Tuesday, May 15.
After battling my West Coast circadian rhythms, I managed to haul myself out of bed just before 7AM. At one point during my wake-up routine, I starting singing "Tale as old as song / song as old as rhyme / Beauty and the Mime", which meant that I got to fast forward the movie in my head an imagine villagers storming a dark castle chanting, "Kill the Mine! / Kill the Mime!" And giggling. (Mark thinks this is not funny and just plain weird.)
We drove from the condo, took a short ferry ride, and managed to get to The Magic Kingdom just after it opened at 9AM. The Magic Kingdom is one of my favorite parks because of the iconic Disney Castle in the center, through which one can see a carousel. OK, and there are monorails.
We rode the Small World ride; I like how they managed to do so much without computers or special digital effects. And I like the squealing can-can dancers. I especially like how they do the suns. But I wonder how much of the strength of the Small World ride works because it's the ride that we as children remember.
We did the Peter Pan ride. We managed to go twice, and I saw a lot more the second time through. I appreciated the use of black backsides of clouds and creative sail placement to hide the fact that there were other sailboat gondolas zigzagging much closer to ours that we probably realized in a space much smaller than it seemed.
We did the Splash Mountain ride, and I was really grateful for the Fast Pass option as walked by the folks in the really long line.
The Haunted House was fun... although, I sort of liked it more seven years ago. Maybe I was reliving the ride forty years ago when I was on the ride seven years ago. This time, maybe I was in a different head space, or maybe the sound was different. I think they've toned the ride down in terms of things popping out of boxes and the visual ghost effects have improved. Maybe this time around I really wanted to just stop and look at the details of the set. I think the best part of the Haunted House was the interactive graveyard--if you touched different instruments on a musical headstone different instruments would play. I also liked the headstone bookshelf.
We visited The Hall of the Presidents. I remembered someone telling me long ago that when Abraham Lincoln stands up out of his chair, it's a chilling moment. They were right.
Keeping in mind Nina's advice to look around for writing ideas, the only thing that kept repeating was Difficult Parenting Moments. The Magic Kingdom attracts many families with small children, and sometimes the kids get tired, the parents get frustrated, and around noon the blood sugar levels crash, which culminates in the moment when the adult's competency as a parent is called into question. Probably the least worrisome was the imperious mother getting into a "Nuh-uh," argument--with park eviction as the parent's trump card--with her defiant pre-teen son.
I suppose the other writing idea comes from the ibis and cranes in Adventure Land. While most seemed to be fine avian specimens, the ones that I saw up close and personal were the shabby looking ones hanging out in the picnic area scavenging scraps from folks eating fast food. They looked like there was something wrong with their feathers; they seemed to be falling out and dirty. The crane had red skin showing on its neck, and the ibises were picking at the mostly meatless bones from one couple's fried ribs basket.
Today's observation about Disney is: Which came first, Disney or the Wedding Industry? I mean the Wedding Industry works hard to instill the notion of a Special Day filled with memories. And Disney instills the notion that one documents one's Special Day with photographs, autographs (which are like guest books), and personal wishes coming through.
And, yes; we did see several newlyweds at Disney World.