But Fantasmic! doesn't start until nine, so we took some time to go on a couple of rides. First, we wanted to see if there was any kind of valid reason for having It's A Small World closed for most of the year so far. We noticed the facade still needs some cleaning, and then when we got on, and we were in the Europe room, I noticed some of the papier mache type animatronics weren't working, so I was like, "Great. You had it closed all this time so you could show us a less pretty ride? What the heck?" I started wondering if they were trying to make the ride as creepy and gross as it is in Epic Mickey.
Eventually we figured out that they had been working on improvements, I guess. In the Africa room, we noticed that the papier mache type hippopotamus was more animated than we seemed to remember. So we started paying more attention to the animals, and sure enough, all of them were moving more than they used to. I'm not sure I like the effect, though, because sometimes they just seem to be moving faster or spazzier than they used to, and it didn't seem to really flow with the rest of what was going on. It's hard to explain, but it seemed off. It didn't help that for some of the animals, they had to replace parts (ears, beaks, etc.) to make them move, and the change was really obvious. In some cases, the new parts didn't even match the original style of the animal. It really seems like with Small World these days, they keep messing with a good thing.
After that, we took the time to go on Gadget's Go Coaster, which might have been a mistake, because by the time we finished that and had dinner, our favorite viewing spot for Fantasmic! was already packed. ...Well, it was maybe about three-fourths packed, but the rest of it was covered in blankets and jackets for seat-saving purposes. I know the tradition of saving seats for three to four hours started over a decade ago, but seriously, why? Okay, I know why, but it seems to me that the people who know they need to start saving seats that soon have already seen the show. Why can't we consider the people who have yet to discover its amazingness? If they can't find a seat, they'll be like, "Whatevs," and never know what they're missing! And of course I also want people to consider the people like me who have better things to do than wait on a walkway for four hours to see a twenty-five minute show I've already seen. I don't want to acknowledge World of Color's fastpass system as the way to go (it used to be that you couldn't watch WoC at all if you didn't have a ticket)! Please let it not be!
That's okay, though, because Fantasmic! has magical grumpiness-erasing powers, and as soon as the first musical cue sounded, I was all smiles. ...And then came the Maleficent part, which I knew was going to have me shaking my head because we never liked the dragon robot, but last night it was even worse because the robot was missing again. Of course the first assumption is that it was malfunctioning (again), but there is now a (weak?) theory that the dragon is taking a break as some kind of weird promotional thing to encourage people to see that movie that just came out. Either way, fie! Bring back dragon-head-on-a-stick!
After that, we went on the Indiana Jones ride, which had also just been refurbished and yet was mysteriously missing a key part of the ride's story, the giant boulder at the end. Why was the boulder missing? Maybe it needed refurbishing that couldn't be taken care of before they needed to open up again for the summer. I don't know, but it was weird. I didn't notice it until it was almost too late anyway, though, because I was staring at the Indiana Jones animatronic figure to see if it looked like they'd upgraded his movements, too. I couldn't tell.
We stopped at what used to be the watch shop as we left through Main Street, and I noticed that the display case for the watches had a bowl with what looked like quartz crystals in it. I thought that was pretty odd, so I went to look at it, and a cast member noticed us so we started up a conversation. She commented on how lovely the watch faces were--they were the artisan watches, with one-of-a-kind art drawn specially by Disneyland watch artists--and I said yeah, but too bad we never have the money to buy them. Maybe someday... *wisftul* ...Only apparently not someday, because they've discontinued the artisan watch program, and the ones on display were the last ones ever. We were all, "What!? Why!?" And she was like, "I don't know. All I know is that Florida stopped doing it, so now we have to stop doing it." And we were like, "Why should we have to copy Florida? Florida's the original copycat! Fie!" We didn't say fie, but I wish we did.
And then we talked about a bunch of stuff, like Disney villains and manga and stuff, and it was very nice. And then some guests came up because they wanted to, like, buy stuff, so she had to do her job and we left.
As for today, our big project still hasn't hit, so we spent the day working on retranslating Saiyuki Gaiden 4. Awww, it's so sad. Poor little Goku.
Today I'm thankful for getting to watch Fantasmic! last night, having a pretty good place to watch it from despite my whinings, getting to work on Saiyuki Gaiden today, getting to go on the Indiana Jones ride last night, and getting to have a lovely conversation with a cast member.