First stop: the Magic Kingdom.
We had to take a boat ride to get to the Magic Kingdom from our resort, which was a-okay by us. Water that you couldn't walk on? We love that stuff! And the novelty of palm trees and Spanish moss and herons and egrets thrilled us.
We walked into the Magic Kingdom and headed straight for the "Pirates of the Caribbean", because I love that one, and I'm the loudest. And we walked up to it and.....we were the only ones there, we just walked right on, which, believe me, is a miracle at Disney World. (The holding pens for the bazillions of people to wait at the peak of the season is truly awe-inspiring.....we walked past vast, echoing corrals that literally would hold hundreds of people in line for a ride. The fact that we were not in them was as wonderous as the rides themselves.)
That was fabulous.
Then we went to the Haunted Mansion, Peter Pan and saw the fireworks, all in about an hour. I tell you, it was like having our own private park.
Then I did a truly horrible thing, a thing my children will hold against me forever, and will inevitably bring up in therapy: I took them on "It's A Small World". If you've never been on "It's A Small World", let me paint a visual for you: it is a boat ride through room after room after room of disturbing 3-foot-high dolls in various national costumes singing one of the most persistently annoying songs ever written, over and over and over again, in the most aggressively chipper manners possible. And this goes on for 15 full minutes. It's excruciating. I knew they would hate it, but I just couldn't help myself. (You can see it for yourself here, but don't say I didn't warn you.)
The look on their faces was priceless, as they entered each successive room of creepy, chirpy singing dolls. Their mounting horror as they realized that there was ALWAYS another room, made me almost wet myself laughing. The Greek chorus of "oh MY GOD" that punctuated the ride was hilarious, as they got increasingly deseperate for it to end. At one point, Thing 1 turned to me and cried "it never ends, does it???? We just do this forever until we go crazy, right????"
I was beside myself.
When the nightmare ended, the two of them gave me a venouous stare that would have made Toby proud, they vowed to get even.
I said that my punishement was going on that ride for the second time in my life. I won't tell them that it's worse than that; I still have the song stuck in my head. But it was totally worth it.