Thursday, August 15, 2013

Disneyland

I went to Disneyland by myself today. I had never been there alone before and since I have an annual pass, I decided to see how different it would be solo. I knew it wouldn't be weird or uncomfortable. I go places by myself all the time – the beach, the movies, Portugal. Hmm. Maybe later in the month I'll blog about that trip. It's a pretty good story. I wholeheartedly recommend going to a European country alone. One of the two or three best vacations of my life. But I digress (there's a shocker).


Anyway, the going alone part was no big deal. However, I did something else – something crazy for me. I checked in on Facebook and Twitter from the Toy Story parking lot (Woody 12B) and then didn't log back onto any social media site for the rest of the day. People who know me are at this moment rubbing their eyes and rereading the previous sentence. That's right. I VOLUNTARILY went socially incommunicado (I almost wrote socially commando) for six full hours. I'd love to tell you it was because I wanted to “be present” and enjoy my day. I suppose I could tell you that; it would be a crock of shit though. I knew I had a blog post to write when I got home tonight and I didn't want everyone suffering from Disneyland Fatigue Syndrome or I'd have had to think of something different to write about.

Even considering the ulterior motive, it's still a bit surprising I was able to pull it off. I mean I had way better reasons (seven voices in my head) to stop doing crystal and I kept going for more than year from that point. More shocking was the fact that it wasn't even that hard. I just did it. [Editor's note: Just because I did it this once doesn't mean people can try to insist I do it for other occasions. The response to that is Bite Me.]

So what is Disneyland like when there's no one to answer to and no one to share the experience with? It's kind of cool. I wouldn't do it all the time, but it was a nice change up. Here are some of the highlights.

The last three times I've gone to Disneyland I've thought I'd go to Magic Kingdom first for a change and finish at California Adventure. It never happens. The line to get into MK is always (and I'm not exaggerating – although I'm horrible at estimating so maybe I am exaggerating) 20-25 times as long as the line to get into CA. I have no idea why either. CA is awesome.


Bad news
First of all, it has Carsland. If I could live in any Disney town, land or village it would definitely be Radiator Springs. No contest. I was never big on the forest so I certainly wouldn't live with the dwarfs. Plus most of the places Disney characters live are riddled with witches, ogres and other villainous cretins. Radiator Springs is pretty low key. Except for the Radiator Springs Racers. I figured as a single rider, I probably could get through the line in a half hour. Plus, the wait for Tower of Terror was only 13 minutes (not that I went on it, that's what was on the sign), so how long could the wait for the racers be? Two hours. Plus, there were so many people crowded around both the stand-by and the fast pass lines that I couldn't even get close enough to ask how long it would be for a single rider. I decided to mosey. When I have someone to talk to, I can wait as long as I have to for that ride. But alone, with no Facebook to keep me company, there was no way.


Racers or no racers, CA still rocks. I headed over to Soarin' Over California. LOVE LOVE LOVE Soarin'. Nothing out of the ordinary happened there though. The real news is at the Grizzly River Run. That's another ride where you can expect to wait a while, especially on a hot day. I timidly walked up and asked the cast member if there was a single rider line for it. Yes. You get your single rider ticket and go in through the exit all the way to the very front of the line and wait for there to be an empty seat on one of the boats. Every friggin' boat has an empty seat. I waited about 47 seconds. SCORE. I ended up doing that again before I left CA.

Then I did what has to be the gayest thing a gay man can do (and I'm not even going to exclude gay sex from that statement). Gay gay gay gay gay. I went on Ariel's Undersea Adventure. By myself. I love that ride. So much that I took video of each segment. Is there a word that is gayer than gay, because I think I need it right now.
video

Then I went into the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail. The cool thing about being alone is you can do things that would be totally lame to even suggest if you were with someone. Redwood Creek is one of those things. But it was a nice little respite, and Shazam! There are corners in there where there is shade and quiet. There are kids 50 feet away, but I had a fabulous little moment of solitude before heading back out.

After three glorious hours in CA, I decided it was time to head over to MK. If CA is a place where you can steal a minute of calm, MK is where serenity goes to die. To be tortured, disemboweled and decapitated really. Now, these are ostensibly the same people that are milling about CA not bothering a soul. In the MK, it's like an entire country of people raised by wolves. They're pushing, cutting you off, rolling their strollers over your foot. One kid (probably 16 or so) walked backwards right the hell into me. Going fast. And then turned around like he was stunned that there was some obstacle blocking his path. I wanted to just be OK with it, but my eyes had a different idea. Fortunately, I think adolescents are too self-absorbed to be affected by “the look”. But his mother saw it.

On top of the rudeness, there is no single rider line for Space Mountain. Bite me Mr. Disney. There is, however, one for the Matterhorn. So I did that instead. Then I went and had the chicken dinner at the Plaza Inn. Seriously, if you only spend money on one thing when you're at Disneyland, spend it on the chicken dinner. For 14 bucks they give you a mountain of chicken that resembles the Matterhorn, with mashed potatoes, gravy, a biscuit and green beans. I honestly don't know what the green beans are doing there. There's already way too much food and I'm certainly not filling up on vegetables when I have fried chicken sitting in front of me. I was so hungry that I scarfed the whole thing before it occurred to me to take a picture. No need to fear though. Google images to the rescue. Check this shit out.


I was pretty much done for after that, but I wandered around and did more of those things I would never do with other people – Sleeping Beauty's Castle, the Mickey Mouse animated shorts (Laurel and Hardy, who I'm pretty sure were real people, were in one of the cartoons), Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln. All fun to do when you go to Disneyland so often that you can waste a trip on whatever you want. I finished up in the Disneyland art gallery. Then I went over to City Hall to see if I could buy a stamp. I got a postcard for my niece and nephew and I saw a mailbox there so I figured I'd mail it before I left. The mayor of Disney (or whoever works at City Hall) told me they don't sell stamps anywhere in the park.

But there's a mailbox right there. What the hell is that for? Do people come to Disneyland with their car insurance bill (already stamped) and just drop it in the box there? So now I have to find a stamp somewhere. God knows when those poor kids will be getting their postcard. I'll probably end up hand delivering it to them.


One last thing. I had no intention of going onto any social media sites, but I was trying to text my boyfriend and send him some pictures and videos throughout the day. What a fruitless endeavor that was. I have no idea what Sprint did to piss Disneyland off, but I'm pretty sure I'd have better data service inside a lead box.

If you got this far into the post, god bless ya. I hope you enjoy the pictures and videos.



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