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This may be the real world reason for the drop. But as far as the fictional backstory for the rides goes it’s a little different.
When I visited Disneyland, back in 2007, I was curious as to why the Pirates of the Caribbean ride started off in the swampy bayou with some old guy rocking back on forth on the front porch of his old cabin. I thought to myself, “What does this guy and this locale have anything to do with Pirates of the Caribbean. So I asked a cast member if they knew. And this is the story that I was given. Which, I think, makes a lot of sense.
The old guy on the porch is an old, retired pirate. After you pass him you’ll start to see the corridor walls changing to stone and concrete and you come up to the talking skull and crossbones. This is the beginning of that old, retired pirates story. His memories about his swashbuckling days. When you take the first drop you are dropping into his memories of being a pirate.
I was also told that this story ties into the Haunted Mansion as well. Which is why they are both near each other in New Orleans square. I don’t remember the Haunted mansion story too well, but I was told that the mansion originally belonged to this old pirate and his new bride. He had given up his pirating days and was creating a new life for him and his bride in this beautiful mansion that he had purchased with some of his pirating gold. His new bride was not aware of his past life as pirate.
One day the pirate was presented with an opportunity for one last pirating run that would set him and his bride up for the rest of their lives. In order to hide this from his bride he told her that he was asked to make a textile run to another continent. During this run the bride found out about his lies and his past life. She was so overridden with shame and hurt that she hung herself from the very top of the mansion.
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