We’ve been planning this trip ever since we knew we’d be living this close. As we entered the gates and I saw the spires of the castle, the familiar characters, the Christmas carols playing over the sound system, I was overwhelmed.
It’s been 30 years since I’ve been here.
There is magic here. Beyond excited to see the happiest place on earth through the eyes of the minions, the hubby and I vowed not to be impatient, rushed and simply go at their pace.
Lil Miss wanted desperately to ride Splash mountain. After the 50 ft drop, and being soaked, both were crying and screaming. (We will accept our Parent of the Year award shortly.)
After calming them down, reassuring them that they’d never have to ride another roller coaster, we got to see Santa! Soaking wet of course…
Isn’t it weird visiting places you experienced as a kid? Neighborhoods and houses you thought were huge seem so small viewed through adult eyes. Floods of memories came rushing back through Toad’s Wild Ride and spinning crazily on Tea Cups. Even though I am now an adult (at least most of the time), the whole place still looms large. What I didn’t expect, was the magic of the mouse to hit me quite so hard.
We didn’t get to see everything, but what we did experience was awesome. Planting the seeds of magic through the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean, it will be fun to hear what the kids remember from this trip. I’ll remember the kindness of the cast in giving us extra services for Lil Man’s sensory and autism issues. The kiosks where we could ask for a return time for an attraction were a Godsend – and every single time they were courteous, informative and genuine.
I will also remember that my own slight disappointment at not making it to the fireworks wasn’t the end of the world. (The minions were so worn out.) The picture in my mind of our family vacation didn’t need to be replicated precisely in reality. It was wonderful – as it was. Back at the hotel, the kids zoned out and Hubby and I popped upstairs to the fitness center that overlooked the park. The fireworks lit up the sky just as I knew they would in spectacular fashion.
“Thank you,” I whispered to him, and to the unexpected magic. Standing there in our pajamas, there was no place that I would rather be.