OMG, I thought you'd never finish. Now, I will read.
Fabulously Wonderful Disneyland/SoCal Trip Report – June 2nd - 4th 2010
Note: smilie references have been included for your enjoyment! (Or, annoyance…..you make the call…! *grin*)
My folks dropped a very giddy DS and myself off at ABIA (Austin-Bergstrom International Airport – or, as I like to call it, “Austin-Bergstrom Aeropuerto Internationale!!!”) at about 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 2nd for our 2:35 p.m. flight from Austin to Denver on Frontier Airlines. The early Texas summer oven pre-heating was already well under way. We popped through the sliding doors and hopped right onto the up escalator to the gate level. We had no bags to check, so we headed straight to security and then to find our gate. Once we found it and checked the board to make sure all was still runnin’ on-time smooth, we headed to get somethin’ to drink and to talk and get even more psyched about visiting Uncle Walt’s original dream! Matt had a Pepsi, and I, a mighty tasty malted adult beverage. Hey, I waited ‘til after lunch…! *grin* *winking* *smilie*
The flight from Austin to Denver was smooth and on time. The only slight bummer was that both of us really love to fly and neither of us had been assigned a window seat to check out the view, but on a totally packed flight, we figured it wouldn’t be too cool to ask people to play “non-musical flyin’-aluminum-tube chairs”. Plus, with the two “vacation (albeit, a very short one) scotches” I was about to knock back during the flight, it really didn’t matter anyway…! *dizzy* *grin* I re-read my Disneyland Imagineering Field Guide for the 22nd-ish time to pass the flight and we arrived in Denver at around 3:50 p.m. Mountain Time (10:50 p.m. Prague, Czech Republic time…! *insert silly, grinny, just-for-fun smilie here*). I Called DW (already in LA, and seein’ the sights with youngest DD on HS choir trip) to let her know things were runnin’ as smooth as 12-year-old scotch, so far.
We had eaten lunch before we left home, so we really weren’t hungry yet. We pretty much headed straight to our gate and hung out there until our 4:45 flight to LAX. Again, a very pleasant, smooth, on time flight, but no window seats for us on this one either (no scotches on this flight, though…rental car SoCal “Motor Madness” was up for me after this one…!). We’ve become a bit spoiled over the years, in regard to window seats, flyin’ Southwest Airlines ‘cause there are no assigned seats. Just show up on time, and…..voila! Window seats galore…!
We arrived at LAX at about 6:10 p.m. Pacific Time and managed to find our way, with a little friendly airport personnel directional assistance, to the shuttle bus stop for our ride to go pick up our Fred’s Bar & Grill & Rental Cars (Enterprise) rental car…! *grin* Immediately upon exiting the terminal, we chuckled about the glaring weather difference…..no heat, no humidity, just 70-ish degree no-sauna perfection! Although we’ve become acclimated over the years, for the most part, to the ofttimes smothering Texas humidity, I generally prefer my breathable air with a bit less water content…! *dizzy* *faint* Only bit-o-phooey, upon descent into LA, was the VERY noticeable brown blanket of smog that I managed to get a few glimpses of across the person seated next to me on the plane. Same thing we used to see, years ago, flyin’ in and out of “San Francisco Aeropuerto Internationale!!!” when we lived in San Jose. At “Fred’s” we got a “free” upgrade from a Chevy Aveo to a Cobalt. I tried to get us “free-upgraded” to a convertible…..no dice! *no* *cry*
Once we were on 405 headin’ north, I called DW again to let her know we were on our way to the hotel. They were just boarding their tour bus after dinner in Malibu (with Barbie! *grin*) and were on their way to the Griffith Observatory in the hills above Hollywood for a short visit (to look down on some stars and up at others…! *winking*), and then on their way back to the hotel as well. Traffic wasn’t too bad in the waning-rush-hour dusk of SoCal. Although, I must confess, I did have a slight urge, every now and again, to open the rental car door in front of any one of the motorcycle riders that kept goin’ between the lanes of stop-n-go vehiculage…..they don’t seem to do that NEARLY as much here in Texas…! And again, that weather…..OHHHHH YEEEAAAAAHHH!!!
DS and myself arrived at the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel across from the Burbank-Bob Hope Airport (and all that jazz…!) around 8:30 p.m. We got another key card to DW’s room and headed upstairs. We flipped on the TV, plopped down on the beds and chilled for a bit. After viewing a sickeningly over-bloated fast-food burger in a commercial shortly thereafter, we realized that food sounded REALLY *dizzy* good about this point…! As luck would have it, there was a McD’s (oh boy!) across the street, so we settled for that. DW and DD got back to the Los Angeles Marriott Bur… (never mind…..just tryin’ to see if your still payin’ attention!) around 9:30p.m. We were all happy to be together again, but about this time, pretty whipped from our various days adventures, and except for a bit of TV, pretty much called it a night.
After an overly-excited, barely decent night’s (but-more-than-enough-to be pumped-and-ready-for-any-Disney-Park-day…!) sleep, we awoke at 6:15 a.m. more than ready to get ourselves down the road to our West Coast Home! We got it goin’ as quickly as possible ‘cause, as soon as we turned on the TV, they were talkin’ about a massive early mornin’ accident on I-5 South between us and Disneyland. Good Grief…! The Girls had to stick with their group and bus and were scheduled to arrive at DLR around 9:00 a.m. DS and myself headed down to the front desk to see if we could get better info on the status of the carnage and its clearing. They said the road was clear now, but there was still a little residual backup (or, “constipation”, as I call it…! *grin*) Not too bad. We walked outta’ the hotel lobby about 6:50 a.m. into the cool California mornin’, jumped into our upgraded non-convertible, and headed for I-5 South. Again, although Disneyland was still about 40 miles down the road, traffic wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. A bit of stop-n-go here and there, but a breeze for the most part. Then I had a somewhat sobering thought…..WOOF…! Austin traffic must be worse than I thought if LA’s didn’t seem so bad…! *faint*
As we began closin’ in on the prize we started lookin’ for the Matterhorn, which is what we always used to see first when we drove down from San Jose, as kids (actually, mom and dad drove us down…! *grin*). Instead, there looming, was The Tower of Terror…..! I had all but forgotten it was even there at DCA! Before we knew it, our exit was upon us and we headed off the freeway towards the much-anticipated Disney bliss…! We made our way to the Mickey and Friends Parkin’ Garage, and were quickly directed to a spot on the Daisy level (2) in section G9 about 8:50 a.m. (about 3:50 p.m. Prague, Cz…..never mind…! *grin*). By this time there was no hiding, nor did we even care to hide, the giddy anticipation…..DS and myself were 8-ish to 12-ish years old again…!!! *YAHOO!*
We made our way to the escalator and down to the tram queue. Within a coupla’ minutes we were on a tram and on our way to the front entrance. Although it was still kinda’ cool out it was a bit funny, to us anyway, to see so many people on the tram in sweats and sweaters…..WE was loooooovvvinnnnn’ the cooooolll! The whole trip, as opposed to what would’ve been a sauna-fest at WDW (or, back home in Texas…!) the same time of year, I don’t remember ever breakin’ a sweat…?...not even once…!!! *smilie*
The tram made its way past DTD and the World of Disney Store to the edge of the Entrance Plaza. We hopped off and headed for the first available “Gate to The Magic!” After havin’ the requisite DNA, retinal, toeprint and fingerprint scans done (JK, LOL, and all that jazz…!) and using my CM park passes to get in, we were so excited, now that I think about it, we may have forgotten to take pics in front of the train station…! I need to go back and check! We then headed right on through the left tunnel and into Town Square…..I was finally home again!!!
First order of ‘bidniss’…..City Hall for a b-day button for DS. Once acquired, I made a quick call to DW to let her know we were there safe and sound and awaiting their arrival. They were runnin’ a bit late (somethin’ about an attempted tour bus mutiny to IHOP…! *grin*), but expected to be there fairly shortly. In the meantime, we headed across Town Square to the Disney Gallery. I really had no idea what to expect. We ended up in Heaven!!! Original Imagineering artwork out the waz…..well, y’all know…! *grin* The interior was designed by Imagineer Kim Irvine, daughter of Imagineer “Madame” Leota Wharton/Toombs/Thomas. Kim ended up marryin’ Richard F. Irvine’s son, BTW!
Anyway, the Gallery was filled with so many original works, works that I have seen so many times in my books, I was a bit (I almost swooned, actually…!) overwhelmed! John Hench, Herb Ryman, the original daytime/nighttime aerial story board painting by Peter Ellenshaw! There was also a very fun CM named Ruth that we walked around the Gallery with who was very surprised about, and impressed with, my Disney knowledge. You ROCK Ruth! It was a blast!
I got a call from DW about 9:40 a.m. that they were right outside the front gate. We met them at 9:45 in Town Square. Finally! We decided to head straight for PotC and walked down Main Street hand in hand… Awwwww…..! Right?!!! *barfing* *grin* (I REALLY need some ACTUAL silly smilies for this report…!!!)
I was walking (no….. make that “Magically floating”…!) back in time. Back to 1968 and my first visit to Disneyland at the age of 6. The emotions were off-the-charts!!! We hadn’t been to DL since ’87. And, although I felt very much at home, it was like seein’ an old friend again for the first time in many years. You’re very excited about re-familiarizing yourself with the old them, and also at the same time, very excited to see what has changed about the new them.
We approached Pirates, and the memories started to flood mustily (boy, was THAT word ever jaggedy-line underlined…! *faint* *grin*) back. As we approached the doors, that famous Disney Park musty-water smell began to put me under its intoxicating spell. Although, almost just as intoxicating at WDW, this was the place I had first experienced it and it was like a drug. If nothing else about the attraction was already carved into my brain (and other things most DEFINITELY are!), the memory of that scent is as vivid as any memory I’ve ever had. I know, a bit over-the-top maybe, but as they say, it is what it is…! *yes*
We walked right onto Pirates! The attraction itself is just fabulous, and sooooo much more! For those that have been, you know what I mean, for those yet to go, I hope you get there ASAP! We, just a bit reluctantly, got up and walked off with the hugest smiles on our faces…..we had just christened the rest of our spectacular day-yet-to-come with that re-inaugural voyage…!!!
Next…..on to HM. Walked on again! Had a bit of fun in the “stretching room” explaining, to some Guests who were askin’ questions, about the difference in those rooms at WDW and DLR, and why. For some silly reason, DS decided to jump into the same DoomBuggie as DW and myself….. “Next time son, get your own…..mom and I would like a little ‘alone time’ sometimes!” *LOL!*
Pretty much the same overall attraction as WDW’s version. Always great fun at WDW and DLR and right up there with Pirates as an all-time favorite!
On to Splash Mountain. Approx. 15 minute wait. Just one of several places where DS got a b-day song from CM’s and Guests! Very cool and he LOVED it! We also reminded DS not to whip his head around after the big plunge like at WDW in ’01 (my fault…..I forgot the glasses strap for that ride…! *dizzy*) and flip his glasses into the drink…! Again, pretty much the same attraction as WDW except for the overall queue and the single-seat logs instead of tandem seating. We’ll always love the relaxing silly fun and the “WAKE UP!” plunge towards the end! …..After which DS whipped his head around and…..JK, LOL, and all that jazz…! *grin*
Next, we headed towards the Indiana Jones Adventure. DS took a quick run through Tarzan’s Treehouse on the way. Unfortunately, when we got to Indy’s attraction, he was apparently off on some other adventure (probably unintentionally involving snakes again, at some point…!) ‘cause it was closed for the day. Slight bummer. We really wanted to do that one, too. I’ve heard great things about it!
So, since there was no wait to speak of for JC, we queued up for that next! It was the same ol’ spiel we’re all used to by now, of course, but this skipper seemed to REALLY be havin’ a blast deliverin’ it! Although, of course, it has changed since Walt’s time, this is where this original of his baby’s was first born. We got off JC about 11:40-ish, and after seein’ all those tasty-lookin’ exotic animals (OK, so I knew there wasn’t a hippo burger to be found…! *grin*), decided it was time for some lunch…!
Hot dog time!!! We decided to head for Refreshment Corner, which is in the same location on Main Street at DL as Casey’s is at WDW. Although the overall theming isn’t as good as Casey’s and I was a bit disappointed in the absence of a relish (can you say “muy caliente!” relish?!) bar, like at Casey’s, it was still a really good dog and a GEEEEEEERATE time! We decided to do a little browsing on Main Street after that to get some ideas for purchases later in the day and chill for a bit.
OMG, I thought you'd never finish. Now, I will read.
After that we headed straight for Star Tours and a “last blast!” to Endor before the refurb. DW and myself had ridden it the year it first opened back in ’87 during a stop at DL on our way up to NoCal to visit friends, and we were now back to close the original incarnation…..23 years later! It was only about a 15 minute wait, and as we queued up in our numbered rows, I asked one of the CM’s when, exactly, the attraction was goin’ down at DL. He said July 27th. I proceeded to tell him our silly little story and he quickly called over a CM named Lori. Lori told us how she had been workin’ the attraction since it opened in ’87, and after a bit of discussion, we determined that she would’ve almost definitely been on shift when we first crazy-cruised to Endor waaaaayyy back in the day! We all had a good chuckle! Star Tours is, obviously, and of course, another all-time favorite, and yes, as well as missing it for sentimental reasons, it’s still just plain ol’ good fun and we will very much miss it for that reason, as well! We really hope they’ll do it justice on its next adventure in a galaxy far, far, away…!
Now, it was time for a good ol’ fashioned bobsled ride in the Alps! (I sure miss those days when we used to go bobsledding in the Alps…! *grin*) The Matterhorn had only about a 10 minute wait in the right-hand line for the slightly longer track (wanna’ get my money’s worth, ya’ know…?! *dizzy* *lol*). And, we may just like this Yeti a bit better than the one at a certain other Disney attraction (for now, anyway…!), and he showed up, at least, twice with outstanding timing, too! What fun!!! It’s still a classically-fun blast from the past…..DW screamed (and, maybe me a ‘coupla’ times, too…..maybe…! *grin* *winking*) the whole way!
Now, time for some Toad Hall terror…! We had the longest wait of the day here at a crippling, stifling 20 minutes…..heeeheeeee! Love the theming and architecture of the Hall, of course, and the ride was still a bunch-o-fun! “Motor Madness” lives on at DL!
Next, we foot-motored our way off to Space Mountain. It was temporarily down, so we got FP’s for 7:15 p.m. - 8:15 p.m. Slight bummer, but no biggie ‘cause we’ll be baaaAAAaack!
We decided to head back to Pirates for another voyage, but apparently the Spanish Main needed a bit o’ de-sacking, ‘cause it was down too! Slight bummer, again. No biggie, again…..we’ll be back to reeeee-saaaAAAaack laterrrrrrr…!
Sooooooo, back to HM for some more Grim Grinning Grimacing Green Ghostly FUUUUUNNN…!
Yay! It wasn’t down! DW and myself got our own DB this time, too…! *grin* All 999 Happy Haunts had the “spookometer” pegged!!!
Then, back to Pirates again…..still with the de-sacking…! *dizzy* *faint* So, we headed to The Enchanted Tiki Room for another of Walt’s wonderful, classic Disneyland baby’s. What a classic, indeed…..We hope it NEVER changes!
Next…? Yep, you guessed it…..Dole Whip-o-Rama!!!
Just needed, maybe, that splash or two of rum…! *grin*
After that, we decided to see if there was a wait at the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. There was…..all 40-minutes-worth. Nemo would have to wait for another visit. Or, actually, we would have to wait for another visit…! *dizzy* Although we know it’s similar to the Clam Shells at WDW, we REALLY wanted to get all submerged in our favorite subs again for old time sake! Oh well…..like I said, next time…!
We then decided to take a quick jaunt on one of the new (as of ’08) Mark VII Monorails. It was indeed a quick one on Monorail (color-shifting-paint-OOOooooo…! Shiny objects…! *grin*) Orange, all right, but those Mark VII’s are way-cool retro…! I had seen pics of them, of course, but never knew they would look that cool in person. They also have nice outside-facing seating. Sweeeeet! *smilie*
IaSW was next on the agenda (although, we really didn’t have an “agenda”...! *dizzy*). And, yes…..we just had to do it! How can ya’ not do the original? It has a far superior exterior than the WDW version and I just LOVE the outdoor load area! I still, vividly, remember riding it (and other, now long-gone, attractions such as “Adventure Through Inner Space”, “Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland”, etc…) at the tender age of 6 years young, and it’s been a “Small World” ever since…..thanks, Sherman Brothers…! *dizzy* *lol*
After our “…happiest cruise that ever sailed ‘round the world!” we decided to head back to Main Street so DW and DD could do some power shoppin’ ‘cause they had to be back to the bus by 6:30 to go see The Lion King at the Orange County Performing Arts Center. BTW, they said they didn’t run into any “Real Housewives of Orange County” while they were there…..none from the show, anyhow…! *grin*
After our “See y’all later! Have fun!” goodbye with the Girls, we headed back to Space Mountain to see if it was ready to resume countdown again. As we approached, a bit apprehensively and with fingers crossed…..we got the go for boarding! Also, a guy with two 6:15 p.m. - 7:15 p.m. FP’s he didn’t need dropped ‘em on us. That was cool ‘cause it was 6:45-ish, standby was already up to 45 minutes, and our FP’s weren’t good ‘til 7:15! We still ended up with about a 15 minute wait even in the FP return, but that’s a breeze, and we had a good conversation with a guy down from NoCal about him bein’ able to see World of Color testin’ from his hotel room, the Grand Californian I believe, late night/early mornin’, and some other good Disney chat. Then…..LIFTOFF!!! Space Mountain at DL has the tandem ride vehicles instead of the single-seat vehicles at WDW and for some reason the ride just felt a bit more intense than I remember it bein’ at WDW. We got slung around like drunken space monkeys…! *dizzy* *yahoo* *LOL* Maybe it was the overall excitement of the trip, but I don’t think so. It just seemed to feel more fun and intense, yet somehow smoother.
After that, DS and myself started feelin’ the hunger pangs again (musta’ been the “rocket lag”…! *grin*), so we headed right next door to Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port for a coupla’ slices.
After our intergalactic refueling, we headed on back over to Pirates to see if our favorite Scurvy Squid Brains were back to sackin’, pillagin’ and plunderin’ like the Bugger Bilge Rats they be…..they were indeed, mateys!!! It was only about a 15 minute wait and it was another great rum! OOOooooopps…..I meant “run”…! *grin* BTW…..I coulda’ swore I heard ‘em yellin’ “We wants the Redhead and her rum!!!” this time, Lori…! *winking* *smilie*
Off to BTMR next, but the wait was longer than the time ‘til “park closing”, so we decided not to queue up. Next trip…!
After that, we headed to a shop in Frontierland where, earlier, we had seen some t-shirts we liked.
Good gosh! My CM discount REALLY came in handy during this trip! It was the first time I was able to use it in one of our Disney Parks!
The fireworks were just beginnin’ when we were walkin’ outta’ the shop, so we quickly found a pretty good place near the Frontierland hub entrance to watch. It was as fabulously wonderful and emotional as it always is with Disney! Just wish the Girls still wouda’ been there to watch the show with us…..! *cry!*
Then, alas, after the show, we slowly made our way back to Main Street and towards those dreaded closing credits. We stopped and turned around in Town Square to say our final goodbyes for this trip…..while at the same time already talkin’ about plans for our next Disney trip…..y’all ALL know how that goes…! *grin* *winking*
Then, to ease the pain of our exiting *sob, sob…!*, we headed STRAIGHT for the World of Disney store in DTD for a little “grief relief” pin shoppin’…..!!!!!
The End…..-ish…?!!!!! *inquis* *grin* *winking* *smilie*
sounds like an awesome day!
Tiffany~ºoº ~ D23 member
Sufferer of Disney Vacation Depression
97'~French Quarter, 99'~CBR, 01'~Movies, 03'~Music/PORriverside/DCL, 05'~POP, 06'~Movies, 08'~Movies, 09'~Disneyland/ Embassy Suites Irvine/ 10'~Music, 12'~LBV Best Western Disney View
oh i wanna go to DL!
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Pop Century September 2012Chrissy
Thanks for the report. Very entertaining. I was going to be going to DL in August but I had to postpone it. But that leaves it wide open for next year during the EXPO! Curious, what Disney Store do you work at? I work at A Disney Store in Barrie Ontario Canada.
There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow! Just a dream away!
"A Tip of the hat from Dr. Facilier"
"Cause I've got friends on the other side!"
A proud D23 Charter Year member.
And a dedicated Lead Manager at the Disney Store in Georgian Mall, Barrie, Ontario! 3 years! I almost get a Pluto pin!
I tried to make it a bit of a, hopefully, slightly more enjoyable to read "Trip Story" as opposed to just a plain ol' report.
I'm a part-time CM at The Disney Store here in Austin/Cedar Park at Lakeline Mall.
Thanks for askin'! My name is Steve. Nice to meet ya'! Always cool to meet another DS CM!
Sorry about you havin' to cancel your trip, but the EXPO should DEFINITELY make it worth the wait!
Last edited by Dizisit; 07-06-2010 at 08:14 PM. Reason: Added last sentence...!
I just remebered one other little bit o' sillines (at least to us) I was gonna' mention towards the end of the report and totally forgot...
On June 4th while DS and myself were in the air on our way back to Austin from Denver, DW and youngest DD were in the air and on their way back to Austin from LA, and oldest DD was in the air on her way to Miami for the first leg of her trip to The Bahamas...! All 5 of us spread out on 3 different planes all in the air at the same time. It was just a bit of a funny thought to us.....no worries, just silly...!
Question: How many Imagineers does it take to change a light bulb?
Answer: Does it have to be a light bulb?
I liked reading your rough version when you were constructing your trip report. But you did a good job adding the smile words so that the extra excitement could be shared with everyone....
Thanks for great memories!!!
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