Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Disney: July 14: Hollywood Studios

Our last day at Disney was spent at Hollywood Studios.  The bus driver let us out in the parking lot and said he'd be back at 4:15pm - - the first pick up of the day.  I think I saw PopPop do some quick calculations about how long he'd have to suffer the heat of the park while pushing our rented stroller ($51 for four days!)for the last time. 

It was supposed to be a relaxing day of shows... and the map confirmed that kid-friendly attractions weren't as abundant at this park as they were at the two kingdoms.

First stop? The Fast Pass station for the Tower of Terror.  We picked up four passes - each with an hour window for use.  And a sweet smile from Chi with an equally sweet, "PopPop, will you ride with me?" saved me from having to get on the freakish elevator drop. Yeah! Sigh of relief.
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While waiting, we caught the live performance of Beauty and the Beast.  Ya was totally engrossed in the show.
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We decided to go character hunting again, and followed the signs to an indoor (yeah!) area that featured Magician Mickey (Fantasia?), Lotso (Toy Story 3), and the Incredibles.  We skipped Mickey (saw him at Animal Kingdom) and joined the long line for Lotso - the newest park character.  Lotso is apparently a bad guy on the movie who lures kids in offering hugs and smelling like fruit (strawberries?).  Great!  Lotso demonstrated his evil tendency by trying to smother Ya.
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We missed photos and autographs of two of the Incredibles characters, but our consolation prize was Mrs. Incredible - who scared Ya, but excited Chi.
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I tried the Disney Animator position out... but didn't quite get Dale right...
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And then I oogled the awesome sketches from Disney movies of old.
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This animator was busy coloring a cell for something with a super fine paint brush.
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Back outside, Chi was happy to join the line for the Little Einstein's June and Quincy - - she used to watch the show "when I was a kid," afterall.
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It was so neat to watch her dance and twirl with June.
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When I spotted Handy Manny, I was overjoyed... it is Ya's favorite show on Playhouse Disney (and next up is Mickey Mouse Club House).  But poor Ya was essentially comatose and was totally unaware that his hero was there to give him a hand shake, hug or high five.  We got the autograph and picture anyway, and showed it to him when he woke up.
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I asked Oma to get a picture of me on the giant ant and waited in the short line of kids whose parents were hoping to do the same thing.  Somehow, though, the pictures I got were blurry or missing much of the ant in the frame.  And the lady behind me in line - who had a conversation with me about how others were standing too close when folk were taking pictures and where therefore in these strangers photos - is smiling in my pictures as though she were posing with me. What?  I had to crop her and her son out of my picture, thereby further eliminating my ride from the shot.
Photo taking opportunities were cut short here, because as soon as the first drops of rain began to fall, attendants rushed us out of the attraction.  It's ironic, because rain was a big issue in the movie, too.

PopPop was already seated and eating at a restaurant, so we didn't have to run too far for cover.  Hollywood, unlike the other parks, pretty much shuts down in incliment weather.

So, we tried to busy ourselves with photos while waiting for 4:15 to get closer.  I know what you're thinking, any excuse I get for a photo I'm going to use it. Exactly!
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After slipping on the slick curb en route the the restroom, Chi and I were a little leery of the park.  The rain had dampened our spirits tremendously.  But just as we walked outside the bathroom, we were confronted with the park's daily parade coming right at us!  Again, we had stumbled into prime viewing location.
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One last photo op at the gas station where the strollers are returned, and we were on our way to wait for pick up.
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In the parking lot, Ya resumed his disgruntled bus searching.  He pointed, he called out, "Wait. Stop! Bus?" to each driver as the buses passed us by on their routes.
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