We stayed at the Marriott on the first night we were in Anaheim, because earlier in the week, I received a second confirmation notice from the Hilton stating that I had a reservation from July 1 to July 5, instead of the June 30-July 5 reservation I asked for. So, since I did not go down with the huge caravan I thought I was going down with, I had booked two rooms… but with Dave dropping out and everyone else making their own plans even after they said they would go with us, I had two rooms and I only needed one. So, since I had the two reservations and both hotels were still sold out for the weekend, I asked the Marriott if I could just stay the one night the first night, and then we would move into the Hilton for the rest of the weekend. Being a Marriott Rewards Silver Elite member has some sway, apparently, because the moment they found out what my membership number was, it was a different story.
I fell asleep at around 11pm the previous night, and Jody, Jenn, and Thomas stayed up watching Yakitake!! Japan until around 2:45 in the morning. When they went to sleep, I found that I couldn’t go back to sleep no matter how hard I tried. Feeling pretty grimy from the previous day’s events, I got up and took a shower and got dressed for the day. I sat down and wrote the update for Before Day One on my laptop and then I watched the sun rise. Our balcony view at the Marriott was fucking perfect; it overlooked the front of the hotel and the Hilton across the street and I was cursing my luck. I wanted to stay at the Marriott with a room like that! I’d been waiting for a room with a view of the festivities, which was the first time since 1996 that we had such luck. Last year, our balcony overlooked the ghetto city of Anaheim and the smells from the hotel restuarant permeated the air whenever we opened the sliding door. But, since I made the reservation and it was too late to cancel the room (else risk being charged a 212 dollar fee) we had to move.
At around 6am, though… I started to feel tired and eventually went to lay down on my bed and closed my eyes. When I woke up, it was around 9am and it was really time to get the hell out of the room. We packed up at 11am and checked out, and then we had to head to WaMu for Jenn so she could get money, and Wal-Mart for me and Jenn so we could grab toothbrushes and other things. And this was my very first visit to Wal-Mart… beleive it or not, I’ve never ever been inside one and I’ve worked for them for over a year. I’ve heard horro stories, but nothing could prepare me for the cavalcade of crap I experienced that morning. I used my employee discount card for the first time, ever, too. It was a horrible experience, and even though I hated it, I had to admit that the prices were pretty damn low. Once we were all ready to go, we checked into the Hilton. Now, earlier in the week, I signed up for HHonors, which is the Hilton equivalent of the Marriott Rewards program. And because I had a membership, I didn’t have to stand in the gigantic non-member line and I was second for the VIP line instead! We checked in in record time, and made it up to the room where Thomas (who’d been staying a floor below us; we were on 12, and he was on 11), came up and we had lunch. It’s 1998 all over again, because the Burgers are still the cheapest thing on the menu here at the hotel.
After that, it was pretty much lazy day. The numbers at Anime Expo are expected to be more than last year, so the crowds are gigantic. We didn’t leave the room until 8:30pm in the middle of the Giants/Padres game, where I was bitching abotu the lack of run support from the Giants in a tie ballgame that they could win. At 9:30pm we took the Anaheim Resort bus from the Hilton to the Disney Resort’s Downtown Disney. We watched War of the Worlds… which turned out to be a huge disappointment. Oh my, did it suck ass. If you’ve ever watched the old George Pal film or read the book, you will be greatly disappointed by the perspective change, the cliches, the crappy adaptation… ugh. I walked back thinking to myself, “Gee, you know what I need now to clean my film palette? Batman Begins.” I need something really good to erase the waste of time I just paid $9 for. Ugh! Reliving that pain again was painful!
Following the travesty of motion picture history, we headed to Carl’s Jr. and got food, then came back to the room and I collapsed for the night, dreaming of a better tomorrow.