China at Epcot / Times Have Changed

China at Epcot

For several reasons, one of the countries in World Showcase at Epcot at Walt Disney World that I photograph the most is China. There are so many unique views and angles to be found there, along with the rich colors throughout the pavilion.

On this last visit, we had arrived at China in the early evening, and the setting sun was hitting everything just right, bringing out those great colors even more. I went around getting all the photos that I could before the light was gone. This one was one of my favorites.

China in World Showcase at Epcot in Walt Disney World

Photo location: Epcot, Walt Disney World, Florida
A three-exposure (-2, 0, +2) HDR tonemapped in Photomatix, edited in GIMP

Times Have Changed

The other day, Laura was going through an old desk in our house, trying to clean some things out. And some of the things she found were pretty interesting. Which is what usually happens when you clean things out, looking to throw things away. You find all sorts of things that make you think, “I really don’t want to throw that away – that’s worth keeping!” And you end up keeping at least as much as you throw out. And while that does get rid of some stuff, it usually isn’t nearly as much as you thought you would get rid of. But anyway, back to the point.

One thing she found was our old taxes. It was quite interesting to look back and see how much we made. Or rather, how little we made. Especially back during the days when we were a one-income family while she was still in school. Of course, we made it just fine back then. But we have grown quite accustomed to the amount we make now, which is much more than we made back then. Hard to imagine going back to that, although I’m sure we could if we had to. Because we didn’t miss any meals back then, and we always had a roof over our heads.

But the really neat stuff she found was all from our honeymoon, which was eighteen years and a couple of weeks ago. Fun to see hotel receipts from where we stayed. For example, we stayed at what I remember to be a pretty good Holiday Inn (we weren’t exactly big spenders – see the above paragraph), and it was only $44 a night. Spend that little these days, and you are lucky to get a door with your room.If you haven’t guessed, we went to Walt Disney World for the main part of our honeymoon. Shocking, I know. But looking back at the receipt, we stayed at the Dixie Landings Resort (now known as Port Orleans Riverside) for the amazing price of around $77 a night. In the middle of the summer. If you aren’t aware, the price has gone up a bit since then, although I’m sure it is still a nice place to stay. But if it were still $77 a night, you couldn’t keep us away.

And lastly in that batch of good stuff were receipts from when we bought gas on that honeymoon trip. Yes, we drove to Florida for our honeymoon. Again, see the part about limited finances above. But we had fun doing it. Anyway, the price of gas. Are you sitting down? Ready to hear what it was?


That’s right – only $1.27 for a gallon of gas. Only about $12 to fill up the tank of our Ford Escort. These days, when the pump gets up to $12, I have just gotten started. But back then, it was a full tank. Seriously. And people wonder why we are now having an economic crisis.

So if you need me, I’ll be out back, building a time machine to take me back to the good old days. Of course, I probably can’t afford the tank of gas to power it.

Whatever is has already been, and what will be has been before; and God will call the past to account – Ecclesiastes 3:15