For the most part, the trip was a wonderful experience and I'm glad I got to go, at least once in my life. Hopefully, I will be able to go back again, but maybe in several years and more-so on my own terms.
The ugliest part of the trip was the dreaded LA Bus Tour that I had been terrified to death of. Overall, it ended up OK, but the one part I was dreading the most, the Hollywood Blvd stop was way worse than I was expecting. I was expecting the homeless people everywhere, but I wasn't expecting the life-sucking vibe associated with them. I was expecting the pan-handlers, but I wasn't expecting them to actually physically touch me! I was even expecting the crowds, but I wasn't expecting the cattle-herding we were subjected to. Basically, once I managed to get myself in a store, I stayed there until it was time for the bus to come back because I couldn't face going outside again. That ranks with one of the top 10 worst experiences ever for me and if I never go back there again, I will be grateful!
But speaking of crowds, I've been in Disney World parks numerous times when they close to capacity and I swear I have never been in the crowds we had to deal with, especially on Saturday. Cattle-herding would be the understatement of the millennium! No one else seemed to mind it much, which freaked me out even more. At Disney World, you are the one that gets run over by strollers, or scooters, or wheelchairs...at Disneyland, the people do the running over them. I wished I had a dime for every single time I had to stop so that some poor person in a wheelchair or a scooter could get through the crowds. No one else paid them any mind, they would just walk directly out in front of them like they didn't exist. I have a new found appreciation for the disabled at Disney World now (although I still loathe the stroller people because they enjoy hitting your heels).
And finally, I came back from the trip minus a friend. I know I'm one of the hardest people in the world to travel with because of all my issues, so I was expecting a bit of friction, I just wasn't prepared for the ending I got. I was always taught that there are three sides of every story...his, hers, and the truth and one must strive for the truth. Unfortunately, I can't separate my side from the truth, one of the worst Asper traits. But hey, one of the best Asper traits is the whole emotional shut-down at the flick of a switch thing, so I'm still able to remember the good parts of the trip overall, without the emotional baggage I probably should be going through right now.
But anyhoo, eventually, I'll be able to go through the pictures and have reviews and all kinds of good stuff, but I'm just not ready for that now. I just want to go back to my normal life of being a hermit, snuggling with my puppy, and stitching!
Thanks to everyone who helped me plan this trip, especially Heather who had so much good advice! I can never repay you for all the help you gave me, both strategically and emotionally. There were aspects of this trip that I was dreading so much and, although most of them were unfounded, at least I was prepared thanks to you guys!