A while back I won tickets to the two Universal Theme parks over at Jenny on the Spot. I was thrilled! I haven’t been to any kind of theme park in 22 years or so, and our girls have never been before. We really didn’t know what to expect. We hopped on a Ferry, a car, and a plane (or two) and flew 7 hours to try out something new.
We had two day passes, so our plan of attack was to scope everything out the first day and then come back to what we liked the second.
The first day we arrived like little deer in headlights to an astounding sight of literally thousands of people all over. Everywhere we looked. Whenever my husband was waiting for us to get out of one of the many bathrooms, he would sit and count people. We came back to “I just counted two hundred fifty people that walked past me” more than once.
At one point he turned to me and commented on how there really wasn’t a flow or pattern to the masses. They were acting like sugar ants. Random and entwined, stopping occasionally to sip something or look around. I have never seen people in this light before. But it was true!
That was it. From that moment on, whenever we wanted to get through a crowd quickly, I shouted “Sugar Ants!” and we all wove single file as fast as we could all the way to our destination.
The Bee had many questions about how things work. She really couldn’t get her mind around why a place would just have rides with long lines and lots of stuff to buy. There wasn’t anything to just see and interact with (like at a science museum). She was extremely disillusioned by the time the first day ended. Actually I think the word that best describes how we all felt is… overwhelmed.
The second day was slightly better because we knew what to expect. We brought a ton of water to drink (which was essential) and some light snacks.
There wasn’t a whole lot we could all do together. Falafel (being very small for her age) didn’t meet the height requirement for many rides. We split up for a few.
The lines were a challenge. The Bee and I stood on a two hour line (in the 87 degree sunshine) for a Harry Potter ride. Being the dedicated fans that we are, we stuck it out. At the end of it, we were exhausted, and not quite sure it was worth it. At one point my dear 12 year old started to moo. I have to admit I felt like cattle too.
Day two seemed to have a bit more to see and interact with (maybe because it was Friday??). The characters came out and there were several attractions open(that weren’t on Thursday).
The two kids lit up every time we spotted a tiny lizard climbing a tree, or a turtle swimming in the strange green water. They would have been thrilled with a bucket of rocks.
Surprisingly, we found that the two whole family-friendliest areas were Seuss landing…
and Jurassic Park! Seriously. It was fun and not too scary.
At the end of this two day excursion, we discovered theme parks and our family don’t mix too well, but we are so glad we had the opportunity to find that out… and experience a slice of America we previously hadn’t.
We are happy we went!
We’ll never forget it.