Our Final French Adventure: Disney Studios - The Graduation Adventure Day 14
Wednesday, June 4th
Rain was coming down pretty heavy as we walked through the front gates of Disney Studios. As you entered the gates, there was a small courtyard with an animation statue. You continue along through the courtyard and walk through a studio set. This is actually the coolest theme of the park. Because this is the "studio", it is really set up as such. The back sides of "buildings" show plywood. Signs are only angled to the specific area they need to be seen. Everything seems to be situated perfectly for a movie. For a set. And behind the set, it's not perfect. It's not even a building. That's neat to see. And of course, I didn't really take pictures of this area.
It's raining this morning. Which is kind of fitting for several reasons. It has rained a lot while we were visiting Europe. Mostly in the UK, but a little in France as well. But we are worn out from yesterday. Worn out hard. The rain kind of works for us because it instantly makes us move slower (easy to do at this point) and it also gives us license to take it easy on the final day.
I always knew this day would be the hardest. Which is why we waited until the end of the trip to attack Disneyland Paris. One day at a park is hard enough. Combine that feeling with the culmination of 13 additional days of travel...I was guessing today is going to be very low-key. And based what I'd heard about the Disney Studios Park, this is probably a fitting place to be.
What I didn't expect was how hard the mighty would fall.
Elias was adamant this morning about showering and getting ready like normal. I was perfectly happy lounging in bed until the moment I needed to find some pants and head out for breakfast. I am one of the unwashed masses today. And I regret nothing.
On the walk to breakfast, we saw just how ugly the weather was going to be for us. The umbrella (best thing I brought from home, btw) was getting a workout. I even resurrected the fleece jacket, cause it was cold out there. Elias put on his sweatshirt which he claims will never be worn again after this trip.
Breakfast is what it is here. I'm not gonna lie, I want a big breakfast when I get home. I want oatmeal and pancakes and waffles and bacon and eggs. I want it all. Then I want a defibrillator, cause I know I'll need one. But the breakfast in general was just a bit disappointing.
We went back to the room. Disney Studios wasn't opening until 10a anyway. We didn't have to race around the world. We could be leisurely. And we would be.
The walk to the front gates is that same as if you were going to Disneyland. The entrances are literally next door to each other. But with the rain, the normal 10 minute walk became much longer. It was the first sense that our day was going to be very different from the idea I had in my head.
The thing is, this was our add-on day. This was originally the day we were going home. But as always, my mouth started talking before my brain had a chance to yell NOOOOOO!! "What if we do the Studios for the whole day and just stay in Europe longer??" Elias wasn't going to say no to that. Which is why we are leaving on Thursday instead of Wednesday. Hindsight and all, I'm still not sure if we'd have made any changes.
|The only Selfie I had of us at the parks. It was just so miserable.|
And I will stop for a moment and go on record..the photos are so nooooooot great for this park. Mostly because we were always getting rained on. Always. So taking pictures was not ideal. And because we were so tired. And because of the rain. Because, rain. I also was feeling slightly dejected about the picture taking from yesterday. I knew I "needed" to take every picture possible for the other Disney Nerds I know. And even though I took about 700 pictures yesterday, I still didn't feel like I captured enough. Did I get that one sign that reflected Walt's love of that one thing?? The answer is probably no.
The first step was to congregate under the Animagique sign. Mostly because of the cover from the rain. But because we wanted to see the show. This was a journey through animation with Donald Duck as the guide. But it didn't start until 1045a. It was 1005a and Elias was already crapping out. A 40 minute wait wasn't going to be ideal.
A line was extending out of a "door" area next to the show we were going to see. I did a quick look at the map and saw this was Crush's Coaster. It wasn't an upside down coaster, so I basically grabbed Elias by the hand and dragged him to the queue.
Elias is funny. He likes the idea of some of these rides, but doesn't actually like the rides themselves. We've been on Tower of Terror a few times now and he doesn't want to do it this time. So the idea of the coaster was a little suspect to him. But as long as it didn't go upside down, we should be ok. Those are the rules.
The line for the queue was for 60 minutes. And Elias was skeptical. But at this point, the rain was coming down something fierce. We could either wait 60 minutes in the (inside) line for a coaster, or we could wait for 45 minutes slightly covered by an awning from the rain. We chose wisely.
Crush's Coaster is a twirly kind of coaster. Four seats on a "shell", the coaster is actually akin to Space Mountain at WDW. It's a dark coaster, but with a car that rotates. Super fun. Except for getting into the car itself.
We have problems with the moving walkway kinds of rides. Escalators/Moving Walkways are Elias's kryptonite. He has a hard time keeping balance on them. This ride doesn't have a moving walkway, but it is a continual motion kind of ride. We made it on ok (getting off, they did have to stop the motion), but in the frenzy of getting in the car and getting situated before the twirly nature of the ride, Elias did receive a bit of an injury.
The safety bar was brought down to keep us safe, but Elias caught his foot on the bottom of the bar. It pinned his foot against the bar and every time we moved (what is normally done on a roller coaster) it pinned the foot a little more. He (we) loved the coaster, but didn't go on it again due to the injury he sustained. Ouch.
We only spent about 30 minutes in line, and in that time, the weather cleared up a bit. So it was time to take advantage of the break. And we did so in the Toy Story Land. We spun around in the Cars area, then made our way to the Toy Story Soldier Drop.
What I loved the most about the soldier drop was this was right next door to Tower of Terror. So we were kind of doing the kiddie version (though it wasn't a total kiddie version) of the ride right next door. We did have a great view of the Ratatouille area that opens in July.
We were kind of disappointed to know we were going to miss a brand new area of the park by only a month or so. It wouldn't be the first time we'd miss a place by a few days. It probably wouldn't be the last. So it was nice to see (from afar) what we would probably never see again.
|Because Frozen has to be everywhere. Though the parks were still doing more with Tangled than Frozen.|
The weather was still holding up, so we hopped on the Studio Tour tram ride. And...what a let down. The thing about the rides in DLP vs WDW or DL (oh, so many acronyms, but you already know them from yesterday...), we know these rides. So if they're in French, it doesn't entirely matter. We have been to the other parks so much, we know the story. As for the Studio Tour...short, boring, short. Then it started to rain. So, cold, miserable, short, boring, short.
Once we were done with the tour, we tried dodging rain to get to lunch. Elias wanted the burger situation in Studio 1 (might have been at the Brown Derby, or maybe somewhere else). I couldn't do burgers anymore, so I ended up with chocolate chaud. I haven't had as much chocolate chaud in my life as I've had in the he last few days. And with summer starting up in Chicago, chocolate chaud is not going to be in the works for a while. But now, loved it. Even if it was a Swiss Miss powder, it hit the spot for me. Come to think of it, I never really had lunch today.
The rain kept coming. And we made an executive decision. If the rain kept coming, we would bail out on the day. Disney Studios is small enough park. We wouldn't actually be missing that much. Right??
I will admit, I was a bit conflicted about leaving early. I'm the jerk who is at the park at the start of the day and leaving at the last possible moment (like yesterday). But we really were exhausted and the weather was very much not on our side. And there is nothing worse than bad weather at a Disney park. Paris or Orlando. We quickly dodged rain pellets and made it to the Stitch Live show, then went back to the hotel.
We curled up under the covers and stayed there for hours. Hours. It was everything we needed it to be. Time was spent on Facebook and texting family members. Reading and talking. Resting. There was a lot of resting. Some packing. More resting.
By the time we emerged from our hotel room, several hours later, we were happy to see the rain had stopped. It was still stupidly cold, but it had stopped raining. That didn't stop me from holding on to my Weather Channel umbrella...just in case. We had decided a good final dinner was necessary. Maxim, the Concierge (who unsuccessfully directed us to the outlet mall the other day), told us the only food in the hotels were buffets. All were expensive buffets, but our hotel had the "best known buffet" on the grounds. We couldn't get food for another hour or so, which meant it was good timing to hit the bar.
I didn't get any pictures of the buffet. Mostly because I was more focused on eating (mostly desserts), but because sometimes taking pictures of buffets can just be weird. So I'm not going to go down that road. We enjoyed the food, but both said we are not buffet people. It is usually too expensive to justify what we actually consume. Though the desserts on this one...so good. I'm 100% sure I doused everything on my plate in creme anglaise. So, kind of perfect.
There was one final thing that needed to be done before leaving Paris. One thing we kept meaning to do, but haven't yet done. We needed champagne. We went back to the bar and had a lovely glass of champagne to celebrate our last night of our trip. Because, Paris.
|He's gonna have to learn to live without alcohol for a while...|
6/4 - 15,700 steps, 6.75 miles