6 May 2008

Disneyland Day 3

We spent all our of day 3 in the Studios Park. Again, it was very wet and quite cold. Moreover, the park was extremely busy. Obviously many French people were on holidays. If I ever go again, and I expect we will, I will check the French school holidays schedule carefully!

This day we were determined to see a few of the shows, hoping to enjoy shelter from the awful weather. We were on time to see the Motor stunt show. I kept Duncan in his pushchair, waving his green access card when asked to leave the chair with all the other pushchairs. This helped him and he was more comfortable to remain in his little chair. I had wondered how he'd cope with the car show, with its loud noises, smells and scenes of danger and simulated shooting and fire balls. I explained carefully what was going to happen, and kept whispering to him throughout. He actually loved it, his little head moving from side to side as he followed the action. He got a real thrill when a stunt man pretended to be shot and dropped off the top of a building or when the cars jumped over a lorry. He reached his limit a while before it ended and I took him out early, and we had fun watching the newest roller coaster there, Crush's Coaster based on the Finding Nemo film. Gordon and I had mobile phones and walkie talkies to keep in touch, all of which were so useful.

We all enjoyed the Animagique show. This is one of Thomas ans Lady's favourites. Again Duncan sat next to me, and he was wide eyed with wonder as the well known characters sang the familiar songs on stage.

The live Stitch show, while hugely enjoyable, wasn't so successful for Duncan. It was a lot more discursive, and he isn't that interested in the character. So although he didn't want to leave, he did shout out a few times during the show. If I'd been able to see how to leave easily I would have done so. As it was, a little girl sitting in front of us spent more time staring at Duncan than at the screen.

My whispering reassurances helped him. We'd stumbled upon a new phrase that seemed to help him. I would ask "who does Mummy love the best?" and he then calmed down to answer that I love Duncan the best, then I'd ask, "who is the best boy in Disneyland" to which he'd say he was! Lady and Thomas knew that neither statement was entirely accurate!

Afterwards we ate at possibly the worst eatery in France. I really don't know how Disneyland Paris can serve such over-priced, poor quality food despite the deserved reputation for quality and appreciation of food in France. Why do the French let them get away with it? Is eating terrible American-style food seen as part of the Disney experience?

But there was more fun to come. We went on the Studios Tour, again something I was worried Duncan would be frightened by, but which Gordon felt he'd enjoy. And G. was right. When the lorry went on fire, D. got a shock (even though I'd whispered to him it would happen) but recovered instantly, understanding that it was part of the show, and that no-one was worried. He got a real thrill watching and hearing thousands of litres of water gush down over everything.

I took Thomas and Lady on the Aladdin Flying Carpet ride, which Duncan didn't want to go on then we went back to the hotel. As before, E. had had enough and stayed there for the rest of the evening. Lady and I had earlier picked up FastPass tickets for the Tower of Terror ride and we both rushed back to make our allocated time slot.

Now this is an appropriately named attraction. We queued up, having a good idea of what was to happen, thanks to YouTube. But to experience it is something else. We lined up for about 20 minutes and were shown to our "lift". The cast member showing us in played the part to perfection. He was tall and gaunt, he gesticulated, and eye rolled. On entering, I asked, "should I be scared" and in a Norman Bates Manner, he assured me that all was well...

Merde alors!

It was far more scary than I anticipated. Lady was wailing and promptly shut her eyes. I had to fight my instinct to hold on to the handles below my seat with my instinct to put my arms around my distressed daughter. After the 1st drop, I managed to let go of one side and hold her. We came to a stop and Lady asked, with her eyes still tightly shut, if it was definitely over. "I'm going to kill him!" she said referring to the staff member who'd shown us into our seats. And as we walked out past him, she glared at him, drew her finger across her neck in that universally understood sign of "you're dead" and pointed at him. I was shocked, but he played along and pretended to fall down. Wow, scary daughter! But we felt very proud of our accomplishment/craziness.

Later still, I took Thomas and Lady out for a meal at the Rainforest Cafe while Gordon stayed with Duncan. I ordered a starter which turned out to be revolting and they each had a children's meal of disgusting spaghetti with meatballs, a small drink and an ice-lolly for almost 15 euros each! Despite that we enjoyed being out together, and Thomas was thrilled that I allowed him to wander around the restaurant alone (he went on tours of 1-2 minutes each over to the aquarium) so we didn't let the terrible food bother us too much. Well, I went out with Gordon again later for something a bit better so I wasn't bothered.

So ended the 3rd day.

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