Monday, August 19, 2013

Summertime and the livin' is busy.  So much so that not only have I not tended to my blog very well, but I haven't taken a single stitch since sometime in June.  While that doesn't make me all that sad, I can tell that summer may well be winding down.  This morning, Larkin and I headed out on our usual walk at the local lagoon and beach.  It was like a ghost town down there.  Back in June, the crowds of families, day camps, surf camps, life guard camps, etc. made it feel almost like there were more bodies than grains of sand. Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration  . . . . but you know what I mean.  We will will have at least one more go of crowds over Labor Day weekend, but for now schools are in session and the the tourists are gone.
If you have been a reader of my blog for any amount of time, you well know that I LOVE Disneyland.  Hubby and I have had annual passes for nearly 15 years. We use them regularly and we use them often.  Beyond rides, there is an abundance of live entertainment to be enjoyed not to mention good, old-fashioned people watching.  Earlier this month, did something we have never tried before and took a guided tour.
Called "A Walk In Walt's Footsteps" this tour shares Walt's vision for a place where parents and children alike could enjoy amusements together, how that became Disneyland Park, and how the development of audio-animatronics  took everything to a whole new place.  All very interesting, but for me the real draw was the opportunity to set foot inside the lobby of Club 33 and Walt's personal apartment (a stop added to the tour about a year ago).
We had a wonderful tour guide.  She was knowledgeable, affable and clearly loves all things Disney.  She kept our group of 14 on the move for the entire 3 hours.  We talked about the construction, opening day in 1955, attractions then and now.  Soon enough we were in New Orleans Square - looking at that door  . . . the one I never imagined I would ever pass through.
And then it opened just a little bit.
Suddenly we were welcomed inside.

I would say that is was everything I had imagined but that would not be true since I couldn't even think of what I should imagine.   It was a timely visit because Club 33 is about to undergo a major renovation that will change it significantly.  This was the impetus to take the tour NOW as I wanted to see it while it still appeared as Walt would have.
We finished the tour with that promised visit to Walt's personal apartment.  He had the apartment installed as the park was being built to make it easier to be on site during construction.  It is only 500 square feet in size and is above the Fire House on Main Street USA. 
When Walt was in the park, a lamp was lit in the window so Cast Members would be aware of his presence.  That lamp now burns continuously as a reminder of that Walt's spirit lives to this day inside Disneyland.  I always pause to look at that light whenever we visit -  never once dreaming that I might actually see it from any other vantage point.
We were asked to leave our personal belongings (including cameras) on a table when we entered the apartment as no photography is allowed.  At the end of our tour, our guide took photos of us *I cropped us out ;-) *  Two photos per camera - one oriented in landscape and one in portrait.  There was a bit of  'huh?' when I asked for my second photo to be this:
But I had my reason.  Hubby and I finished out the day by enjoying the audio-animatronic attractions - The Enchanted Tiki Room, It's a Small World, and Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln.  It was a great day.
Today is another great day.
We are celebrating 1 year with Larkin as a member of our family.  What a year it has been.  There's been a lot of growing, a lot of training, some REALLY frustrating days, but mostly just sweet doggy love.  Here's to celebrating a whole bunch more of these anniversaries!


Dixie said...

This looks so fun! Will have to visit this next time we are in Anaheim. Jim and I love to take tours, so this is right up our alley. Thanks for posting!

Sharon said...

libby, this move back to the west coast seems like it was the best thing for you two. Sounds like you had a great day. Will be see a floral appliqued quilt in your future? I've only been to DL once, but I loved every minute of the trip.

suz said...

how wonderful that tour must have been. I only recently heard of Club 33 - exciting you got to see it and more exciting to see the apartment - love the shoe photo! Larkin has grown into a lovely young lady!

WoolenSails said...

That is fun that you can go anytime with a pass, wish we had one here. Larkin really has grown in the last year.


Karen said...

I know you are a big Disneyland lover. The special tour was just the perfect thing for you to do. I am curious about the photo with only your lower part showing. I know it has to be a good story.

Candace said...

How totally cool, Libby! It's a Small World was always my fave! Happy one year for Larkin! She is such a cutie!

KC Quilter said...

My favorite kind of travel of all is to be a tourist in my own hometown! Sounds like you make the most of your beautiful California!

Quilts And Pieces said...

Oh how fun!

Valerie the Pumpkin Patch Quilter said...

I just love Disney - we went to Disney World for the first time last year and it was so much fun!

Stephanie D said...

Hubby and I lucked up and were able to visit Disneyworld the first weekend it was open--coming back from our honeymoon! We visited twice more, but haven't been back since before Epcot was built. We're talking mid 70s here! So we plan to go back in Feb. of next year. Can't wait!

deb said...

we too have passes and my daughter would LOVE LOVE LOVE to get in 33.......she talks about it all the time...maybe I will tell her about this tour!!!!!! we were just there a ffew days ago...Stella can finally ride the big rides YEAH!!!!!!