Us again but a different mouse. #7

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by Poohshoney, Sep 11, 2002.

  1. Poohshoney

    Poohshoney <font color=6666CC>Ya-ya sister!<br><font color=gr

    Dec 12, 2001
    The players –

    Carol (41, British) – dangerously Disney obsessed.
    Roland (36, German) – puts up with me somehow.

    I wrote a WDW trip report called Mickey & US – if you missed it you might have trouble with some of the references!

    27 August 2002

    Part 7

    Now today was a special day for me – my birthday - and I'd been promised I could pick a birthday present for myself. Oooh goody!!!! I kept my eyes peeled all day for any possible acquisitions but the place I was most hopeful about was in Austria – they had an attraction called the Magical World of Diamonds (my favourite D-word after Disney!) and it had a shop attached. I must admit, the quality of the other shops made me think I wasn’t going to find the Koh-I-Noor but as the family optimist I couldn’t help but feel excited!

    We did the attraction first. We walked through a `diamond´ mine with lots of little gnome-like people in it – more Emerald City than Snow White. And periodically a train rushed through with people screaming: it was very atmospheric and we liked it. My favourite scene was when we were coming out. It had three gnomes sitting at a conveyor belt with a gremlin-thingy behind them. It was obviously quality control and the expressions on the gnomes faces were just spot on. `Oh heck, this is SO boring. Hope I don’t get fire breathed down my neck. When can we go home? ´

    We exited into the shop. I'm so glad I didn’t get my hopes up. It was more Woolworth's than Tiffany's. Roland cheered up a bit though – lack of diamonds does that to him. An extensive search (went round three times!) failed to produce even a likely candidate for birthday present of the year but I did get a lot of reassuring hand-squeezing from Roland. (He also said not to worry, I could pick myself two presents when we went to the Disney Store in Frankfurt – can you believe they’ve closed it!!! I’m so gutted…)

    There’s a ride in Austria called the Alpine Express – AKA Big Thunder Mountain if you’re a Mouseketeer. That’s one of Roland’s favourite rides so we were a bit glum when we saw the 45 min queue sign. A quick con-fab and it was decided we’d try again later. Besides which, we were hungry. BTM isn’t good on an empty stomach.

    A quick look at the map and we spotted the See-Restaurant nearby. According to the map it was in Adventureland but it was in Austria, looked like a Tyrolean chalet and the waitresses all wore Austrian national dress.

    We got more water (in glass bottles not plastic cups like the rest of the park – posh) and a goulash soup each and boy were they good!

    We snagged a table out on the terrace overlooking the lake. We could see Elephant Rock (surprisingly, a group of rocks with fake elephants on – we hadn’t known what to expect) and EP's Jungle Cruise. This was a very slow moving raft ride. After watching the bored expressions as yet another raft crawled by, we decided to give it a miss. I wished we’d done it now.

    The lake also had a Mississippi steamer. We decided Adventureland was an EP synonym for `we haven’t got a country for this attraction, where can we put it?´ The steamer was smaller than Disney’s. It looked surprisingly full.

    The cabaret during our meal was provided by a family who arrived just before we left, two teenagers and their parents. The mum plonked her bags down and meaningfully muttered, “I have to go somewhere”. “Great” bellowed the teenagers indiscreetly, “We’ll come too.” The mum went as pink as her T-shirt! It reminded me so much of my own mum’s little ritual. It’s always the same; she peers round to the left and then to the right before lowering her head, raising her eyebrows and using a stage whisper guaranteed to be heard in the back row asks, “Is there ANYWHERE you need to go.” It guarantees hysterics from the rest of us.

    The plan when we’d finished eating was to wander all the way along the top of the park and this time we stuck to it.

    The first thing we saw looked at was a water power station (yawn). It was definitely working but as it was ancient we couldn’t work out why. Roland reckoned the amount of energy it could produce would run the nearby lights but not much else. Unfortunately, the info wasn’t very informative.

    We continued down Fairy Tale Avenue – I loved it! It had little booths down it with scenes from fairy tales such as Cat in Boots, Sleeping Beauty, etc. You pushed a button and then a narrator told the story. Unfortunately, I didn’t reckon with one of the buttons being French – anyone interested in Puss in Boots in French? No, neither were we. The German narrator had a wonderful voice I could have listened to for hours (once I'd worked out which buttons to push).

    We had a nice surprise as we walked along: there were teenagers roller-skating along holding boards saying `Just for you, the park will remain open till 19:30. That’s 7:30 pm to the rest of us and as the park had been due to close at six we were well suited – how nice of them to think of us like that!

    I had been looking forward to the Gnome House – it’s the kind of name that appeals to me. Roland was pleased to find it was a teeny tiny kiddie ride with height limits and we were too big.

    And then we got to England. Note, not GB or UK or anything else, just England. And they’d even got the flag right.

    England had my favourite loos. (I really regret not trying the ones in Adventureland – they were called Tarzan and Jane.) The English ones were called, what else, Ladies & Gents. And when you got inside, each door had the name of a king or queen on it. I went in Charles II (I wanted a queen but they were all engaged) and on the back wall it said `The secret place of Charles II´ and had his coat of arms underneath – see what I mean about EP doing a lot with imagination with just a little money?!

    I was a bit miffed about England’s food. Not only wasn’t it English (even though you can find burgers on every corner in England, I still don’t think that makes it native cuisine) but the map actually told you it wasn’t British. `Only the buildings are British, the cuisine is international´. No other country had that. Reminds me of the postcard we got from Roland’s aunty last month, from England. `The weather and the food are surprisingly good´. And when she got home we still couldn’t convince her that she hadn’t been fed special `suitable for Germans´ food. Sigh. One of the things we both miss most about Britain is the food – it’s better than its reputation, honest!

    England boasts a reproduction of Shakespeare’s Globe theatre. It hosts a magic show – we managed to miss this one by 50 mins. Pure natural talent.

    So we went into Baron William’s Mystery Hall. Actually, we didn’t get past the door for a good few minutes. It was so dark I couldn't see more than a few inches in front of me – I was afraid the mystery was going to be `what have I fallen over?´ Eventually Roland shoved me in, promising me there wasn’t anything to trip over and my eyes acclimatised and he was right. We think Baron William was the Phantom Of the Opera type character standing on the left waving a candelabra and wailing something very forgettable. Although he might have been the man sitting on the right who got beheaded. That was ever so well done, especially when the head disappeared backwards, rolled down and was held up by a ghoul when it got to the bottom. It got us talking again about the `will my children be frightened by Haunted Mansion?´ posts. Both ghoulish things at EP were MUCH worse than HM yet the kids didn’t turn a hair. Will they grow up psychotic? Are they hardened by things they’ve seen on TV? Is it adults subconsciously communicating their own anxieties which makes the kids flip? We came to no conclusions but it was an interesting conversation.

    We didn’t rate England’s attractions at all. A shooting range, radio-controlled boats and the Silverstone Arena (to be fair, we didn’t look into that one). so we grabbed a Schokokuss (delicious German titbit of very thin chocolate over a sort of creamy centre) and moved on.

    We moved on past Nivealand, aka Children’s World. Roland peered over the hedge and said it was all little kiddie things. I could hear a lot of happy little voices so I think it was a good place to be if you’re knee-height.

    And then we were in front of the castle.

    To be continued…

  2. Marla Hellwig

    Marla Hellwig I'm not lost, it's called creative exploring

    Mar 25, 2000
    Sorry to hear you didn't find any diamonds - thanks for posting!
  3. yepod

    yepod DIS Veteran

    Aug 18, 2001
    I'm so sorry to hear about your DS closing;) "gutted"? LOL

    So your mum didn't say loo ay?!?! LOL

    Happy belated birthday & I hope you find a suitable BD present!

    Thanks again for your great report! (I'm caught up to you now!)
  4. jennymouse

    jennymouse <a href=""targe

    Mar 9, 2001
    I"m caught up too! Unless there's an #8 burried here somewhere. It really sounds like I might like this place........has a real haunted house and everything. Sorry you didn't score a diamond.....we'll come to think of it, you got Roland!:p
  5. Poohshoney

    Poohshoney <font color=6666CC>Ya-ya sister!<br><font color=gr

    Dec 12, 2001
    Thanks Yepod! I'm enjoying looking for a pressie so much I'll probably be still looking at Christmas... We talked to our family about the DS closing and they all said Disney had priced themselves out of the market. Don't know if it's true but it would add up.
    Jennifer - you're so right! He's the maximum carats you can get!!

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