My wife and I have hit up three Walt Disney World parks over the last couple of days (hence the reason you haven't seen me post new content lately!) and let me tell you: Never in my life have I seen or been in so crowded a place.
It's mind-boggling how packed the Disney parks get, especially Magic Kingdom. You can't walk a few yards without bumping into someone. I realize this is perhaps the busiest time of year to visit in light of all the holiday shows they put on. But they'll have to do something to contain the number of people going into these parks. Otherwise, pushing and shoving will escalate into all-out brawls, and mad dashes to go on rides might devolve into stampedes where people get seriously injured.
Maybe it's just me, but the police presence at Disney has seemed rather light. Perhaps the massive crowds are indicative of the fact that Disney has become too big for its own good.
This brings me to my main point: I absolutely loathe going to places that insanely crowded. It's not that I'm claustrophobic per se -- but I become overwhelmed when there's too much noise and commotion in my immediate environment. It feels like an assault on the senses. I don't know how my wife and I managed to do it, but we spent all day at the parks over a 3-day span. We were there from about 8 a.m. until after 10 p.m.
We got home so exhausted yesterday that we agreed to use our next two vacation days to relax and recharge.
What I find even more jarring is the number of moms/couples who go to the parks with newborns in tow. I saw many of them carrying the babies while in line to get on rides, or navigating the parks with their young children in strollers, even after sundown.
I think parents should follow this rule of thumb: If the kids are so young where they probably won't remember the trip when they get older, then their little ones are not at the age where they should thrust into all the hustle and bustle of Disney World.
Thus, I try to avoid big crowds like the plague. There's a lot to be said for a quiet evening with a good book and cup of joe. Mind you, I don't mind being around people, but when it gets to the point where I feel they're invading my personal space, that's where I draw the line.
If I have a choice between seeing the widely watched New Year's Eve countdown in New York City (hosted by Ryan Seacrest) on TV from the comfort of my home or being there in person, I'd choose the former.
Where do you stand on this? Do you hate enormous crowds as much as I do?