This post is a continuation of The Grand Trip To West Coast USA – Part 1
Los Angeles Town
We only spent a single day out at downtown LA itself. It started off with a drive to the Chinese theatre, where we visited Hollywood Boulevard where you get to see quite a few ’tiles’ of famous celebrities, including Donald Trump, the now elected President of USA, and familiar Asian stars like Jackie Chan.
No idea why wifey had to take a photo with Ryan Reynold’s..
Of course no trip to LA is complete without a photo with the famous “Hollywood” sign. We weren’t really close enough to get a decent photo of it though. Didn’t quite have a high powered fancy lens with us either 🙁 We probably should have planned better and chose a location closer to the sign itself, but never got a chance to do it that day. Maybe next time.
Later on in the day, we did go to Beverly Hills just to drive through the neighbourhood. After all we were born in the era of “Beverly Hills 90210”! I had no interest dropping in to shops there given I probably could not afford anything anyway. Wifey had to take a picture with the “Beverly Hills” sign just to have evidence that she’s at least been there. Besides, I knew I’m in an area that’s way out of my league when you see a Bugatti around.
So for something more affordable, we ended up at “Grand Central Market” where I joined the queue to buy an “eggslut”. I figured if there’s such a long line for it, it’s gotta be good. Had to admit, it was good!
I don’t think we’ve seen all that much of downtown LA at all given we only spent a day in town. We definitely need to make another trip here to check out the place properly. We made our way back to Orange County soon after lunch where we were staying, and ended up catering to wifey’s shopping needs. For that, we went to Outlets at Orange leaving me with the babysitting duties. Fortunately me & Ethan had fun. Most memorable moment that evening was probably seeing his reaction after he insisted on trying Gobstoppers (i.e the extremely sour one) thinking it was regular sweets. The flavour was just a tad too strong for him and he was quick to scrounge his face spitting the lolly out. Poor Ethan.. that experience probably put him off any lollies that resembled Gobstoppers for a while..
Then it’s time for Disneyland. Being checked into a Marriott hotel within walking distance helps. With park ticket at SGD$200 each for 2 days, I didn’t really want to waste much time at all! Having said that, I can’t remember why did Ethan fell asleep before we even got to Disneyland. We’ve been in USA for about a week at this point, and it sure wasn’t jet lag!
We chose to go on New Year’s Eve, which was probably a mistake. The intent was brilliant (at least I think so anyway). Who wouldn’t want to see the fireworks on New Year’s Eve right in front of the Disney Castle. We got there early enough, when weather was good, and planned reasonably well enough that we got the popular ones that we wanted to cover out of the way early. That included Peter Pan’s Flight, and It’s a Small World After All.
Ethan did catch a photo with Mickey Mouse at the Toon Town as well, which we spent quite some time lining up for.
We caught the parade around noon, which was pretty good. But the lack of sun and clouds hanging over our head was a hint of where the weather was heading in the afternoon.
It all went pear shaped once we hit about noon when rain started pouring down. Once again, we were slightly under-dressed, and the cold started to hit us hard. It didn’t help that we had to walk around with our shoes wet. Wifey even bought a Mickey Mouse raincoat for temporary cover from the rain. It’s probably the most expensive raincoat we’ve ever bought.
What’s worse was that the planned parade in the evening for “Colour of the Light” was cancelled, and we had to decide between going home for a change of clothes to come back out, or just head home. As the sun starts to set, it just got too cold and we had to call it quits and head home in our soggy shoes and socks. We did manage to chew on a giant turkey drumstick and a giant pretzel though.
Whilst we didn’t get to see the fireworks in the park, we lived close enough to see it just outside the park, and from our hotel parking lot. It wasn’t as grand as I imagined to be. But it was hell of a lot nicer watching it in a car with heater on than in wet, cold and soggy shoes/clothes!
In hindsight, we probably needed to pay more attention to the weather forecast, and pick the days rather than forcing ourselves to be there for New Year’s Eve. We lived in Singapore for too long, where weather forecast is pretty much irrelevant!
On New Year’s Day itself, we visited California Park next door. This time the weather was much nicer, and that alone translated to a much nicer experience. It was uncrowded and we were able to cover most rides with very little waiting times. Arguably the scariest ride that we could all got on, was this Mickey Mouse wheel. It’s no ordinary wheel!! Nice intro for Ethan to roller coaster I would say!
Ethan hanged on to me, but handled it surprisingly well. If you ever go there, definitely check out this ride. Other rides that Ethan enjoyed included Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters..
And Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree.
We did stick to our plan to go home in the afternoon for Ethan’s nap, and to dress more appropriately for the night to see the light/fountain show. It’s definitely a nice show, but would probably be better if we booked something to be closer to the fountain without massive crowd obstructing our view.
Overall, it was a nice introduction to Disneyland. We heard a lot about Disney World in Orlando, which is much much bigger than this one. We definitely need to plan a trip there in the future! For now it’s off to Las Vegas!