Monday, September 4th
This was the morning that we were eligible for early entry because we purchased the three day park hopper pass. Because of the very long day the day before, I wanted to sleep in. Kevin, however, was up bright and early like his normal self, and was out the door without even waking me up.
I got up at about 9:00am, and took my time in getting ready. I got a few things rearranged in preparation for leaving the next day, then grabbed some breakfast. I brought it back to the room and ate while I chatted with my mom for a while. She told me that Steve Irwin had died that morning, which was horrible news, but not news that really surprised me. After breakfast, I showered, got dressed and headed for the park, not even worrying about drying my hair.
I called Kevin slightly before I arrived, and he was just about to go inside the Disneyland - The First 50 Years movie, so I said I would just meet him at the exit. Once I got to the park, the movie had just started so I wandered around Main Street a bit.
The Main Street Train Station
I went up into the train station to get some photos, watched a couple of penny movies in the arcade, then browsed the gift shop at the exit of the movie.
Once I met up with him, our first ride was the Jungle Cruise. While we waited, he said that he'd ridden everything in Fantasyland, most things in Tomorrowland and lots of other stuff during his early entry time! I really wish I could have drug myself out of bed, but I figured that I'd be toast by the end of the night if I didn't get enough sleep. The Jungle Cruise was the same as always, excepting the new piranha scene. It was a nice touch, but not one that really altered the "classicness" of the ride.
Leaving Adventureland, we decided to take a ride on the Sailing Ship Columbia. We had neglected to ride the Columbia on the last trip, so it was a priority this time.
As we rode, we spotted the canoes...the only Disneyland attraction that I don't care to do again! I was exhausted after riding them on the last trip!
The kitchen on the Sailing Ship Columbia
I thought the below decks displays on the Columbia were really cool, and our pirate guide did a great job too! I wish we'd gotten a chance to ride the Mark Twain, but we didn't end up having the time. Again, one more reason to come back!
Kevin wanted to check out the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies show in the Diamond Horseshoe, and since one was coming up soon, we decided to go over there and have lunch before the show. I didn't like the looks of anything on the Diamond Horseshoe menu, so I headed next door to Rancho del Zocalo. I'd heard great reviews of this restaurant, and now I can give one too! After oogling at a man in line who was wearing a kilt, I got a chicken taco salad, and took it back to the Diamond Horseshoe to eat. Kevin had found a table near the back of the main floor, and soon it was show time.
Hearing the description of the show, I wasn't terribly interested in seeing it. I find a lot of comedy of that genre to be pandering and stereotypical, but I didn't feel that way about this show at all! I had a blast! I loved the bit where the main Billy puts in the fake teeth and plays Devil Went Down to Georgia...hilarious! I will most definitely find time in any future Disneyland trip to see these guys perform again!
After the show, we went back into Fantasyland to ride the Storybookland Canal Boats since that was one of the only things there that we hadn't done. While on the ride, we noticed that the Casey Jr. Circus Train was running...it was supposed to be in rehab when we were there, but I guess not. We never got around to riding it though. I don't find the canal boats to be that thrilling of a ride, but since it's the only one like it, I'm sure I'll ride it every time I'm there.
Kevin had been excited to take in a showing of the Snow White musical since that day was the last day it was ever being performed. A show was just about to start when we arrived, so we got seats towards the rear of the theater. Snow White is one of my favorite Disney movies, so I enjoyed the show, but I'm not too sad to see it go. It was good, but not something I'd probably make time for again. Animazement...now *that* was a great show!
We headed back into Toontown again after the show, and got Fast Passes for Car Toon Spin. The standby line said an hour, I think, but the Fast Passes were only for half an hour later. So we wandered around a little bit, reliving a few funny moments from the trip in 2001.
Kevin played with the talking mailbox...
I got a barbell dropped on my foot...
Kevin prank called Minnie Mouse, then we decided to get in line to meet Mickey. We hadn't found him in either park yet, and you just have to get Mickey hug when you're at Disneyland! His house was so cute...I don't recall going through it last time...and the wait wasn't all that bad.
Me relaxing in Mickey's house
Kevin playing Mickey's piano
After getting our hug and our picture with the Big Cheese, we perused the main gift shop, where we each made some small souvenir purchases. I got a nice photo album, some stickers and some magnets, and Kevin bought a few odds and ends. By the time we were done, our Fast Passes were valid.
Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin was closed during the last trip because it was right after the little girl had gotten hit by the ride vehicle. So it was a completely new experience for me, and one that I thought was pretty good. I've never seen the movie, so I didn't really understand what was going on, but I thought it was fun nonetheless. Despite trying really hard, I wasn't able to control the spinning on the car. I'd try to spin it, but I had to pull or push so hard that I eventually gave up on it.
At this point, we split up for a bit. Kevin wanted to go back to DCA and see the Aladdin show again, and I wanted to reride a few rides so I could video tape them. Once he was off, I got in line for the Tomorrowland side of the Matterhorn again. I called Jahan and chatted with him through my wait, which only ended up being about 10 minutes. I got great video of it! We were also racing with another bobsled, which hadn't happened on my previous two rides.
While I was there, I rerode Alice in Wonderland, then Mr. Toad, then Pinocchio, video taping each one. Most of the video didn't come out well, but at least the sound recorded well. I wanted to run back over to DCA for a bit to ride Screamin' again, so I started towards the front of the park. I decided to stop and watch the First 50 Years movie on the way out, which I really enjoyed. It was pretty much just a humorous timeline of the changes Disneyland had gone though...I'm glad it wasn't a sappy tear jerker like One Man's Dream! (which I love, but don't watch too often since it's a more emotional film)
The Walt and Mickey photomosaic at the First 50 Years entrance
Disneyland opening day model in the First 50 Years display
I started to leave the park, but just then the train pulled in, so I ran up to the train station to get a ride. I figured that if I didn't ride it then, I wouldn't get a chance to. And is it me, or did they change the train? I could swear that in 2001, all the seats on the train faced the right side...so all the guests were facing outward as you went through the Small World facade. Maybe I'm wrong, but I really don't remember it being a normal train. After the ride was over, I left and went back to DCA.
My only real objective at DCA was to ride California Screamin' again since I like it so much. I pretty much bee-lined for the Pier, stopping only to take photos along the way.
I rode in the front seat for my ride, and it was once again a great ride. I thought about going back around for another ride, but ultimately I decided not to.
I called Sean, and he and Pamela had already met up with Kevin, and they were having dinner at Red Rockets Pizza Port. I assumed that someone would have called me when it was time for dinner, but I was wrong. I left the park, and when I got inside Disneyland, I called again, and they said that they were about to get in line for Pirates. I got them to wait for me, then scurried over there as fast as I could. The wait was significantly shorter for this ride than the first!
After the ride, I was really hungry, but I didn't just want to grab a snack somewhere since I was wanting to stop for a full meal.
Kevin said that he wanted another mint julep, so when we got to the mint julep bar, I got a Coke. I was so hungry and thirsty that I downed my Coke almost immediately, so we headed into the counter service restaurant to get a refill. Afterwards, we browsed the Disney Gallery, and oogled over all the stuff that's too expensive for us to own! Sean and Pamela are collecting these miniatures of Main Street, and you can buy a big table to put them all in to display them...they were really awesome, but way too large for something I would collect!
We'd picked up Fast Passes for Indiana Jones earlier at some point, so we wanted to use them before the fireworks. Sean and Pamela said that they'd go stake out good seats in front of the castle, so we rode while they held spots for us. We didn't even need the Fast Passes since there was no line, so we kept them as souvenirs.
We found Sean and Pamela directly in front of the castle, which were perfect fireworks viewing seats! I, however, had had more than my fill of fireworks already, so I wanted to go hit up a few more rides before the night was over. Sean decided to wait with Kevin and watch the fireworks, while Pamela and I went off to ride some more. Having some time to kill, we decided to ride Astro Orbiter. The line was really long, but it wasn't so bad since we were able to chat through the whole wait. Afterwards, we rode Buzz with two Fast Passes that Sean had handed off to us earlier.
With fireworks having not even started yet, we opted to ride the Autopia. The wait time was posted at 20 minutes, but we ended up waiting about 45 minutes instead! At one point, Sean called to say that the fireworks had been cancelled due to winds, and that they'd meet us after our ride. I really like the Autopia...definitely my favorite miniature car ride because of...
...the off-road section and the hot rusted nuts! The ride was very dark, and I could barely tell what any of the scenery was, so I almost missed the hot rusted nuts!
After the ride, we found the boys right where they said they'd be. I mentioned that I still had not had dinner and that I was about to starve, so we decided to stop in the Main Street bakery on the way out since that was just about the only thing still open. I ended up getting a turkey sandwich, a huge chocolate chocolate chip muffin and a glass of water. It was all great, and almost too much to finish! Sean and Pamela split a giant cinnamon roll, and we all sat in the Carnation Cafe while we finished our goodies.
By the time we were all done, the park was almost empty, so we took the opportunity to get some shots of the Main Street lights with very few people around.
The Crystal Arcade
Main Street at night
Most of them came out really well! I was quite surprised and impressed with myself! hehe On the way out, we found Paul Pressler's commemorative brick...
...and took a few pictures of the DCA lights. We wandered out through Downtown Disney, but didn't stop in any of the shops, and soon made it back to the car.
Sean and Pamela
Once at the hotel, we bid our friends farewell until next year, and headed to the room. I tried to pack up a bit of stuff, but that didn't really work too well, so I just went on to sleep.