Destination Walt Disney World
I’m going to Disney World! Every summer, my sister and her husband rent a vacation home in Orlando and take the kids to Disney World. This year, my mom and I are crashing their party.
Having grown up in Florida and just a five-hour drive away, I’ve been to Walt Disney World more times than I can count. The first time my family visited was in the early 1980s and I only know I was there because of the fading photographs. The next few visits were school field trips, most memorably Grad Night, a night in the Magic Kingdom for high school graduating seniors. When I went to college in the city of Tampa just an hour from Orlando, I met two fellow students who were cast members. So, I went to Disney a lot.
I don’t get tired of Disney and while the experience of it changes, the magic doesn’t. As a child, it’s full of wonder. Experiencing it as an adult with children is delightful. I remember when my niece was a toddler seeing Mickey Mouse and Megara from Hercules for the first time. She didn’t say anything; she just hugged them. Adults without children easily suspend their disbelief and enjoy it tremendously. A few years ago, I took my mother to Disney World and it was the first time she’d experienced the theme parks without small (tired, hungry, and cranky) children. We went to the four major parks – Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom. We were at the gates when the parks opened, caught the midday parades, took photos with more characters than I can count, enjoyed many rides, dined at some of the best restaurants in the parks, and watched the fireworks and other shows at night. We had a great time.
So, we’re doing it again this year. We won’t go to all the parks as this will be a working vacation for me, but we’ll spend Independence Day at the Magic Kingdom and I’ll spend the rest of the week working poolside with a margarita in my hand. It’s just five hours away, but it’s nice to get away. More importantly, it will be a special time with my family before my move to Australia.