Thursday, April 10, 2008

These Are A Few of My Favorite (Disney) Things

Dear Amanda,

I'm so glad you asked about such an important topic to me.  You truly are a kindred spirit of the Disney kind.

What's your favorite Disney memory?


I've been thinking about Disney memories since you asked me a couple days ago, trying to determine what was the shining moment that stands out in all of my Disney vacation history.  I don't believe there's any one thing that I can say is my favorite memory.  You see, the magic of our years of Disney vacations cannot be summed up in just one thing.  It is one big package of sights and smells and sounds and feelings that make up the memory that is Disney for me.

First, I need to take you back to when this all began.  My parents sparked our Disney addiction at an early age.  We took our first vacation to Walt Disney World in 1979 when I was 5 years old.  Way back then there was just one park - The Magic Kingdom.  My parents knew how to pinch a penny, so my dad converted the inside of our van into a makeshift camper.  He laid carpet, paneled the walls, and even built a bed frame at the back and put a mattress in there, just so we could camp in it.  We actually got to lay on the bed as we traveled.  That was high class to me and Kath.  Mind you, this was before the days of children being required to ride in a car seat.  We camped at a nearby Jellystone Campground.

After that we got even fancier, borrowing campers or tents and actually moving into the Disney complex, staying at Fort Wilderness year after year.  The Disney property grew as the years went by.  I even love to tout the fact that Epcot opened just for my birthday in 1982.  We got to see Danny Kaye and Drew Barrymore filming a Disney special at the park.  I know.  You envy me right now, don't you? 

Those are fun memories, but like I said, the memories are all just one big bundle of magic I carry with me in my heart.  And when I think about Disney, it's these things that bring on the longing to return someday...

  1. Upon arriving at Fort Wilderness, having to hurry to the restrooms just to hear the bluegrass music playing
  2. Eating pizza at the Trail's End buffet at Fort Wilderness and listening to the banjo player
  3. Taking a boat ride at night from Fort Wilderness to the Contemporary Resort
  4. Riding in the nose of the Monorail
  5. Riding on the buses and knowing you're having a shared experience with the people sitting around you
  6. Arriving at the front gate of the Magic Kingdom and seeing Mickey's face done in floral landscaping
  7. The music that surrounds you at every turn
  8. Walking up Main Street USA and gawking at Cinderella Castle
  9. All the smells (flowers, mulch, food, water, Florida)
  10. Wanting to ride Peter Pan's Flight, even though it's a kiddie ride and you've done it a hundred times
  11. Popcorn
  12. Browsing through the candy shop and wanting one of everything
  13. Playing in the old arcade at Contemporary Resort and then watching Summer Magic in the little theater
  14. Riding the monorail from resort to resort, looking for souvenirs to buy at each stop
  15. Swimming at the Polynesian Resort pool
  16. The tropical foliage in the center of the Polynesian Resort
  17. Watching the sunset at the Caribbean Beach
  18. Eating sundaes at the ice cream parlor on Main Street
  19. Country Bear Jamboree
  20. The original Enchanted Tiki Room (it's my favorite!)
  21. The entrance music at Epcot
  22. Standing at the base of Spaceship Earth and trying to fathom the ginormousness of the thing
  23. Getting goosebumps during the American Adventure
  24. Taking a boat ride from Dixie Landings to Downtown Disney
  25. Shopping at Downtown Disney
  26. Eating ice cream sundaes at Ghirardelli's 

And honestly... this is only scratching the surface of everything I love to remember.

Wishing I was there,


1 comment:

  1. Oh, Liz! We ARE kindred spirits! We stayed at Fort Wilderness the first time I went to Disney (and several times after that...including Lydia's first time.) There is just NOTHING like it!

    I want to copy you and do this same post! I LOVED IT!

    (in fact, i think i might have chills! did you hear about the bloggy mixer at Disney this weekend? omgoodness. jo-lynne from musings of a housewife is there. FOR FREE. i'm trying not to be jealous, but oh, I AM!)


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