Yes, we finally made it to Disney. We saved it for Friday for 2 reasons. One was that everything else was going to be closed since it was a national holiday and the other was that it would help the kids have something to look forward to.
They would say this was the best thing they did in Paris – but for me, it was the least fun. I’m pretty sad about that since this is the 5th time I’ve done Disney (previous 4 in Florida) and I’ve always liked it (not loved it, like some, but it was definitely fun).
Zander and Callie had been to Disney one time before, about 2 years ago, with my sister Tina. They were so excited coming up to this trip since they had many, many fond memories. I told them that it might be crowded. Zander said, “Don’t worry Mom, we’ll just go in the hot tub.” “Yeah” Callie chimed in. “or the pool!” Well, kids, THAT was at the hotel!!!! Not at Disney! They were shocked. “You mean, no hot tub?…. Will Aunt Tina be there to play with? NO??? Then what was Disney?” I reminded them of the rides and characters, and digging for dinosaur bones – they had loved everything (except Splash Mountain). I forced them on that ride, sure they would end up liking it, and they were both terrified (whoops). I clearly remember them saying “Mom, I love Disney, but I hate Splash Mountain. I will never like it and I’m never, ever, ever going on it even if we ever come back.” However, when I mentioned the name of the ride, they both got really excited and started telling Griffin how awesome it was and how they couldn’t wait to go on it again. I will never understand how their minds work.
Well we got there after about an hour on the train and sure enough, it was terribly crowded. Strangely, they only had FastPass on 3 rides in the whole park, two of which my kids were too small to ride on – so that meant lines. Thirdly, Deeznay, is no Disney. It does look similar but it is smaller, doesn’t have as much for young kids, has worse line estimations and entertainment while waiting, doesn’t have some of the classic rides (no Splash Mountain?) has fewer characters to bump into, and (if this is possible), worse and more expensive food. A hot dog with a tiny bag of chips (no drink) was 8.50 Euros.
But, we did get to go on Thunder Mountain together, then a river boat ride, stale popcorn and ice cream for lunch and watched a few shows. Mickey was magic and gave out sparkly streamers. Callie and Griffin wanted some so I had to fight other parents to get them. Meanwhile Zander and Daddie walked through the Haunted House. That was Zander’s favorite thing in Deeznay. Then we couldn’t agree on anything. Zander wanted to do a ride that only he was tall enough for, Griffin wanted to just stay in one spot and rest and Callie, when asked, said “But mom, the thing I want most to do in Disney is to buy something so I can remember Disney.” There you have it folks, she’s every marketer’s dream. We waited while they pored over the map and finally decided to go over to Disney Studios (I got the tickets off Ebay and it was the same price for a two park pass as it was for the one park pass). This was a great choice because it was much less crowded and the lines were so much shorter over there. There were also lots more characters strolling around to see. We rode on Aladdin's carpets, in the Cars Cars and then watched a really awesome car stunt show while eating overpriced hot dogs – the kids were enthralled. We especially enjoyed the part when the stunt guy caught on fire. Griffin really liked the ‘backwards’ cars – they seemed like they were cars going full speed in reverse but they were actually built backwards for stunt purposes. I have been playing ‘backwards car’ with him the past few days. Then we saw a neat interactive Lilo and Stitch show. Then we headed back over to the other park for our souvenir coins and one last Haunted House trip and found out that, although the park is open until 10pm the Haunted House was now closed (at 7:30 – that’s France for you). So we spent some time on Adventure Island instead and got home around 9:30. The kid consensus was that it was a fun day – but Zander said he enjoyed Dutch Wonderland and Clementon Park (visited last summer) much more – no lines!!!
Andre’, who had never been to Disney before, hated it. He wanted to go home about half an hour after we walked in the door! So much for the Disney magic….