Monday, April 02, 2007

Disney 2007 Trip Report, Chapter 5

Anyone still need them?
Chapter 1: Departure and Arrival
Chapter 2: Downtown Disney
Chapter 3: The Magic Kingdom, Part 1
Chapter 4: The Magic Kingdom, Part 2

March 16, Part 1: Disney/MGM Studios

Friday morning unfolded much like Thursday: wake at 7, waffles, sunscreen, etc, except for two things. The first difference was that the weather forecast was showing rain from 9-11 AM or so. Great. I'm starting to have flashbacks from two years prior, where we were also spending the morning at MGM and the afternoon at the Magic Kingdom, and it rained the whole freakin' day. Not much fun for Mommy, Daddy, or 5-month Baby Luke. The second difference was that we were ahead of schedule. Normally, this would be a pleasant miracle, but getting to the park before it opened was going to be really boring for Luke. Especially since Mom and I were going to completely abandon Luke and DH for an hour or so to run over and ride the Rockin' Roller Coaster first thing. But once he was all sprayed with sunscreen, he wanted nothing more to do with cartoons. He grabbed his backpack and started fussing at the door. Guess we'll go on and figure out the rest later.

We did pretty well. By the time we parked and walked and got through security, we had about 7 minutes until the park opened. I know, it doesn't seem like much to an adult, but it really is to a two-year-old. They were letting us in through the gates, but they had the street blocked off just where Hollywood and Vine split. Now, in their defense, they were running what they call "streetmosphere." They had a "director" up on one of those cranes with a camera and a megaphone, with his assistant, trying to entertain the crowd, I mean extras, as we prepared to "roll film" on a new movie. (I.E. They were trying to keep the guests happy until they decided to actually let us in.) And in one of the rare cases where being short is a great advantage, Mom and I (5' and 5'2", respectively) left Luke and DH (with his permission) and started slowly and carefully weaving our way through the crowd and up toward the front of the line. Being short, no one really noticed us. Finally, they shouted "ACTION!," and we were off to the races. Walking as quickly as we could without running, we made straight for the Rockin' Roller Coaster at the far end of the street. I think the wait was about 15 minutes, and at our request, we got to ride in the front seat! Mom hadn't done that before, though she said it ultimately didn't matter since she had her eyes closed. Silly woman! LOL

So, the first part of our plan was fairly well executed, as far as Mom and I were concerned. We were totally exhilarated! DH, on the other hand, seemed rather frazzled. Apparently Luke was a little fussy, and there really wasn't much for him to do. He played on some of the steps, though, and was generally in a pretty good mood when we got there. Again, we had something of a "hit list" for the park: Rockin' Roller Coaster, the Villain Store, the Indiana Jones store, and the Star Wars store. There were other things on the "maybe" list, but those were the biggies. Yes, I know that three of the four things are shops; the year that I was pregnant (and thus could not ride the roller coaster), we still went to MGM, *just* to go shopping! But it was with a heavy heart that DH informed me that he had been in the Villain Store, and it was merely a shadow of its former glory. It was now almost entirely Jack Skellington and The Nightmare Before Christmas. Now, I realize that for several of my readers, this sounds like pure heaven! But alas, not for me. It is not a movie I care for very much. They had a little bit of Jack Sparrow, and just one or two other things, and that was it. Very little in the way of any of the classic animated villains, including my personal favorite, Maleficent. ::pout::

So as not to repeat the mistake of Thursday, we now headed for the Commissary to have a morning snack. Getting there was interesting, because I always think it is one street sooner than it is. The first route we tried was about to dump us right at Star Tours, which we were not ready for yet. We wanted to hit that on our way out! So we had to backtrack, but we did eventually get there. Some water, some fruit snacks, and a granola bar for Luke, plus water and Cokes for the adults. I also went down to the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater to see if they had any lunch reservations still open. It is a restaurant that has booths that look like classic cars, all facing a huge movie screen, and it is very dim inside with the walls painted like a landscape. You'd swear you were at a drive in theater. And all the servers are on roller skates (seriously!). It is so cool! I figured Luke would love it. Watching cartoons while he eats, has to be good, right? They did have a few slots, right at 11 AM, which I thought would be perfect. And much to our delight, it still had not rained. Maybe we'll luck out after all?

Well, we have some time to kill, now what? DH had wanted to try Luke with the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular, but after checking the times, the first show wasn't until 11:30, which was not going to work. Another small disappointment for the day. We knew there wasn't a whole lot for Luke to do at MGM, but we were quickly realizing just how little. Hmm.... what might keep his attention? Maybe the Muppets? So we headed over to the Muppetvision 3D Theater. I didn't really think he would wear the 3D glasses, and I was right, but I knew he would get the gist of it, and it might keep him happy until it was time for lunch. We got there about 10 minutes before showtime, so we looked at the fountain for a while before we went in. The pre-show on the television monitors kept his attention moderately well, and he was just about to start fussing when we went inside the theater. We very intentionally sat at the very end of a row so that we could make a hasty exit, if need be, but it was unnecessary. He didn't want to wear his glasses really (the photo was a quick shot before he ripped them off his head), but he still seemed to think the movie and the animatronics were pretty nifty.

Not quite time for lunch yet, so we killed some time on New York Street, where they have various facades (a hotel, an apartment building, a subway station, etc) and props out for you to enjoy. It kept Luke fairly entertained, though, which was the point.

Finally, it is 11 AM. Time for lunch! We'll sit down, let Luke watch cartoons, relax, have some casual food (sandwiches and such), then see what we want to do. And this is where things all started to unravel a bit. Out in front of the Sci-Fi Dine In Theater, they have one of the classic car booths so you can see what they look like. Luke pitched a fit to get to play in it. Honey, we have 11 AM reservations, we need to go in. Nope, wouldn't get out. They have these cars inside! Come on inside! You get to sit in a car *and* watch cartoons. It will be fun! We got him out of the car out front, but he was not happy about it.

When we entered the restaurant, though, his eyes lit up. Look at all the cars! We were seated, but he didn't want to sit in our designated car. He wanted to get up and run around and play in all the other cars. No, Luke, we have to sit in this car. "No!" Great. So we pick him up and take him out to the lobby, trying to calm him down and get him to agree to sit down. We tried *everything.* Granola bar, corn pops, fruit snacks, marshmallows, even M&Ms. We had Mom sitting in the car to try and get him to sit with her. No go. After three additional attempts, and him continuing to scream and cry and not sit in our booth, we gave up. Thankfully we had not ordered yet, and all of the cast members were reassuring us that it was fine, it happened all the time (I think they thought he was scared or something), and not to worry about it, but I was still quite embarrassed and irritated about the whole thing. I really thought it was something he would enjoy, and instead it was a miserable failure.

There was a little area off to the right that had benches and everything, so we sat down there to try and get him calm and to figure out what we were going to do. DH and I got into an argument (about what, I can't even remember), which should have been a clue that we were all just tired and hungry. He and I virtually never fight, ever. I can count on two hands the number of fights we've ever had in the 12 years we've been together, and still have fingers left. We let it go, but I think we were both still angry (as in, if my mother had not been with us, I probably would have kicked him in the shin! but not with my mommy watching me).

We agreed that the Backlot Express was probably now our best bet for lunch, but no matter what route we took to get there, we were going to encounter a major obstacle: Star Tours. Once Luke saw it, or even heard the music, it was going to be all over. So we just bit the bullet and went on. But first, we posed for pictures with the speeder bike. As we were going into the store, we passed the character greeting area, which was featuring a storm trouper, Boba Fett, and Darth Vader, but the line was already closed. I hated it, because I knew he would have loved it. They did say they were coming back. At 1 PM. No good. So we went on in, and Luke actually didn't fuss too much. Things actually went very well at the store, better than I would ever have guessed. He picked up a "Jedi Training Academy" light saber keychain (available only at Star Tours), we got him a shirt (that will be too big for him to wear for a couple of years to come, but it was too cute to pass up), I got a hat, and a few other this and thats. Did pretty well, though. The first photo isn't be best, but it shows off the light saber keychain pretty well.

Finally made it to the Backlot Express, and we were thrilled to discover chicken nuggets on the menu. Not chicken tenders (he won't eat those; no, I can't explain it), but actual chicken nuggets. Thank goodness! Finally some protein Luke will eat. Ha! He wanted nothing to do with them. I tried one, and I thought they were pretty good, so I don't know what the problem was (besides that it wasn't Wendy's). He had a double helping of fries and a granola bar instead. If he didn't eat granola bars, I think he would have starved while we were there. So, it is now about 12:30, what do we want to do? Let's go see what the line looks like for the next Indiana Jones show. We walk outside and ran right into the rain! It had held off for us all morning, but it was now coming down at a fairly moderate pace. We stopped by the Indiana Jones store (which had nothing we either wanted or could afford), then headed on out of the park for our afternoon nap.

Next up, our return to the Magic Kingdom, including the Barnstormer. There's even a video!


  1. Glad to know u all had great fun. And after reading all those, I just want to visit Disneyland!!

  2. We have MGM planned for our first day there. Since we only have a half day (the morning being taken up by travel) I figured it would be a good park to go to since there isn't a ton smaller kids can do.

    We have reservations for Sci-Fi for dinner. :)


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