In the meantime, I still have some stuff to record about Disneyland.
So we were at the Golden Horseshoe, waiting to see Billy Hill and the Hillbillies. I realize this might seem strange after my long rant about how we dislike country music, and I can't really explain why Billy Hill is okay while most other country music gets on our nerves. I have a couple of theories, though. First, Billy Hill has a nostalgia factor, since we started watching him back in '98, before all the stupid stuff that made us hate country. I'm not sure if this theory has much credence, though, because sometimes if we're thinking too hard about the good old times, watching Billy Hill, we get grumpy about the fact that everything fell apart.
So the next theory is that bluegrass isn't the same as the type of country music you normally hear on the radio. Since I'm no music expert, I don't know how true that is, but at any rate, I like Billy's voice better than the voices of most country singers. This probably has to do with the fact that he's from Santa Monica, CA, and not the deep South. Also, the content of the music tends to be more family-friendly (y'know, them being at Disneyland and all).
Anyway, another reason we were there is that Gaston decided it was lunch time, and wanted to make sure we actually ate something (get off my back, I can take care of myself!), and the Golden Horseshoe has yummy chicken nuggets. This made me a little sad, though, because I was looking forward to eating a sundae at the Golden Horseshoe, and there wouldn't be time of stomach space for both at one time. Ah well, the chicken was delicious, at least.
This time, it was the Billies' holiday show! Woohoo! They started with our favorite, "Sleigh Ride," which we like because they use a prop to make a whip-cracking sound, which then turns off all the lights. The reaction was kind of sad, though, probably because most of the audience had seen the Billies before. They also did Puddle Prance, their scaled-down version of River Dance, with a super amazing special effect, during which a Christmas tree levitated over the stage! Oooohhhh! (A scraggly little tree (much like the one in the Charlie Brown Christmas special) hung from a rope. Billy Hill grabbed the rope to hold the tree in place, and moved his hand under the tree to show us that it was, in fact, not touching the stage. It also had very sparkly lights.)
There was a new bit, where Billy turned to the kids in the boxed seats right by the stage and said something that I don't remember at all but sounded a little like a, "Get ready for something exciting and/or scary." Then, as he played his fiddle, he edged closer to them, and when he got there, he pulled his bow over the strings really fast and jumped at the kids like, "Wah!" Then he said, "Let's see that again in slow motion." So he did the same thing in slow motion, only instead of him really playing his fiddle, the bass player got out a bow and played the slow motion version. It was awesome, but maybe not so much in a text description.
After the show, we hung around for a while, and then we...went to Fantasyland...? Oh right, we got fast passes to Big Thunder. The line was twenty-five minutes long, so Gaston asked if we wanted to go on it now or get fast passes, and we were like whatever, be a man and decide, and he was like, "What do you want to do, honey?" and Alice was like, "It's not a long line. Let's just wait." and Gaston was like, "We'll be able to get new fast passes again soon anyway, so let's just get fast passes." And that's why we were like whatever.
And then we stopped by the reindeer place again, and then we went to Fantasyland, and Gaston revealed that he had a headache. So we asked if he wanted to find a place to sit down, but for some reason, we wandered around a little more. We thought we were heading for the first aid center, but we really couldn't tell. Eventually, we discovered that Gaston and Alice had decided to get hot chocolate and find a place to sit down. That sounded like a good idea, because we don't like people to have headaches at Disneyland. Then they said we could go off and do stuff if we wanted, and since I was a little irked at having walked across Fantasyland without stopping for a single attraction, I was ready to go wait in some lines.
But first, ice cream! We went to the ice cream shop on Main Street, and that turned out to be better than the Golden Horseshoe, because the Golden Horseshoe only had sundaes, but the Main Street ice cream shop had everything! And that includes waffle cones dipped in chocolate and then crushed candy canes! Ooooohhhh! So we each got one of those with a single scoop of mint chip ice cream and hot fudge. It was very tasty, and the hot fudge kept our hands warm while we ate ice cream in the wind-chilled outdoors.
Then we went on Alice in Wonderland, where we had a lovely conversation with the woman in front of us. Her little son was being a nuisance to everyone, insisting on making his way through the line by keeping one foot on each of the rails on either side of the queue. That didn't bother us too much because it was funny, and we used to do it when we were his size (I like to think we did it faster, but who can say?), but of course his mother was stressed out about it. She said that that made her stressed with herself about being stressed out at Disneyland, which is not an uncommon occurrence--people getting upset with themselves because they're not supposed to be upset at Disneyland, I mean. Our philosophy is if you're upset at Disneyland, just accept it and move on. Then again, in our case, we can just sneak off to a line by ourselves and use the wait time to vent at each other, finishing off with a nice, happy ride. So maybe that philosophy doesn't work so well with others, but at least don't make yourself extra upset just because of the fact that you're upset.
Also, I found a hidden Mickey.
Then we were feeling like rebels, so we went on the teacups! That's right, we went on the teacups! Take that!
And then we went on the carousel, which wasn't really the best of ideas right after the teacups, especially because we got distracted with this one horse, so we were watching the horses really closely while we waited our turn, and oh boy. Not a good idea when you're already dizzy. But the point is, there's a horse with a red A on its haunch. What does it mean? Is the horse an adulterer? I thought maybe it stands for Alethea, but then I decided to ride the horse with the star spangles instead.
After a wild ride with Mr. Toad, we met up with Gaston and Alice in line to Peter Pan's Flight. That ride is super awesome and we need to go on it more. Also, they should have used that format to make the Little Mermaid ride, because it would have been super awesome, too. Now it's just alright.
By then it was dark, so we went on It's A Small World, and after that the parade was going on, and trying to cross the parade route would have been perilous, so we went to Frontierland instead. The significance of this is that the line to Big Thunder was so short, that the fast pass collector said, "Keep your fast pass and use it later." Then! then! we went on the ride, and when we got off, the train was about to leave half empty! So we hopped in! Without waiting in line! We're such rebels!
But the cast members didn't mind. In fact, it reminded us of the one time, waaaaay back when, when they showed Fantasmic! and the Electrical Parade at the same time. This was the perfect time to go on rides, because everybody (and I mean everybody!) was watching one of the shows. It was also back when they still had the skyway that went from Fantasyland to Tomorrowland. So we went on it during this time slot, and when we got to the other side, there was no line! Literally, zero people! So we said, "Can we go again?" and they just pushed our sky bucket around and we went again! Without even getting off! And then we did that two more times. It was awesome.
Now it was time to wait for the fireworks, only it was a really windy day, so there was an announcement warning everybody that the fireworks might not happen. We were sitting with a bunch of people who suggested an Occupy Main Street campaign if the fireworks didn't go off. Then they made a Facebook page for it. I wonder if it's still around...
We didn't see the fireworks, but the wind made the soapy snow blow around like a blizzard. That was fun. And then we went to dinner at the Plaza Inn, and had the most amazing sparkly chocolate cake ever. There was a bus boy going around, and when he cleared the table next to ours, he asked us if we wanted him to take any of our stuff, but we weren't done, so we said no thank you, and then he wished us a merry Christmas.
That was a little odd, so I commented on it, and Gaston noted his accent and said he was foreign, so he didn't know that "Merry Christmas" is politically incorrect. Then we all became curious as to where he was from. When he came by again to clear another table next to ours, I told Gaston to check his nametag, which said London, England, but that's not what his accent said. So Gaston asked him where he was from originally, and he said he was from Israel. That's when I noticed for the first time that his name was Moses, and I felt like a jerk for wishing him merry Christmas back.
He and Gaston talked about Europe for a while (since Gaston spent two years in Germany), and then he asked where we were from, and when Gaston said Fresno, he said oh, there are a lot of Armenians there. His wife is Armenian! And so we think he's probably Christian, because most Armenians are. And then I didn't feel like a jerk anymore, and as we left, he wished us merry Christmas again.
Finally, we went to Tomorrowland to use our fast passes, and we realized for the first time that the non-Roman alphabet they have in various places of the Star Tours queue is, in fact, another font. So we immediately set out to decipher it. We're nowhere near as fluent as we are with the Indiana Jones queue font, but we'll get there.
On the way back to the car, we had the awesomest tram guy ever. See, the trams have a driver, and then somebody riding in the very back to let the driver know that the back of the tram isn't about to run over somebody. Usually the only things they say are things like, "Driver, your turn is clear," and, "Our tram is full. Please stay behind the yellow line. Another tram will arrive shortly." But this guy had a spiel.
We were still talking about how we ran into former Disneyland associate Donald, so we missed the very beginning of his spiel, but it had something to do with describing his job and ended with, "Stay in school, kids." Then the tram left, and they played the recording about park hours or whatever, and suddenly we hear the tram guy say, "Man, it's gonna take forever at this speed." And we were like, "Wha...?" Gaston said he wondered if the guy knew his mic was on.
Then he says, "It's okay, I know a trick that might work. Everyone say it with me. I think...I can...I think...I can... Okay, that didn't work. Probably 'cause I was the only one doing it." (We were all doing it with him, but we were in the front car, and since he was in the back, he wouldn't have heard us.) "Maybe this will work: Driver, your turn is clear." We drove a little more, then, "For those of you who are still awake, we're on our way to the Mickey & Friends Parking Structure. For those of you who are asleep," *lowers voice* "We're on our way to the Mickey & Friends Parking Structure. Driver, if you're still awake, honk twice. If you're asleep, lean your heavy head onto the steering wheel and rest it there." *honk honk* "It would appear that our driver is half asleep."
Then he started humming Brahm's lullaby into the mic, and when he finished, he said, "That was dedicated to all the parents and guardians in the tram. You're welcome." Then we were almost at our destination, so he gave the normal instructions, "Remember, when you're in the parking structure, the speed limit is 14 miles an hour. It is a confusing speed limit." I missed the next part, because all the drivers in the tram liked that joke a lot. He told those parked in the Pinocchio and Chip & Dale parking lots to take the crosswalk. "This will be your one and only entrance to the Pinocchio and Chip & Dale parking lots. Feel free to wave to our friendly cast members as you walk by. If they don't wave back or their motions are a little stiff, don't worry; that's just the onset of hypothermia. If you cannot find your vehicle, it is not stolen. It is located on one of the other five levels of our parking structure."
...And that's all I remember. It was awesome.
And there was a little more stuff that happened on Tuesday, but it's time for us to leave for Thursday Night Activity, so that will have to wait.
Today I'm thankful for awesome tram guys, yummy Disneyland ice cream, the Bill Hill and the Hillbillies Holiday Spectacular, getting to wait in some lines, and getting to go on Big Thunder twice without having to.