Saturday, 5 October 2013

Southern California Honeymoon and Caching (Part Two: The Trip)

Well it feels good to be back in the writers chair.  I feel a bit rusty, but it is nice to get these memories written down to share with you all.

In the last blog I shared with you I told you about the preparation for the trip geocaching wise.  How I was disappointed with the lack of caches around Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm and Universal Studios.  How the I was even more disappointed in the couple of virtual caches that were there due to them being virtual-multistages with 13 stages to them.  And how ecstatic I was to find a virtual and earthcache that I could do, along with the mother load of caches in San Diego.

So lets move along and talk about the actual trip and the geocaching.  I may have to do a part three due to content size, so you are forewarned.

The days before leaving were horrible. Rain, wind, and more rain were all we were seeing.  My father Postie Bear came down to take us to the airport in the morning, and to do us a favor and house sit for us while we were away.  It was early in the morning that we had to leave, and could I sleep that night... The answer would be no.  Stupidly I had a caffeinated coffee too late in the evening, and that screwed me up something good.  So when the time came to get up and go, my father was shocked to find me on the couch watching Family Guy.

We did our final rushing around and quick check of belongings and passports, and soon we were on our way.  Surprisingly the weather had calmed down a bit this morning, which was good because we didn't need any crazy wind delaying our departing flight.  Just Leafy and I checked in for the flight, said our farewells to my dad, and headed in to airport security.  And after a brief wait we boarded our flight to San Francisco where we had to go through customs and meet our connecting flight.

The flight to San Francisco was uneventful.  Just Leafy was able to get a bit more shut eye, but I was wide awake.  But with headphones on and some good music I whiled away the time, and soon the first leg of the journey was over.  We got through customs met with our connecting flight and were on the final leg of the trip.

 Just Leafy was so excited, this time there was no sleep for her. And as we started our decent, she was nearly bouncing for joy.

After getting out of the airport we took a cab to our hotel "The Staybridge Suites", but since we were so early (before 3pm) they did not have a room ready for us.  This was when we met Pam, the Front Desk agent for our hotel.  She was so awesome and answered all our questions and put our luggage in storage for us so that we could head straight to the park.

One of the nice things about Anaheim is they have the ART (Anaheim Resort Transit) system.  It is just like The Duce in Las Vegas, where you pay a small fee and have transit that runs every 15min that takes you from the hotels to Disneyland.  Only difference is that it does not run 24/7 like The Duce does.
We hopped onto one of these buses to the park, and when we arrived Just Leafy almost ran away from me in joy.

When we got to Disneyland ticket booths we used our vouchers to check in and get our passes, and the nice lady gave us our badges.  If you ever go there for a reason, be it Honeymoon, First Time, Anniversary, Birthday, they have a badge for that.  The nice part about badges is the cast members see them, and will congratulate you, or do random nice things like take you to the front of the line.  Don't expect it, just go about your stay and let the magic happen when it does.

Once we were inside we headed straight to the rides and had a blast.  The park was only open to 6pm that day due to a special function, so we only had maybe 4 hours.  But we were able to get 7 rides in, which by the way is amazing.  We only had 5-25 minute waits at any ride we went to.  We had such a good time, that the 4 hours passed super fast and it was time to go.

Thankfully I was able to get a good nights sleep that
night, because the next day would be the first full day in the park.  And not to forget a Earthcache and Virtual to get too.

We headed to the park nice and early so that we could be through the gates when they opened.  Just Leafy
and I rode the rides with amazingly short wait times yet again.  We were having such a great time that I almost forgot about the caches that I wanted to do.  But when we took a break that is when I remembered, and Just Leafy suggested that we do them now.  So off we went towards the edge of Fantasy Land and New Orleans where they were located.

First up was the Virtual Cache called "Disney's Horseshoe Review - GCG926".  This was fun to do since it required that we stop in at the Golden Horseshoe (a mock up of an old western saloon) and have our picture taken while the "Horseshoe Review" (a comedic show) was going on.  And we lucked out and walked in while the show was in full swing..  So ding, one cache down!  We took the required photos of us at the saloon while the show was on, and slipped out to take a few outside too.

With that one out of the way we headed over to do the Earthcache.  This didn't require us to go too far since the petrified tree was only a few steps away by the Rivers of America.  This cache was called "Happiest Earthcache on Earth - GC3FQY7" and this required checking out the petrified tree that is here and answer basic earth-science questions about it.  After collecting the info we felt was correct we took a few pictures of us here too.  And then headed back to the rides.

We had a fantastic rest of the day riding 15 rides total and had dinner at Ariel's Grotto in California Adventures, followed by the World of Color water and light show. And when the park closed we had to literally drag ourselves home to the hotel.  And on the third day was able to ride 26 rides total in California Adventures.

To bring this blog post to a close, the rest of our stay at Disneyland and California Adventures was amazing.  We met some wonderful people that we become friends with, and still keep in touch with today.

Stay tuned for Part Three where the adventure continues!!

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