Day 2 (Saturday, Sept. 16)(Click on any image to see a larger version of the photo.)
I made it out of bed in time for the free breakfast at the Candy Cane, and after doing some organizational stuff on my computer, I caught the 11:00 a.m. shuttle to Disneyland. I wandered through Downtown Disney working on Larry's virtual geocache for that area and admiring the always outstanding Disney landscaping. I was especially taken with some bougainvillea in hanging baskets--some of them had an interesting pointy shape I hadn't seen before--and with some of the huge hibiscus flowers near the Rainforest Café.
Around noon, I went into Tortilla Jo's for a lunch break. I ordered a shrimp taco, a black bean taco, and tortilla soup, but when the waiter noticed that I wasn't eating the soup, he offered to take it back. I explained that there are different ways of making tortilla soup, and their particular combination just didn't appeal to me. The tacos and tortillas chips with salsa were enough to fill me up for the moment, anyway.
After lunch, I resumed my quest through Downtown Disney. Some of the waypoints for Larry's virtual are actually located at the three Disney hotels, so they gave me an excuse to explore the Disneyland Hotel, which I'd been meaning to do for a long time. I popped into the Health and Fitness Expo for a few minutes (part of the Half Marathon weekend), then went back to looking for waypoints. I don't recall ever having seen the beautiful waterfalls near the Bonita Tower before, so I was glad of the excuse to go to that area.
I went back to my hotel for about 45 minutes to catch my breath and change into warmer clothes for the evening, then caught the 3:30 shuttle to Disneyland. I found Larry at the "L" about 3:50, and his wife Julie wandered up shortly after. Then Nick showed up, freshly arrived from Florida. A few minutes later, rec.arts.disney.parks Usenet group friends Laura and Lee showed up. Laura and I were amazed to discover that we were both wearing exactly the same t-shirt! Obviously, we had both been to the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival earlier this year!
We weren't sure whether Lloyd and Meg had arrived in Anaheim yet, or whether they had even received my cell-phone message about meeting in the plaza, so after a few more minutes, the five of us went over to Baker's Field Bakery to chat while we had something to drink. Laura and Lee were in town from San Diego for the race.
Larry, Nick, Julie, and I bade Laura and Lee goodbye about ten minutes before our 5:00 p.m. reservation at Storytellers Café at the Grand Californian. We took the shortcut through DCA, showing Nick a few survey marks along the way.
Meg and Lloyd arrived at the café shortly after we did, and we were all seated promptly. I got the buffet dinner, focusing on the salmon and chicken entrees and the corn chowder. I also had some salad, and of course, I had to try a sampling of the desserts! Meg inquired about lemonade and was told that the restaurant offered a standard premade lemonade, but also a fresh-squeezed one with raspberry made by the bartender. That sounded great, so we each ordered one. It was indeed very refreshing and delicious.
After dinner, Lloyd headed straight for Sleeping Beauty Castle to stake out a spot where we could all watch the Disneyland 50th anniversary fireworks show, "Remember...Dreams Come True." I saw it in November, but from the other end of Main Street, where I couldn't see the projections on the castle. So it was very nice of Lloyd to volunteer to get us a prime viewing spot early. I was concerned about him and Meg staying up so late the night before the race, but they weren't worried about it.
The rest of us meandered through DCA for a while before heading over to Disneyland. Larry and I tried to go on a few rides, but they kept breaking down while we were in line! (At least a couple of them may have been affected by the same electrical problem, because they were in adjoining areas of the same building in Fantasyland.) So we gave up and went back to the castle.
The fireworks were beautiful, combining tributes to many classic Disneyland attractions with parts of the "Wishes" fireworks show. (And with a narration by Julie Andrews.) We had a great view of the projected images on the castle, and of Tinkerbell's back-and-forth flights. Afterwards, we all went our separate ways. Nick was also staying at the Candy Cane, and was so amazed at being within walking distance of the parks (a rarity at Disney World) that he wanted to walk back to the motel instead of taking the shuttle, so I went with him. Total steps today: 20,800. Not bad!
Planning and Day 1
Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5
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Text and photos (c) 2006 Patricia F. Winter, unless otherwise noted.
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Last updated 12/17/06