Ah, it’s so pretty! – an American visitor yelled by the Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Here are my memories of our short trip to the land of eternal childhood, Disneyland.
Before leaving, we were wondering if we weren’t crazy to take our small children to such a crowded place, which that they were not old enough to appreciate. For the first few hours, this is exactly how I felt. To Dean’s surprise, Disney’s park (usually less visited in November) was extremely crowded.
I felt like escaping rather than immersing myself in this historical (opened in 1955) adventure park. Later, it turned out that Disney’s new Jedi (Star Wars) attraction opened that time.
My husband strongly let me know that I didn’t understand the situation, and that we had to check in quickly at the hotel and even quicker find our way to the park (our hotel was close by). I preferred to drink coffee and go to the pool.
Dean’s excitement has not changed, even though he has been in Disneyland multiple times. His experience proved very useful, because he knew exactly which rides would be suitable for Rose (and Maya).
Luckily we did drag our double stroller with us, so we could easier maneuver in the crowd of baby prams, wheelchairs, large adults, seniors, family reunions, couples in love, and tourists with older children. The lines to the popular attractions often took 40 minutes.
The next day, the crowd wasn’t as big. We were in much better mood. We joined the queue at 8am and quickly were able to take pictures in front of a huge Christmas tree (at the Disney the festive season begins much earlier), or with the castle in the background – see below.
The character dinner at Goofys Kitchen (Dean’s idea, with early booking) was a huge success. Rose stared at the large, walking, giving high-fives, mascots. Dinner was a Swedish buffet with kid favorites.
Maya was not tired from Disneyland. She looked around and slept in the stroller. For most of Dean’s attractions, he took Rose, and I rather strolled with them. All four of us rode Casey’s Junior train, the Storybook Canal Boats, and sang along at the Enchanted Tiki Room with an almost mandatory pineapple sorbet. Rose and I rode on the Winnie the Pooh, and I rode on Monster’s Incorporated.
Of course, visiting Disneyland with older children is more likely to succeed. We managed to see about half the park (good work out after all these fast foods), and maybe a few percent of the rides. Famous spots like the Haunted Mansion, Splash Mountain, Snow White or Mr Toad’s Wild Ride will have to wait for the next time.
I can’t deny, that at least once it is worth it to see Disneyland. There is something magical about that place. Adults can feel like children, forget about their problems and just look for fun points on the map. My dentist’s assistant told me that she had visited Disneyland 9 times in the past nine years. She took her sick mom there, to lift the mood, to feel like a kid again. Crowds and the Commercialization may keep you away.
At Disneyland I felt more like an American mom. Like thousands of other women, I pushed the baby stroller, I took pictures of my children, looked for the Mickey Mouse. I was content, that when the girls get bigger, the will be able to say that their parents took them to Disneyland. I will also pleasantly remember about our lunch at the wooden Hungry Bear Restaurant in the forest, just next to the Pirates of the Caribbean island.
Dean is planning another trip, maybe this time without the kids? 🙂
After Disneyland, we went to Dean’s dad and sister. We spend two wonderful days in beautiful Newport Beach.
This week we start the holiday season. On Thursday I will celebrate my fourth Thansgiving in the USA:)