Yes Fezzes are still cool

My final Halloween 2015 re-run for the season (Re-run, I said. There will be a 2016 wrap-up after Halloween).

 

“Fezzes are cool”

Fezzes are cool

(The last Halloween post for 2015 – I promise. It’s a Halloween wrap, one could say.  This post is not as long as it appears to be – there are a good number of pictures because, you know…. it’s Halloween and I have no restraint)

As costumes go, this year was really not all that difficult.

  • He chose costumes that actually existed.
  • We were able to find all of his requests in his size.
  • The two that I did have to buy in pieces to make up the costumes were not all that difficult to put together because the pieces actually exist.

It was a relatively easy year.

Yes, we had the whole “Jim Dear” bump in the road but luckily and unexpectedly it worked out  so – Jim Dear will be counted and included in his “costume parade” this year and of course included in his annual Halloween book that he receives for Christmas each year.

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– We do take this holiday very seriously.

We may be a little bit over the top, but he loves it and I am perfectly happy to encourage and go with it!

Onward….. his first second choice – the costume that he wore to his Work/Day Program Halloween Dance and the reason (well partially the reason) he was so excited when I brought out that nightmarish pair of glass slippers….

Prince Charming – the REAL Costume this time.

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He even had the opportunity to escort a real princess to the dance. We were not allowed to call her a princess, she is the “Zombie Prom QUEEN!” But to DC, she was a princess – just don’t tell *Salli. Her costume must and should always be identified properly using the official name. Never a Princess!

A few days later we were going to the Haunted Miniature Golf Course to work at a table to support DC’s summer camp. Wearing a costume was not something I had thought about, believe it or not. When I realized the day before I ventured into my costume closet to see if there was something in there for him to wear at the last minute.

The Costume Closet: Let’s talk about the costume closet. DC and I live in a very small duplex. There is no storage and really nowhere to put anything, but still I have an entire closet devoted to Halloween Costumes (Priorities, people!). This closet is beyond ridiculous. I really can not find anything. I don’t even know everything that is in there at this point, but I was hopeful. The other issue with pulling out an old costume is that many of them will not fit him any longer. DC is a big boy.

I saw something with a black cape. I was able to get at it without the rest of the closet caving in on me. It was a Jack the Ripper costume. The only reason that I can think of for having a Jack the Ripper costume is that I must have thought I could use all or part of it for one of DC’s requests for a costume that did not exist. I don’t recall ever using it though. It had a black vest, a black cape and a top hat. It was trimmed in red. I showed it to him and asked if he would like to wear it to the golf course. I got an emphatic “Yes”. The boy just loves a cape. We tried it on. I was worried about the vest but it fit – PHEW. He went to look at himself in the mirror.

I asked: “DC who are you?”

“Captain Von Trapp”

????!!!!?????

I have no idea why he thought he looked like Captain Von Trapp unless there is some obscure scene in the Sound of Music where either Christopher Plummer or Stephen Moyer is wearing a cape. If DC thinks so, then there probably is.

Only because I was still a bit confused about the Captain Von Trapp thing, I asked him again who he thought he looked like. This time the answer was “Doc Terminus” (Jim Dale from Pete’s Dragon for those of you that have not seen every Disney movie ever made). That actually made perfect sense. He did look like him, more than he looked like Captain Von Trapp, anyway.

IMG_1648Of course we did have a mustache on hand to complete the look.

We were scheduled to man the table a second day and fortunately I did not have to venture into the dreaded closet again. I remembered his Grease garb from a Grease Sing-A-Long that we attended a few years ago that was hanging in his own closet – SCORE!  It had a jacket which was perfect as it can get mighty cold out there and there is nothing worse than having to wear a coat or jacket over one’s Halloween costume.

Nothing… Seriously… Look it up..it is just not done!

The second best part was that it was easy and recognizable……

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except that everyone called him “Elvis” – everyone.

His camp party came just two days after the golf course. His choice……. “Hook” but not the Disney Captain Hook (yay!)- Captain Hook from the television show “Once Upon a Time” (yay, again). I was happy with this choice. It is a popular character on a current TV show. Other than the Big Bang Theory last year, he really never chooses or has any interest in anything current, so usually No One Knows What He Is Supposed To Be. 

HookPirates UNITE!

He even ran into another pirate at the party.

Fortunately no swords were drawn – it was all very amicable.

Moving on to my very favorite costume of the season!  This one for the Best Buddies Halloween party.

Dr. Who – the 10th Dr.! (DC’s favorite DR (mine as well)  and the greatest challenge of the season – David Tennant’s hair.

  • Two ruined wigs
  • DC loosing his stuff over the hair clippings – everywhere.
  • DC loosing his stuff over the hair glue (extra strength mouse, but I really think it IS glue) everywhere.

I finally had to give it up or the costume that he was so excited about would turn into something he did not want to wear or hear about – ever again. I think we still made the point even with the rather ridiculous hairdo.

bb halloween 008

One could truly say the was “The Madman with a box.”

DC and his Best Buddy

DC and his Best Buddy

Traveling in his “Big” (very, very big) Blue Box through space and time to somewhere in New England – coordinates set for October 31, 2015 and regeneration complete…….

comes…….The 11th Doctor.

Fezzes are very cool

Although David Tennant, the 10th Dr. is DC’s favorite – He would not pass up the opportunity to wear a FEZ.

But seriously……Who could??

“Fezzes are cool”

Happy Halloween!

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“The ‘boy’ who waited” …. and waited and waited

(Part 3 of our trip to Rhode Island Comic-Con)

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After a fantastic time on Friday night, we ventured back on Saturday, knowing full well that it would be much more crowded and we would not be able to do much more than the photo ops we still had scheduled. Before heading to the photo-op room, we took one more swing by the Supernatural and Walking Dead rooms, just to see if there was anyone there that hadn’t been there on Friday night. Sure enough – there was “Merle”! We got in line. Again, DC does not know who he is and again, he would be acting as my stand in. There were two women in front of us that asked me to take their photo with Merle (Michael Rooker) and of course I obliged. Knowing as we do how DC can not resist a camera, especially one in his mother’s hands; he jumped in the photo with the two women. The more I tried to explain to him that he was next and he needed to move out of the ladies’ picture the more he held his ground and the bigger the smile became. I finally had to go over and take him by the arm away from the picture. Unfortunately it was not my camera or I would have certainly taken a picture of DC photo bombing Michael Rooker, but alas… I only have the one that we took when it was DC’s turn.

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We were lucky that we were able to get one of our Saturday ops done on Friday night (Alex Kingston). That was helpful but we still had the scheduling conflict with Jim Beaver and Karen Gillian to contend with.

Jim Beaver was scheduled for 12:45 – 1:15 and the other was scheduled for 12:45 – 1:30. We decided to get Jim Beaver done first. Explaining the conflict to a volunteer in order to find out how early we could get in line for Jim Beaver, I took out my printed, bar coded ticket that clearly stated: “You must present this ticket with the Bar Code and e-mail address visible” to double-check the time I had written on the ticket. She looked at it and told us we could probably get in line at about 12:30. We walked around a bit and went back to get in line at the time she had given us. I gave the same volunteer my ticket and she said “Oh no, we can’t take those paper tickets. You have to get in that line over there and trade them in for cards.”

We had used the paper ticket the night before for Alex Kingston with no problem and there was nothing posted or announced to inform people about trading in their paper tickets. We went and exchanged our paper tickets and got through the Jim Beaver photo-op (a longer story; already covered in Part 1) and moved right on to the Karen Gillian line.

The “line” outside the corralled line went all the way through the arena and through all of the vendor booths. We had to keep checking that we were actually still in the line and not just stuck behind people at the vendor tables. I’m sure the vendors were just thrilled that the line was blocking their tables and customers from getting at their tables.

LINE

There were no volunteers around checking to see that people were in the right line or to be sure that people waiting in line were aware of this paper ticket exchange. No one was overseeing any of this at all.

When one is in a line for such a long time, one begins to bond with the people in close proximity. There was a boy in front of us that looked to be about 15 years old. He was with a friend about the same age. We discussed The Walking Dead for quite some time. We discussed our “Glen’ theories (this was during the “Is Glen dead” or “Is Glen under the dumpster” weeks of limbo). I told him that I thought that because they were carrying it on so long that we would find out finally that yes, Glen is alive and because we would all be so happy about that, they would kill him (or Maggie) off very shortly afterwards (that’s my theory and I am sticking to it).  Eventually he asked me about how much I paid for the photo-op ticket. I told him I really didn’t remember because I bought it so long ago on-line. He said, “I have 50.00 on me, that should be enough, right?”. This would be the first time my heart broke in this line. I looked at him and said “Please don’t tell me you don’t have a ticket yet.”

He didn’t. He thought he would be able to buy one when he got to the front. He didn’t know that they had to be purchased before getting in the line. He had been in line with us at that point a good 45 minutes. I told him not to get out of line until we could find out for sure. We got the attention of a volunteer to see if he could buy a ticket at the front of the line. He couldn’t. I felt so bad for them! But again, there was no guidance at all. There were no signs, there was no one checking for tickets, there was no one to tell anyone exactly what they were supposed to do.

Somewhere around the hour mark, we made it to the corral and the actual line. This is where the confusion really began. We just stopped moving. The photo-op was way over it’s 45 minute scheduled time. People were now really confused because no one was explaining why we stopped – were we now in line for the next person? Is Karen Gillian gone? While we were all standing there wondering why we stopped moving, we noticed that there was a good number of people sitting up in the bleachers and they were now being directed down to the line. Those 50 or more people were actually ahead of us but there were so many people at the entrance to the corral, it was considered a fire hazard so they had to move them out.

Seriously, what did they expect when they sold probably triple (maybe more) the photo ops that can be taken in a 45 minute session? There were too many people in line. There were people getting in line for whoever was supposed to have that room after Karen Gillian- no one is telling any one what to do. This had to cause scheduling conflicts not only for the attendees but for the celebrities that may have had to be at a panel, or at their tables, or for the people coming to the op rooms next.

We stood in this same spot for another 30 minutes. People were beginning to worry that she would leave before everyone in line made it inside. In front of us was a woman and her two daughters – the second group of people that we bonded with in this line. We talked for a long while and when DC started yelling “I’m out of here!” over and over again, the girls went out of their way to talk him down. We saw pictures of them in their Halloween costumes – all Dr. Who themed. DC enjoyed that. They were wonderful and I believe they were almost solely responsible for keeping him in line.

We finally started to move and made it into the corral.  The corral moved quickly and it was the mother and the two little girls’ turn to go in. The mother showed the volunteer her electronic tickets on her phone which earlier in the day she was told would be fine. But in true RI Comic-Con form was told that THEY WERE NOT GOOD. THEY’D HAVE TO GO AND EXCHANGE THEIR TICKETS TOO!!!! An hour and a half in line and no one saw fit to announce this or check with the people in line about this change with the paper and apparently now the electronic tickets?

At this point, the little girl who was so excited to show me her Amy Pond – complete with suitcase and boots (she already had the red hair) – Halloween picture, burst into tears and they left the line. I just stood there in shock! We were next and of course, me being me, could not keep my mouth shut. I screamed at the volunteer collecting tickets. “That girl just stood in this line for an hour and a half and you just made her cry! You can’t just change the ticket procedure and not tell people!” Then…. I noticed him holding a bunch of tickets cards (like we had to exchange our paper tickets for) AND he also had a handful of paper tickets!!!

“And WHY are you holding paper tickets? We were told they were not good and had to exchange them! Why are you taking paper tickets? Why wouldn’t you take the electronic tickets if you are taking the paper tickets that you aren’t supposed to be taking?!”

His reply……

Say it with me….. “I don’t know, I’m only a volunteer.”

There may or may not have been a few choice ‘words’ thrown in his general direction.

We went inside. DC was DONE with this, but even though she was an hour and a half, I believe, over her scheduled time, Karen really did make an effort to chat quickly with him. He really was just too distracted and over it by this time and once again they made him take his glasses off, so that was fun.  I was distracted too about little Amy Pond crying and did not intervene as much as I would normally have to redirect him to get him back on track.

We took the picture and left the room but we had to wait for the photo to come out. While Doug waited for the picture, I went on a hunt to find this woman and if she wasn’t going to yell at people to get them back in that line in front of everyone, I was going to yell at people for her.  I could not get over the sight of that poor kid bursting into tears.

I could not find them anywhere so DC and I went back to where we had left Doug waiting for the picture. It finally came out and DC seemed happy to see it even though he was not thrilled when he was having it taken. We decided that we had been there quite long enough for that day.

amy

 

We did have one more op scheduled with Scott Wilson but we already had a photo of him that we took at his table the night before so I had Doug just give it away. I know this was a colossal waste of money but I just couldn’t put DC though that again. He was done and so was I.

We did run into the woman and her girls on the way out and I was happy to hear that they were able to get back in line – IN the FRONT of the line and have their picture taken. I was glad to see her daughter smiling again.

DC ran into a few more princesses on the way out which put him in a much better mood.

And me?

I really still just wanted to find people to yell at.

*****

I do understand that waiting and lines are the norm. We have been to NY Comic-Con which is much larger and of course we waited – of course it was crowded and of course there were lines, but it was just so much more organized. There was no comparison.

****

Next (and last) – on a happier note, his favorite person of the Con.

 

 

 

 

“Hello Sweetie”

Part 2 of our recent trip to the Rhode Island Comic-Con….

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(from Part 1 – “Don’t You Cry No More” #Supernatural)

(I have a lot to say about our visit to the Rhode Island Comic-Con. Some good; some not so much. Everyone we met was very nice. Now I understand that they are supposed to be, but we all know that it isn’t always the case. There were a few people who were just extraordinarily wonderful to DC, so I want to be sure I mention all of them. Because I have so much to say about the entire event; Autism-related and not,  I have decided to split the story up into a few parts, by category rather than in order by the day) 

I will say again that I am so glad we went on Friday night just to get the lay of the land for Saturday. It was not crowded at all. We saw and did more that I ever imagined we would get to do – of course this also means that I spent so much more money than I had intended. But how could one pass up all of these people just standing around waiting for the crowds that didn’t come until Saturday?

After leaving the “Supernatural (or the “Don’t You Cry No More”) room, thinking we would not be so lucky as to happen upon another room with people just standing around waiting – we happened upon Scott Wilson.

We had a photo op scheduled with him on Saturday, but I wasn’t going to pass up this opportunity. Now, DC has no idea who he is but he was going to be my stand-in for the scheduled photo op as I am just too fat to have my picture taken, so he was delegated as my stand-in here as well.

DC really took a shine to him even though he didn’t know who he was. He was a nice man with grey hair and a beard and that was good enough for him. I took his picture with DC and then he insisted that I get in a shot (a photo that will never see the light of day).  Also in the Walking Dead room was Seth Gilliam – DC does not know him either, but he was happy to have his picture taken (still standing in for Mom) – he is always happy to have his picture taken.

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Technically we were there to figure out where everything was in anticipation of the crowds on Saturday and we could already see that there was no information readily available. It was very important to DC that we find one particular person before the weekend was done.  We asked THE only Volunteer that would prove to be helpful during this entire weekend.  He gave us directions to another area that we never would have found on our own (more about his favorite person in another installment). While walking around this area we came upon Alex Kingston’s table. This was the one and only table where we found a line that entire night. We did have a photo op scheduled for the following day, but we got in line anyway. This was one of the very few times that our VIP tickets came in handy and they whisked us to the front. At this point DC was so excited he began squealing and stimming. She and most of the people in line seemed to be getting a kick out of just how excited he was. Fortunately there was a table between her and him because if there hadn’t been, he would have headed straight for all of that hair. She signed his photo with “Hello, Sweetie”, which just sent him further over-the-top with his squealing. We left the table with DC yelling and waving “Good-bye” to her and then of course a big “Good-bye everybody” complete with a bow, to the rest of the people in line.

We walked around a little bit more. DC stopped quite a few random people in costume and insisted on having his picture taken with them. Most of the people he stopped were dressed as princesses and they all obliged.

I decided that we should try to find the photo op area so we would not spend Saturday searching. We did eventually find it. They were holding the photo ops in the arena – it was large enough but it was also full of vendors. We looked around at some of the vendor tables and noticed that the schedule on the wall (the only information available about anything was the current photo op schedule and the panel schedules) was showing that Alex Kingston was in one of the photo op rooms right then. We had a ticket for the following day, but due to the many conflicts on Saturday, I thought it would make my life so much easier to be able to get at least one out of the way on Friday. It never hurts to ask, right? There was NO ONE in line, no one – really – that was just how dead it was there on Friday night. While DC was checking out an Anna (Frozen) doll at one of the vendor booths, Doug went over to ask. He came back with a “yes”.

As we walked over to the “booth”, I reminded DC not to touch her hair.

DC: “No touch the hair”

Me: What is the other rule?

DC: “Don’t pick up the people”

They took the paper ticket with no problem.

When he got inside the curtained area, he immediately began squealing.

Alex: Well, Hello Again!” (who would not remember this boy squealing at your table earlier that evening?)

DC: “Hello There!” (another bow)

Since there was no one else in line, there was time for a little bit of small talk between them. She also commented on his shirt, which made him extremely happy!

He was able to control himself enough to give her a hug without breaking her back, grabbing her hair or (Phew) picking her up!

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Needless to say, he was quite the happy guy when we left the venue on Friday night! He had such a great night all around there on Friday. It could not have been more perfect for him.

No crowds, no lines and River Song twice in one night. What could be better?

*****

There was one person that could and did make his night even more awesome….. More about that in another installment….

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Fezzes are cool”

Fezzes are cool

(The last Halloween post for 2015 – I promise. It’s a Halloween wrap, one could say.  This post is not as long as it appears to be – there are a good number of pictures because, you know…. it’s Halloween and I have no restraint)

As costumes go, this year was really not all that difficult.

  • He chose costumes that actually existed.
  • We were able to find all of his requests in his size.
  • The two that I did have to buy in pieces to make up the costumes were not all that difficult to put together because the pieces actually exist.

It was a relatively easy year.

Yes, we had the whole “Jim Dear” bump in the road but luckily and unexpectedly it worked out  so – Jim Dear will be counted and included in his “costume parade” this year and of course included in his annual Halloween book that he receives for Christmas each year.

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– We do take this holiday very seriously.

We may be a little bit over the top, but he loves it and I am perfectly happy to encourage and go with it!

Onward….. his first second choice – the costume that he wore to his Work/Day Program Halloween Dance and the reason (well partially the reason) he was so excited when I brought out that nightmarish pair of glass slippers….

Prince Charming – the REAL Costume this time.

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He even had the opportunity to escort a real princess to the dance. We were not allowed to call her a princess, she is the “Zombie Prom QUEEN!” But to DC, she was a princess – just don’t tell *Salli. Her costume must and should always be identified properly using the official name. Never a Princess!

A few days later we were going to the Haunted Miniature Golf Course to work at a table to support DC’s summer camp. Wearing a costume was not something I had thought about, believe it or not. When I realized the day before I ventured into my costume closet to see if there was something in there for him to wear at the last minute.

The Costume Closet: Let’s talk about the costume closet. DC and I live in a very small duplex. There is no storage and really nowhere to put anything, but still I have an entire closet devoted to Halloween Costumes (Priorities, people!). This closet is beyond ridiculous. I really can not find anything. I don’t even know everything that is in there at this point, but I was hopeful. The other issue with pulling out an old costume is that many of them will not fit him any longer. DC is a big boy.

I saw something with a black cape. I was able to get at it without the rest of the closet caving in on me. It was a Jack the Ripper costume. The only reason that I can think of for having a Jack the Ripper costume is that I must have thought I could use all or part of it for one of DC’s requests for a costume that did not exist. I don’t recall ever using it though. It had a black vest, a black cape and a top hat. It was trimmed in red. I showed it to him and asked if he would like to wear it to the golf course. I got an emphatic “Yes”. The boy just loves a cape. We tried it on. I was worried about the vest but it fit – PHEW. He went to look at himself in the mirror.

I asked: “DC who are you?”

“Captain Von Trapp”

????!!!!?????

I have no idea why he thought he looked like Captain Von Trapp unless there is some obscure scene in the Sound of Music where either Christopher Plummer or Stephen Moyer is wearing a cape. If DC thinks so, then there probably is.

Only because I was still a bit confused about the Captain Von Trapp thing, I asked him again who he thought he looked like. This time the answer was “Doc Terminus” (Jim Dale from Pete’s Dragon for those of you that have not seen every Disney movie ever made). That actually made perfect sense. He did look like him, more than he looked like Captain Von Trapp, anyway.

IMG_1648Of course we did have a mustache on hand to complete the look.

We were scheduled to man the table a second day and fortunately I did not have to venture into the dreaded closet again. I remembered his Grease garb from a Grease Sing-A-Long that we attended a few years ago that was hanging in his own closet – SCORE!  It had a jacket which was perfect as it can get mighty cold out there and there is nothing worse than having to wear a coat or jacket over one’s Halloween costume.

Nothing… Seriously… Look it up..it is just not done!

The second best part was that it was easy and recognizable……

IMG_1818

except that everyone called him “Elvis” – everyone.

His camp party came just two days after the golf course. His choice……. “Hook” but not the Disney Captain Hook (yay!)- Captain Hook from the television show “Once Upon a Time” (yay, again). I was happy with this choice. It is a popular character on a current TV show. Other than the Big Bang Theory last year, he really never chooses or has any interest in anything current, so usually No One Knows What He Is Supposed To Be. 

HookPirates UNITE!

He even ran into another pirate at the party.

Fortunately no swords were drawn – it was all very amicable.

Moving on to my very favorite costume of the season!  This one for the Best Buddies Halloween party.

Dr. Who – the 10th Dr.! (DC’s favorite DR (mine as well)  and the greatest challenge of the season – David Tennant’s hair.

  • Two ruined wigs
  • DC loosing his stuff over the hair clippings – everywhere.
  • DC loosing his stuff over the hair glue (extra strength mouse, but I really think it IS glue) everywhere.

I finally had to give it up or the costume that he was so excited about would turn into something he did not want to wear or hear about – ever again. I think we still made the point even with the rather ridiculous hairdo.

bb halloween 008

One could truly say the was “The Madman with a box.”

DC and his Best Buddy

DC and his Best Buddy

Traveling in his “Big” (very, very big) Blue Box through space and time to somewhere in New England – coordinates set for October 31, 2015 and regeneration complete…….

comes…….The 11th Doctor.

Fezzes are very cool

Although David Tennant, the 10th Dr. is DC’s favorite – He would not pass up the opportunity to wear a FEZ.

But seriously……Who could??

“Fezzes are cool”

Happy Halloween!

Everything is Related – Dr. Who

Relating the things that DC loves to anything else just helps to make it more enjoyable for him. DC loves to travel, but if we are not traveling to Disney World I usually rack my brain to come up with something to make the trip more interesting and exciting for him. Recently we took a trip to London and Paris.

One of the items on our agenda would be a trip to Cardiff and the Dr. Who Experience – have I mentioned that before? 🙂 . DC loves Dr. Who, but he gravitates more to the David Tennant Doctor and Rose combo. He eventually warmed up to Matt Smith, but he is having trouble relating to the Peter Capaldi Doctor.

On the recommendation of Autism-Mom we watched the Paddington Bear movie before we left. The movie is centered in London and I was hoping that he would warm up a bit to Peter Capaldi as he is a very funny character in the movie (two birds – one stone kind of relating for DC). He liked the movie and above all, it gave him a few more relatable items to bring to London and to Cardiff.

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Paddington Store – Paddington Station

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Paddington Station

So here we have the fourth installment in the “Everything is related” series.

Dr. Who is one of the very few “relatable(s)” that did not come directly or even indirectly from Disney. I happened upon the series quite by accident. I happened to be flipping channels one morning at 5am and there it was, on the Syfy Channel. I had missed the beginning and had no idea what this was or what was going on. (I had to do a little bit of research today to try to determine how long ago this was; I am guessing somewhere around 2008 as they were already into the David Tennant seasons. I assumed that the SyFy channel was showing the season that had just ended and not brand new episodes.). I discovered later that the episode I saw that first morning was “Gridlock” – it is still one of my favorite episodes.

I sleep with the TV on. Listening to whatever is on distracts me from the “mind race” I seem to have every night when I try to get to sleep. I know that I have mentioned that TNT (‘Two-Five’ in DC-speak) is the default channel in our house. I got into the habit of watching (half asleep/half awake) the 4am episode of “NUMB3RS” and then the 5am episode, fully awake with coffee before DC woke up. For some reason the 5am episode was not on the schedule on Friday mornings. Not wanting to give up my “sitting in bed with coffee ‘me-time'”, I started flipping channels searching for anything that was not an infomercial.

I was totally hooked on NUMB3ERS and when TNT removed it from their lineup entirely, I had to just purchase the entire series. But on the upside, due to TNT’s very odd Friday scheduling, I had become an official “Whovian”. I went out and purchased all of the newer revamped seasons that were available at the time.

Quite by accident again while I was watching my newly purchased Dr. Who DVD’s,  DC walked into the living room just in time to see a burping trash can. Over and above anything else, DC is a male, therefore anything having to do with bodily functions is just hilarious to him. He was hooked.

We purchased our Dr. Who Experience and train tickets months before we left on our trip. It was a two hour train ride from London to Cardiff  and then a short cab ride to Cardiff Bay. I have to say that I was just as, if not more excited as DC was.

Paris London 335

Inside was a snack area and quite a few very lifelike figures. DC did his best not to “Blink”.

Don't Blink

Don’t Blink

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I did not know what to expect inside the “Experience”- I imagined something like the old Star Trek Experience in Las Vegas – a virtual ride. It wasn’t like that at all but still a lot of fun. Of course, photos are not allowed inside the “Experience”.

Star Trek Experience Quark's Bar

Star Trek Experience Quark’s Bar

The exit from “Experience” brought us into an area of props – TWO Floors (exciting!!!). Photos are allowed in this area so I am going to post a few… Please understand that I am using a great deal of restraint in not posting every single one!

Cardiff Bay, the area around the Dr. Who Experience was very pretty, filled with shops and restaurants. There was a walking tour that was part of the ticket price to the Experience. We chose not to wait and since we had a map, we took the tour on our own. To be honest all I wanted to find was the entrance to Torchwood. As it turned out it was right in that same area and impossible to miss. While DC and Doug rode the carousel, I walked over and took a few photos of the Torchwood fountain (the secret entrance to the Torchwood Institute).

Paris London 380

We had a nice lunch at Bill’s and opted to walk back to the train station. I would definitely recommend Bill’s for lunch, maybe not the walk back to the station.

We had little time before our train was scheduled to leave so we took a quick walk up to Cardiff Castle where a few Dr. Who scenes were filmed and where the Tardis landed in celebration of 50th Anniversary of the Dr. Who Series. It was only a five-minute walk from the station, but we really did not have the time to go through the whole castle. I wish we had scheduled it into our day ahead of time. Normally DC loves a castle, any castle but he was exhausted at this point so viewing it from the outside was just fine with him.

I am not going to give away what goes on inside “The Experience” itself because, you know, “Spoilers Sweetie” but I will say that DC found the final “piece of the puzzle” and inserted it into the proper place and helped to save the universe……

It was a great day all around for us, but more importantly –  for the universe.

“To Boldly Go……”

To Boldy Go....

To Bodly Go….

I confess…

I admit it…

I am just a big old Sci-fi geek from way back. I watched the first episode of Star Trek back in 1966/1967 (?) and I was hooked – for life.

The first “sign” that DC learned when he was very young (for those of you that may not know, DC was non-verbal until he was 7 years old) was the “Live Long and Prosper” sign. If and when he saw a picture of Mr. Spock or heard him mentioned, he used that sign.

Today, he is verbal but will still, at times use his signs in conjunction with his speech – that “Mr. Spock” sign has come to represent Star Trek in general for him and he still uses it.

Coincidently, DC just happened to be born on William Shatner’s birthday (not planned – I swear)

Before the days when Star Trek costumes were available to purchase - DC's second Halloween.

Before the days when Star Trek costumes were available to purchase – DC’s second Halloween.

Last October, we finally made it to New York Comic-Con. I was nervous – it was so crowded, but the hope of meeting Felicia Day, kept DC pretty much on track. He also got to meet William Shatner and the Real Mike Tee Vee. All were very nice to him and he was very, very happy.

A few years back a friend of mine told me about “Shore Leave“,an event held in Baltimore every August. It is smaller than ComicCon and the original plan was to try this first, see how DC managed it and then move on to the bigger ‘Con’ in NY at a later date. Somehow we ended up doing it in reverse. But, since DC did so well at ComicCon we decided  Shore Leave would be a breeze.

We left on Thursday afternoon as soon as DC came home from his work program. Our 5 hour drive to Baltimore somehow turned into an 8 hour haul. We opted not to stay at the hotel where the event was being held as we were planning on doing a few other things in Baltimore while we were there and I really thought it would be just too much for DC. We had reservations at the Holiday Inn – Timonium. We finally arrived a little bit after 11pm.

The man at the desk checked us in to room 717. We headed up to the 7th floor in the slowest elevator known to man – reverse warp speed. We opened the door to room 717 and found that the door was bolted from the inside and soon a man’s face was looking at us through the 6 inch space in the door. He wanted to know what we were doing and why we had a key to his room. We explained that we had just checked in and this was the room we were given. He explained that HE had just checked into this room moments before. DC does not understand this, he wants to “go to the room”.

Fortunately a hotel employee was in the hallway and called down to the desk. He got the desk clerk to assign us a different room on the same floor, let us in with his master-key and went down to switch out the keys for us. We were now checked into room 725. At about 11:45, the room phone rang. It was the desk clerk. He has forgotten our name (??!!) – we had reservations so he should have all of that information, but I gave him our name again. At midnight, the phone rang. It was the desk clerk once again, this time calling to tell us he would have someone slip free breakfast coupons under our door for our inconvenience. We thanked him and hoped this would be the end of the phone calls for the evening.

We spent Friday at the Inner Harbor. DC of course spotted the Barnes and Noble and Hard Rock “Caf” (DC-speak) so, you bet we had to  visit both places. It was a nice day and we had a very nice time.

We got back to the room at about 4pm to discover that no one had come to clean. I thought that was odd, but given the debacle of the night before, I really didn’t think too much about it at the time. We would be heading back out in an hour so there wasn’t much point to calling anyone to clean at that time of day.

Reading the Shore Leave schedule, I noticed that there was a “Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock” tournament at 6pm. DC loves the Big Bang Theory and thinks “Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock” is the most hysterical thing he’s ever heard. He does not really know what it means, the words are  just so funny to him. I thought if we attended the tournament, he would see exactly what it is…. a game.  I didn’t think he would actually understand the game, but at the very least he might understand what they are talking about in the show.

When we first walked in, the moderator was explaining the rules, reading from a very confusing T-shirt, complete with diagrams and pictures of the signs. One of the participants piped up “That boy has the directions right on his shirt” – I don’t think the moderator appreciated this, he looked up, sighed and went right back to explaining with HIS T-shirt. DC got a kick out of the tournament and asked me more than once “to play“. I knew he really didn’t understand it and thought about asking the moderator if someone could play a quick game with him when they were finished, but during the practice rounds I did with him, I could see he really didn’t get it. He just threw whatever I threw. I told him he could play against me. We played at the table while the tournament was in progress. This seemed to make him happy enough.

After the tournament we were walking down one of the hallways and I noticed the TARDIS in the corner and pointed it out to DC. He recognized it immediately yelling,  “Dr Who” We went to check it out. It was a photo booth. I don’t know what sort of directions the man gave DC when he was in the booth, but I could see from the computer screen outside that every time “Look at the Camera” came up on the screen, DC did something with his hands and his face, when the prompt was not there he sat looking at the screen normally. I’m sure he was following his understanding of the directions the man gave him.

He also happened to find a pair of TARDIS slippers. There were only two pair on the table, but thankfully one pair was his size. He was pretty darn happy to get them. He has a “thing” about slippers lately, I don’t know why. He has a few pair of slippers at home but never wanted to wear them, all of a sudden he loves slippers and wears them all of the time. The Tardis slippers were a nice find for him.

Pictures taken, slippers purchased, now DC was beginning to get antsy. He had enough for one night and as you may or may not know, DC’s favorite thing when on vacation – besides bookstores and restaurants, that is – is the hotel room. He really just LOVES hotel rooms, so he was anxious to get back. We arrived back at the hotel at a little after 9. Jokingly, I said to Doug, “I hope they didn’t give our room to someone else”

 -I really have to stop joking like that, really!

We got to the door and the key would not work, none of our keys worked. There were 2 women just down the hall going into their room and I heard one  say  to the other, “Now look,  their keys won’t work” and they asked us if our keys worked. We told them that they didn’t. They proceeded to inform us that they had just checked in and they were assigned room number 725 (our room). They opened the door, went in and realized that this was clearly someone else’s room (especially as you know,  no one had come to clean it that day). They had just been down at the desk to have it corrected and in the process the people at the desk deactivated our keys.

DC just wanted to “go to the room” and again, we are left standing in the hallway. I was so worried about Shore Leave being too much for him, but as it turns out the hotel caused him (and me) more anxiety that anything else that weekend.

We went back down to the desk and informed them that once again, we were stuck in the hallway. Last night they had us walking into someone else’s room and tonight they sent strangers into our room. The women at the desk said that when the desk clerk switched our room the night before he didn’t mark it down – which explains why no one came to clean – they thought it was empty (but why did he call to ask our name?? – That will remain a mystery). One woman offered us free breakfast coupons for the rest of our stay (they must have to give out an awful lot of those) – I informed her that we had already been given coupons the night before for that error. They didn’t offer anything else. I could be wrong, but it did seem as though the women that walked into our room that night were upgraded to a suite – but, I could be wrong…………….

On Saturday morning, we decided to take in the “Fairy Tale Panel” back at Shore Leave. DC must have been much more exhausted from Friday than I realized as he fell asleep and slept (in the front row, mind you) throughout the entire hour. 200lbs of dead weight hanging on me the entire time – just what you want when you are running a panel, someone fast asleep in the front row!  He did also sleep through the Once Upon a Time panel at ComicCon, but at least it was a dark room and we were nowhere close to the front. I suppose it could have been worse, he could have been snoring.
Saturday was much more crowded than Friday night had been. We tried to stay away from the most crowded areas, but refreshed from his “nap”, DC made a bee-line to the Buffy doll that I knew he wanted but refused to buy the day before – I think he was just too overwhelmed on Friday night to know what he wanted until he found the Tardis slippers, that is..
We had purchased tickets for 3 photo ops the night before, but we still had a little time to kill, so we went to the autograph tables, which surprisingly, were not very crowded.

Our first stop was Robert Picardo. I explained to DC that he was once on a Star Trek (Voyager). His sign read “I’m the Doctor”. This confused DC, he knew it wasn’t David Tennant, the only Dr. he is aware of, but the sign did say “I am the Dr.” so he called him Dr. Who.

– just following directions, Doc…….

We moved on to Michael Welch. He was exceptionally nice to DC – really, they all were.

We then headed to THE most confusing Photo Op line ever. We had tickets for 3 Photo Ops which meant we had to get in line 3 times. The lines did move quickly, but it was all very confusing trying to figure out where we were supposed to be.

The woman at the entrance to the photo room just Ooo’d and Ahh’d over DC every time we arrived for a photo. “Oh! Look at him, he is so excited!” – he was, plus there is no one that loves to have their picture taken more than DC does.

His first photo was with Robert Picardo, “Dr. Who” from a half hour earlier. He didn’t call him Dr. Who this time even though he was wearing a Dr. Who shirt (he didn’t have his “I’m the Doctor” sign with him and it wasn’t David Tennant on his shirt).

Next up was Eve Myles. She was a few minutes late getting to the photo room and when I saw her coming down the hallway, I got a little bit anxious. Her hair was much longer than it is on TV and in photos. DC LOVES long hair, LOVES it! Before we were faced with another  ‘Snow White Incident’ I launched into “the rules”.
“DC, you can not touch her hair”
“Okay Mom”
“DC what is the rule? – Tell me”
“Don’t touch your hair” (the usual pronoun confusion,but I knew he understood)
and then….. just for good measure…
“DC, what is the other rule?”
“Don’t pick up the people”
and he didn’t……….

Next and thankfully, last as DC was tired of getting in and out of lines…. Silas Weir Mitchell. I love Grimm. DC has seen it a few times, but I don’t think he really knew who he was. It didn’t faze him because, someone was taking HIS picture and isn’t that really all that matters?

At this point, DC was starting to get edgy. Our last stop was the Eve Myles autograph table. We had a good 1/2 hour wait until she was finished with the Q&A she was leading. We slipped inside to listen and more importantly to move DC out of the hallway.

He didn’t want to sit down.

He didn’t want to stand where we were standing.

He didn’t want to stand in the next place we moved to.

We moved close to the door and he seemed okay with that.

But then a staff person came over and told us we couldn’t stand there so we moved back to the hallway.

We decided to just wait at the table.

There was a wonderful lady sitting at the table who just happened to be a Special Ed teacher (we seem to run into Special Ed teachers everywhere we go, she was the second on this trip), she let DC pick out the photo he wanted autographed early. He picked a photo of Ms. Myles from a Merlin episode. We chatted a bit, she chatted with DC a bit as well. She told him he was doing a good job waiting – he loves compliments, who doesn’t.

The Dalek from the Tardis photo booth was now roaming the hallway “EXTERMINATE!”,  so that helped to keep him occupied until Ms. Myles was finished with her Q&A. When she arrived at the table, the woman whispered something to her and then introduced her to DC. She told her that he was waiting a long time for her. He was first in line for her autograph, she was lovely to him. He was thrilled…..

but he was also “done”.

I didn’t try to push him to do any more. We arrived that morning at 9 and it was now after 3. That was a long stretch for him, even with the nap. He had a few sketchy moments throughout the day, but I really I think, overall he did a fantastic job!

In the words of DC, “We all had a wonderful time”

except for this guy…………..

this guy....

this guy….

and a big shout-out to the “trying to be helpful staff member” that asked Doug (aka “This Guy”) if he needed help finding something….

“I’m just looking for some place to hang myself”

(Thanks Guy, I’m sure, Doug was waiting all day for an opportunity to use that line, and there it was)

#LLAP