestion of the day when it was pointed out that Fish and Chips in the Rose and Crown Pub were not only excellent, they absorbed 10 time their weight in alcohol. I think after 39.3 miles that Fish and Chips were mandatory particularly when washed down with a glass of Stella Artois.
Watching people meandering around Great Britain, you didn’t need a specialization in gait analysis to tell the Goofy Challenge finishers from the Marathon finishers, unless perhaps the Ministry of Silly Walks exhibit was recruiting characters that day as well. The Goofy’s seemed to be moving much better than the 26.2 finishers.
There were so many people proudly wearing their race medals. Smiles and thumbs up abounded throughout the afternoon occasionally interrupted by shouts of “Goofy!!” A number of times we were stopped and asked what the different medals meant or where could you get one of those. We were Rock Stars for a day.
It started to rain at bit in France, we went inside the museum in Morocco to sit for a bit, and then on to Japan. I passed having a drink at Morocco and somehow got an extra large Kiran at Japan, which I was still drinking at the “American Experience”.
After an Espresso gelato at Italy and huge pretzel and beer at Germany, I thought I was about done. There were three countries left. China is a bit of a blur. I was going to pass on Norwegian beer but Gina digressed from the rainbow and did a shot of Aquavit, escaping being labeled a candyass , I had a shot as well. The last time I drank was sometime in the late 80’s and Winnipeg still had a team in the NHL. I saw them play Boston in Boston on a Saturday afternoon in the old Boston Garden with some Scandinavian guys while we were on a training course (major digression here).
Since I’d switched to “the hard stuff”, I opted for a lime margarita in Mexico the final country of the tour. John celebrated with a champagne glass of amazing sipping tequila which we pass around before immortalizing ourselves with El Donald.
Everyone was still standing. There was still over an hour to kill until IllumiNations began so we worked our way back to the Rose and Crown where I decided to honor one final finish line tradition.
There was no biscotti to be had but I drank a Bailey’s and remembered Victoria after her Boston finish.
There is no finer way to end a victory lap.