Halloween at the Grand Californian Day 2 Part 1

Note: We made some changes to the previous day’s report since I mixed up a couple of nights. I should have listened to Rich’s voice notes before I started writing the report, but I now have it in my possession. 🙂 Back to the report.

We woke up to thick fog, a common summer weather pattern due to hot inland areas, but since it was so hot this weekend, it’s not surprising the morning fog slipped into September – Indian summer – another common weather pattern for the area. It soon cleared up, though. My mother tells stories of how she’d have to put on long pants in the morning, change into shorts for the hot afternoon, and then back into long pants for the cool coastal evenings when we lived in nearby Westminster.

We ordered an American Breakfast room service to share and a pot of coffee, and the GC staff came through again and delivered it within 30 minutes – not bad.

DCA was the plan for this morning, and while it didn’t open until 10 a.m., Soarin Over California opens at 9:30. So we lined up at the GC entry gate at about 9:25 and they let us in at about 9:30 and we walked onto Soarin. We got the top middle row – woo hoo!!!

Who doesn’t love this ride? It makes me cry because it captures all of my California memories, where I lived most of my life. It’s like watching home movies. It opens soaring over the Golden Gate Bridge, and not only was I conceived there (where my mother and father honeymooned while he waited for his military deployment from San Francisco to the Pacific), but I spent 22 years of my adult life there. Rich and I met, worked together, and got married there. It’s a beautiful place, no doubt about that. Then the film moves up to the Russian River – one of our favorite getaways from San Francisco.

Other nostalgic stops along the way: Yosemite where my dad and his family spent most of his summers growing up and where Rich hiked Half Dome, backpacked into the Sierras, and overnight camping trips in cabins. The Central Valley where Dad#1 and Dad#2 grew up – where one family still grows grapes for raisins – as in “The California Raisins.” LOL! The fighter jets recall Dad#1 and his love for planes and his time in the Air Force, the hot air balloons over Napa and hang gliders – a particular passion of Dad#2.

And then the ride zooms in over the L.A. freeways, where my mother grew up and where I was born, and then the finale soarin over Disneyland (where I grew up) at Christmas – wow – who wouldn’t cry? I might cry right now. 🙂

Anyway, after Soarin, we walked through “Candy Corn Acres,” and took some pics, and listened to every candy-themed song there ever was. My personal childhood favorite: Sunshine, Lollipops” and Rich’s “Sugar, Sugar.”

We waited around for about 5 minutes until rope drop, and the designated family dropped the rope and led us down Hollywood Boulevard. We went straight for Tower of Terror, which is Rich’s favorite ride, and while I love the theming, I have a hard time with that dropping feeling. 🙂

We then rode Monsters Inc for the very first time. It was a lot of fun.

About Kathy

Novelist & Music Producer