So much for that sleeping in until 6 bit. But hey, waking up at 4:30 has its merits - lots of time to write these posts, for one. It didn't help that I ended up going to sleep less than an hour after eating last night's massive multicourse meal. I'd like to say lesson learned but I'm pretty sure that's exactly what will happen on every longhaul flight on this trip. Lesson not even remotely learned?
Since I was already up, I decided it would be a good day to use the Morning Magic Hour that came with my
ticket and head into the park an hour early. That still left me with 3 hours to
kill, so I took advantage of the complimentary Starbucks breakfast and enjoyed
a muffin while reading USA Today. Does anyone read USA Today anywhere other
than at a hotel or airport?
When I arrived at
it immediately became clear that today was not going to be an orderly day at
the parks. Their systems were down. I'm not sure what the problem was, but it
affected a broad range of things from their ability to scan tickets, to the
Fastpass system and even their ability to accept credit cards. Mild disaster.
Later in the day when I tried to get into Disney California Adventure it took
20 minutes just to make it through the turnstiles because they had been reduced
to checking photo IDs.
|If only every morning was a magic morning|
|Never do I feel as weird as when I'm riding Peter Pan alone|
|I can see my house from here...yeah, I just made that joke|
|I forsee a new Facebook icon for me|
|Wish I was an Imagineer so I could put Hidden Mickeys everywhere|
|Alice in Wonderland is a great ride but I literally refuse to ride it solo|
|Wait a second, this doesn't exist in Orlando. Sadly it was down for renovations.|
At that point it was still only 8:30 and I had 30 more minutes of relative peace and quiet in the park as part of the Magic Morning hour. I headed over to the Finding Nemo submarines, located on the former site of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. In Walt Disney World they have a similar ride at EPCOT except that it sucks and no one goes on it, whereas the
Disneyland version is pretty spectacular. I hear that
when the ride first opened you couldn't find a wait less than 60 minutes
because of how slowly it loads. Thankfully that does not appear to be the case
|It's not 20,000 Leagues but it will do|
|Another awesome dark ride that's not at Disney World|
|Absolutely. Fucking. Terrifying. (Expand to see why if you can't otherwise)|
|Little known fact: Wicked Queens can be appeased with pennies.|
|If I told you all my wish then it wouldn't come true, right?|
The morning also involved a snack of mixed berries and a mint julep. Dammit all, why doesn't the
have a Magic Kingdom New Orleans Square
so I can get a non-alcoholic, sugared-up mint julep any time I want?
|Ah, so that's where my students but their papers from|
|We have 999 happy haunts, but there's room for a thousand. Any volunteers?|
|Mint julep. Bonus: Creepy disembodied hand!|
|It would take an emergency to get me into it|
|Remember this one for later|
|I <3 maps|
|Nicest secluded spot in Disneyland|
|Fantastic recreation of the French Quarter|
|This jazz band played during my Cafe Orleans lunch every day|
|Damn straight I'm posting a photo of the fries again!|
|Even better than it looks|
Having sated my need for rides, it was time for some shopping. My plan is to get a pin and a t-shirt at every Disney park on the trip. Here you can see my
purchases. It took 30 minutes in line to get these as they had to write down
every purchase and then call in any credit cards to central processing because
of the system problems.
|Wait a second...what the heck is Hollywood Studios doing in Anaheim?|
|A Disneyland shirt I'd actually wear - not easy to find|
The afternoon entailed trip report writing, doing a little work, a quick nap and a walk to the local Target, conveniently located right across the street from my usual
hotel, the Sheraton Garden Grove. It was awkward seeing the Sheraton; I felt
like I was cheating on it. Look, Sheraton, I love you. It's just the Hilton is
closer, has a better breakfast, and doesn't charge for internet or the awesome
views. Maybe we should just see other hotels for a little while? Y'know, take a
break? Awww, don't be like that, Sheraton. A part of me will always love you
but did you check out the views on the Hilton?
The Target stop involved purchasing a new backpack. I had hoped my old backpack would make it through the trip but it became clear within the first two days that there was no way that was happening. Thankfully Target had basically the exact same backpack, just eight years newer. Thus ends a good run for my old Targus backpack, just a few months after the laptop it was originally purchased to house also bit the dust at the hands (paws?) of my roommate's dog. Goodbye old laptop. Goodbye laptop backpack. You both served me well. Rest with honor.
As a final note, my relatively new laptop has already suffered some damage on the trip and I am a bit concerned. The base of the screen appears to be cracking open. I have the crazy thorough Dell warranty because I am not kind to my laptops, but I hope it can make it through the next six weeks first. Let's hope the luck of the Irish (note: I'm not Irish) is with me.