For the First Time In Forever.....A Disneyland reopening TR, Sorry about the absence! New Update 11/16

franandaj

I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
OK so it hasn't been Forever, but it sure seems like it! This year has been one of the longest we have all endured and we can't wait for Disney in CA to reopen so we can all get back to our happy place!

If you don't know me, I've been posting on the DIS for a while, and even though I'm local to Disneyland I don't normally post over here on the Disneyland boards because I mostly tend to do day trips to Disneyland. My partner Fran and I have been together almost 25 years, and I've included some photos of us around California Disney over those years.

We only live half an hour away so most of my trips here tend to become bonus features on the tail ends of my WDW trips or my cruises, which are usually posted in the DVC or cruise forum. However since we haven't done any of those (WDW or cruises) in the last year, I guess it's time to launch a good ole fashioned TR here on the DL boards. I do know that some people in California have read my TRs, because I have been approached in the parks by folks who recognized us. I think the most infamous TR was the one where I tossed a Frozen Prime Rib in our suitcase before we got on the plane. The Prime Rib traveled through Universal's resort in Orlando, and the Titanic exhibit before becoming dinner at the AKL and you can read about its adventures here.


Trip Report with Prime Rib tagging along

Its not until page 16, that the Prime Rib actually gets cooked, but everyone was pretty darned concerned about that roast in the time leading up to it. Just so you understand the rationale of bringing along a Prime Rib, Fran had recently recovered from a severe bout of venal ulcers in her leg and would not have the strength to dine out every night. She would need her rest, so with the Prime Rib, I was able to cook dinner in the room every other night while she slept and got some rest. Because a Prime Rib is so versatile I was able to make four completely different dinners each night that I cooked in the room. But enough about that let me introduce ourselves. People seem to enjoy seeing pictures throughout the years so here are some of us from the past. As you can see we enjoy Disney on all levels from fancy to casual.

This is the oldest Disneyland photo that I can find of us, it came from 1998, back when we were young and care free!



Here we are at the DCA soft opening in 2001.



And at a Lilo and Stitch Luau in 2003 (not the one at WDW)



Between that time and the time that I joined the DIS, I rarely took pictures of Fran and I at Disney. Going through my photo albums I found plenty of pictures of other people, but I was always the one taking the pictures, either that or Fran was taking them of me. Most of my pictures come from 2009 and later.

Here we are in front of the train station one evening.



Anyone remember this incarnation of DCA?



We’re up to 2010 with this celebration picture.



We love us some Cafe Orleans, and can’t wait to get back there for the Monte Cristo and Pomme Frites!



We also love us some Trader Sams, can’t wait to find out when that place will reopen!



While I enjoy the MCU, I’m going to miss A Bug’s Land seen here in 2010.



We love our shopping and after a rough couple years healthwise, we were happy to get back to the parks in 2013.



We clean up pretty OK, for special nights out like this one at Steakhouse 55 in 2014.



This year we spent our valentines day with royalty.



For the 25th anniversary of Splash, we got a special character meet.



In 2015 for the 60th Anniversary we saw the fireworks quite a few times!



We'd like to thank the Academy….



I hope that when we are on the other side of this mess, Disney comes up with something to replace the APs. All these little photo ops, magnets, and pins were lots of fun.



Our band used to play out at the parks, and then everyone got to run around and have a fun day at Disney. I hope we can do that again.



When Galaxy’s Edge opened, we spent a bit of time rubbing elbows with the unsavory characters in Oga’s Cantina.



We were there for the 50th Anniversary of the Haunted Mansion



We have been known to get dressed up and have a night out on the town.



This was our final posed character photo in 2020, taken just two weeks before everything shut down.



We were in the parks last year March 6th & 7th, we were staying at the Grand Californian and I’m not sure if we went into the parks on check out day, the 8th. Of course we figured that we would be back, I mean I had booked several Food & Wine events, a couple $20 demos with Jenny (you'll meet her next chapter or two if you don't know her already) and her husband. We also booked Wine Receptions for Fess Parker, and Skywalker Vineyards at the Carthay Circle. Who needed to worry about hitting the park when we would be back in less than two weeks?

I’ll tell you that this is by far the longest Fran and I have ever gone between Disneyland visits!

At first I was apprehensive about going back to the parks, however, with the virus rate dropping as it is in California, and more and more people getting vaccinated, I’m getting really excited for my upcoming days at the parks. I was even able to book a two night mid-week stay at the Grand Californian Villas, that coincides with one of my park reservation days!

As of tomorrow it's single digits until my first day back and I'll be counting down until then!

I'm going to lead into this new TR with my last bonus features from before the shut down. Remember back then? It was all the rage to try and get a boarding group for RotR from your home? Even though we all knew we wouldn't get a group without having scanned through the park, still folks with APs would "practice" and the queue would "sell out" within mere minutes. I had been following the RotR thread since opening day, and had all the strategies down. So when it came to our turn, we arrived on the Esplanade at around 7AM and went directly to the queue. We were not too far back.



And by 7:51 this was the line that had formed behind us! Can you imagine lines like this now???



At 8AM they started letting people into the park. Our party of four headed over near the little red wagon, outside the camera shop, and just waited for 9AM when the park opened.

It was just like everyone said online, silence right at 9AM and then big bursts of "Woot! Woot!", "Yay!" And other exclamations. We were successful and got a fairly low BG. I don't remember what it was now, but it was something like 13 or 14. Because the ride had a history of opening sometimes more than an hour after park opening, I had made us a reservation at Carnation Cafe for 9:15 so we could enjoy our wait for the BG to open.

As soon as we were seated, the ride opened up. Shortly after we placed our order our boarding group was called. No worries we have two hours to get there.

Say hi to us!



Our meals arrived promptly. I believe Fran got Corned Beef Hash and Eggs. She liked it a lot.



Both Jim and Leonard ordered Eggs Benedict.



I got a Mickey Waffle! Yum! Even with my own Mickey wafflemaker at home, they totally taste better in the park.



After we finished our breakfast we went directly to the ride. Luckily it hadn’t gone down in the time it took us to eat breakfast and walk over there. We had no problems and soon we were on our journey.


Watch out! If you’re avoiding spoilers, skip the next three photos!

















Such a fun ride! I can’t wait to ride it again!

I’m not exactly sure what we did for the rest of the day. I know that we rode Space Mountain because I have photo evidence.



Leonard tells me that we rode Guardians as well, but my phone was malfunctioning and wouldn’t take the picture, so he did. The problem is that once Disney closed down, I was never able to get my PhotoPass pictures from the site. Every time that I tried to link them, I got an error message that I entered an invalid code.



We did get some treats in DCA, the guys got ice cream from Clarabelle’s while Fran and I got some treats from the sweet shop next door.






I think after that we headed out. It was getting late in the afternoon. Leonard had to work the next day since this was a Monday, and he had to drive all the way back to the Valley after we got back to Long Beach.

But don’t worry we have more fun coming up in less than two weeks last year! I hope to have everything from the past posted before we attend our first DL day which is during the soft openings, our date is April 28. I don’t know how quickly I’ll be able to post once we start our DL trips because we have quite a few days booked right off the bat, but I promise I will try to update as soon as I can.
 

jedijill

Chiefs fan living in Bronco country
Joined
Jan 17, 2005
I love all the pictures of you and Fran through the years! Who knew the whole world was going to shut down the last time we were there. Can't wait to see you ladies in a couple of weeks! Too bad California won't let me into DL yet. I miss my happy place!

Jill in CO
 

tiggrbaby

<font color=deeppink><marquee>We must work harder
Joined
Jun 26, 2004
So glad you are getting back to your happy place! Can't wait to experience it through your TR!
 

rentayenta

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2007
Here! Great intro! I’m soooooo happy we’re finally opening up, slowly, but it’s happening!
 
  • pkondz

    Brace yourself for immediate disintegration
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    I'm here, but I'm at work and can't see the photos. I'll look later, when I can.
     

    pkondz

    Brace yourself for immediate disintegration
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    OK so it hasn't been Forever, but it sure seems like it!
    Ugh. Tell me about it! :sad2:
    This year has been one of the longest we have all endured
    Funny (not), it's been more than a year, yet... that just feels like such an accurate statement.
    If you don't know me, I've been posting on the DIS for a while
    You have? Who knew!?!?


    ;)
    I do know that some people in California have read my TRs, because I have been approached in the parks by folks who recognized us.
    I like that. :)
    I've never had that happen, but... 1. I'm not in a Disney park anywhere near as you guys. And 2. I seldom post photos of myself... so kinda hard to recognize me anyway! :laughing:
    I think the most infamous TR was the one where I tossed a Frozen Prime Rib in our suitcase before we got on the plane. The Prime Rib traveled through Universal's resort in Orlando, and the Titanic exhibit before becoming dinner at the AKL and you can read about its adventures here.
    What?!?!?!?
    Gonna go read that one!
    This is the oldest Disneyland photo that I can find of us, it came from 1998, back when we were young and care free!
    You're still young and care free. :)
    Anyone remember this incarnation of DCA?
    Nope!
    We clean up pretty OK,
    Very ok! ::yes::
    We'd like to thank the Academy….
    And the Oscar for excellence in TR writing goes to...
    We were there for the 50th Anniversary of the Haunted Mansion
    Love the outfits. All of them.
    We have been known to get dressed up and have a night out on the town.
    I remember seeing that photo (or similar). You guys look amazing!
    Who needed to worry about hitting the park when we would be back in less than two weeks?
    :sad2:
    As of tomorrow it's single digits until my first day back and I'll be counting down until then!
    Woot!!!!
    I'm going to lead into this new TR with my last bonus features from before the shut down. Remember back then?
    Barely.
    And by 7:51 this was the line that had formed behind us! Can you imagine lines like this now???
    Well... I actually hope to see lines like that again some day.
    It was just like everyone said online, silence right at 9AM and then big bursts of "Woot! Woot!", "Yay!" And other exclamations.
    "other exclamations"...

    Perhaps... a few swear words here and there for the less successful candidates?
    We were successful and got a fairly low BG. I don't remember what it was now, but it was something like 13 or 14.
    Wow! That is low!
    As soon as we were seated, the ride opened up. Shortly after we placed our order our boarding group was called. No worries we have two hours to get there.
    Ah! I was wondering about that.
    Say hi to us!
    :wave:
    Both Jim and Leonard ordered Eggs Benedict.
    Because they're smart. ::yes::

    (And is this Naked Jim??)
    Such a fun ride! I can’t wait to ride it again!
    Me too! (Take that any way you like.)
    Holy decadent! :faint:
     
  • NancyLuvsMickey

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 3, 2009
    I would LOVE to live only 30 minutes from Disney!!! But I'm afraid if I did, I'd give Fran a run for her money when it came to shopping!!! :rotfl2:
     

    franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    First! Going back to read.
    :welcome:

    I love all the pictures of you and Fran through the years! Who knew the whole world was going to shut down the last time we were there. Can't wait to see you ladies in a couple of weeks! Too bad California won't let me into DL yet. I miss my happy place!

    Jill in CO
    The next update will be our last time at DL! 😢 Can't wait to see you! Now it's less than 2 weeks!

    As soon as DL will let you in, we will get you on a plane and into the park!
     

    franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    So glad you are getting back to your happy place! Can't wait to experience it through your TR!
    :welcome:


    :welcome:


    Here! Great intro! I’m soooooo happy we’re finally opening up, slowly, but it’s happening!
    :welcome:
    Can't wait to go together!

    Joinning in!!!
    :welcome:


    I'm here, but I'm at work and can't see the photos. I'll look later, when I can.
    :welcome:


    I am here
    :welcome:
     

    franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    Funny (not), it's been more than a year, yet... that just feels like such an accurate statement.
    It is an accurate statement!

    You have? Who knew!?!?


    ;)
    :laughing:

    I like that. :)
    I've never had that happen, but... 1. I'm not in a Disney park anywhere near as you guys. And 2. I seldom post photos of myself... so kinda hard to recognize me anyway! :laughing:
    I also think that two women on matching scooters are easy to spot......

    What?!?!?!?
    Gonna go read that one!
    Tell me if you think we're crazy! :laughing:

    You're still young and care free. :)
    Definitely not young, and certainly not care free....way too many worries!

    And the Oscar for excellence in TR writing goes to...
    awwww.......

    I remember seeing that photo (or similar). You guys look amazing!
    Probably the same one. I usually pick the best of the lot and go with that one. Then again someone else took it and we may have only got one photo.

    Well... I actually hope to see lines like that again some day.
    Well I would hope that the world recovers enough that it is safe, but I really don't relish the idea of standing in crowds like that.

    "other exclamations"...

    Perhaps... a few swear words here and there for the less successful candidates?
    Well, I didn't hear any of those....did you hear the new policy? They can kick you out of the park for profanity! At least in California!

    Wow! That is low!
    And I never expected the ride to start up that early. Most of the time it didn't get going until about an hour after the park opened. Just wait for the next update. :sad2:

    Ah! I was wondering about that.
    I was just praying that it didn't break down before we got there.

    Because they're smart. ::yes::

    (And is this Naked Jim??)
    Yes, that is Naked Jim. It's just been so long since that happened I wasn't sure if I should keep calling him that. He will make an appearance in this TR. He is on one of our reservations.

    Me too! (Take that any way you like.)
    Hmmm..... :scratchin

    Holy decadent! :faint:
    Looks delicious!
     

    franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    I would LOVE to live only 30 minutes from Disney!!! But I'm afraid if I did, I'd give Fran a run for her money when it came to shopping!!! :rotfl2:
    :welcome: I can't imagine not living half an hour away! Luckily we have no reason to move so we will stay close!

    Love all of the photos. Looks like you all enjoy life!!
    :welcome: We try! Nothing else to do but try to enjoy it otherwise you're miserable!
     

    pkondz

    Brace yourself for immediate disintegration
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    It is an accurate statement!
    Of course it is!
    I also think that two women on matching scooters are easy to spot......
    Ha! That's true. Never thought of that. I'm more of a blur. I move fast.
    Tell me if you think we're crazy! :laughing:
    :laughing: Okay!


    But the answer is yes. :)
    Definitely not young, and certainly not care free....way too many worries!
    How about Just right and generous?
    Well I would hope that the world recovers enough that it is safe, but I really don't relish the idea of standing in crowds like that.
    I hear you.
    I want things to go back to normal... but I also want it to be normal in a way that doesn't negatively impact me in any way.
    Well, I didn't hear any of those....did you hear the new policy? They can kick you out of the park for profanity! At least in California!
    Really!
    Then again... I'm not all that surprised.
    Actually... I'm a bit surprised that it wasn't already a policy.
    Yes, that is Naked Jim.
    Ah!!
    It's just been so long since that happened I wasn't sure if I should keep calling him that. He will make an appearance in this TR. He is on one of our reservations.
    I say keep calling him that. So colourful!
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257, Galactic Salad Dodger
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    I'm here! So excited for you guys.

    OK so it hasn't been Forever, but it sure seems like it! This year has been one of the longest we have all endured and we can't wait for Disney in CA to reopen so we can all get back to our happy place!
    Thank goodness! Longest. Year. Ever.

    I do know that some people in California have read my TRs, because I have been approached in the parks by folks who recognized us.
    Do they ask for your autograph? Selfies?

    I think the most infamous TR was the one where I tossed a Frozen Prime Rib in our suitcase before we got on the plane.
    I wonder how the bomb-sniffing dogs reacted.

    Anyone remember this incarnation of DCA?
    Nope. Missed that one. Doesn't look like it would have aged well, though.

    We love us some Cafe Orleans, and can’t wait to get back there for the Monte Cristo and Pomme Frites!
    Now we're talking!

    While I enjoy the MCU, I’m going to miss A Bug’s Land seen here in 2010.
    I think A Bug's Life is one of the few Pixar movies I didn't like, so...yeah, bring on the MCU!

    We love our shopping and after a rough couple years healthwise, we were happy to get back to the parks in 2013.
    That is quite the impressive haul there.

    We'd like to thank the Academy….
    :rotfl2:

    I hope that when we are on the other side of this mess, Disney comes up with something to replace the APs.
    I'm sure they will. They don't ignore any cash cows out there.

    I feel like they're using this break to try and figure out a system to better manage the crowds between AP holders vs. tourists/vacationers.

    I’ll tell you that this is by far the longest Fran and I have ever gone between Disneyland visits!
    I believe you!

    As of tomorrow it's single digits until my first day back and I'll be counting down until then!
    :woohoo:

    Even though we all knew we wouldn't get a group without having scanned through the park, still folks with APs would "practice" and the queue would "sell out" within mere minutes.
    Hope that didn't mess up the system!

    And by 7:51 this was the line that had formed behind us! Can you imagine lines like this now???
    :faint:

    It was just like everyone said online, silence right at 9AM and then big bursts of "Woot! Woot!", "Yay!" And other exclamations.
    Probably a few profane ones.

    I think that's my biggest fear for my next park visit. I'll have spent all this time and effort and money on the trip, and then end up getting shut out of a BG when I'm in the park ready to try it out.

    Even with my own Mickey wafflemaker at home, they totally taste better in the park.
    Everything tastes better in a Disney park.

    Such a fun ride! I can’t wait to ride it again!
    I can't wait to try it out! (fingers crossed)

    I don’t know how quickly I’ll be able to post once we start our DL trips because we have quite a few days booked right off the bat, but I promise I will try to update as soon as I can.
    Don't worry, I'll have no problem falling well behind no matter how frequently you post.
     

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