It’s so hard to pick favorites. I mean, yeah, I have favorite rides, but I think attractions are so much more than that. Hell, the petrified tree could be an attraction. Well maybe that’s stretching it.
Normally I’d say Big Thunder, but that’s an obvious choice, so I’ll talk about another favorite. Now, I’m totally biased here, but Billy Hill and the Hillbillies has become a favorite of mine lately. It might be because I’ve had to watch their show too many times to count while learning to interpret it (mostly on YouTube, unfortunately). It might also be because of the two shows I’ve interpreted, this one doesn’t drive me insane (THERE’S A SPECIAL MAGIC AT CHRISTMAS TIME THIS YEAR). But it’s mostly because they’re just fantastic.
Up until last October, I’ve never step foot in the Golden Horseshoe. I always assumed it was just another restaurant like the Plaza Inn, but smaller. I knew of the Hillbillies’ existence, but never knew where to catch them or even what times. All I knew about the show was what my cousin Geo, another interpreter in the parks until recently, told me. That it was a comedy show with lots of music and improvised (somewhat) dialogue. It really intimidated me, actually.
Interpreting the show is a bit of a challenge (only the songs are choreographed for us in ASL, so the dialogue is all on us), but it’s a good challenge. Of the five days I interpreted for this show, I don’t think I signed the same thing once, even if the dialogue happened to be the same. Working with interpreters that are obviously more skilled than yourself is quite the motivation for me to keep working on interpretations of things to make them more ASL and less English. For instance, the introduction before the show starts. I think it goes "Howdy folks! Why don’t you pick up a chair and set yourselves down, ‘cause you’re in for the toe tappin’, foot stompin’, all around make ya feel good country pickins of the sensational Billy Hill and the Hillbillies!" Normally, I would have signed something close to that in sign (I honestly didn’t know what to sign, actually), but before my first show, Gil taught me what he does, which was hella ASL. “HI, FIND CHAIR, READY! DANCE [classifier for feet stomping] INSPIRE ENJOY COUNTRY MUSIC. WOW GREAT [name is fingerspelled with both hands]” All with a welcoming, country-ish expression of course. But even now, I can think of several little improvements to add to that.
Of course, at this point, I’m the only thing going on near the stage (for reference, here’s a picture of the stage. We’re in the lower booth where those kids are hanging out.), so all eyes are on me. I always get so nervous before this because you really don’t know exactly when it’s going to start and any conversations going on in the back of that little booth are cut off and I have to run to the balcony to start the show. Sometimes it’s late, sometimes it’s early.
Once that’s over, any nerves I had fly out the window and I’m ready to act like a fool with the Billys.
Oh jeez, I went on longer than I thought I would. Well anyway. They’re my favorite (non-ride) attraction.
Ohhhh a Matterhorn construction shot! Cool beans.
Day 21: Your Favorite Food or Beverage
Day 22: Your Favorite Shop
Probably that store in Frontierland with the cool hats and errthang.