So I return from the happiest place on earth. How was it, you ask? I've been amusing myself by telling people it was uplifting, which it was, but in more ways that I intended.
It was awesome to get away with the family, to explore Disneyland with my kid who has been to Disneyland but once before in comparison to my 30 or so times, and to see it through his fresh little eyes. It was really neat to see the improvements to the California Adventure park. I dig Disneyland. I'm one of those people that tears up at the end of Fantasmic, no matter how many times I've seen it. (Go ahead and roll your eyes; I can take it.)
In all those ways, it was uplifting.
It was also uplifting in the sense that Shawn and I caught a flu bug and both up-ended the contents of our stomachs several times over the course of the weekend.
I've been at Disneyland for a bomb scare before. I've been there in the rain. I've been evacuated off a boat on Pirates of the Carribean and out through secret exits in the cursed caves below. I've been stopped on Small World for what seemed like a very, very long time. But I've never thrown up in planter box in Fantasyland before. That was new.
To be fair, I can't possibly be the only person to accomplish this feat. Think about the poor flowers surrounding the tea cup ride. Thank god they can't really talk.
It hit me first. Friday morning, our first day in the park, I went from feeling fine, to feeling queasy, to visiting the afore-mentioned planter box, to staring at the ceiling of our hotel room. The next day I was on the mend and back to the park with the kiddo, and Shawn took his turn staring up at the ceiling of the hotel room. Our son, if you'll recall, was having tummy troubles three days prior, had it out of his system and was right as rain for the duration. Our immune systems don't bounce back quite so quickly as his, but even still, it was short lived and we managed to make his Disneyland trip unbroken and get in a fair amount of fun and exploration ourselves as well.
So all that part is unique but hardly interesting, so let's accentuate the positive, as the man says, and move on to the fun stuff.
Also new to us this year was the recently added Cars Land in California Adventure. As my household contains a seven-year-old boy, you can imagine that the cast of the Cars and Planes films are popular around here. Disney did a good job on recreating Radiator Springs and emphasizing the Route 66 feel as opposed to the nascar route. They also introduced a ride that does a good job of blending a Fantasyland-style dark ride with a little bit of the speed and excitement of an E-ticket. I would have liked a little more time here, and it would have been cool to check it out after dark when all the neon is lit up. Something to look forward to next time.
They've also retooled the entrance to the California Adventure park, and with good success, I think. It's starting to feel more like it belongs in the Disney family.
Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters still maintains the number one spot on the kiddo's list as best ride ever. I went on Star Tours another half dozen times as still have not gotten to be the rebel spy, but I remain hopeful for the future. We discovered that if you watch the fireworks at Small World instead of in front of the castle, you get a great view and and no real crowds. (Imagine breezing in 5 minutes before the fireworks start and finding a bench to sit on with a good view, eh? That's more like it.) I still love Pirates of the Carribean but can't help a little wistful longing for the way it was when I was a kid.
Because, at least for Shawn and I, our functional time in the park was less than expected, there were many things we didn't get around to this time, but I found myself not minding so much. We'll be back in a year or two, and Space Mountain will still be there. We got the important moments in.