We didn't really mean to neglect LiveJournal for so long; it's just that things kept coming up and then we realized we had less time than we thought we did, and we wanted to use it for other things, like catching up on anime and practicing the difficult piano accompaniment for what sounded like a fairly easy violin solo that I accompanied in Sunday School today. That's not really meant to be a complaint about the piece, though. Just the fact that I wish we had more time for things.
Anyway, we went to Disneyland on Wednesday night and most of Thursday. We left early on Thursday, because we had agreed to help with a Relief Society activity. The theme was music, and they wanted someone to teach the sisters how to lead music. It was really funny, though, because I got a phone call about it on Wednesday night when we were walking back to Gaston's car, and when I confirmed with Athena that she wouldn't need much time, she said, "All I have to do is teach them how to do this," and waved her arms. Gaston noticed it and told us his mnemonic device for leading 4/4 music, which he must have learned on his mission: down, hit yourself, hit your companion, up.
As for Disneyland itself, it was mostly typical, except that it rained. For like three hours. And it was super awesome, because California is in dire need of rain (we wondered, back when the East Coast was having yet another snowpocalypse, if anyone is trying to come up with a way to scoop up all the snow and fly it out west for our poor drought-ridden farmers), but not awesome enough to get people to leave. That was another funny thing, because while we were walking through Cars Land (we figured Radiator Springs Racers would be awesome in the rain, and it was), somebody called Gaston, and we heard him tell them, "Yeah, it's raining. After a while, the crowds should thin out." And we looked at each other and said, "It's been raining how long now?" "About two hours." The crowds never thinned. We all had a good laugh when we heard someone say, "They should just give out those ponchos for free when it rains," referring to the ponchos that everybody was now wearing.
We also got to see the newest addition to the Haunted Mansion: the Hatbox Ghost. (We started watching Danny Phantom on Hulu, so Athena automatically finished that in her head as "the Box Ghost", and then when I typed "hat" she was like, "Oh yeah.") The Hatbox Ghost has been a source of much internet buzz for years now, but in case you haven't heard about it, back when the Haunted Mansion opened, there was a ghost in the attic that was holding a large hatbox. There was a special effect that made it look like his head would disappear from his neck and reappear in the hatbox. He was only there for about a week before the Imagineers took him out because the illusion wasn't working properly (other theories are that it worked okay but the placement of the ghost made it difficult for people to see the effect properly, so it didn't look as cool). But there were people who went on the ride when he was there, and I guess what happened was the internet came along and they were able to read other testimonies that the Hatbox Ghost really did exist and they didn't dream the whole thing. (Oh wait, now that I think of it, they had other proof, because the Hatbox Ghost was featured in some of the Haunted Mansion merchandise from the time.)
Anyway, now Disneyland has brought back the infamous Hatbox Ghost for all to see, only with shiny new technology. And that's the problem--the technology is so new and shiny, and the animation of the Hatbox Ghost's face is so detailed, that he's in higher-definition than all the other ghosts in the Haunted Mansion, so he doesn't quite blend in. It's a pretty cool effect if you like decapitation humor, though. Unfortunately for us, we're not real fans of decapitation humor.
The only other thing maybe worth mentioning was Star Tours. When we walked by, Gaston noticed that his Star Tours cast member friend was working that day, so he went to say hi. The friend seemed too busy to talk, so he just handed us the special cast member instant fast pass, and we went right into the fast pass line. Then when we got to the loading dock, there were Stormtroopers! I mean, I guess that doesn't sound like anything remarkable, especially because I think every scenario in the new Star Tours involves your flight getting stopped by Stormtroopers, but these were like real life people in suits, not just the simulator screen. We walked by them as we went to wait for our transport to let us in, and I said, "I'm not the rebel spy, I promise!", which I admit is not the cleverest thing to say, but I wanted to say something, and it was the first thing I came up with. The cast member didn't miss a beat; he replied, "That's exactly what the rebel spy would say."
Anyway, there were adventures in shopping for Black Widow toys, but I'll talk about that later. We also finally saw Age of Ultron, and that, too, will be talked about later.
Today I'm thankful for having a good time at Disneyland, getting to play in the rain (it was about ten minutes after it let up that we all decided to go into a cafe for about an hour), having a lovely time at the Relief Society activity (one of the presenters played Name that Tune, and I won! ...and that's about the only setting where I would win that game these days), getting to see the new Avengers movie, and Page looking super cute in her heated cat bed right now.