Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Vacation Anticipation

So, apparently the Witch has granted me posting privileges on here, and, despite the fact that I've been far too lazy to post on my own blog, I'm going to use this opportunity to perform a preemptive strike of sorts.

Bar exam #2 is now over. I'll make a Post About the Bar, in which the Warlock Makes A Friend over on my place shortly (or not, as the case may be). It may or may not be funny but will certainly involve a fictitious person drowning in a vat of cow dung (there was actually a question on this). In keeping with tradition (sample size = 1), we are about to head out on a family vacation.

I should note that family vacations we took when I was a kid were often mixed bags. The typical vacation I remember involved a six hour trip to Idaho in a Volkswagon Vanagon (think VW Bus, minus the smell of pot and sitar music) to see my grandparents. These vacations could be good or bad, depending on how many times Dad made good on his threat to pull the car over to the side of the road and/or how often we got locked outside of Grandma's house with their rabid evil Satan dog with giant fangs and bloodshot eyes (I'm pretty sure he spent every night binge drinking) that ate kids for breakfast. There were other vacations (camping, Boston) that were more or less fine, but still were a bit short of the Gold Standard: Disneyland.

While we flew and had multi-day trips to Disneyland when I was older, our first trips were more of the stuff of legend. We'd pile into a car (usually without A/C) and drive the 13 or so hours to California. Typically the parents would take steps to make these trips better than the ones to Idaho; I specifically remember laying in the back of a truck with a camper shell with a trillion sleeping bags, watching movies on a small TV/VCR that was running off of a generator that was bolted to a plate that was welded to a trailer hitch.

We'd get to Burbank and stay with my Great Aunt, who was very sweet and kind (even though she had a personality befitting a role as a yenta across from Topol, and an ethical system akin to David Duke) and hardly sleep that night. The next morning, we'd pile back into the car and drive the hour or so down to Anaheim, fighting traffic the entire way, until finally we stopped and hiked the 18 or so miles from the parking lot (now California Adventure) to the main entrance. We'd pace around nervously for the three hours it took Dad to buy tickets, and then we'd finally go in and see this:

Everybody knew this was the magic portal. Once we pass through this, we'd see the castle, and Space Mountain was just around the corner, and our parents would invariably refuse to go to the Tiki Room, and we wouldn't care because we'd just go ride Pirates 10 times in a row, and then we'd stay until we crashed, and fall asleep on the way back to Burbank. We never had enough time to do everything and we didn't care. This was the one place we kids never fought among one another and all the bad things in life didn't exist. (I'm sure Mom and Dad remember it differently). It was only one day, usually, but it was the best day to be a kid.

We probably went (I'm guessing here) about once every three years or so, on average. Later we would start flying there and having multi-day trips and my brother and I would go off alone and do ridiculously stupid things, like wait in line for 3 hours when Splash Mountain opened - and then do it again right after the ride was over.

Even as an adult, that tunnel (non-existent at Walt Disney World, I believe, but it's there at Tokyo Disneyland) is a special magical barrier. We've gone several times as grown-ups; once we went to Tokyo Disneyland in the middle of a typhoon (five minute waits for everything, and Dumbo was shut down!). Another time we accidentally woke up 2 hours earlier than we needed to and didn't realize it until we were halfway there. Another time I completely surprised the Witch (with the help of a cast of friends) and took her there for an anniversary (she'd not been to Disneyland proper until then). And it's the last family vacation we took before our oldest daughter died. Each time, that magical barrier is where I get all teary-eyed with anticipation and joy and memory.

So it won't surprise you that we're going to Disneyland AGAIN for our post-bar vacation. And it also won't surprise you that (and this is the part I'm preempting) that the person most excited about it is ME. Oh, Pippi is bouncing off the wall to be sure (we've been planning it since last November, and it was a bigger deal to her than opening Christmas presents - on Christmas Day!) and the Witch is certainly happy (not least because we're flying in my little sister to help out with the kids - and she's getting a free vacation, so she's not sad either). But I'm the one who is going around the house humming the Splash Mountain song, or singing the Tigger ditty, or watching YouTube videos of the Haunted Mansion, or downloading software to optimize ride/wait time, or making reservations for the Blue Bayou 60 days in advance, or spending hours reading up on tips for making sure kids or happy, or any number of other things. I am a seven year old with a paycheck.


The Silly Witch said...

I don't think Disneyland itself could be nearly as fun as watching you anticipate Disneyland. When you see Disneyland in the near future, you are not a mere Warlock, you're a Jolly Warlock.

You forgot to mention some of your methods for getting the rest of us excited about the trip. Pippi has been offered extra chores to earn "a little" extra money. "I'll give you ten dollars if you help me clean out the car." Ten dollars? I don't think I'd ever even held 1 ten dollar bill in my hand when I was six years old. Pippi has a wallet that feels like an anchor.

You've been gradually introducing Bardo to Mickey mouse and Pluto

Sisyphus said...

Inflation. I'm just accounting for inflation.

Although that does remind me I have to stop at the ATM today and get her some cash. Maybe I'll dig up one more job for her and make it an even $40.

Rachael said...

Go on Pirates of the Caribbean twice for me!! I LOVE Disneyland!! Have fun.

Nancy said...

i heart disneyland. i even like the tiki tiki tiki tiki, tiki, room.

citymama1 said...

Oooo oooo! We're going to Disneyland too. It's our post-bar pre-end of clerkship trip. When are you guys going? (We'll be there on Sat-Tues!) Maybe we'll run into you at the tea cups!

Have a great time.

JessK said...

Have so much fun! We've been 3 times since getting married (and only once with a kid, and then she had very little clue what was going on). We should totally go together someday. Say hi to Space Mountain for me!
PS. Do you still like the Tiki Room since they've changed it?

Kissy said...

If I ever need help getting psyched up for a vacation, I'll know who to turn to. Jolly Warlock, I LOVE your enthusiasm!

Prudence said...

Have fun at Disneyland. It's a fun place for sure! We'd love to have you someday come and visit us on Vacation!

Darrell said...

A favourite vacation of ours too! We're jealous!

eryka said...

Have fun! We LOVE disneyland too. Law school friends reunion at Disneyland someday?

Prairie Smoke said...

I hope you have a GREAT time. I have been to Disneyland once and Disney World once. I guess I'm more in to the simple things when it comes to a vacation. I like that people have different preferences.

Have a wonderful time and take lots of pictures.