I left off yesterday just fresh from taking artsy shots of the castle. We headed back to New Orleans Square because it was getting close to lunch time and I wanted to make sure we were in the general vicinity because we had reservations at Cafe Orleans. Since I don't like to tempt fate by nature, of course we arrived in New Orleans Square about an hour and a half before the ressie, so we had time to ride Pirates again.
And we took some time to wander the shops.
Disneyland blows Disney World out of the water with their shop decorations and like I always tell people, when in Disney, don't just look around, look down and up:
We did wander a bit over to Critter Country:
And checked out the sweets at Pooh Corner where I picked up my first cake pop of the trip (more on that later):
But it was finally time to start wandering back to Cafe Orleans for our lunch. Along the way, I managed a shot of the Brothers Disney's initials on the balcony for the Castle Dream Suite:
Now here is where I have to rant a bit...Disney World does reservations really well. If there isn't a waiting area, you get a beeper. There is no question as to where you go before and after you check in. Disneyland's system is far less organized. We waited in a huge line that rarely moved because other people kept cutting in line to walk directly up to the counter to see if there was anything available. Ressies aren't such a big deal at DL, so people don't tend to think of them as a necessity. Apparently, at least on that day, it was a necessity to get into Cafe Orleans and a lot of people left the stand pissed. Here's a pic of the 10th person cutting in line before us to see if he could get in:
Maybe if they had one person dealing with those in line and one dealing with the walk-ups? I'm not sure, but it wasn't the first time we had this problem nor would it be the last. But it really didn't take too long for us to get seated once we made it to the podium, and we got our drinks even quicker:
He had the gumbo:
and I had the Pomme Frities which were AH-MAZ-ING!
And we both had the Monte Cristo:
To be honest, I was a bit scared to try this dish because how I am about mixing flavors, specifically sweet and savory, but I have to admit, this sandwich was really very good and filling, so I couldn't eat the entire thing. I'm not sure I would necessarily order it again, but at least I can say I had a Monte Cristo at Disneyland! As far as service went, we had one server go to lunch in the middle of serving us, and then that one's replacement went on break, so we had three different servers for the 25 minutes we were in there. All three were good, I just don't think it was very professional.
And, of course, I noticed the light fixtures as well:
I figured, since we both had fully bellies, maybe a calm right would be better, so off to The Jungle Cruise we went:
Now again, I need to rant a bit. I have a bad knee that doesn't like stairs very much. There are a couple of areas I have to avoid in Disney World but, for the most part, I can pretty much go wherever. At Disneyland, most of the queues, especially for the original rides, go up stairs, then down, then back up, then down again. I get the reason why, to expand the queue in a limited amount of space, but for someone with a bum knee, it wasn't pleasant. By the time we got seated in the boat, my knee was screaming. But overall, for a ride that is shorter than it's WDW counterpart, it's far more packed with scenes and vistas and I did enjoy it much more.
By the time we exited Jungle Cruise, the pedestrian traffic was getting out of control and the flow took us back down to Main Street. I wasn't complaining too much because I was finally able to get close ups of the Fire Station:
And I was finally able to enjoy my cake pop:
It was pretty, but didn't taste very good...I just figured I got a bad one. I didn't realize that it would be a recurring theme of the trip. We managed to catch the parade as well, and I got a wave from my buddy:
As well as another one of my favorite photos from the trip because we REALLY like duck butts and we can not lie:
I have to admit that I much prefer the Rapunzel tower on the float to the tower at the Rapunzel bathrooms in Disney World. It just seems more "life-like":
Once the parade was over, we were able to head across the way over to Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, another thing I was really looking forward to since we don't have it. There were some amazing pieces in the museum section including the undertaker from Haunted Mansion (since he was currently ousted by Jack Skellington):
I thought it was really neat he was in a vault. Then there was an amazing crystal castle (which looks gold...sorry, the lighting was horrible in there):
And, well, this is self-explanatory:
I had a FIT over the marionettes for Country Bears (I LUV me some Country Bears!):
But it was finally time for the show. No pictures of any kind were allowed, so I only managed to grab this shot:
Afterwards, we wandered back over to Tomorrowland, were I did manage a random light pic:
We spent a few minutes looking at the Nemo ride, but I chickened out and we ended up not riding it at all. I'm not claustrophobic by any means, but I am a bigger girl and I was worried I would have trouble getting in.
We rode the monorail next, and I knew it was nothing like Disney World's (this one is more of a ride than transportation), but I was shocked at some of the behind the scenes views it offered (plus it had no air conditioning and smelled even worse than WDW's). I did manage a decent shot of the outside of our resort, the Grand Cali:
I tried to avoid taking pictures of the backstage stuff, but this one was an accident...I wasn't aware of what I was looking at until it was too late:
I was almost completely disgusted after that and needed a break, so I had my first attempt at trying to find a Disneyland version of LaFou's Brew. I'm not sure where I got this one, but it was an utter failure...how can an apple freeze taste so much different from place to place? I guess it's all in the foam (and this one had none):
I think by that point I was done for the day, so we called it a night and went back to the room. Next up is our first trip to California Adventure, but I guess it will have to wait until after Christmas.