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Hail Guest, we ask not what thou art.
If Friend, we greet thee, hand and heart.
If Stranger, such no longer be.
If Foe, our love will conquer thee.
-Old Welsh Door Verse

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Music Magic

Never get tired of it.

Not going to explain much today, but here are the photos and video from another great day with my Mom at Disneyland.
We sat outside, but this is the new indoor seating area at the Carnation Cafe.

So, this video needs a little explanation.  Mom and I have always enjoyed this Disneyland Band set at the front gates.  Music is Disney themes, and the Mad Hatter, Alice and other characters show up to lead guests in some fun (albeit often embarrassing) activities.  Recently, both Hatters have zeroed in on her to participate, something she does NOT want to do.  A few visits ago the other Hatter stole her from my BIL for the stroller drill team, and on this visit this Hatter also "insisted" and Bert graciously offered to be her chauffer (both refusing to take "No, thank you," for an answer.  BTW, my BET was in full force at the beginning of this video, but YouTube said they fixed it.  We'll see.

Most of the day consisted of us dashing from one musical set to the next.

The Disneyland Band is doing a set on the Mark Twain.  Couldn't miss that now, could we?

They struck the perfect balance between performance and quiet.  At this point we were coming up on the Plains Indians scene.  Of course, Pocahontas was not a Plains Indian, but it is a nice theme to use anyway.  They had played the Davy Crockett theme as we came up to Mike Fink's cabin.

After the boat ride I took Mom over to the Sleeping Beauty Castle to wait for the Band's next set.  While she held our spot, I took some purchases to the front gate Newstand for holding during the day, and on the way back stopped for Pecan Nuttles (going to have to stop doing that) and made note that Esmeralda was indeed still in her traditional spot.  I had found a quarter on the ground and used it to get my fortune, which was somewhat prescient as well as completely appropriate for what was to come.

I thought Mom had seen this before, but I was wrong and she was delightfully surprised by who all joined the band for this show.

So, this was a unique experience for me.  57 years of coming to this magical place, and this was the first time someone has picked a fight with me.  So strange.  Remember the woman standing next to us,  whose hands and camera you can see in my video?  Less than five minutes before the end of this set a man came up behind us and literally pushed that woman out of the way so that his friend - who was holding a baby (about six months old) could stand in the front.  "First time! First time!" the pushing man was shouting.  I just kept taking pictures, figuring if she wanted to argue, that was her business.  But within seconds I noticed that as the man with the baby was swinging the baby from side to side following the antics of the characters, the baby's feet were hitting my mom very close to her one good eye.  I touched him lightly on the shoulder, pointing out what was happening.  He didn't seem to have a problem - settled down so it didn't happen again - but the man who had pushed them into that position (who was now standing behind me) started lecturing me that this place was for kids, not for 60-year-olds.  I refrained from giving him the Disney history lecture (Walt got the idea for a park that adults could enjoy, too, after sitting on a bench at Griffith Park while his daughters rode the carousel) and instead just said, "Well, there's the Disneyland spirit."  To which he replied, "That's just the way of the world."  For probably the first time in my life, I was able to calmly respond with exactly what I wanted to say (it usually takes me a few days of seething and festering to come up with what I should have said.)

"Only if that's the way you want it."

I didn't hear anything else from him.  The set ended and the man with the baby turned to me and said, "I'm so sorry that happened.  I am so, so, sorry."  He couldn't stop apologizing, and I ended up patting his shoulder and assuring him that it was all right.  I was completely satisfied with how it turned out and I really hoped that the experience didn't ruin his first visit with his little girl.  Sure am curious what transpired between the two men after that.

Next up was the Town Square Disney movie music set (always a treat), after which we headed to Coke Corner for something to drink while we enjoyed the Mad Hatter, Alice and Ragtime Patrick as they played Musical Chairs.

While Mom rested there, I skeedaddled over to Splash Mountain for a turn through the Laughin' Place and into the Briar Patch.  I was hoping for a cooling drenching (very warm day) but the water level was low and I barely got a sprinkle.

On my way past I snapped a picture of the "Disneyland" rose.  I lost my "Sutter's Gold" last year and finally dug the stump out at the beginning of the summer.  I wanted this rose to replace it, but was too late this year - everyone was sold out.  It's at the top of my list for Otto and Sons Rose Days next April.

Then we were back to the Castle for the first All American College Band 2012 set.  I fear that I'm losing my camera (probably crashing due to overwork) and it kept freezing on me during videos.  I missed the cool intro to this medley of attractions themes, but I got some of it.

From there we made the quick dash barely in time for the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies set...

... and then over to the Pizza Port for linner...

... and back to Frontierland and into the Golden Horseshoe so that Mom could cool down in the AC and enjoy the Laughing Stock comedy show, which she had never seen.  John Eaden (with the bandana) is one of the funniest performers at Disneyland Resort and I had hoped Mom could see him in his usual role of Sally Mae, but the actor who did her did a fine job and Mom really enjoyed the show.

Another push to Town Square and our usual seats for Soundsational.

This music is so cleverly arranged!  The transitions between floats is perfectly edited so that the dancers are right on beat even when the music is not theirs, then when the music switches to the right stuff, it's perfect.

Speaking of perfect, there are my sweeps!

Just a few minutes later it was time for the final set of the AACB 2012.

Stevie Wonder Medley.  Did I mention here that last year I saw Stevie at the Park?  We were sitting at Coke Corner when he and his entourage were escorted right by us on their way out the back way.  Close enough to touch.

The day's finale is (as always) their tribute to Earth, Wind and Fire.  The lead trumpet was even better this time, but my little camera doesn't do him justice.

Well, I guess I couldn't just post without some story after all.  So what else is new?  Had a comfortable trip home, dropped Mom at her house and returned to my own.  We'll try for one more visit before we lose the AACB and before I run out of summer break.

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