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Chris Weldon

A savvy software engineer and agilist, Chris slings code in C#, but has also been known for commanding fleets of systems. He's currently a Tech Lead at Wolters Kluwer.

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Well, I am officially on the airplane back to America. This has been an amazing trip, and there are plenty of more things to write about.

Let me start with 2 days ago - day 9. We woke up around 7:30AM and got ready. We were checked out by 9:00AM and on the subway within minutes. Tokyo -> Minawa Station. Overall it took less than 40 minutes. There was quite a bit of walking to be done @ Tokyo station since it is a massive train station. We hopped on the limited express to Minawa(?), which was fairly crowded, and stopped right in front of the Disneyland Entrance. Oh yes, if I didn’t mention it beforehand, we’re going to Disneyland today.

We took our now massive amount of luggage to the Disney Resort Welcome Center, where I was reminded of Airport check-in. After waiting in line for 20-30 minutes we got our tickets and went into Disneyland. I had seen a hell of a lot of Japanese up to this point, but upon entering Disney the limit was busted by a long shot. There was an excessive amount of Japanese in one small area. We had a hell of a time trying to navigate our way through the crowd and finally broke through to make our way over to Adventureland. From there we took a stroll through the Western town that you can never remember the name of but reminds you of Texas. We then saw a parade coming through. I got some decent pictures of Mickey & Minnie in Kimonos, as well as Lilo & Stitch. They were the only ones on floats, so they stood far above the crowd, Melissa put it best when she said it sounded weird hearing Mickie & Minnie speaking Japanese.

Anywho, we then went into the waiting line for Thunder Mountain. Care to take a guess how long the wait time was? 140 minutes. The reason for this is for Diney’s stupid ‘Fastpass’ implementation. Everyone had a so called Passport that could get Fastpasses, so literally everyone (and their mom, dad, brothers, sisters, aunt, and uncle) we’re getting one. Then, once actually in line, the Disney crew lets about 26 people in the fastpass line through for every 6 people on what they call the standby line. So, do this repeatedly for a few hundred fastpass holders and think of how slowly the line moves for the standby line…

Anywho, the ride was fun after all the waiting and being pissy about Fastpass. We went over to Splash mountain and decided to be one with the crowd and get a Fastpass. By this point in time it was about noon. Oh yes, before Splash mountain fastpasses we got lunch. Fried chicken baskets. It was…so so. The churros were still as good as they are in the states. The fastpasses we pulled for Splash Mountain were from 17:35-18:35, a whole 5 hours from when we were there.

We jumped over to the Haunted house, a favorite of mine. Only, this was a themed haunted house using characters from The Nightmare Before Christmas. I was really impressed with how they set it up and the theme as well. Melissa liked it too, which made me happy. The wait for this ride was about 120 minutes, but it seemed to go quite quicker than the Thunder Mountain wait. This was preumably because I was playing a lot more Nintendo DS (that Melissa so kindly brought) than in the Thunder Mountain ride.

After this, we exited right when a Beauty and the Beast as well as Cinderella parade was going by. I managed to run & catch some photos of some of the characters before getting sandwiched in a Japanese clusterfuck. Everyone was in a narrow walking path only most weren’t moving because they wanted to see the parade. When the parade was over, everyone leaving created another chaotic situation of lots of Japanese trying to do down narrow paths. We eventually made our way through & over to the Futuristic area. This of course was after going through another parade scene which was chaotic. But, Space Mountain (also one of my favorites) was CLOSED! You have no idea how upset I was; not just for my sake but Melissa’s sake as well - she has never ridden Space Mountain. The one time she went to Disneyland in the States, Space Mountain was closed then. Perhaps when we go to DisneyWorld we will end up getting to ride Space Mountain.

We then decided to do some shopping since I was too tired to do any reading of Katakana on the map. Shopping was just as bad as waiting in lines as it was in Akihabara. Very depressing as well as angering. When we finally found stuff to buy, we managed to make our way to an almost empty register & buy Melissa a hat and myself and my sister some trinkets.

We walked through lots of different stores with different names & the same stuff. But, upon exiting one store we ended up in front of Pirates of the Caribbean. I was pleased because I had been looking for this ride but couldn’t manage to find it. The wait was a little less than an hour because there were only a few fastpass holders that came through. The ride was enjoyable and brought us back good memories of the US versions.

(I’m going to stop here and continue with a second post, since this one is getting so damn long.)