3 days at Disneyland is quite enough, thank you very much. I have now had my lifelong fill of the Happiest Place on Earth in the Year of a Million Dreams – or aprox. 1 per 500 people by BigShot’s calculations.
The lilEinstein finally got the hang of the whole experience about halfway through the 2nd day when he realized the animatronic buzz lightyear was actually not real. It took him a bit to figure that out, and after our last trippedDisney, wherein his first ride was the hellishly apocalyptic Mr. Toad’s terrible Ride, taking us into the hot bowels of satan, it was a tough sell to get my little guy back on any rides for this time (he never rode another after Mr. Toad on his first venture into Disney’s land, making it an expensive walkabout instead of an amusementpark jaunt). This trip, we took it easy the first day and waited until the afternoon to try Pirate’s of the Caribbean. He was freaked the first go-round, but we talked through the ride and afterwards about how nothing bad was going to happen to him because Disney really, really wants everyone to come back for more. He ended up visiting Cap’n Jack Sparrow 3 more times after begging us all to wait in line, again. His D-buddy wanted to go on the Haunted Mansion tour, which I recalled scared the bejeezuz outa me when I was a kid, so we worked our way up to that and scheduled it for the last day of our joint-family adventure.
ePrince was the ole pro, having been so many times before with his biodad and friends… Fortunately, he got to go on all the rides he wanted with D-buddy’s daddy and that made it a good trip for him too. While gone, BigShot learned to text message and then surprised me and the boys by flying in on Tuesday evening to join us for our last day. That was really about all he could stand of the uberfantasy anyway so it was fairly pleasant for everyone.
Excepting that I noticed something funny about Disneyland; everyone loses their happiestplaceonearthveneer at about 4pm. Not a little, a lot. Kids who are sparkly and fresh in their bestdisneyoutfits are ragged and mucky and coated in sugar and bad manners by late afternoon. Parents who are so excited and joyed at the idea of sharing DisneyoutLandishness with their children are so over it by noon and downright feisty by beer:30. Even the employees are a lot less jovial and patient in the afternoon than they are in the sunshiny hopefullness of the morning. Our party was not immune to this phenomenon either. On the last day, at around 4pm, D-buddy’s mom waited in line to get a family portrait with PumpkinKingJack and his lovely Sally but was turned away; then, waited another 45 minutes in line for another chance, only to be told that waiting at the ‘front’ of the line was now really the ‘back’ of the line and there would not be time for pictures. Needless to say, it was looking like it was going to get ugly; yet thankfully, ugly was a near miss, and we got the pic! But the least joyful moment came quickly afterwards…
Some 7 or 8 year old kid came hauling ass out of the Haunted Mansion line and climbed up on the wrought iron gate out of adult reach screaming at the top of his lungs that he was not going in. At first it was pretty amusing – until everyone realized that his parents were not as equally amused as we spectators to the scene. They were pissed and cursing at him for being so afraid. Rather than deal with his fear and calm the boy, dad climbed up and roughly pulled him down, hurting him in the process. His mom grabbed him by the arm and yanked him off out of sight. So we sadly walked away, hoping all would be well. That boy must have been 1 of the 500 hundred to have a ‘dream come true’ palling a nightmare over his adventureland experience. Our families stopped to regroup, figure out dinner plans and our return drive home, when I looked over to see that mom beating the crap out of that little boy between two garbage cans. She punched him in the face right before my eyes and I couldn’t help but state loudly that children should NOT be beaten in the happiest place on earth. She picked him up, carried him back towards the Haunted Mansion and I stood there in a state of shock and horror. lilEinstein wanted to know how anyone could do that to their kid at all, let alone in Disneyland. And I began to cry. I couldn’t help it. I couldn’t even hold it in. Terrible flashbacks and memories of my own haunted childhood flooded so fast I couldn’t even think through it for a moment. And just when I thought I had to do something to help the boy (and maybe his parents too), that boy superwhammy kicked his mother in the face breaking her nose and running away into MardiGras fakery. And she finally gave up on the Haunted Mansion; you could see that the battle was over and yet I knew that despite the small victory, the war in their family would be raging on.
So now it is very nearly 1307 days until Paris, France… and I think AuntPepsi and I will skip ParisMicky while we are there!