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PASADENA... part 3
(griffin's 2011 BotCon report)


FRIDAY MAY 27TH


 (part 2 of Legoland... because it was just soooo huge)

Miniworld, with San Francisco

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Hollywood & Los Angeles

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(not sure where these next 4 are)

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Washington DC & Georgetown

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Heads of the Presidents

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Las Vegas

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Looks to be a generic farming town scene, with a working Train set

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New Orleans

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New York

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A Couple more rides

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A boy and his donkey...

Okay, so I took that photo at such a naughty angle.
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Egyptian themed ride

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Technic ride

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Bionical ride

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Atlantis ride (closed)

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Bob the Builder

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A fake Construction site

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A 3D Wall mural (I think it was titled 'karma')

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Giraffes in front of a play room

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Giant Einstein head

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The Boat tour we took near the end of our day, which took us near the Miniland area.

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Sydney Opera House

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Taj Mahal

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Eiffel Tower

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New York

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And the undersea band to finish off the tour.

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Another ride

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Minifigures series 4 on display in one of the Lego stores.

We left there at about 5pm, and went home via a Target store (for toys obviously), but they didn't have any Transformers I wanted... I did get some Pepsi Max, Diet Cherry Dr Pepper, and my first 2 Giant/hot Pretzels for this year (not fresh ones though, as they were from Target's 'pre-prepared' hot-food counter).

It was after 7pm when we got back to the Hotel, and shortly after that, Caroline and I went next door to the Taco Bell to buy something for dinner (Ian and Emilie had Subway). The variety and cheapness of Taco Bell is probably why it is so popular. Most items were only about a dollar each, and even less on the 'meal' deals. I'm not really a fan of Taco Bell because of how processed it feels, but can't complain about the value.

The original plan was to check out of this hotel on the Sunday (a total of just 3 nights) and drive back up to LA to check into the Pasadena hotel that afternoon... and maybe stop off at some stores on the way. But the more Ian looked over things available to do in San Diego, and the fact that we still didn't have definite plans for Tuesday in LA, we started looking at the idea of staying an extra night, and heading back up on the Monday.
I re-mapped our itinerary to see how that would play out, and it worked out nicely. It used up a spare day, while it also meant saving some money on this cheaper hotel (the first night at the Pasadena Sheraton was an extra $60) and meant another meal was paid for (Breakfast). Plus, I only found out today that Monday was a public holiday in America (Memorial Day), so perhaps it was best that we were driving instead of going somewhere as a tourist and fighting the crowds of Americans who have the day off.
I checked with the Hotel we were at, to see if it was possible to stay an extra night (which it was, and still at their cheapest rate - $60 less than the Pasadena Hotel), and rang up the Sheraton to see if it was too late to change our booking to check in on the Monday instead of Sunday (if it was past their cut-off, we'd have to stick to the original plan - but fortunately it was okay).
With an extra day now in San Diego, Ian started looking at the things he wanted to do on the Sunday.  I wasn't too fussed about seeing anything else, as San Diego didn't have much else that really sparked my interest, but told him that I could drop them off somewhere, and go toyhunting.
I think there was a bit of divided loyalties between the toys and doing stuff with his family, because he only ended up deciding on one thing, and wanted to toy hunt with me for most of the day.

The other big thing to suddenly throw our plans into a mess was the news being posted on fansites about a 25th anniversary screening of the 1986 Movie at a theatre some distance from the convention centre (as it wasn't a BotCon event), that would have a discussion group after it with several of the Voice Actors, including the Bumblebee's.  The problem though, was that it was on the Sunday... the day I was leaving this year.  The one year I decide to save money and leave early, there is finally something worth doing on the sunday.  And having a hire car would have been perfect too, as I could have ferried us to it and back.
I had to see what it would cost to change my flight by a day, and then see if the Car rental can add a day as well.  It could mean a huge added expense from those two things, and the extra night accomodation... but if it was like a couple hundred dollars, I would feel it was worth it (for me).
Unfortunately it wasn't going to happen though. On the Tuesday, after we got back from Disney, I was able to ring up my travel agent to get an idea of what costs I could be looking at. I knew that discount economy fares usually means you are stuck with what you've got, but I wanted to be sure... and maybe it could be moved with a small penalty fee.  It couldn't though.  The price he quoted it costing was the cost of a whole new ticket ($900).  There was nothing I could do with the discount economy ticket.  If I wanted to see the movie screening, it would end up costing me about $1100 for the flight, the car and the room.

At midnight, the others went to sleep. I was on the computer working on the photos from the day for another 90 minutes before going to sleep as well.

The alarm was set for 7am, and our second Tourist destination on this trip is to the San Diego Zoo... which is said to be one of the biggest and best zoos in the world.
(and if there's time, some toy hunting as well of course)

That reminds me. That first day of toy purchasing resulted in one of those giant ToysRUs bags full of plastic bubbles (from removing the toys from backing cards and out of boxes) left for the cleaner when we went to Legoland.  I felt so sorry for whoever came in to clean our room. They would have had to make a trip all the way down to their industrial bin and back to the room, because there would have been no room on their cart for it.
(Imagine what it is like every year at the 'BotCon' hotel(s), with hundreds of toy fans leaving similar amounts of rubbish in every room over a 2-3 day period... and the cleaners having to deal with that)

Continue onto Saturday May 28th page
Or
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***All pictures in this BotCon report are mine unless noted. Any that are borrowed, should have the source credited/noted.  If you want to use/borrow any of my photos, all I ask is for you to please credit the source as well. I try to take as many of my own photos as possible, and usually only resort to using others if I failed to get something, or my photo wasn't clear enough.

OZFORMERS - Australasian Transformers News and Interaction (our 15th year - longer than any other moderated Transfan community)
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BotCon website - The official Collector Club and Convention website (check it out for when and where the next one will be)
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Me --> griffin @ otca.com.au