December 16, 2007




Magical Moments at a haunted hotel


Sunday started out differently from what we had planned. We had wanted to get up early, be there for EMH and spend the morning at the Magic Kingdom until 12 when Tower of Terror would open again.


Well, since we had got up VERY early the day before and went to bed late we were just too tired to get up in time. When we finally got up I did the packing while Tom had a shower and Tom prepared breakfast while I had a shower. We managed to squeeze everything into our carry ons and left the room by 10am. We drove over to the New York, New York hotel again and this time we were lucky and able to park there.

We crossed the lobby and happened to look at the shop window of the little shop there. There was a beautiful, but expensive necklace with Tinkerbell on it, made by Swarovski, which is Austrian crystal. Tom bought it for me for Christmas. Back to the car to store it there.

We finally made it out of the hotel and strolled through the village and over to the Magic Kingdom. There were a lot of people. But right in the middle of the town square there was Santa Goofy!

We watched for a while, then went to check out the shops on Main Street. Big surprise when we left the Emporium and it was snowing on Main Street. No, no real snow – Disney snow!!

It was fun to see how excited people get when they see Disney snow – never seen such excitement with real snow!

We decided to just stroll around a bit and maybe have an early lunch, but the table service places were all booked and the counter service places were just too full so we decided to say good bye to the castle and head over to the Walt Disney Studios to be there for the Tower of Terror to be opened again. We arrived there just after they had opened, showed our APs and went to ride the elevator. After the ride the “back entrance” was closed and we had to walk around the hotel to get back in. This time we were stopped – a CM asked if we would agree to take a “guest” with us. He explained that we were allowed to bring a guest each, so we said we would happily take someone with us.

That someone was a French guy who didn’t understand a word of English and didn’t even try to communicate. We lost him shortly after we entered the lobby. But we met another VERY nice CM, Julie, who was interacting with guests, especially children, while we waited to be loaded into the elevators. She was rewarded with a Merci chocolate bar and told us that she had heard someone was handing out chocolate the day before and that the chocolate was very good. She was so excited about it, she got a second one.  

Soon we were seated in the elevator again and off to another trip to the Twilight Zone. Lunchtime was nearly over by now, so we thought we would have a look if we could get a bite to eat somewhere, we tried all the restaurants in the studios and everything was still packed so we walked back to the Hollywood Tower hotel again and picked out “more guests”. This time there was a young couple being turned away, so we approached them and asked them if they wanted to be our guests.

They didn’t speak much English either, but tried to communicate and were very excited to be able to ride the Tower. We were surprised to see the second level elevator loading zone being open and we were soon to discover why.

After the ride we walked around the building and when we tried to show our APs we were told that it was now open for everyone, but that the AP was our Fastpass. They were trying out the regular and FP lines! Now that’s why they opened both loading zones. It took a little longer to get loaded onto the elevator, but after about 40 minutes we had finished another “drop”!

When we exited the back entrance was still closed so we walked around for one more ride before it was time for us to leave. Getting to the entrance we were astonished to see that they had actually closed the gate again for the general public. This meant one more chance to “bring a guest”. We waited for a while until we saw a mum and daughter talking to the CMs at the gate and then be turned away.

You could just see the disappointment in the little girl’s face. Tom and I knew that we were to ask those two if they wanted to come. Now, from my previous experiences I knew that the chances were high we would ask someone whose English was very little. Well, we were so surprised that when we asked if they spoke English, the woman answered that, yes, of course, she did. They WERE English!

We explained about being able to bring guests and they both were very happy to come along. We had such a fun time, even though this was the longest wait in those two days, but the little girl told us that this was a very special trip for her. A surprise trip! She had been woken up at 3am on Friday and was asked if she wanted to go to Disneyland Paris. Even more surprised when the taxi they were riding in stopped at her best friends house to pick her and her mum up too. Her friend didn’t like thrill rides, so she was riding the magic carpets, while they were riding the tower with us. The girl even told us that her dad was so afraid of heights he would not go on any of those rides either.

You could see how excited the little girl got once we finally entered the boiler room. We explained everything to her and then we saw that Julie was loading people on our elevator. Since this was the little girl’s first time and she wanted to sit front row, I was going to ask for it. When Julie saw us, she smiled and we introduced our “guests” to her. We got a really big smile back and she said that if we had guests we should sit front row. I didn’t even had to ask for it.

Needless to say, she got more “Merci” chocolate. Once we were seated Tom and I were very surprised to hear Julie explain the whole spiel in French AND English and after the doors of the elevator finally closed, the narration was in English. What a difference to the French narration. Needless to say we ALL enjoyed this ride very much. The little girl was holding on to her mom’s arm the whole ride through, but had a real big smile on her face once we were to leave.

She told everyone how much she had enjoyed that ride. While they were looking at the ride photo and around the store Tom got her a bellhop Stitch to remember the ride by. She was SO surprised and hugged Stitch and held him tight. Her mum had tears in her eyes.


We went outside and the little girl couldn’t wait to tell her dad and her friend about it. So we said goodbye, waved and started walking toward the exit. Tom and I talked about the whole experience and we remembered Florence, a member of the Dream Squard, whom we had met in WDW and who told us that she had the best job ever, making people happy. That was how WE felt! We were in time to leave the park, so we went back to the New York, New York carpark, went to the gas station and filled up the car.

Funnily enough even though we topped it up it would not show. But we did not think about it and got going. As soon as we hit the motorway we  hit the traffic jam! Now, we had enough time to make it to the airport but not with this kind of traffic jam. Well, we did reach the airport just in time, filled up the car again and went to rental return where we had a discussion with the attendant who would not believe that we had filled up the car. Since we were so insistant he gave in in the end and we were off to check in. I could not believe it, but there was no line at check in and we were through in no time. Even enough time for us to have a snack. We both had a chili chicken wrap before we went to our gate.

Boarding started soon after we had gotten to the gate and off we went to Munich. Even though this is only a 70 minute flight we got ham sandwiches and a small chocolate Santa. The thing was that there were only 45 minutes to get from one gate to the next.

 We arrived on time and were driven to our arrival gate and our departure gate was just opposite. All we had to do is cross a bridge and there we were. I had just time to get out the new boarding passes and boarding started. On our flight to Linz, which is only 50 minutes we got some Taralli, an Italian olive oil snack.

Having only carry on luggage we were out of the airport in a matter of minutes and on the way to the car in no time. Tom was home shortly after 11 and I got home at 11.30pm after a wonderful weekend at the happiest place in France!