Monday, 7 September 2015

Vacation Blog Part Three!!!

8:30 AM - now that's a decent night of sleep. A good solid 8 hours with little to no wake-ups during the night. I have a severe case of sleep apnea so sleeping well is quite an achievement for me. I wouldn't go so far as to say I woke up "refreshed" this morning (let's not go nuts) but this is probably as close as I've been in a couple years.

The wife is still asleep and she can stay that way for as long as she likes. Today we have lots to accomplish again but she might as well be rested while we attack DCA.

As I'm sitting on the patio typing this, I hear the toilet flush. Vacation bear is out of hibernation and "The Process (TM)" can begin! The parks are supposed to be very quiet today so hopefully we can get all of DCA done today before we have to be back in our room around 5:30 to prepare for our Fantasy Football draft which starts at 6.

9:30 AM - we are out and on our way back to La Brea for breakfast where we both order exactly the same thing as yesterday. Given the myriad of excellent dining opportunities here you know it must be good if we are doubling up.

After breakfast we head through the front gates of DCA and right over to Soarin' to get a Fastpass before heading over to Screamin' and Toy Story. Screamin' is my favourite coaster anywhere. It's just extreme enough to be thrilling but not so crazy that it makes this old fart dizzy or nauseous. And once again I need to mention that Disney just "gets it" when it comes to wait times. The posted 30 minute wait at Screamin' was about 15 and Toy Story's 45 minute wait was maybe half that. Unlike some theme parks COUGH UNIVERSAL COUGH where a 45 minute posted wait time really means "come back tomorrow", Disney understand the principal of under promising and over delivering. Don't tell your boss or client you can have something to them by noon if you are going to struggle to get it done! Tell them they'll have it by 3 and then when they get it at 1:30 they are thrilled. Common sense.

On the way over to Screamin', we notice that the Fastpass return time for Radiator Springs Racers is already between 9 and 10 pm, which is actually perfect for us as we are having dinner tonight at 8 at the Carthay Circle. We already have Fastpasses for Soarin' though so we can't get another Fastpass until 12:15 which is a bit of a problem. When we share our conundrum with a cast member near the Fastpass area, he promptly goes and gets us two Fastpasses for the ride! Just another example of perfect service here in Disneyland.

After Tracey beats me at Toy Story (an appeal is pending) we walk down the boardwalk where I finally find my new Iphone case, featuring everyone's favourite snowman, Olaf (sorry Frosty). I came here with a broken case expecting to have no trouble finding something cool but it was tough to find a good case for the 5S. I was looking for Jack Skellington but nothing to be found, so Olaf to the rescue.

12:30 PM - on the way to use our Fastpasses for Soarin' we notice that the return time for the Grizzly Rapids inner tube ride is between 4:15 and 5:15 which is also perfect for our timing today as that is just before we would be leaving the park anyway to head back to the room, so since its past the start time for our Soarin' passes we are able to get two more passes for this ride. The first time in my Disney life that I've ever been holding three Fastpasses at once.

We enjoy this version of Soarin' for likely the last time ever as they are changing the movie in the next year to be Soaring Over The World, with better sound and graphics. I'll miss this California based movie though but we are looking forward to the new one. Maybe it will be open in Florida by March.

After a little shopping and picture taking we are hitting a wall of extreme heat. It's crazy hot again today, hotter than we were expecting, so it's time for a bit of down time.

2:30 PM - back in the room to relax for an hour or so until we go back to use our Fastpasses for Grizzly River Rapids. If anyone ever wonders why we always pay the absurd prices to stay here and why we would NEVER dream of staying off-property, this is exactly why. A crazy hot day, 5 hours in the park, we need a short break. We stop at Haagen Dazs again for lunch (as Tracey says, why fuck with perfection???) and head up to the room for a very quick rest. Try doing THAT while staying offsite. It's just not practical.

5:00 PM - back in the room after successfully navigating the Grizzly River Rapids and getting modestly soaked, but not completely drenched. Not that it matters, this is another reason why we stay here....go down to the park in my swimming trunks, sandals and tank top, and get as wet as I get and don't care. No worries about having to walk around the park in squishy shoes or drenched jeans....Tracey calls us "Disney professionals" LOL.

And we get back to the room to this:

Our new Mickey Mouse wine glasses with some of that lovely Oregon Pinot that we picked up at Seatac. Tracey takes her wine into the bath while I update the blog, while we wait for our 6 PM date with Fantasy Football greatness to begin. I log into the app and notice that I pick second to last, and Tracey just one spot in front of me. PFFFFT.

7:50 PM - back to DCA for our reservation at Carthay Circle restaurant. Another fabulous dining experience. We have a terrific waiter, the food is incredible and we have a world class bottle of wine to accompany it. Awesome.

After dinner off to Cars Land to use the Fastpasses we were so generously given this morning. It's a really terrific ride, maybe even better when it's dark. The scenery is breathtaking. We win the race, again. I'm not sure how many times I've been on this ride, 6 or 7, but I'm undefeated which means I'm bucking the odds quite a bit...given my assumption that the ending of the "race" is random. Not that it matters but winning is better than losing at ANYTHING :)

DCA closes at 10 PM tonight so we head across the courtyard to Disneyland to hopefully knock one or two more rides off the list, but everyone else had the same idea and it's really busy. We only manage to get on a few rides that are, well, aimed at a less mature audience. Alice in Wonderland, Mr Toad's Wild Ride (not that wild even with Tracey driving), Pinocchio's Daring Journey (not that daring) and Snow White's Scary Adventures. Scary? Well if you don't know the plot of the movie, I'd say it is. The last scene in the ride shows the witch at the top of a hill about to unleash a boulder onto the 7 dwarves. Then you go through a door and a sign says "...and they lived happily ever after". WOAH. IF I'd never seen the movie I'd be pretty sure at this point that the witch was the hero of the story and had vanquished those pesky little people by crushing them with a rock. Go witch!!

11:30 PM - back to the room as we are exhausted after another full day. Tomorrow is already the last full day of our vacation (WTF??????) so we have to make the most of it!

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