Big Kahuna Trip Report May 18, Part 5

May 18, Part 5: Soarin’ Back Home

When Soarin’ opens with the flight over San Francisco Bay, my heart fills with pride. I think we’ve all left a piece of our hearts in San Francisco. My parents honeymooned there while my Naval Air Force father waited to be shipped overseas. I lived there for 22 years as an adult and met and married Rich there. I never thought I’d leave. And San Francisco Bay is especially gorgeous from an aerial view—something I noticed every time I flew out of SFO.

Flying over Redwood Creek in the Mendocino area is also touching—I love the Russian River area. Rich and I made frequent trips to Napa/Sonoma for wine tasting and getting away from the SF Bay Area noise. Yosemite brings back so many childhood camping memories and stories of my father spending summers there with his family when he was a kid. Rich remembers hiking all the way to the top of Half Dome back in his backpacking days.

When we soared over the busy L.A. freeway lit up at night, the entire audience applauded – that was a first – I don’t recall people doing that at WDW (maybe it’ll happen when they do “Soarin’ over Florida”). Maybe they were applauding at DCA because soarin’ over the freeways is the only way to get anywhere quickly. LOL. Or maybe it was pride in being home. That’s certainly the way I felt at the end when we soared over the Matterhorn. My eyes filled with tears when I rode it at WDW, longing for home, and I was surprised that they filled again at DCA—tears of joy at finally being home.

Apparently, I’m not alone. This blurb from wikipedia captures the feeling well:

The score for both versions of the ride is the same and was composed by Jerry Goldsmith, who is said to have come down from his first ride in tears. In addition to finding the ride visually beautiful and magical, he said that his father was a pilot who loved all things Californian. I’d do anything to be part of this project, Goldsmith said. I’d even score the film for free.

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