Monday, October 13, 2008

I have a good excuse for not blogging for a while. I've been in Disneyland!

My good friend Liz turned forty on Friday, so we helped her celebrate by joining her, Larry, and their daughter for a long weekend in Disneyland.

The last time we went to Disneyland was just over three years ago. Daisy was six years old at the time and was scared of her own shadow. Actually, she wasn't technically scared of her own shadow, but she should have been since all dark things and moving objects terrified her. So, since 90% of the rides at Disneyland involve dark, and 100% of them involve moving objects, the amusement park ended up being the Scariest Place on Earth.

This time around I was more optimistic. In the three years since our previous visit Daisy had become more comfortable with dark-based activities like movies or sleeping. (Granted, her physical grip on me still tightens when we walk into a darkened movie theater, but her desire to see the movie generally outweighs her fear of the theater.) Also, a couple trips to our local crappy amusement parks had acclimated her to the idea that being zoomed up, down, and sideways could constitute entertainment.

Finally, as added incentive to actually ride the damn rides this time, we brought along one of Daisy's friends, allowing the power of peer pressure to substitute for effective reassurances and actual parenting.

Did it work? Did Daisy ride and enjoy the rides? Well, in her own way, yes.

Some rides she just flat out loved. Both Star Tours (youtube) and Soarin' Over California (youtube) were big hits. Of course both these rides are essentially just being jiggled and tilted while watching a movie. Other more Disney-themed and traditional rides were still just a little too scary, so Daisy coped by just closing her eyes. She used this technique to deal with most of theDisneyland rides like Mr. Toad, Roger Rabbit's Cartoon Spin, and parts of Alice in Wonderland.

Even rides that basically took place entirely in the dark were only tolerable with her eyes closed. So, although Daisy amazed us by agreeing to ride Space Mountain and Tower of Terror, she only made it through those rides with her sanity intact by fiercely shutting her eyes. Whatever it takes, babe.

One day that girl is going to write a kick-ass Blind Person's Guide to Disneyland: The Tactile World of Walt Disney.


Meg S. said...

I'm glad you had a better time this go around. I have two who are scared of the dark rides and one, the four year old, who can't get enough. The pirate hiding out on the island tunnels that jumps out at you? "Bing it on mama". The 17 and 6 year old cower over with daddy. One night we got Star Tours all to ourselves. Very cool. I have downloaded a lot of D-land videos podcasts and my girls love them.

Mike said...

I keep hoping my girl will grow out of it, but maybe she'll shut her eyes her whole life. I guess that's ok.

loveyh said...

My mom's best friend was screaming obscenities at my dad on Space Mountain. We lied to her, said it was a Pirates-style ride...but it's not. She HATES roller coasters.

I can still hear her screaming, "God Damn you, you lying sonafabitch!" I was 13, and could not stop giggling.

Maybe Daisy ill grow out of it...or maybe "It's a Small World" will be as adventurous as she gets. Either way, It's Disney, bay-bee!

Mike said...

Lovey, thankfully my daughter also hates It's a Small World. At least we agree on that one.