This weekend we took a trip to Disneyland with a group of friends from work and we drug our action junkie friend Marcia along for the ride, too. It was Marcia’s first trip ever to Disneyland. Now, before you think she’s lived a sheltered life, you need to realize she was born in Minnesota, now lives in Las Vegas and has been to California 2 times in her life. Once to San Diego and once to
Santa Barbara Santa Monica. Believe me, she’s anything but sheltered.
The trip started out by me taking the day off on Friday. Chris, the kids and I left early for Cali. Marcia was working, so we flew her in and picked her up at the airport in Long Beach. It may sound crazy to have done it this way, but it was the only way for us to be able to get there in time to go to Captain Kidd’s for dinner on Friday. In our minds, it was totally worth it. Plus, this allowed us time to get the kids over to Grandma’s house for a visit as well. See, we aren’t entirely crazy.
After dinner with friends and family on Friday we headed back to my sister’s house in Lomita to crash for the night. Disneyland opens at 8 am on the weekends and we wanted to be there when the gates opened so we could cram in as many rides as possible before the crowds started to grow too long.
We got up around 5:30, showered and were out the door by 6:45. We stopped for some McDonalds (breakfast of champions) and made it to the parking lot of Disneyland by 7:30. We got a killer parking spot and headed for the front door. Picked up some tickets, took a few quick photos and then waited no more than 5 minutes to get in to Disney. I’d say our timing was pretty much awesome!
We rushed in the gates, secured a locker and then hit Space Mountain. Total time in line: 5 minutes. Next it was Star Tours which had no line at all. We then crossed the park to try and ride Indiana Jones. Unfortunately it was broken down at that time, but they said it would be back online later. We hit up Pirates of the Caribbean (no line) and then the Haunted Mansion which is all decked out with Nightmare Before Christmas garb for the holiday season. 4 rides in under an hour and we were cruising!
We made sure to get Marcia on all the “important” rides at the park. She rode Dumbo, the tea cups, Matterhorn, Big Thunder Mountain and several others. We took dozens of pictures and you can see most of them over here.
One of the rides we rode on with the entire group was Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blaster. If you’ve never rode it before, it’s like being in a giant video game. You ride around and shoot targets with a laser gun and score points for hits. While in line there was a fairly heated discussion about who was going to end up with the highest score. There were 10 or 12 of us at the time, and almost all of us said that we were going to be the winner. Rob and Matt both scored in the 90 thousand point range. That’s pretty good, for a couple of beginners. Those scores were only good enough for spots #2 and #3. With a score of just over 167 thousand, I’m happy to say, I kicked their ass. Even though I took nearly 200 photos that day, this right here may be the most important one.
Oh, one final tid-bit. Before we got to the park, we had been told by a few people that since it was Marcia’s first time to the park, we needed to stop by City Hall on Main Street and pick her up a “First Time” button. As we rode in on the tram we told everybody within ear shot that it was her first time. 2 or 3 of the cast members also mentioned City Hall for the first time button. After our initial rush to hit some rides, we stopped back by City Hall. Chris and Marcia waited in a LONG line to get in. When they reached the front the lady explained that hey stopped making the first time buttons a long time ago. Instead they gave her a “Happy Birthday” button but wrote the word “un-” on it. It was supposed to say “Happy Un-Birthday”, but they wrote it in the wrong spot so instead it said, “Un-Happy Birthday” which seemed really funny to me. Almost as funny as having every cast member for the remainder of the day, along with SEVERAL park visitors, yell out “Happy Birthday” to her every chance they got. Ahh, good times.
We had a great day at the park. It’s always fun to hang out with friends from work AWAY from work. I hope we get to do it again real soon!