We hadn’t been on a real holiday for almost 2 years, so we were getting fairly desperate to go somewhere – anywhere really. I would have settled for a camping holiday in the back garden, but something tells me my wife and kids would prefer something different. Perhaps something with activities other than fighting off giant slugs or not getting burnt by nettles. It was pretty clear. We had to do something this summer.
After a long chat with the event coordinator (the missus), which lasted approximately 27 seconds, and having looked at the most recent bank statement, we decided what to do. We lifted our hands, clutched our fists, and screamed “To hell with it! Lets’s enjoy ourselves and take the kids on a family vacation. We have all deserved it”. So, we booked a trip to Disneyland Paris.
In true Judgebrix style, I had to break the blog into a few blogs, otherwise you would fall asleep bored while drooling on your keyboard or you’d close my blog site. Either outcome is not acceptable – stay awake!
As I see it, the holiday is broken into 3 tales
- There and Back Again (this blog)
- The Disneyland Adventure (the actual WD experience)
- The Other French Connection (blitz visit to Paris)
These brave tales of our family holiday, will capture the most magical moments of our first adventure away from Ireland in over 2 years (sad, I know) and at the same time allow me to remember what exactly happened.
The journey itself was a package deal, so nothing exciting about that. However, we had decided to stay in the Disneyland zone – or so we thought.
All packed and ready to go, we were leaving on a jet plane – or so we thought. The plane was tiny compared to the “normal” European short haul planes. It was packed with French tourists going home. I could barely fit my arse down the isle, so imagine squeezing two kids, a baby and a hand luggage down the isle. And, to make matters worse, they had placed us at the very back. The days of letting families with kids on the plane in advance are well gone, so now I was bumping every French person’s head, all the way down to my seat.
And behold, I was sitting next to a Franciscan Father and my wife was seated next to a Franciscan monk. Was this short flight doomed already? If it was, then we could at least get a blessing. In fact, the two Franciscan dudes were extremely nice to talk to. I know this sounds weird, but you often have the preconception that holy people can only talk about their God. We chatted about everything but God and I even introduced the Father to the wonders of the iPad. He was truly amazed.
We arrived safe and quickly found the Disney Resort bus. Disneyland Paris is only 30-40 minutes from the airport. You know you are in France, when the bus drivers sits on a bench smoking, while watching you struggle putting the luggage on the bus. It’s not like I expect help, as I’m a strong dude, but it would be nice if the driver helped my wife while she attempted to hold the baby and folding the stroller at the same time. But no, he just pointed to where we should put them in cargo area.
Finally, the hotel was in sight and we checked in quickly. To our surprise, the hotel was not in the resort area, but a 10 minute ride on a free shuttle bus. It was a nice hotel and they had steamed snails on the buffet menu, much to my daughter’s amazement.
We dropped the luggage in the room and headed straight for Disneyland. We had to see the place of our dreams. The kids went bananas when we saw the shuttle bus, as it had all the Disney characters on the side. They couldn’t believe it.
As we arrived, we had to walk to the park, and walked passed the Disney Village. Again, the kids went mental. Screaming and laughing frantically. For us parents, we knew that this would be a great holiday for them. They had only seen this in the movies and YouTube, but now it was real.
All the restaurants in or around Disneyland were primarily burger joints, which I don’t mind at all, but if your kids don’t eat burgers, fries and pizza, then it’s pretty darn annoying. But, we weren’t going to let that get to us. I’m sure we would find smaller restaurants that server spaghetti or buffet food.
The next few days were spent running up and down the main street, visiting all the smaller parks, seeing all the Disney characters and breathing the Disney spirit. It was pure magic for our family. We had plenty moments of “aahhh”, “uuuhh”, “wow!” – and several truly hilarious incidents. Read more here: