Disneyland, Villa at Grand California, Jan 8-12, 2010

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February 20th 2010
Published: March 13th 2010
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View from my VGS studio roomView from my VGS studio roomView from my VGS studio room

Great Park view, and I did actually manage one ride on the big Mickey's Color Wheel
After the delightful whale-watching I motated back toward the LA area on the 101 (instead of the more scenic Hwy 1 I used on the way north), to the 405. I'm surprised after all this time away from Calif, I still feel comfortable driving there, even tho it can be annoying. Sometimes it's less annoying to use one of the long, straight surface streets. My destination was the Villas at the Grand Californian (VGC) at Disneyland Resort; it's between the "California Adventure" park (CA) and "Downtown Disney" (DTD) and an easy walk to Disneyland (DL). VGC is part of the Disney Vacation Club timeshare system (I bought some points there last year), and is very lovely. It is part of the GC hotel. It has a very well-done Arts and Crafts era theme (which one of the well-known old hotels in Asheville has -- the Grove Park Inn, which dates from that era and still has a lot of its original furnishings and style (except for the new wings, which do follow the theme). I had a "studio" unit with one queen bed, one sofa bed, a kichenette (good-sized dorm fridge, microwave, sink, coffee-maker, toaster, cups, glasses, and some paper plates
Finally, the FGFinally, the FGFinally, the FG

In all my years of going to Disney Parks, this was the first time I got a photo with the Fairy Godmother.
and bowls, and plastic utensils) small balcony, and a great view to Mickey's Color Wheel in CA. (Have I mentioned how much I love timesharing -- lots more room and at least a kitchenette, so I don't have to eat out very much -- cuts the trip cost down a lot). Also having access to free/included laundry room is helpful -- got tokens from the front desk (she seemed surprised that I asked for them when I checked in); did laundry the first evening. (I had stayed in a Best Western just across the street from Disneyland the first weekend, which worked out fine, but not as enjoyable).

Still having good weather, and keeping a cold at bay, but doing great; trip is going very well, thoroughly enjoying it.

I had a 6-day parkhopper pass, that was half-used up from the previous weekend, and I went back and forth between the two parks Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. I didn't manage to keep a journal of my DLR days, because I spent a lot of time in the parks and got too tired -- so everything is jumbled together. I fully enjoyed my 6-day pass, even without doing the
Monorail on the Golden GateMonorail on the Golden GateMonorail on the Golden Gate

Entering the California Adventure Park
thrill rides (I can't/won't ride coasters) -- went on several rides more than once, got my picture taken with lots of characters, (including princesses and faires, which I don't do when DGS (dear grandson) is with me), and explored most of the nooks and crannies. I doubt that I will ever make the trip out to CA again, so I wanted to "leave no stone unturned" -- no regrets at missing something (although the new lights and water show at CA looks like it will be spectacular, and I love that kind of stuff).

I saw all the parades, and I think all of the shows that were going, went on Soarin' and Mr. Toad's Wild Ride four times, even went on Indiana Jones (once was enough for my creaky body -- but at least it stays on the ground). It was warm enough for the Grizzly River Rapids (I like raft rides) -- I got soaked, so it was handy that I was staying at VGC for that -- it has a gate right from the hotel; I changed into spare clothes before the ride, and then was able to go back and get dried off after it.
Played the game right!Played the game right!Played the game right!

Mal is one of my favorite characters, so I managed to skew my answers and got surprised (?) with this character answer.
It was great to have plenty of time. I didn't eat or snack much in the Parks -- it's expensive and unreliable quality (some things are really good -- ice cream sundaes, esp.). I had expected that I wouldn't find much that this slightly creaky, semi-old lady could enjoy at CA, but that didn't turn out to be the case -- even with the construction going on, I found plenty to do there -- even got to watch 5 princesses riding on the carousel (I don't think that is a regular thing -- it looked like it might have been an informal photo shoot). The Fantasmic show at DL was great -- it's not in a theater, so it's whole different effect than at WDW. (I know I'm muddling all this together, sorry).

There's tons more I should write about my nostalgic trip back to Disneyland; hope I get around to it eventually (but that may get lost in the planning for the next trips (just got back from Branson with my sister more WDW, DC, maybe Grand Cayman yet this year -- keep in mind, I'm pretty much a budget traveller, even tho that may not sound like it).


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