So my first week of nails centers around Wet ‘n’ Wild Fantasy Makers’ Glow in the Dark. It was probably somewhere between 99 cents and $2.50 whenever it was that I bought it, however long ago that was. I’m not even sure if Wet ‘n’ Wild still exists, but somehow the cheap companies always seem to do the best work with the glow works. This week I really needed to glow!
This year I turn 40 (actually, it’s this month) and to celebrate I decided that I wanted to finally do something that’s been on my life list forever: to stay at a Disneyland Hotel. It started with a memory of passing by one of the pools on the way to the park and seeing a fantastical pirate’s cove with a skull cave and everything. Sadly, the pool is long gone, and how that could even be possible astounds me. So instead, I stayed in the Grand Californian, with its special entrance into California Adventure and beautiful architecture. I’d been planning it for months after talking with my sister one afternoon. I even set up an event on my Facebook, and then waited to see who would join me…
The answer I got was Practically No One. After the initial planning with my sister, she and my mom told me that they couldn’t make it for more than a day or two and couldn’t afford the hotel. I quickly called my friend Murphy who for had the money and time to waste. She agreed to join me. She was the only one. My family joined us for a day at the park, spent the night at a nearby hotel, and went on a tour of the hotel with me the next day. Most of my friends were either sick at the last minute or never responded to the event.
It turned out to be cool that it was just Murph and me. Two people have a much easier time getting around. There’s no splitting up the group because some want to go on rides while others want to eat, and no feeling guilty for splitting up. Still, it did hurt my feelings to not have more people want to join me.
The thing is the plans we make in our heads never seem to live up in reality. Pools get remodeled, financials change, people get sick, life just sucks that way. And we cling to those moments of suckiness rather than the hours of fun and color. What’s that thing in The Matrix where the computers tried to give humans a happy world to live in (or feed of them in) but the humans would never believe it? And I’m just as bad as anyone else I’ve ever met.
So in an attempt to be more positive, here are just a few of the fabulous things that you missed by not celebrating my birthday with me:
1. The hotel was fantastic! Beautiful grounds, friendly staff, and the guest service desk had these funny little quizzes about some of the rides with prizes if you answered them all. It’s mostly for kids but we had fun with them anyway. The bed was cozy with the best pillows ever complete divine little chocolates at night. Housekeeping kept leaving us these cards with Disney characters on them, and the even the soap had an imprint of the castle. There were even hidden Mickeys in the carpet and Bambi in the shower curtain.
2. We got to go into the park an hour earlier than the regular crowd. It allowed us to go on some of the new rides that we never would have been able to try out because the park was so crowded. We rode the new Cars ride and played in the Toy Story Arcade twice. When the park was open it would have taken the whole day in a line for just one of those rides, but we got to play and play and play.
3. I got to hear a really awesome house band and see the coolest Alice in Wonderland costumes ever! They even have groupies, stalker groupies apparently. They were part of the Disney rave that happens most nights in California Adventure. My favorite part was their costumes. The lead singer was The Mad Hatter, but not some big headed, Johnny Depp clone. This one was total rocker, all purple and sonic apple green with a red graphic tee and a belt made out spools of millinery thread.
4. We got to ride the Jungle Cruise three times in one day. I know that it sounds silly, but it was one of my favorite rides this time. The new rides all have prerecorded tour guides that never change, but everyday different guides tell different jokes to the passengers. We got to hear three of them. The best joke? “Spear, spear, spear, spear!”
There were a lot more awesome, fun, ridiculous moments: yummy sandwiches, a Christmas tree of traffic cones, wreathes of wrenches, chocolate doubloons, a wickedly frustrating hoodie hunt, a colossally crazy Pirates of the Caribbean special fun line that wound through all of Frontierland, and even had a switchback or two to keep people from figuring it out, RumbleRoar at Pigfarts, and more than one trip through an inner-tube followed by a hot tub.
So what did we learn? Nothing turns out the way you plan. Guest Services is awesome (but they are nicer to kids than adults) and Wet ‘n’ Wild made really great glow in the dark nail polish (Seriously, every time we were in a dark ride I got to play dancing fingers). Whenever you are seriously depressed about how something did not go the way you wanted it to, take the time to count off all the moments that were fun or fantastic or silly or just unexpected. Oh, and go in twos if you can (thirty is just too many) and if you can have it be one of those rare people that remind you that crying is okay especially when you really need to. Even better if they remember to bring the Harry Potter Musical on DVD for you to watch when you don’t feel like going out again.
Oh! I tipped my nails with Nicole’s OPI holiday color: Deck the Halls. OPI is one of my favorite brands, and I always highly recommend it. The colors are pretty great and they have lots of variety, but the best thing is the brush! It’s flat unlike the traditional brush, which makes it easier to put on, smoother and faster drying too. Anyway, have a great week filled with color and fun!