To get to Disneyland Yas and Justin kindly lent us their car. After taking instruction from Justin and making sure the data on our new sim card was working perfectly for Google maps, we hit the road and quickly encountered our first experience with what felt like a twenty lane highway. Consisting of express car pool and mandatory exit/entry lanes that are two lanes deep, the beginning of the adventure was a tad chaotic. We quickly overcame this, tuning into the eclectic sounds KCRW.FM (LA’s unofficial favourite radio station) and proudly arriving at Mickey’s house without a single wrong turn.
The experience of Disneyland is one that starts at the car park. To help you remember where you left your car, each floor is named after a Disney character, Daffy, Mickey, Pinocchio, etc. We scored a spot in Pluto D. This end to end Disney-fied experience continues even through to traffic attendants. As a small child broke out in tears at the lights, the traffic attendant reached into his pocket and produced a shiny badge to soothe the boy’s frustrations. Mickey would have been proud. Alice considered crying to elicit a badge too. It didn’t work.
Once through the polished gates, more magic continued in the form of rides, characters and oversized American theme park food.There are 20,000 employees at Disneyland Resort, and it all started with Walt’s first hire, Mickey. First stop had to be this all American classic, the good old corn dog. (Not “Dagwood Dog” as Alice first enquired about. What a dag!). While Australian theme parks such as Seaworld and Dreamworld seem to have terrible fast food standards (floppy not quite hot chips, soggy hot dog bread buns, stingy portions of tomato sauce that are charged for by the sachet), Disneyland delivered their high calorie goods with perfect scores. With crispy crunchy batter and a piping hot dog inside, we enjoyed every bite. Each dog is accompanied with a bundle of free ketchup and mustard also. Oh condiments. A fun Disney fact we later found out was around Walt Disney’s attention to detail. Walt specifically placed the bins at Disney World 25 steps away from the hot dog stall, as this was how long it took him to eat a hot dog. Barbershop quartet. One of many impromptu shows happening around the park. Chip and Dale brought the nostalgia. Throughout the park, the American spirit is celebrated with the same fervour as Micky and Minnie. We definitely got our hit of feel good family fun with a triple dose of patriotism. No, Ben’s head hasn’t shrunk, he’s merely eating giant foods. This was another favourite Disney food experience. Giant turkey legs (from some farm growing giant turkeys apparently) was our protein hit for the day. Finishing the job. Micky ears are required attire at Disneyland. This is when we were in the future. Disneyland, where you start the day pumped, and finish it plumped. These are pretty cute though. Coming down the third time from another sugar high, the walk out of Disneyland is one filled with exhaustion. All the kids in the prams with lollipops still in hand were asleep and blown out. We weren’t dissimilar, but without our mommies, we had to drive ourselves home. Taking one last glance at Sleeping Beauty’s castle, we headed back to our Pluto D car space Disney-fried but satisfied we’d done Disney right. Another glance of an American flag – for the road.