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Old 01-28-2008, 01:21 AM   #1
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solo trip report!

Hello, I'm Molly, and perhaps I should belong to Disney Anonymous. If I were TRULY a member of that I would have to sneak an e on the end of anonymous, wouldn't I? So I'm OK, right? Not really in need of an intervention before I go again?

Well in this case, it was an intervention if sorts that caused my solo trip. An intervention of "you are getting more tired and crabby every day, I don't think you should wait until April, maybe we can make a quick trip happen" from my hubby. And I was tired. We had a vacay in December, and you can read that report somewhere on this page or perhaps the second one in to the trip reports. About 1.5 days in DLR with my 3 year old, then at midnight hubby arrived, we spent 2.5 days all together in the parks, then hubby left around 2pm on that third day of his trip, to go back home to work the next day. My brother arrived later that day, and DS and I spent nine days in San Diego, in a ChildFree home. My brother and SIL love my son, but he was grating on everyone's nerves.

And that, my friends, was because I was selfish with a capital S. So, um, Selfish. I wanted to visit my bro and be away from WA for 9 days, so that's what I planned, the feelings of my boy be gosh-gollied! Selfish. I was also selfish at DLR, wanting everyone to get up and go when I did, being bothered when Every Single Day I was "late" getting there. But when I did try to just go and let them sleep in, they pitched their own sorts of fits.

So I got home very cranky. Perhaps I should scan, or take a picture of, the picture Eamon drew of me when we were on the plane...he does the age-perfect figures of people. BIIIIIG head, legs going straight down from the head, sometimes there are arms...the expression on his self-portrait is a smile. On DH's portrait it's a smile. On mine, his beloved mother, is a really nasty, grim, mean expression. He said "that's you, Mowy!" whimper.

And so...DH said "let's make this happen." And happen it did.

Friday the 25th I caught my 7:50am flight. Switched planes in Sacramento and sat myself, kerplunk, right behind a newly-3 year old girl who was going to...where? where could this 3 year old possibly be going while on a flight from Sac'to to Orange county? oh you're good, you got it! Disneyland! Disneyland! Disneyland! That's what she kept saying, loudly and excitedly. And then she played peekaboo with me, and her mother tried to stop her until I told mom it was OK, just like I do with DS when he plays peekaboo with people on planes...stop them unless you're told it's OK.

So, um, hi, guilt? Yeah hi, I see you stopped in....go away!

I've never been away from DS, not even in sleep, before. I mean, not overnight. DH is quite proficient at parenting the boy, so I do get out. I even let my friend watch him one afternoon, while I went to a baby shower. But overnight? nope. So this was rough.

I got in, went to SuperShuttle at the ground transportation area. Oh, by the way, I liked the OC airport (aka SNA in airport code speak). Cute, just big enough, just small enough...pleasant.

The drive was fast and pleasant, with a conventioneer from Wisconsin who has never been to a Disney park, and never plans to go to a Disney park. Yowza.

I stayed at the Carousel. I had a good rate. Or so I thought. 48 hours before my stay, when I would have had to cancel at 72 hours out per either Carousel or Travelocity, I noticed that Paradise Pier had a $139 rate for their AP5 promo. More than Carousel, but with MM. And HoJo had released more Entertainment Rate rooms at $20 less than I was paying for the Carousel.

But...Carousel is closer, and even though I knew I'd be traveling with The Herd, I did feel safer on this solo trip staying as close to the park as possible.

Carousel and Anabella are the same company, so don't be surprised that they look just the same inside their rooms. I didn't know they were the same so I was a bit weirded out! I liked Anabella better, though...service is better at Anabee, and they have a proper restaurant instead of Quizno's on speeddial.

Unzoomed view from right outside my 4th floor room.

Zoomyzoom...man, that hotel back there is ugly! They should really renovate it or something. I've heard it's haunted.

The room.

I'm editing in info here, because I feel better about them after having sleep since last night. The edited in stuff will be italicized.

Review of Carousel! Meh. The continental breakfast is really sad. Donuts, fruit, bleah coffee in tiny cups with no lids. Some sort of juice in a machine, cereals... They did have the option to buy warmed-over breakfast Sammies from Quiznos, but they had meat in them. You could also buy lattes and such. But I was paying $20 more than I would have at hojos if I had know HJ had released the Entertainment rate so late in the game! I checked and checked, and a week out I got busy and forgot, and I lost. I didn't want to pay money to supplement a sad "free" b'fast.

The breakfast...I have an expectation with a continental b'fast, and that is pastries, not donuts. Or pastries AND donuts. But still, pastries. Some goopy danish that I never eat anywhere else. And that wasn't met.

Also, honestly, I was running late so I could only have a small amount of coffee due to their cup sizes. If I had been on time I could have had refills.

When I got back to the hotel late that night, a shower with hot water (the water got VERY wonderfully hot!) to help sore feet (I was going to take a bath but ewwww, not in that tub...it was actually better than apartment tubs I've lived with, but at least in those apartments I knew that I was indeed cleaning them, and that if it was scummy looking, at least it was clean but scummy looking) caused the smoke detector to go off. Repeatedly. If anyone here was nearby, I do apologize. One does not expect steam to set off a smoke detector. At least, I didn't. Now I do.

If I hadn't been alone, that wouldn't have happened. A companion would have told me it was getting steamy, or would have turned on the a/c. So that only happened because I was alone. Now, should it have gotten that steamy? I don't know.

The bed was very very comfy, and I slept like a rock. I woke up in the exact same position that I fell to sleep in, which was flat on my back, and that's not my normal sleeping pose. I'm a side-sleeper, but it was so comfy and I was so tired that I just passed out! The sheets are soft and pretty (I'm a sucker for white sheets).

There was a fridge and a microwave in the big bureau. They were both to the right; I didn't know there was a microwave until I got curious and opened the cabinet above the fridge. I assume there was a TV and drawers on the left, but I never looked.

They did very kindly keep my one and only bag for me the next day, when I checked out around 7:30am, and they let me rummage around in it when I got there after 5pm to wait for my shuttle. They did not, however, let me know that the shuttle had arrived, as they said they would. Harumph.

By the way, here's the view to the right directly upon hitting the sidewalk outside the Carousel. I did use a little bit of zoom on that picture. I remembered that while getting to sleep last night. Not much, and you could read the sign with the naked eye, but there is a bit of zoom. You can see a guy walking, and to give perspective, he's walking across the street between HoJo and Mimi's...that crosswalk is a big one, but it looks small in the picture.

That's right. You can see the HJ sign. Nothing's *that* far away (well, until the nighttime walk back, but that's just relative distance, ha ha). My feelings about the Carousel were too colored by annoyance at the "deal" not being as good as I could have gotten elsewhere at the last minute. I booked through Travelocity at a AAA rate that I could have gotten through them, but I was wanting to get Sunshine Rewards credits for booking through Travelocity (and I did) so I went through them instead of direct. I don't know who set the policy, but my reservation required cancellation before 72 hours out, and I had forgotten it was that far in advance, so that was my fault and I shouldn't blame Carousel.

Their b'fast room is smaller than it appears online, but has a great view! Watching fireworks from there would be incredible, even though you wouldn't hear the "story" or see the stuff on the castle or IASW.

Next...I go across the street!
-molly + robert + eamon (10!!)

DLR '05-'09 found within this link
DLR 7,9,12 2012 Universal Feb '12 DLR Dec '11 and Feb '12

Made weight goal 1yr8m8days after starting...currently working to maintain 85 lb loss thanks to Weight Watchers!

Last edited by bumbershoot; 01-28-2008 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 01-28-2008, 01:56 AM   #2
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I can't wait to hear more!

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Old 01-28-2008, 03:21 AM   #3
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Wow. My son just fell asleep on the couch by himself. Yes, I know it's late. He suddenly fell asleep after 5:30pm and only woke after 7, which spells big trouble for normal bedtime. DH was beyond exhausted after they picked me up at the airport last night so DH couldn't do his part (very very important part) in getting DS to sleep, and hubby just kept falling asleep himself. So DS was up up up up, and was lying in my arms until 5 minutes ago (when I first started writing this part) when he said he was sweaty and needed water, went over to drink some water, then got onto the couch and now he's fallen asleep.

You have no idea how odd that is for him.

I'll write some more before taking him into the bedroom for proper sleep.


The walk of course is brief and pleasant. This time I had the opportunity to hear the music piped in. And through my visit I couldn't help but marvel at their speaker systems. I mean, something can be going on in one spot, but not that far away something else can be going on, and you can't hear, under normal circumstances, one from the other. It's quite amazing, how specific their sound system is.

Tinkerbell is looking at bit psycho, but I'm sure they had to make her eyes really big so that those without zoom lenses can really see her eyes. She looks fine if you don't hit that zoom.

I took this pic for Eamon. He loves that picture, he loves Jack Sparrow (though he's never really seen the movie), he loves pirates, he begs us to let him see the POTC trilogy....but he's currently terrified of the attraction. 3 year olds...

I walked in, and saw the cute vehicles. Well, why not ride one? I went over to one and hopped on. Since I was alone, I had conversations with people the whole trip long. They all wondered why I was alone, and all marveled that hubby would help this trip happen. So I rode a horseless carriage to the castle. Fun!

Along the way I saw some real characters.

When they dropped me at the castle, I saw a band over in that little area to the left of the castle. It was a high school band. I listened and caught some video. They sucked me in by playing some of the big dramatic music from POTC, and they were playing it well. Alas, it was a medley of sorts, and I lost interest. But I did stick around for a few minutes to watch and smile and clap when they finished that varied piece. I think I remember that they were a group from Temecula.

The first thing I was planning to do was go on Haunted Mansion. But I was hungry.

So instead I had lunch at Rancho del Zocalo. Here's a hangy thing (might be a lamp, might just be a Pretty!)

Instead of the huge meal Robert (DH) and I shared when we went before, I ordered the kid's meal of a bean and cheese burrito. That comes with a drink, and you can get soda on request, so I requested that. To get the little cup you go and pay, get the cup (and "fun straw" that changes colors in cold liquid) from the cashier, then go back in for the soda.

It was quite tasty, no matter what the picture implies.

This, on the other hand, was NOT as tasty as it appeared. The top part including the cake in the middle was fine, but the bottom "crust" and the lighter part above it were bad. The part below the cake layer looks the same as the top, but it is not not not.

So that's two Rancho desserts I've been unhappy with. When we first went there we had the Tres Leches cake, and we didn't like it very much at all.

Bird at my table.

After lunch, I went to get a FP for Indy. I did a bit of random walking b/c I was hoping to run into a Dream Squad. So I did the secret pathways from one land to the next whenever I could!

I went to get a fast pass, but the wait was insanely short. So I got the FP (never used it) and rode. Fun fun! The ride broke down just before we got to the "movie" room, but people were calm about it. We watched special CMs come in and look official while leaning on the gates and talking. Didn't see anyone doing any work, but eventually it was fixed and I got on board.

While waiting, I took pictures of the upper walls and ceiling.

I was put in the driver's seat next to two young women and their preteen...well I don't know what the younger one was to them. It was her first ride and the older girls/young women were tormenting her, but it was just hilarious. Usually I'm not big on screams unless you're actually scared, but the way they were doing it, with huge laughs in between, just cracked me up. And you could tell they went on it often, b/c they knew everything coming up.

Wandered around...they were filming something about the Dream Suite, and a big camera crane was in NOS. One of the big "did you know" secrets is out now, b/c they made the WD and RD golden.

I don't remember if the discussion was here or elsewhere, but just in case it was here and whatever people were talking about it read this:

DS is sleeping in bed now, rather than on the couch with no blanket. Just in case anyone was worried.
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Old 01-28-2008, 03:45 AM   #4
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That day Pirate's Lair was closed every time I went by.

Which led to this. Ack! A pirate!

He loves just walking around, and doesn't seem to care what you want him to do.

Following him there were young women/older girls squealing like he's actually JD. There was also the Mom Squad, each trying to get his attention so that he would say hi to their little darlings. And there are those with cameras pressed to their faces.

The woman pictured *below* got SO incredibly lucky. She was a Mom Squad member, and the kid she was trying to show Jack was a tiny baby. She had baby facing out, which is a no-no for those under about 6 months, and I personally (and professionally as a retired chiropractor) don't like it unless you have a pouch and seat the baby in a Buddha position rather than dangling from the crotch in the Bjorn, but that's beside the point. For some reason she was bound and determined to get herself and baby into a picture with Jack. Perhaps she was delusional and thought that "Jack" was baby's father, or something? Not sure.

I almost talked to her, because she was being pretty rude. Calling out, yelling, at Jack, not saying please, not being nice about it.

Now...we've seen that Jack before (or for the believers...we've seen Jack looking that exact way before, but other times he has looked a bit different). Back in September on Pirate's Lair, in his designated meet-n-greet spot, we watched what happens if you're rude to him. No, he doesn't pillage and plunder, but when a woman said rudely "oh you WILL sign the book", he closed the book, handed it back, and turned his back on the woman and her older children, and never did go back to her. The CM with him just shrugged and said that he's a pirate and will do what he wants to.

I was just about to let this woman know that she might be alienating him, when she finally got nicer, and as she got nicer, he looked at her.

When he looked at her, he saw the baby, and he reacted with surprise and a bit of fear. Asked her if she knew she had a large barnacle growing on her front, and told her that she really needed to have that looked at. I love that reaction. I don't think she got a posed picture, but she might have gotten a paparazzi shot, I don't know.

Lady in the purple, straps to hold on the barnacle showing.

I decided that part of my time there was going to be all about leaving when the experience is as good as it's going to be. So after that funny barnacle thing, I took my leave of the entourage around Captain Sparrow.

After that, I went on Haunted Mansion. Here's the one thing I took a picture of in the queue.

Yay yay, it did not disappoint! I was so saddened by the holiday version in December, and I was nervous for regular HM. Oh man did it creep me out, though! I've read that they did a bit of sound refurb while taking down the holiday overlay, and the guy's voice right in my ears, combined with the stuff going on on the ride...shivers. The doors whose knobs all start to shake (and one door appears to breathe ) got to me, and then as you're passing a grandfather clock there's a shadow that comes down. I figured out that it's a skeletal hand reaching down, but the first time I rode I thought it was a shadow of someone walking past, and I nearly screeched.

The graveyard scene is uber-freaky to me. One room there's a heartbeat sound...augh....scary!

I really liked it.

Then over to Splash, where I sat in the back seat and wore a poncho while the 4 others in the log scoffed and got soaked.

I sauntered along, looking around as I wrote on my list I wanted to do ("look around Critter Country b/c you never get to", "sit and watch everything going on in NOS", "look around Tomorrowland b/c you're always looking for Buzz for Eamon").

Did you know there's a waterfall next to the exit of the Pooh ride?

I for one did not.

Here's a picture of the filming area for the Dream Suite.

Noticed that the Mark Twain was getting ready to go, and I ran, er, walked very briskly but never having both feet off the ground at once, over. It had started to sprinkle, so I sat in front with my poncho back on, and enjoyed the ride!

Picture of the Columbia as seen from the MT.

Walked back behind BTMRR.

Still no Dream Squad. Sigh.

But I saw that the Casey Jr train was open, and I finally noticed where the line started, so I went on that. Kinda odd to be an adult going on it alone, but oh well.

The point of this picture is to show the bars of lights down near the tracks. I assume they light things up in interesting ways, but from my point of view, they just looked fun.

The castle from Casey.

With my old camera I couldn't get anything like this zoom. I my Canon S3. And remember, this was while the train was moving.

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Old 01-28-2008, 03:53 AM   #5
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I feel that I should do a big cliff-hanger thing like others do.

My urge is to just keep on going until I pass out, but then go back in and edit for days b/c I have remembered something else.

I think what I'm going to do is leave you with this, because I thought it looked cool. And I'm going to go to sleep.

Next....will she have dinner somewhere? Will she ride her fave ride (attraction) at DL? Will her feet fall off from the extra walking she's doing to find the Dream Squad? All to be answered, if she remembers to do so, in the next installment of "I Left My family For The Disneyland Resort!"

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Old 01-28-2008, 04:54 AM   #6
That's pretty much it
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I really hope you eventually ate...

I'm lovin' all your pictures. Looking forward to more!
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Old 01-28-2008, 03:58 PM   #7
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I don't know if it was sheer exhaustion, courage from the beer, or a loss of my mind...but I headed over to California Screamin'. Fear of coasters? What fear of coasters?

Oh no, there was a long line! And I didn't have long until the Electrical Light Parade...what to do. Oh yeah, they have Single Rider capability! Hmm, where? I went to the CM and asked, and she whipped out a pass and told me where to go. I think the CMs like those super-secret Single Rider things, b/c they always seem to smile when you ask about it. I think that perhaps they giggle when people come through alone and just wait in line. I could be wrong, but that's what I think.

So I took my handy pass and went through the wheelchair exit, right on to the other side of the loading area. One woman was in front of me. This was most excellent. I felt like a VIP.

The woman said the CM is "signaling me to come over, but I'm waiting for my nephew, go ahead!" So not even a minute after I got in line; perhaps not even a minute after I got the Single Rider pass from the CM, I was getting in the seat. omg omg omg.

You go slowly to the part "in" the water. And then you sit there. And sit. And sit. I was breathing slowly...wondering what on earth I had just done. Knowing that you take off like a shot...so nervous.

The music does NOT help calm you down...it just repeats and repeats...then suddenly they count you down and BAM you go.

OH MY GRACIOUS. When people talk about the speed of the take-off, they are not kidding. It is so incredibly fast. It's not painful, but it's almost painful. It sure isn't natural to feel that way!!! I would imagine the way in nature you'd feel that way is if you're falling off a cliff, and that can't be a good feeling!

So you just slam into acceleration on the straightway, then you're going up up up and I was just thinking "this is unbearable, I can't take this any longer" we were up and that G-force feeling was gone, and then it was just the coaster. "Just" indeed! I don't know what it's like during the day, but it was incredible at night! You are up so high...I was yelping and laughing and making little yips...I'm sure the stranger I was seated next to was happy with me.

The loop...I had forgotten how easy loops are. It was the easiest part of the whole ride. You barely even know you're upside-down, I remembered, with loops.

And then it was done. I got off just laughing, and walking a bit tipsy. Don't know if it was that brew I drank over the course of an hour, or if it was the ride, but I was a little bit stumbly. I texted DH that I had just gone on it, and while texting I missed the signs that said the walkway was closed, so nearly ran into the construction wall. Had to go all the way around the other way past Ariel's, to get over towards Jumpin Jellyfish.

I had intended to go on JJ, to see what it's like for DS, since he's tall enough, but I didn't want to "ruin" the feeling I had from California Screamin'. I bought a gift card with the retro design I had been wanting but hadn't been able to find in a few trips...$5 is the minimum. I had just given up on that design and loaded another giftcard a few hours before, so I was frustrated by that. I like the designs for some ultimate scrapbooking project, and it helps me stick to a certain amount of purchases, if I load a giftcard and just use that.

So then I found a place to lean. I could have sat down, but I didn't want to.

Neon on that Orange ride thing...

The Jellyfish ride looks really relaxing and cute.

And then I saw the Electrical Light Parade for the first time since I was a little kid! I was sooooooo happy that it was playing during this little visit. It shouldn't have been showing at this time of the year, but with the Block Party Bash all gone, they wanted to entertain us somehow!

I took pictures of each and every "float". I started to bore even myself. At one point I thought "shouldn't I be watching this, instead of clicking away?" (I use the viewfinder instead of the big LCD screen on my camera so I can't really do both like most people do) but decided that I would take pictures this time, and in the future, because it doesn't really change, I'll just watch and experience it.

Here I go, boring us all... And this isn't even half of the floats or a third of my pictures.

Whee, spinny!

The stepsisters. I love them. They are hilarious.

She saw me taking pictures and posed, and I'm SO SO SO bummed that she's out of focus!

Then they went back to arguing.

It's amusing that I think they are so funny now. I'm sure my mom is giggling in the ether Beyond...she took me to see Cinderella in the theater when it was re-released (from IMDB's date it looks like I would have been around 3.5, wow), and the stepmom and stepsisters scared me so much I couldn't be consoled, and my mom had to take me out and go home.

There be pirates...

Too cute. I saw Dopey all over the place on this visit.

I don't even know this story.

Thing hanging from the dragon's tail.

Then the parade was done and I was so happy. I had planned to rush over to the pathway and zoom out to hop to DL, but instead I just dawdled, walking behind the parade as so many others were doing.

I even stopped to take some pictures!

Then I remembered my Plan, zoomed over to the path by GRR (go left around GRR, not right even though right seems like it would be faster...you just end up on the path to the left anyway!), and went out. Went across the esplanade and towards the castle.

And that's when serious magic happened*.

*magic as defined by someone who reads everything online and knows about people at DL...not magic as defined by someone who would want only a Dream or free things or whatever

Last edited by bumbershoot; 01-28-2008 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 01-28-2008, 05:06 PM   #8
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I am sooo proud of you for riding Screamin'! That thing scares the crud out of me! I hate being upside down...

The pics are great! I love DEP. The dragon I think is from Pete's Dragon. It is a cute movie.


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Old 01-28-2008, 06:19 PM   #9
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I kept thinking on the bumpy plane ride home..."I liked these feelings on rides at DLR, but not here!" It's all context. Though I'll say I wish the track on Screamin' was just a little bit wider. It just looks so skinny and weak when you're on it!
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Old 01-28-2008, 07:49 PM   #10
I fell in love with DLR, whats not to love. Fantasyland, Toontown, Nemo and so much more. Both parks and DTD are full of little Disney touches that make it truly Walt's park. Mickey Pretzels, Mickey Gingerbreads, Mickey pancaks. Yummy. It is truly th
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Hey Molly, great trippie, love it!! Love the Nemo ride photos!! They are great. Thank you for the name of the shake place, can't wait to try it. Thank you for letting me know the photopass photographers are out, that will be a big help in March and Dec.
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Old 01-28-2008, 07:52 PM   #11
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Dh wants me to try Screamin' when we go. I'm not sure. I might need some liquid courage too.

Lovin' the trip report. Your pictures are so beautiful.

And the dragon is from the movie "Pete's Dragon." It was a favorite movie of mine as a kid.
Disneyland trips- 1969, 1974, 1975, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1996, February 2001, March 2003, January 2006
First trip to WDW-November 8-11, 2006
November 12-16, 2006-first DCL cruise! Four nights on the Wonder and we're hooked.
February 4-8, 2008 our wonderful 15th Wedding Anniversary celebration at Disneyland
Next planned WDW trip/DCL cruise-November 1-12, 2009
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Old 01-28-2008, 09:03 PM   #12
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Thanks, all!

I can't believe this is all in one day. But that's the bonus of being by yourself, with no one else to help, encourage, take breaks when you don't want to, and so on.

I went over to Disneyland, and waited in the fairly long and slow lines to get in. Some recently mentioned that they cut the number of gate CMs during that time to slow down the influx from DCA, and it sure seemed like it!

editing starting now

When I came in to DL, I decided to see the 50 Years movie with Steve Martin and Donald Duck. Just sounded like fun. Has that building been there since DL opened? It sure does smell like an older building! Went in when the doors opened, sat down, and really enjoyed the little movie. I love Steve Martin, and he was funny. As a kid I was a big Donald Duck comic book reader, so that was fun, too.

I highly recommend taking a little break and seeing that movie. I meant to see Steamboat Willie etc later, but I never did.

editing stop

I wandered along, and as the street opened up again before Plaza Inn, I wondered where I was going to go. I decided to keep wandering, and as I got up onto the sidewalk, I noticed a Cast Member. A very familiar looking cast member. I don't know any CMs, how could this be?

Oh my goodness...it's Maynard.

OK so I'm not a "fangirl" of any kind. I adore from afar and never write letters to people or wait at exits to concerts, or anything like that. So to just see this "celebrity CM" was cool enough. But suddenly I found myself doing a double-take and saying "I've heard of you"....

And he was very pleasant and made silly small talk with me! After a minute or so I figured he had places to go and was likely bored talking to me, so I said that it was nice meeting him and that my name was Molly. For some reason that caused him to keep talking, and I think we talked for about 20 minutes!

He sang a song about lions and tigers that he wrote for Jungle Cruise, when they could sing unsanctioned songs. And some silly song with made up words. I said something like he was something of a celebrity online, and he talked about how Disneyland does treat him as such; they even give him an apartment so he doesn't have to commute. At that point he patted the garbage can we were standing near, and said that it was his deluxe accomodations. He kept going back to that, and it was so funny. Talked about the kids whose parents have bought them $40 sodas, then complain that it's "too sweet", and throw them away, dumping 40 gallons of soda on him as he sleeps in his "apartment". Then went on a tangent about being sticky. He just had me in stitches. I asked where I should watch the fireworks from, and he told me, but then the announcements came on to start the show, and he had to go back to work and I didn't have time to find any good places (I don't see all that well in the dark, either...bionic eyes due to Lasik during the day, semi-blind at night, also due to Lasik).

So I watched from the sidewalk on the left, across the circle from the Partners statue. Since it was winter the big tree was bare and didn't really bother me, and actually DH liked the way the fireworks showed through the branches of the tree.

I am still learning how to work with my camera, and I still rely heavily on Auto, and I didn't have a tripod (before our next visit I'm definitely getting one of those, even if it's just a little one), so most of the pix didn't really come out. And mine aren't amazing (I won't be posting them in the picture of the day thread or the photography board), but they're kinda cool, the ones I saved, and it does sort of show that even if your view is blocked, fireworks are still Good Things.

Look at the rainbows of the fireworks and on the castle! Out of focus, but I didn't even notice that rainbow at the time.

The important/cool part of the picture below is that tiny little smoke circle at the middle towards the top.

More tiny circles, and some bigger circles on the opposite plane.

This is part of the POTC bit, where it's depicting battles. I love that part!

This picture just looks disturbing. They were actually big tall wheels of fireworks turning around and around, but I guess my camera wasn't set fast enough to catch it, so instead it just looks like something bad is happening.

Then the Star Wars music started up, and....it all stopped. Announcement came on that due to high winds at upper elevations they had to stop.

Oh well!

I went over to POTC (continuing my wandering) and there was truly no wait. Just as quick as you could get in, you got on.

Then I have in my notes that I went on Star Tours again, and was in the second row from the front. Still my fave ride!

I wandered some more, bought a decaf latte and some sort of snack at the bakery, and slowly meandered out.

My feet were in a bit of pain, though nowhere near as bad as they felt last September. I got back to the hotel and was so tired, but I had to organize for the next day. I was taking part in micechat's Rally, and needed to be at the picnic area at 8am. I didn't know if they would need anything official from me, so I couldn't plan to go back to check out at 11. Therefore I needed to rent a locker, or leave things with the front desk, and therefore I had to be ready! Well, I love organizing things, but it also takes me awhile. So it was getting later and later and I was hurting more and more...finally I wanted to take a bath but the tub scared me a little bit. So I took a shower and it was so nice that the timer on the fan went off....and when I got out, the steam set off the smoke detector alarm.

It all got figured out and I was finally able to put my head down on the pillow, and I fell to sleep almost immediately.

Last edited by bumbershoot; 01-29-2008 at 06:35 PM.
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Old 01-28-2008, 09:03 PM   #13
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Thank you very much for the great trip report loaded with fun pictures. I always enjoy your reports and find your information helpful. I am a Disneyland veteran but have not been in 5 years. As we all know, much has changed, so you tips are very helpful in planning my next trip.

Now I find myself in a position to give you a little tiny bit of information. You know that little, often short lived, guilt you feel about being at Disneyland without your lovely son and husband? Those moments when you think about how much they would have liked this-or-that? Night time when you miss them the most? Well…. That never ever goes away. I wish I could say it did but it does not. My youngest is a senior at the University of Washington and has no interest in vacationing with her family at this point in her life but I still feel guilty when we are on any vacation without her. Even when I remind myself that she is not interested in being there I still can’t get her out of my head. Just thought you should know.

Thanks again for the great report and I am glad you had some grownup fun.
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Old 01-31-2008, 04:50 AM   #14
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I really really should go to bed, but I just can't yet.

I really wish I could leave days, no, weeks, between updates, like they do on the WDW trip reports, to build the suspense and make people drool for more. But I just can't!

I don't know where I was when I noticed, but suddenly I felt the lifting of the headache and related nausea. Since it had been quite a number of hours since I took the ibuprofen, I don't really know if it was related. I'm usually quite sensitive to it and it works quickly when I do use it, so it was very odd. But my neck felt more free, my head didn't hurt, and I didn't want to throw up from my kneecaps (you know that overall body gaaaaaah feeling?). So that was good!

Since I was just then feeling better, I should have continued to rest, should have taken it easy...did I? Heck no! I am the person who drank a beer and went on Screamin', are you kidding me?

Of course I went on Tower of Terror. Wouldn't you?

It was there that I got to see a CM having a bad day. As we were waiting to "check in" I saw this female CM talking to a CM outside. Well, I heard it, then went looking for her, because she was talking pretty loud. She said something like "well hey, it's just an idea that I'm tossing to you. It's up to you if you want to catch it." I thought "ooh, she's not having a good day...." And I looked at the reactions of the male CMs she was talking to, and of course they didn't take her seriously. Not with that tone of voice. Nope. Wish I knew what it was about! She went stomping off, and I hoped that she was going on her break.

I got closer to the podium and I could tell that the people in front of me were enough that the line was about to be closed. In fact he did convey that I would be on the next one, but when he asked how many were in my party and I said one, he opened it back up and said that one "is the magic number".

We went into the room with the TV, and oh dear, the bad-mood CM was the one in there. She said her spiel so quietly and peeved that I just wanted her to take a sick day and get some hugs from someone. I tried to hug her with a smile as I went into the boiler room, but she curled her lips up into what became a sneering snarl, and I felt sad. Hugs to that CM having a bad day...I'm sorry I couldn't make it better for you.

Woo boy is that a crazy ride. I had my camera bag in a big Disney shopping bag, along with some small things. Oh yeah, I called Robert again and then went shopping for a few little souvenirs while I was slowly feeling better. I also had my thin nylon bag that Sunshine Rewards sent to me for being a super member a quarter or so again, which was carrying Crocs, poncho, possibly my sweatshirt... I had those things, and I was holding their straps and trying to put them between my calves.

Well the ride started, and on the BIIIIIG drop, as my butt was SO far off the seat, I looked down and noticed my bags just going weightless, going up up up up up...to almost my chest level! They just kept going up, even after I was back on the seat. It was wild. And the whole experience just feels so surreal anyway.

We all got off the ride laughing at the amount of air we had caught, and it was fun.

Ultimately, the only souvenirs I bought were a big retro Disneyland magnet for me (I like magnets and keychains), a third light saber keychain for Eamon (you guys need to check those out when next in Tomorrowland or the Emporium...they are very small, but their effect is SO much cooler than the properly sized light sabers...Eamon loves his THREE more than he could love the big ones, and he does much less damage with the small/cool one than he would with a telescoping one), and "Doc" with civilian paintjob from Cars, because we couldn't find non-racing Doc anywhere else (so we paid twice as much for it at DLR).

I slowly wandered back over to DL, where I did some of that shopping (the light saber).

And decided that I was hungry! I noticed that it was approaching the parade time, and that if I wanted to get up to the Plaza Inn and across the street, I had better hustle. I made it, but no thanks to the lady with the very slow walk, pushing a HUGE and long stroller with only one baby in it, with a husband who seemed to be playing guard to her, even though no one was trying to hassle her...just get around her! Just when I would reach a point where I could skirt around her easily, she would speed up, or her husband would fall back and take away the space I wanted to use, and so on. I was just about to say something like "oh please can't I get by" when there was a space and hubby was distracted, and I actually jogged through.

I made it, and there were still people crossing under the ropes to cross the street (and no CMs were telling them not to), so I did it too. Sorry, CMs!

Got to the PI. Got a side salad and a kid's penne with marinara meal. Sat outside, with a blocked view of the parade. The food was very good!

I didn't think to get pictures until I had decimated my salad, so these are what I have.

For any of you Ranch dressing lovers out there, their Ranch is incredible. I only used half of it on my salad, but you see those carrots and those apple slices in the pictures above? Oh yeah, those got dipped in Ranch, too. The half-breadstick as well. It was goooooood.

With the help of my zoomy-zoom, this is the kind of view I had of the parade.

She deserves a photo too, because she was working so hard.

Unfortunately, I mainly got "omg is she half nekky?" pictures of Ariel.

I do love this picture, even more so that I hit "saturate color" with shutterfly, to make the colors in the picture match the colors that were in my eyes with that float.

I also like the random Buzz balloon that floated into the shot *just* as I clicked.

AAAAAKKKKKKKK! A lion! I missed that guy; hadn't seen him since October of '06.

Pretty. Again, liking the balloons.

Spinny spinny! Must be fun to be a princess with twirly skirts and banners to dance with.

Until it's time to put them away quickly, before you are needed again.

Ack, that mickey balloon is lurking and looming; kinda scary!

Pretty poofy dress (I was just looking at my wedding pictures tonight, at my swoopy poofy gown, wishing it had been a little bit blue instead of silk-white).

We'll pretend like this was the last picture I took, because, well, you don't know otherwise. You don't know that the last two shots were of Snow White's back (the girl would not face forward for long enough to get a proper picture) or of Chip or Dale's lower body (pic cut off just below his nose so I can't see if it's brown like a chocolate CHIP or red). Nope, nope, this was my last shot.

Last edited by bumbershoot; 01-31-2008 at 05:13 AM.
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Old 01-31-2008, 05:16 AM   #15
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I'll finish it up when next I wake up.
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