Sunday, August 9, 2015

Day Three at Oceanside: Disneyland

I looked at the bathroom mirror's reflection of my pillow creased face, exhaled slowly, and whispered, "Okay Brent, this is gonna be one looooong day." It was 6:10 am.

The Disneyland 35th anniversary watch was a promotional product that Kodak film gave away back in 1990. Allegedly collectible, I found this watch at the thrift store for two bucks, and a battery from Walgreen's got it going. I thought it would be fun to wear it while we visited Disneyland.

We entered the park at 8:34 am.

The drive to Anaheim took an hour. We spent 15 minutes on the shuttle bus, and then we were standing in line for the bag check. That sucked 19 minutes of our lives away. Our line might have moved faster, but a mother in front of us got caught trying to sneak in a "selfie stick", despite the "No Selfie Sticks Allowed" pamphlet that was handed to everyone. I kinda hated her for slowing us down, but standing in a long line surrounded by sweaty strangers was going to be the theme for the day. Better get used to it.

The one attraction that didn't have a line was the Haunted Mansion. The time slot said it was a five minute wait, but it wasn't even that long. We just walked right in.

The spooky narration that welcomed us into the mansion scared Charlotte, but as the ride progressed she warmed up. When the ride was over she shouted, "I want to do it AGAIN!" This also would be a common theme to the day (tears, then cheers). Here we are celebrating our survival of the Haunted Mansion.

The best part of the Haunted Mansion was that Charlotte was there, and I could experience this through her eyes as well as my own. It was as if five-year-old Brent and 46-year-old Brent were riding it together for the first time. Both of us had a blast.

With my one goal accomplished, the rest of the day was up to Daphne and Charlotte. I was just along for their rides.

Exploring Tarzan's tree house was kinda fun.

But boating into the mouth of Monstro was more exciting.

Daphne took one for the team and rode with Char on our only "go around" ride. Thanks, babe.

Disney had the castle all decked out for their 60th anniversary.

We thought that "Pixie Hollow" was going to be a ride, but it turns out it was a meet and greet with Tinker Bell and various pixie pals. I've watch the new Pixie Hollow movies with Char, so I recognized this pixie as Fawn. I'm not proud of that. We gave her a hard time about bringing the NeverBeast into Pixie Hollow, but she argued that in the end the NeverBeast saved everyone. Charlotte conceded that point, but as we walked away I told Fawn I thought she had just gotten lucky. She laughed.

We then walked ten feet to meet Tinker Bell.

We visited Toontown next. I'm sorry, Mickey, but Toontown is by far the seediest part of Disneyland. The ground was full of litter and the concession stand employees were one step away from being rude.  This visit was our first and last.

Char sat in a pretend car in Toontown.

But the "real" cars in Autotopia were much cooler to drive.

In all, I think we rode about 17 rides at Disneyland. That a lot of rides and a lot of standing around on a hot summer day. We were a bit nervous about how Char would handle the long lines, but she was a champ. She didn't complain once, and that's more than I can say. We stuck around for the "Paint the Night Parade", but we were all getting tired.

We didn't wait to watch the fireworks. We still had an hour's drive before we could rest, and I wanted to get out of Disneyland as quickly as we could. Luckily, the lines to leave hadn't begun, and we could hop right on the closest shuttle bus. Once we got seated, I checked my watch: 9:34 pm. We were in Disneyland almost exactly 13 hours. No wonder we were tired. Charlotte was asleep before our car was started.

I smiled at the bathroom mirror's reflection of my sun browned face, exhaled slowly, and whispered, "Okay Brent, we made it." It was 11:10 pm. 

Tomorrow, we beach!

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