Dinner with Poo, er, I mean Pooh
As do many families, we made the pilgrimage to Orlando, Florida in March of ’06. For many years it has been customary for families to donate their well-earned money to the charitable organization known as Disney.
This place fueled by the magic of marketing was everything we hoped for and more, for the kiddies of course. Wife and I enjoyed ourselves almost as much (I thought it would be emasculating for a grown man to get giddy over DisneyWorld, and it was, but I’ve come to grips with it by now).
The best part of the experience was the looks on our kids’ faces when they met the characters. We saw Mickey and Minnie immediately after entering the park. The kids believed that they were real. Why wouldn’t they. There has been nothing in their lives as of yet to dictate otherwise. Hundreds of people stood in line to “meet” them. The looks of despair on the parents’ faces in line guided our decision to go directly to the exit gate. We kind of cheated the system and got away with it because our kids were so young.
The experience was made easier because Aunt Weather and Uncle Scientist came along for the ride. It was a vacation full of in-laws for me. Unlike many people I enjoy spending time with my wife’s siblings (I can’t speak for them, though, in regards to me) and the kid’s absolutely loved hanging out with them.
After we caught our breath we took a leasurely walk toward the castle. It was impressive, even to me (I left my balls in the timeshare). Daughter smiled from ear to ear; she had been exposed to a lot of princess stuff by then (it’s very hard to avoid it and why would you want to? Who doesn’t want to be a princess?).
I’ll give the money-hungry over-charging bast***s (sorry about that) credit for making rides that the whole family can go on, even a ten month old. He seemed to enjoy the teacups even though they made me sick.
The highlight of the the whole experience had to be dinner with Winnie the Pooh and friends (are they really friends or just co-workers?). The characters took turns wandering around the room and stopping at every table to give hugs (it felt good. Aagh the memories of felt against my skin… again, sorry) and pose for pictures while we ate a decent over-priced meal.
Daughter couldn’t get enough of them. She acted like I would have acted meeting the cast of Saved by the Bell. Son oohed and aaghed a lot and wanted to squeeze them. Like I mentioned before, the kids have no reason to think that these things aren’t real. It reminds me of when wife and M-I-L took the kids to see Dora the Explorer and daughter got freaked out by her humongous head. On television she’s more proportional… I thought they said that the camera adds ten pounds.
The fireworks display at the end of the night was spectacular except for all the screaming ( I get scared sometimes). Actually someone had a poopie diaper and wanted it changed (I knew we shouldn’t have brought Grandma… just kidding, there was no Grandma there, at least not one of ours). Did I just write the word poopie? Parenthood has definitely had an effect on me.
I don’t know when we’ll go back to Disneyworld, but it was worth the second mortgage on the house.