1. Levi was both apprehensive and thrilled with the day. Mostly thrilled. Autopia was a mistake because we told him that he would get to drive a car and he took that to mean that he had to actually drive a car and the look on his face as he was driving was just too much. Like at any moment he would lose concentration and they would crash and the day would be ruined. Gina eventually took over. I remember having the exact same reaction when I was a kid although that could have been because my dad would shout out, "We're going to run into those rocks! Keep turning!!" He also loved to tell us that those were actual cannonballs being shot at us on Pirates of the Caribbean. It took years to not instinctively duck.
2. I saw MANY middle aged men roaming the park alone, most of them in Disney gear. Um, what gives? I know that plenty of people love Disney with a fiery passion and, as I discovered later that night, there is a bit of joy in being by yourself at the park - who loves a solo adventure more than I? - but don't these fellas have jobs? Maybe they're all independently wealthy eccentrics, in which case why didn't I befriend one in the hopes of finally finding a Wealthy Benefactor. Dumb, Rachel. Really dumb.
3. So you know there's an app that tells you the wait time for rides. But did you know that it also tells you the wait time for a Dole Whip? Technology has changed our lives in so many delightful ways.
4. The Peter Pan line is always the longest. But it is also always worth it because Peter Pan for president, is what I say.
5. Gina reminded me as we were in line for Small World that she was the first person I went on that ride with. The same could be said for most of the rides. I've spent more time at Disneyland with Gina than anyone else. We should get matching ears or something to commemorate.
6. The rest of the gang went home to put Levi to bed but I wanted to see the parade and fireworks so I stuck around. The crowd had already gathered but I just made my way to a good location and asked whatever group looked the friendliest if I could squeeze in with them. I was between a elderly couple from Arizona and a cute little family from up north. We became fast friends. The beauty of Disneyland is that most people are genuinely happy to be there. They're tired, but they're full of good cheer.
7. A warning to people who take videos of firework shows: prepare to be judged! (Ahem) What are you doing with your life?! You're wasting it, is what you're doing. Fireworks are definitely one of those things that are better enjoyed in the moment and not through the small screen of your phone. And certainly not the next day on that phone. You miss what makes fireworks great: the flash of light on your face and the boom that you can feel in your chest. Taking a video of fireworks is like putting your uneaten french fries in a take-away box. Nobody really enjoys french fries the next day. And are you ever going to watch that video? You're not! And heaven help the poor sap you try to show it to. A fully grown woman who has probably seen dozens of firework shows in her lifetime was standing in front of me and drained her battery recording the entire spectacle. And guess what I just did right this minute? I looked up "Disneyland Fireworks 2016" on YouTube and found several videos of the full show. Look, do what you want with your life, but remember that while you're recording there is a short girl standing behind you, judging you as she jostles around looking for a better view other than through your phone. (End of Judgement.) (Who am I kidding. I will never stop judging you on this!)
8. Look at this face:
8. Look at this face: