Day 36 - 31/07/2002 - Los Angeles, USA

Today, one of my dreams came true ... we spent the day at Universal Studios. Universal Studios.  Although one of my childhood dreams has always been to go to Disney Land (a dream which should also be fulfilled in the next few weeks), there was always a side of me that really wanted to go to Universal Studios (the movie lovers version of Disney Land) ... and even more so than ever, I think that one day I would love to be a movie director (or at least be involved in the movie industry in some capacity).

The day was great and it did live up to my expectations ... but some things were not as good as I expected, while others were better than I expected.  However, what was more important to me was the people that I spent the day with - it made the difference between a good day and a great day.  We successfully managed to see all of the park that we wanted to see (between 10am and 8pm) and we managed to do it without causing world war three ... I was concerned that the day might have involved some massive fight or split of the groups, but fortunately it was the exact opposite - we all had a good time together.

One of my favourite rides was Terminator 2 - 3D.  It starred Arnold Schwarzennegger in the best 3D movie I have ever seen.  The movie also included live actors in the cinema (movie theatre) and other special effects like water and gas and moving seats during explosions etc ... and somehow, the girl next to me managed to fall asleep during this event (but it was towards the end of the day and she did not get much sleep the night before).

The Water World live action show was excellent and we all got really wet as we sat in the front seats in the "soak zone".  I highly recommend this show.

For our group, "The Mummy Returns - Chamber Of Doom" was a lot of fun.  It was a place that you walk through and things jump out and try and scare you ... it is the kind of thing that I would (by myself) walk through and not get scared at all, however, we did have a few girls in the group that created a lot of entertainment for us.  We went around the first corner, and already one of the girls came running back and pushed me in front of her because she was scared ... I could not stop laughing.  This happened  a number of times and I was laughing hysterically through the whole maze ... but, I got my own back on the last corner of the maze ... there was a dark closet and I thought there was nothing in there, so I stuck my hand in and a guy jumped out of nowhere and made me scream (embarrassingly it was quite a girly scream too ... and I think I pushed one of the girls in front of me for protection too) ... the girls would not let me forget this.

The "Back To The Future" ride impressed me because you sat in a car that was on hydraulics and combined with a massive screen that filled all of you vision, it felt as though you were travelling through the movie ... a lot of fun.

We saw a "Spider-Man Rocks!" rock show that was entertaining.  It included famous rock songs being performed by dancers on stage, while also doing acrobatics and fighting scenes ... they managed to summarise the new spider-man movie into a fifteen minutes.

The Jurassic Park ride was good ... it was a standard boat ride to start with, but the big drop at the end was amazing - it was big, high, fast and very wet ... some members of our group were drenched but we all thought it was a lot of fun.

We went to the Animal Planet Show which was had a whole lot of swell trained animals doing funny things ... my favourite (as always) was the monkey which kept hitting his instructor and laughing.  On the way to the animal show, I was applying some sunscreen and the the line started to move and I had a big blob of sunscreen on my forearm, so I had to hold it out in front of me (so it would not fall off), but this sent our group into hysterics because it looked as thought I was marching with my arm out about to say "Heil Hitler" ... I then applied the sunscreen and I happened to be standing next to a poster of a monkey which people thought was funny because they thought that we looked the same next to each other (see photo for yourself).

Disappointingly, the Studio Tour (which I had really been looking forward to) was not as good as I expected.  I expected to be blown away and amazed, but compared to the other things we did, it was not that great.  On the other hand, I thought the Special Effects tour was great ... I could not stop laughing, because of of the hosts were very similar to Veronica and Josh from "Veronica's Closet" and I thought their jokes were hilarious, however, the other people from our group did not find them funny at all (maybe this is because English is not the first language and they did not understand the "in" jokes ... or maybe I just have a weird sense of humour that matched the hosts sense of humour).

At night, we went to the Griffith Park Lookout where you  can see the world famous "HOLLYWOOD" sign and the surrounding Los Angeles area (which is huge).

MOVIE: Day 36 [MPG 930KB]