It was a busy weekend. My friend, the one my mom and I cruised with back in January, had some extra tickets to Disneyland. She and her kids' families went to Disneyland last month for a couple days, but at the time the three-day Park-Hopper ticket was cheaper than the two-day ticket, so they bought the three-day, and the third day was due to expire by before the end of August.
So my friend invited my daughter and me and a mutual friend my daughter's age to use up the final day of her tickets. We didn't need our arms twisted.
Our younger friend spent the night Friday, and we all stayed up late--the girls hanging out with friends and me trying to get ready. When I finally got to bed, I was too excited to get to sleep and ended up with less than three hours of sleep.
Bright and early, we picked up my friend and drove to Anaheim. We parked at Disneyland, caught the tram, had our purses checked by Security, and entered the Magic Kingdom about an hour after they opened. Our first stop was Indiana Jones to pick up a Fast Pass that would let us come back later and cut ahead of the Stand By line. Then we headed over to the newest ride, the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, where we journeyed deep underwater to watch Nemo's dad and Dory on their adventure to find Nemo. It was cute, but now that we've seen it, none of us needs to see it again.
At Astro Blaster, the Buzz Lightyear ride where you get to shoot at the Evil Zurg, they'll email your picture to you, with your score, which you can see was much less than my friend's score. She was the Astro Blaster queen of our group, even though her face was a blur.
We went back to Indiana Jones, but it was temporarily closed because of "technical difficulties." We rode Pirates of the Caribbean, where I tried to take a nap but couldn't manage it. After riding Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, we checked Splash Mountain but the line was too long because of the heat in the middle of the day.
Then we started our park-hopping and went to California Adventure, got our Fast Pass for Grizzly River Run, the water ride that can soak you through to your skin, which sounded really good, and had lunch. Back at Grizzly River, we learned that they were having "technical difficulties" too. The water wasn't flowing.
I was hot and tired, and when the other three rode the California Screamin' roller coaster (it goes upside down and is not my idea of a good time), I found a place to sit. I also sat out the MaliBoomer, which shoots you up a big tower and drops you several times.
We got into the Aladdin show, an abbreviated version of the movie, with a non-Robin Williams genie who updated his jokes to fit recent events in the world. I got my nap during the first part of the show and was refreshed and willing to try a scary ride afterward. So we went to the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, my first time on the ride.
Rod Serling himself greets you on the TV in the library of the Hollywood Hotel and tells you the story of some former guests whose elevator catapulted them into... The Twilight Zone. And it could happen to you too. And then it does.
Our elevator took us up a few floors, stopping at each one to show us the hallway. And then we watched that long-ago elevator disappear before our eyes. And then our elevator doors shut and we entered the Twilight Zone ourselves, shooting upward and opening the doors to show us the panorama of Disneyland and Southern California beyond it. And then we dropped. And rose. And dropped. Over and over, while I clung to the metal bar beside my seat at the end of the row and screamed the whole time. When we finally stopped, back in normal time and space, my legs were woozy and my throat sore.
We rode other rides, both at California Adventure and back at Disneyland, and even though we had planned to stay until the park closed at midnight, we didn't make it past 11:00. We stayed at a motel for the night and drove back home this morning, refreshed but not in time for most of us to get to church.
I fell asleep on the couch and got woken up by a call from my daughter, who had gone to her church for nursery duty. She was crying and saying she couldn't drive. I was afraid she'd crashed the car so it wasn't drivable, but she said it was her CD player. It had shorted out and turned itself on full volume, and she couldn't eject the CD or turn the volume back down or power it off. The only way to make the noise stop was to turn off the car, so she parked beside the road and waited for me to come help her. I grabbed a couple sizes of phillips and slotted screwdrivers and a set of tiny tools and drove to her.
First, I have to say that I'm not mechanical. When I was a kid, my mom was the handyman in the family (she took after her dad). In that respect, I take after my dad, but I've had to learn a few things since I've been on my own.
My daughter was right that the volume was so loud it was intolerable. I disconnected the big set of speakers from the back, and that made the sound painfully loud only in the front. I found a transistor strap (pardon me if my terminology is sadly out of date) and disconnected it, then turned the key on Accessory, plugged my ears with my fingers, and waited. That didn't fix the problem. Then I unscrewed and detached the front section (it folds down to reveal the tape deck), but that didn't fix it either.
It took me a while. There were screws I couldn't remove, so I figured out how to pull off the plastic casing around the CD player and pulled the player out and unplugged everything from the back and put the player on the floor. Then I turned on the car without plugging my ears and listened to the beautiful sound of an idling engine. I turned the car over to my daughter and went back home.
Mighty Mom. That's me!