Carpe Diem: Eurotrip 2016

The Day I Was a Five-Year-Old

Before I even begin to write this, I know it’s going to be my longest post by far. You might want to get a snack and a drink. Maybe a diet coke and a baggie of goldfish, that’s my recommendation. Also, if you’re not interested in in-depth Disney reviews, this one might not be for you. I tend to ramble about Disney stuff. Just throwing it out there.

This was the day I had to say goodbye to all of my new Contiki friends. At the culmination of the tour, everyone was doing one of a few things: flying home, driving back to London on the coach, flying somewhere else in Europe, or staying in Paris. I would be staying in Paris for two extra days. I found out that the majority of those who were doing this with me were actually staying in new hotels, while I would remain at our original Paris location. My company was plummeting from 42 to 0.

First thing in the morning, Kelsey and I dragged Charmaine out of bed, for she was driving back to London, but was clearly having a rough time of making her deadline for 8:00. Kelsey would be staying in Paris, but at another hotel in town. The three of us paraded downstairs for our last breakfast together with the rest of the group. After stuffing our faces with more yummy French breakfast items, it was time for goodbyes.

Everyone went outside to the bus, whether they were leaving on it or not. There was practically a receiving line of hugs for every person who had been on board our happy little Contiki tour. Tears were shed by many, (and yes, that’s including myself. I’m a softie). It’s crazy to think that a short nine days ago, we had all been strangers. This was one of the shortest tours Contiki offers, and yet, at the end of it, hell, by three days into it, we were all family. I hope to see some of them again soon. It’s also good to know that if I ever want to go to Australia, Canada, or South Africa, I’ve got a few options for couch surfing.

I was now solo in Paris. I’ve never traveled solo before, let alone gone into Boston by myself before. This was very much a new challenge, but one I was more than willing to take on to see a couple of French sights that were on my bucket list. Now having maneuvered the city on my own, I have devised some tricks and tips about walking the city by oneself: 1. Walk with a purpose. If you look lost, confused, or even just lollygag, it gives people, sometimes creepers, an invitation to talk to you. So, so long as you appear to know what you’re doing and where you’re going (even if you’re faking it), you’ll ward off unwanted company. 2. Don’t look so approachable. Mom and I have discussed this before: we have an approachable look to us. And I do say “we” because apparently people say we have the same face. A face that says “Hey! I’m nice and non-threatening! If you need something, ask me!” People come up to us and ask for stuff all the time because we look a little too friendly. So in Paris, I did my best to put on my fiercest resting bitch face to steer everyone away. 3. Your phone is a lovely tool. First off, I used it to give me directions so I could avoid asking for some. I’d put headphones in for three reasons: to make me look more occupied, to hide the fact that my phone was giving me GPS directions, and also to rock out to Panic! at the Disco’s new album. Secondly, it was another good deterrent device in more desperate situations, where I feared I might be more likely to be approached or spoken to. I pretended to be having an in-depth phone conversation while walking past people. I avoided attention from a group of sketchy street dwellers and some too-friendly construction workers that way. Anyways, I feel like a pro now, because I avoided pretty much anything bad that the French streets could have thrown at me.

Solo destination number 1 is one near and dear to my heart: Disneyland Paris. Now, I’m going to give a little disclaimer to the whole Disney thing. When I told people I was spending two extra days in Paris, and said I’d spend one romping around Disneyland, I kind of got a quizzical gaze from a good 75% of them. I feel I should explain myself. When you grow up military, and you bounce around living from place to place, and you don’t have Christmas in the same room every year, and you see your grandparents once a year, you spend a good amount of time trying to figure out where “home” is. I’ve struggled with the definition of “home” for a very long time. On vacations and trips with friends who aren’t family, I’d say something like “let’s go home now,” and they would reply with, “Wait, you want to go home?” as in, back to New Hampshire. After the life I’ve lived, sometimes I use the word “home” as the place with the bed in which I intend to sleep that night. But also there’s the home by the more common definition: the lifelong place which makes you feel happy, safe, and welcome. Now, of course my current house is my true home, but two other places that are always near and dear to my heart, places I’ve been going my entire life and feeling at home every time are Burlington, Massachusetts, and Disney World. That being said, I have a little bit of Disney obsession, and part of that obsession is hoping to go to all 12 Disney Parks at some point in my lifetime. Granted, by the time I’m dead there might be 50 parks. Slow down, Disney, I can’t keep up.

My route to Disney was simple and clean. I walked down the street to the first metro station, using all of my cell phone tricks to avoid attention. After one ride on the metro, and another ride on the RER rural line, I hopped off the train and directly into the “Disney Village.” It was so convenient! Bravo, Paris, on making your Disney Park so accessible from the city.

Now, Disneyland Paris has two parks, Disney Studios and Disneyland. Disney Studios is laid out similarly to Hollywood Studios, whereas Disneyland is very much Magic Kingdom-based. And I do say Magic Kingdom, not Disneyland. Yes, there is a difference. I decided to knock out the “must-dos” at Disney Studios first, as the larger, big-ticket attractions were set there, whereas the smaller, shorter-lined rides were all at Disneyland.

Disney Studios was cute. You walked through a turnstile, then to get into the park you had to walk through what looked like a massive soundstage to get to the main area of the park. The soundstage was themed on the inside to look like a Hollywood walkway from the 1950s. On the other side you got to see the actual layout of the park, which seemed to be organized into categories based on film styles. The Finding Nemo Ride and Toy Story areas were in what was called the “Animation Courtyard.” Rock and Rollercoaster and the “Lights Motors Action” stunt show were in the Action courtyard. Ratatouille actually got his own little Parisian land, but that part of the park had been added on when they built the ride just a couple years ago.

One thing I’d like to mention is the fact that Disneyland Paris does a very good job of making their park an inclusive environment. I was a bit worried that I’d get there and I wouldn’t be able to understand anything. Don’t get me wrong, English, French, Greek, Mandarin: whatever language it is, I’ll have a good time. But they actually did a good job of mixing in both French and English. Every announcement made in the parks was both made in English and French, and also sometimes in Italian, German, and Spanish. Even the attractions included both the French and English languages. Usually half of the rides’ and shows’ audio was done in French, the other half in English. The only way to understand every line of every attraction was to know both languages. Luckily, at least based upon my experience, most French people spoke both, so they still won out. I do think it’s very kind of them, and very much appreciated by this American.

I decided to knock out the longest line first and hit up Crush’s Coaster. This was a ride themed around the turtles from Finding Nemo and riding the East Australian Current. I waited 50 minutes. In the single rider line. French people apparently love traveling in even numbers. I could tell I was going to like this ride though, just based upon watching people’s faces as they exited the ride: laughing and windblown adults, elated children, and the occasional crying child. Basically that’s all I need to know that it’s going to be a ride that I’d like. I was right. The ride is very hard to describe. It’s a dark roller coaster with screens on the inside that depict Nemo and Squirt while you whip around in the water. Your ride vehicle is a shell that seats four people, two facing forward, two facing backwards. The car itself whips around while you ride, simulating the currents, but yet it was very smooth, and not too spinney. It was a blast! 10/10 from this nerd.

I next wanted to ride either the Tower of Terror, or the Ratatouille ride, but both were broken down. Hmph. So, I hopped into line for the next thing I saw, which was their Studio Backlot Tour. This one….could have been skipped. It was hosted by a French actor and an English one who walked us through the “magic of cinema” while driving by some props and stuff. But the movies they used as examples were mostly ones I’d never heard of. Yes, we did that thing where we drove into the canyon that blew up and sent water shooting everywhere while we tipped back and forth, but that was it for the fun. The rest was really dated and lame. Blah.

Next I needed some sustenance. I had to do a lot of walking around, because I was in the mood for savory but all of the food trucks around me appeared to focus on sweet. And when I say sweet, I mean Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. Yes, I traveled all the way to Paris for Vermont ice cream. Hah. Anyways I got a croque monsieur sandwich, which was delicious, scarfed it down, and by the time I was done, Tower of Terror was awake again.

Tower of Terror was exactly the same as the one in California, but in French. I didn’t care though, it’s still my favorite ride. I would have liked it to be slightly different, just for new experiences’ sake, but no complaints. I still got to do the droppy thing. Also, the Twilight Zone episode at the beginning of the ride is somehow way creepier in French. It probably didn’t help that while watching it, in the dark, one of the bellhops beckoned his hand right in my peripheral vision and I jumped about 7 feet high. I was paranoid he was going to do it again for the rest of the video.

My last ride-based adventure in the studios was the Ratatouille ride. Unfortunately I can’t remember its’ full name. This is Disneyland Paris’ newest ride, which has been very hyped by the online Disney community. I had no idea what to expect, but I was excited to find out. This ride was so amazingly well-done. You board a little mouse vehicle, then there are two other mouse vehicles that join you on your journey. The ride is trackless, which gives you the sensation that you are freely moving without being guided by a pre-determined route. The plot of the ride is that you are one of Remy’s mouse friends who work in his restaurant. It is your job to get through the kitchen of Gusteau’s without being caught by any of the humans. So you whisk around, mouse-sized, in this restaurant. Sometimes you are watching video on a screen, other times you are hiding under giant furniture or scurrying through walls. If you’ve been to Universal Studios, it’s very similar to the Spiderman ride, except updated and trackless. When the ride spits you out, you get a glimpse of Chez Remy, the Ratatouille themed restaurant at the park! Everything in there is mouse-sized and very cutely themed. The whole thing was very cool. Again, 10/10.

On my way out, I caught Cinemagique, which was advertised as a stage show but was actually a screen show starring Martin Short, who had been trapped in the movies and was trying to get out. He went from movie to movie, interacting with the characters trying to escape. It was kind of like if the Great Movie Ride was a movie instead of a ride/show. I’m a little biased because I love the Great Movie Ride so much, so this one was just okay.

Overall Studios was okay. The theming of the park was a little bland by comparison to Hollywood Studios, but Crush’s Coaster and Ratatouille were two to not miss, so I’m glad I spent some time there.

It was about 3:30 when I crossed over into Disneyland Paris. The park closed at 11, so I had a bit less than eight hours to see all that I wanted to see. Challenge accepted. The two parks were set up right next to each other, similar to Disneyland Resort, so it was a quick jump over to the other park.

I always get tingly whenever I see the castle. It doesn’t matter which park I’m at, which castle it is. Just something about it makes me happy. I had broken my own rule about Disney trips on this trip. I always always always begin a Disney trip by visiting the castle park first. It doesn’t feel like Disney yet until I do. But at that moment, when I walked through Main Street and saw the ornate pink castle, (one I’d seen many times in pictures or miniature model form), I couldn’t help but smile. This was Disneyland Paris, the first park I’d gone way out of my way to see. Such a magical feeling!

I forget strolling down Main Street. The castle was my goal. I could hear the Main Street music (and did notice that it’s the exact same track they play at Disney World), and I could smell the cookies baking at the Main Street Bakery, but my eyes were set on Le Chateau De La Belle au Bois Dormant: Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. Unlike Disney World, this castle had a few surprises inside, and before I did anything else, I wanted to see them. The first was the castle tour. You ascended up a spiral staircase into the castle. Once inside, you could hear an orchestra playing Tchaikovsky’s famous score for Sleeping Beauty. The tour took you around a series of stained glass windows that all told the tale of Sleeping Beauty. At the end of the tour, you were brought to a balcony that overlooked all of Fantasyland. It was all very enchanting. The second castle surprise is one of the undisputed favorite attractions of Fantasyland: the Dragon’s Lair. For those of you who have seen Sleeping Beauty, you know that Maleficent (in her dragon form) is defeated at the end of the movie. Well, at the park, we see that she isn’t dead, but instead is being held, chained against her will underneath the castle in defeat. You walk through a cave and see her on your left, her eyes glowing and her nose spouting steam. You can hear her grumbling as you walk by. She doesn’t move, but she’s still pretty cool. I thought it added an eerie and mystical touch to the castle.

I gotta admit, I’m a big fan of the Disneyland Paris castle. It’s beautifully decorated and very ornate: very fitting of Parisian culture. I don’t want to say that it’s my favorite castle, because I feel like I’d be cheating on Disney World’s castle. That’s my castle. It’s the background on my computer. I feel like it’s a similar sensation to when a guy is married to a girl and she has an obviously prettier cousin that shows up to family functions, and the guy’s always like, “Wow, she is so pretty…” and then he turns to his wife and says, “but not as pretty as you, honey!” It is a really pretty castle. And the fun stuff inside makes it that much cooler.

Alright, castles aside, I was off to ride some rides. In true Ellis family fashion, I was off to Space Mountain first. I don’t know what it us about us, but we always wind up in Tomorrowland first. Granted, in Disneyland Paris they call it “Discoveryland.” Weird. DLP’s Space Mountain is one of those legendary rides I’ve heard about since childhood. “Did you know, in Disneyland Paris, their Space Mountain goes upside down?” These are the conversations I used to have with my brother. We were so cool as children. Anyways, I was excited to finally live the legend. The ride itself has a steampunky vibe to it. You start the ride in a tunnel, which gives the impression that you are being shot out of a cannon. Once you shoot up the lift hill, you find yourself whizzing through space, dodging asteroids, lasers, galaxies, and other cool stuff. This ride was an absolute whip. It was crazy intense, with lots of screens and spacey music in the background.  I would have put it ahead of Disneyland California’s Space Mountain if only for one little detail: it bangs your head against the headrest. A lot. Which is a shame, because it was really fun, if only you didn’t walk off with a headache. 9/10

Next I went through the Nautilus, a walk through that lets you explore Captain Nemo’s ship from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. It was kind of cool, but not nearly as cool as actually being in a submarine like in Disneyland California. Popped in, saw a giant squid, popped out.

Next was it’s a small world. Yes I left that intentionally uncapitalized; that’s how they spell it. I know the majority of the world hates this ride, but it forever has a special place in my heart. It is, after all, the happiest voyage to ever set sail, and an adorable tribute to world culture! It was fairly similar to the Florida one, though it was fun to see all the exhibits now that I’ve been to an even greater portion of the countries displayed. UK! Netherlands! France! Hey, I’m there now… The best part of this one is that they have a whole little section of North America, which is completely skipped in Florida. Come on Florida. It was cute, with all the famous landmarks: Golden Gate Bridge, Hollywood Sign, Statue of Liberty, etc. And lastly, a little football player and baseball fan standing nearby. This is how France sees America, people.

It’s about here where I had a bit of a breakdown. See, I had found this app that allowed me to see the wait times throughout both parks. Unfortunately, it used location services, and it completely tanked my phone’s battery. It was only 5:00 and I only had 30% battery left. If this was regular Disney, I wouldn’t care. But seeing as I had to take two trains and a taxi to get back to my hotel that night, I was nervous about having to do so without a cell phone. Cue the next 45 minutes of Christina searching through Disneyland Paris to find a cell phone charger. I had mom Googling the best places to look for them, meanwhile I popped from shop to shop looking for one. No luck. I wanted to cry. I couldn’t risk going back to Paris with a dead phone. That was my lifeline. On top of the cell phone panic, my feet were hurting so badly I was walking funny. I debated hopping back on the train and leaving right then, leaving the rest of the park unseen.

But then I took a deep breath, and remembered the Contiki motto of “no regrets.” I didn’t want to leave with a “but.” “I went to South Africa but we couldn’t see Robben Island because it rained.” “I’ve been to Paris twice but I’ve never been up the Eiffel Tower.” “I went to Disneyland Paris but only stayed for three hours because my phone died.” Nope, not going down that route. So I stayed. I vowed to turn my phone off when it got to 5% battery and limped back to the park to scavenge for food. As I walked back in, I stumbled upon the day parade in all its glory. I couldn’t help but smile. Yeah, so much for leaving early, I was closing this place down.

Before I found food, however, I stumbled upon “Phantom Manor,” the DLP equivalent of the Haunted Mansion. This was one of those rides that I knew had some different elements, so I was excited to get on it. There were some similar themes: creepy maids and butlers, the shtick at the beginning where the room is stretching and then the guy hangs himself, creepy hallways, dinner party, etc. However, the bride was a recurring character in this one, she’s in a variety of scenes looking for her groom. In the last scene, she dies. Then you go through a graveyard, except instead of ghosts partying, it’s skeletons: creepy ones. I enjoyed the change. As someone who’s seen the same ride 1000 times, it was cool to see something eerier  as well as a little different.

I was about to collapse from hunger, so I finally stopped in a restaurant in Adventureland. They had a Lion King theme; I want to say the restaurant was called the Hakuna Matata Café. As I dined on very classy chicken tenders and fries (which were delicious, thank you very much) I listened to the score of the Lion King. It was nice and relaxing, and my feet enjoyed the break.

Happily fueled, I next ventured to the Indiana Jones ride. Now, I thought it was going to be like the Indiana Jones ride in California, but I was wrong. Instead it was an open air roller coaster. It was kind of a quick ride, with lots of little hills and one small loop. It was kind of fun, but also kind of forgettable. There was very little theming. Meh, you could have done better, DLP.

Next was Pirates of the Caribbean. I’m about to make a bold statement and say that this Pirates might be my favorite Pirates. I know; it’s a wild claim. It was just really cool! Again, there were some similar themes: the pillaging of the down, auctioning off the women, drowning the mayor in the well, yadda yadda. But then there was some completely new stuff. There was one part where you could see the shadows of the pirates fighting each other on the boat sails. Then there was another extended location where the skeletons enjoyed their jewels. And, just like in Disneyland California, a very important detail: not one, but TWO flumes. Fluuuumes.

I crossed back over into Fantasyland to finish tackling it. Fantasyland was just gorgeous in Disneyland Paris. I mean, it probably should be, considering they’re closest to the regions that are used for inspiration, so it made sense that they’d do it right. I was also walking around there during that period just before sunset where the sun is low and hits the buildings just right. It was magical.

First I hopped onto the Pinocchio ride. It was a slow moving dark ride similar to Snow White in Florida (may it rest in peace). Pinocchio is flipping weird, okay? We’re gonna take little kids, throw them into a drug-induced fantasy world with all kinds of bad things, then we’re going to turn them into donkeys? Then he’s going to run further away and get eaten by a whale? SO WEIRD. Even weirder was that the ride showed him get eaten but not how he got out. “Nice job, kid. Happy ending, here you go.” The ride was well done, I guess, it’s just a weird ass movie.

I had wanted to ride the Circus Train and the Storybook boats because those were two attractions that they’d had in California that I didn’t have time for. Apparently they closed early at 8 and I got there at 8:10. COOL. Thanks. It’s not meant to be.

I did however get to walk through the Alice in Wonderland Maze. Now, I’m not a huge Alice in Wonderland fan. Similar to Pinocchio, it’s flipping weird. However, the little maze was a charming way to showcase the weirdness. Basically it was a hedge maze with little sections to it. Once you reached the center of one section, you’d find another path to take you to the next. So you’d go from the caterpillar to the walrus, to the Cheshire cat, and eventually to the Queen of Hearts. My parents will tell you that in my childhood, I was petrified of the Queen of Hearts. For the record, I have good reason to be. That lady is scary. And the character costume they have for her at the parks is terrifying. I’d always hide when she walked by. Well, fitting to that terror, when you reach the center of her section of the maze, she pops out of the hedge like a jack-in-the-box, screeching in French, probably “off with their heads!” I had a little bit of a flashback to my childhood. Scariest Disney villain. No thank you, ma’am, I will keep my head. At the culmination of the maze was a pink tower that you could climb. Apparently that spot is one of the best for photos. I took a panorama of the whole park and it came out beautifully. Ah Disneyland Paris. So beautiful.

Having seen and done just about everything, I doubled back to ride Space Mountain again. However, on my way, I stumbled upon the royal procession for Anna and Elsa. The two were riding in a horse-drawn carriage down Main Street and around the castle. As they rode in, they played “Let It Go,” only it was the multilingual version that I listen to on a regular basis because I’m a nerd! I almost cried. I was singing along in 20 languages, all while everyone else was just watching. When they got closer to the castle, their water fountains started erupting along with the music, as if Elsa was casting her spells on it. So magical.

Space Mountain was just as fun and disorienting as the first time. It was almost 9:00 by the time I finished there, and I was ready to start calming down before the end of the night. I walked down Main Street to buy some souvenirs, then went in search of something sweet. I did not want Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. I wanted the golden ice cream of Disney Fame: Dole Whip. (Cue angelic chorus here). Well, I walked all the way to Adventureland (I’m still limping, remember?) to find out that the Dole Whip cart had closed. Sad face. Oh well, while I was over there I found a walk-through of Aladdin that told the story of Aladdin in little miniature windows while playing the music from the movie. It was a fun discovery.

Defeated in the Dole Whip department, I walked back to Main Street to get some ice cream at Gibson Girl. Then they were closed too! NO! I settled for a Mickey cookie from the Main Street Bakery and a soda and planted myself on the curb towards the very front of the park, directly in front of the castle for the fireworks. I had about an hour to wait, but decided the best thing for my feet and my brain was just to sit there and enjoy the sky getting darker and the lights on Main Street getting brighter.

Before the fireworks, there was a short Frozen pre-show with the fountains. They played a couple songs from the movie while the fountains went off and changed different colors. It was cute. I mean it wasn’t World of Color or anything, it was just cute.

Then came Disney Dreams, their nighttime spectacular. I stood up and moved closer to get a better view. This show was different than the fireworks shows in America because it used projection, water, and fireworks all at once. Visually, I’d give the show an 8. It was kind of hard to feel the full effect of it from further away, but it was very well done. The fireworks were scant and small, but used at very dramatic times, so it was still visually beautiful. The kicker for me was the general arrangement of the show. It started off with Peter Pan and Wendy looking at the second star to the right. Peter said, “If you follow the second star to the right, you can go wherever your dreams will take you!” And I was done. Then came the waterworks. Y’know, I’m absolutely dead inside when sad things happen. But when something hits me right in the feels, like Peter Pan talking about travel and dreams after the most amazing trip of my life. Gone. Done. Crying for days.

Next came the musical numbers. Lumiere sang “Be Our Guest” in French. Fitting. Next they played “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” from the Lion King. Classic. The next one was another highlight for me. One of my favorite Disney movies, and one I feel is the most underrated, is “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.” This movie, is nearly abandoned by the American Disney parks, but I absolutely adore it because both the story and soundtrack are just beautiful. I was completely thrilled when they cued up the music to “Out There,” and I just about lost it when I realized they were playing it in French. More crying. I had just been there at Notre Dame, now they’re playing the song! Too much. Then they played “Let It Go,” everyone’s favorite, and the song that got me through my senior year of college. Let’s just keep them coming, at this point I’m a faucet. People are probably staring at me by this point, I’m alone in a Disney park bawling my eyes out. Then they did “I See The Light” from Tangled, which has no sentimental value for me whatsoever but I always cry during that song for some reason ANYWAY and I have no idea why.  Then lastly out of nowhere they played the voodoo guy’s song from Princess and the Frog. That one felt out of place. They wrapped up with a medley, Peter Pan’s star got its magic back, there was a barrage of fireworks for the finale, and show’s over. I turned around wiped the tears from my eyes, and darted for the metro.

It was a mad dash for the train, but I made it, and even got a seat. After that ride, and a second ride on the inner city train, I had made my way back to the streets of Paris. They were nearly empty. I turned on my phone to text mom…and it flashed the battery signal. NO. This is what I tried to avoid! Thoughts were streaming through my head. “Were those fireworks really worth it?” “You didn’t really HAVE to turn your phone backi on to take a picture of the castle at night, y’know!” “Why did you have to be a five-year-old and go to Disney?!” “This is how I die.”

A cab approached and I suddenly felt relief. I popped my head in his window. “Ibis Hotel, Rue Barbes.” I said, trying to lay on as much as a French accent as possible so he’d understand me. “Huh?” He said. I repeated the hotel and street. “No no no.” He said, and drove off. I stood there dumbstruck. What the hell? I knew that was the right place! That’s even what Matt told me to say when I hailed the cab!

Another cab approached just a few minutes after, though it felt like a lifetime. I popped my head in again. “Ibis Hotel, Rue Barbes.” He looked at me quizzically. “IT’S IN MONTROUGE,” I said, forcefully, thankfully remembering the neighborhood as well as the street. “Ah, ah, oui.” I breathed a sigh of relief and was whisked down the street. Thank you, second cab driver, for not being a jerk.

He dumped me off at my hotel, I walked through the sliding doors, and I felt like I needed to kiss the ground. It was 1am, I had gone 2 days without a shower, my feet were still gross from puddles outside the Moulin Rouge. I was sweaty, exhausted, and never so happy to see a bed. But gosh darn it, I’d done it. I’d gone to a destination in an unfamiliar city, no, country, by myself! No assistance! Victory!

And I’m so happy I’d done it. Disneyland Paris was a gem. Overall, the rides were okay, but the park itself was just beautiful. The detail placed in the decoration and grooming of the park was spectacular, and I’m glad to have visited. That’s 8 parks I’ve been to worldwide, and 4 to go. If I want to do the next four, I’d have to hit up Japan and China. I don’t know that I’m ready for Asia yet. We’ll see in a couple years.


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