Our first SoCal morning dawned grey and cool, but none of our party were deterred; we were spending our first day in Disneyland! The hotel was a 20 minute walk from the park and that served as a great warm-up for the miles and miles and miles of walking that were to come. Once through the gates, the three kids were all begging to go on their favourite rides first.
“Tower of Terror!”
This was the kids first ‘real’ roller coaster ride, (and my first in over 25 years) and they had a blast! “Can we go again? Can we go again?” they begged. The stock answer throughout the day was, “Yes, but not today.” The rides of Tomorrowland beckoned and we got off the plan to experience a few before the crowds surged. Chevron's Autopia ride is the most realistic, especially the part where you are stuck in gridlock for 15 minutes at the end of the ride. Thanks for this glimpse of the future Walt! The irony is how quaint the “rides of tomorrow” seem now. Even the futuristic shuttle in the docking port of Space Mountain seems anachronistic in NASA’s post-shuttle days.
Speaking of Space Mountain, I remember going on that ride when I was 11 and praying it would end with the fervour of a Baptist minister. However, taking the kids on it 34 years later, I put on a brave face admitting only to mild nervousness. Inside, however, I was battling butterflies the size of Apache helicopters. My 7 year old daughter was keen to ride on her own, so I did a gut check and loaded aboard with a grin. And it was AWESOME!!!! I exorcised the demons of 34 years in 90 seconds and am willing and able to ride Space Mountain any time.
As for the 3-D version of “Captain Eo”, only the most ardent Michael Jackson adherent could possibly enjoy this atrocity. The story of Michael Jackson freeing Angelica Houston and her minions from their Borg-like enslavement through music would make even Star Trek: Deep Space 9 fans laugh. And this film abomination was the creation of the directors “Star Wars” and the Godfather Saga? The Disney corporation must have been holding captive the children of Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas to keep them working. Avoid this ride like the Sarlacc in Tatooine’s Great Pit of Carkoon.
We put the hammer down and rode everything we could well past our normal supper. By 7:30 I was more than ready to get out of the park. I needed food, but I needed some quiet even more. The rides are loud, the crowds are loud and there is auditory stimulus coming through speakers hidden in lamps, trees, rocks and squirrels everywhere.
We never made it to ToonTown as Vern suggested and there are still areas of Adventureland and Tom Sawyers’ Island still to explore. But bed (and a foot massage for Mrs. Trooper) await.