Before I proceed with the reasons for my breakup, I must confess that the rest of my family does not share my disdain. In fact, they see me as something of a kill-joy for even suggesting that the "Magical Kingdom" is anything but.
I readily accept their verdict and welcome the punishment — not being invited next year when the family plans its traditional day at the park.
I submit the following bare facts as grounds for the separation: We spent more than $600 for five adults and two children and after nine hours at the place, went on a total of five rides. The majority of the day was spent waiting in lines. We waited to take a bus from a parking lot; we were directed to blocks away from Disneyland.
We spent 45 minutes waiting for one ride that lasted less than two minutes (Peter Pan); we waited an hour and 10 minutes for Space Mountain, 10 of those minutes going nowhere because of "mechanical difficulties."
We waited in line to buy ice cream and popcorn; we even waited in line to get a drink of water (I think they've eliminated a number of water fountains to force visitors to buy bottled water at a price I calculated to be about a dollar a gulp).
For the visitors slogging sheep-like toward the entrance of rides, there are many distractions at Disneyland. But when Snow White greets a line of people waiting for their turn at Pirates of the Caribbean, she's not just being friendly — she's a decoy, as are the happy background voices and music to make the wait more pleasant. And those lines are no ordinary straight-arrow lines either. They're laid out in a back-and-forth pattern so that the next turn is never out of sight, giving the impression that you're making progress.