Disneyland in 14 hours. A thousand word essay. Sorry, guys.

Last Friday Sarah, Lauren, Corey, Patrick and I went to the most magical place on earth…. Drum roll, please…. DISNEYLAND (DL)!! It was definitely one of the best days that I have had since I have been in California!
We left Oakwood at 7:30 am and made it to Anaheim by 8:30. Once we arrived in Anaheim, we drove to a rather sketchy office building to pick up our discounted $50 Parkhopper tickets that I found on Craig’s List… By 9:00 am we were parked in “Daisy 2”, and by 9:15 am, we were in the park! Since I have lived in Orlando my entire life, and also considering that I am a HUGE Disney World (DW)-goer, I knew exactly how to get the most out of our day. I knew we’d have to be organized, energized and determined. I knew we’d have to wrestle through the crowds of children and families and knock down whomever got in our… Okay, well maybe not all that, but you get the idea. I grabbed a map at the entrance and picked out the big rides that we would need to go on first before the crowds started pouring into the park. We got fast passes for Indiana Jones and Space Mountain and while we were waiting for the time to pass until we could use them we rode the Matterhorn, Splash Mountain, and Thunder Mountain. Soon after all these decisions had come into play, I was dubbed with the nickname, “Mom”… Well somebody had to do it!
The Matterhorn was lame. It was a bad/not as cool version of Expedition Everest and you had to straddle the person who was in front of you and share a seat belt. I guess Walt didn’t care much about personal space. Splash Mountain was pretty much the same as DW, and Thunder Mountain was kind of lame too. After going on those three rides I kind of slowed down to take DL in a little more. The castle and Main Street USA were a considerably smaller than the DW ones that I had grown up seeing. They were cute and charming, but kind of disappointing. It was cool to go on Indiana Jones because they don’t have a ride like that one in DW. That ride was pretty sweet. After riding those four rides, we headed to CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE! Side note: Since getting the Disney Channel in 5th grade and watching all of the little shorts on California Adventure being built, it has been a dream of mine to go, and at 11:45 am That. Dream. Finally. Became. A. Reality. Hey, Disney’s slogan isn’t “We’re dreams come true” for nothing!
Once again, I grabbed a map and scouted out the “MUST RIDE” attractions. We met up with Corey, who got in free through his Disney internship. (Lucky.) California Adventure is BEAUTIFUL, much like the state it is designed after! The park is divided into California themes and locations: Hollywood, NorCal, Wine Country and SoCal Beach piers. We walked around for a little bit and ended up in the back of the park where there were awesome carnival themed rides, games and food. It reminded me of a vintage Santa Monica pier. We got fast passes for the roller coaster and then went on a ride that looked like a giant high striker and we were the bell that gets hit to the top! After the rubber mallet/ striker/ free fall ride, we rode the swings. There were a couple of little girls from a summer camp program who weren’t going to be able to ride the swings because they were too small to ride them by themselves, so Glover and I, a.k.a. the good Samaritans, volunteered to ride with them (… good thing they were little brats). We then headed to Hollywood, where we went on Lauren’s favorite ride of the day, TOWER of TERROR! (Personally, I liked the DW TOT better). We then got super delicious Margaritas and rode California Screamin’, the wooden pier themed roller coaster TWICE! Yeah, it was that much fun. Corey had gotten a few VIP passes to go see Aladdin the Musical so we saw that show. It had a lot of cool technical aspects, but overall it was TERRIBLE! So terrible in fact, that the second it was over, I insisted that we leave the park to get as far away from that theatre as possible and head back over to Disneyland. It was then that I fell in love. Space Mountain. Words cannot describe how awesome that ride was! So much better than the one at DW!! I liked it so much that I wanted to sneak on it again, and it almost worked!… almost. After my mind was blown, we realized we should probably eat to regain our energy for more Disney fun time. We stopped for some pizza, shopped around a little (I got a sweet Star Wars shirt) and then headed to Pirates of the Caribbean and The Haunted Mansion. They were in the New Orleans themed area of Disneyland. So cool! We then snuck onto Indiana Jones again so Corey could ride it this time and THEN went BACK to California Adventure where we got some more margaritas, started a HUGE awesome dance party in Hollywood during the GLOW FEST RAVE (everything was black lit) and rode Tower of Terror one more time. By then it was almost 11pm and we knew it was time to head home and reflect on our incredible day. At so many points throughout the day we were laughing to the point of tears. We got back to Oakwood around midnight-almost 14 hours total at Disney.
Every time I think about last Friday, I smile. I started out somewhat disappointed with Disneyland, but looking back I think I liked it more than… Disney World. Shhhh! I feel like I’m betraying something by saying that out loud. I liked how everything was closer together and the fact that there were just as many rides. AND, of course, the friends that I shared it with made it the cherry on top of a wonderful day. Okay, that ending is lame, but I’m keeping it. Such a great day!

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