Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: FAMILY VACATION (07/30/15)
- TITLE: Disney Magic
By Cindy Duncan
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Our son was twelve and our daughter was ten the first time we took them to Walt Disney World. After seven hours of “Are we there yet?” on repeat in the back seat, we finally arrived in the city of Orlando. I was already having doubts about this “magical” vacation we had chosen, but those doubts were increased the minute I stepped out of the car.
Drops of sweat began bursting from my pores like popcorn in a microwave oven, and suddenly breathing became a chore instead of an involuntary reflex. The combination of heat and humidity was literally breathtaking.
We stayed at one of the Disney resorts, which gave us access to buses taking us to and from the parks. This was nice, because it allowed us to avoid driving and traffic for our entire stay. When we stepped off the bus at our first park, however, we encountered a traffic jam of a different sort.
People. They were everywhere. They were a sea of humanity, with waves to dodge or ride. There were children intoxicated by the magic, while others had already overdosed on it. Some parents were the suppliers, paying for another hit when the magic level was running low, while others seemed allergic to the magic, breaking out in hives of worry and frustration. Which category we fit into had yet to be determined, for we were rookies at this sport.
Our son wanted to ride everything. Our daughter didn’t. He had no fear, while she had many. So my husband and I became jugglers of magic, trying to keep both of them happy with a combination of roller coasters and souvenirs. For our efforts, we came away with two lanyards, an assortment of Disney pins, and a two-hour stay at the first aid center. Mission: SPACE did what no other ride had managed to do. It made our son sick, and it ended our thrill ride excursion for the day.
Staying at a Disney resort also earns you something called Magical Hours. These Magical Hours supposedly take place after the park closes, and the unfortunate people who are staying outside the resort property go home. On day two of our adventure, we decided to take advantage of these so-called Magical Hours. We’re talking two o’clock in the morning magic. I never did find it. The only magic I found was after the Magical Hours were over and I found my way back to my rented bed. And no, I’m not talking about the kind of magic you might be thinking; I’m talking about sleep magic.
Day three of our family fun happened to fall on the Fourth of July. We spent the day at Magic Kingdom, which was filled to capacity by noon. Our son, with his expert navigational skills, led us through twists and turns in an effort to avoid the parades, and thereby the crowds. The parade music played in my head for weeks, reminding me of our great escape.
The special Independence Day fireworks that evening were not to be missed. The sky exploded with vivid color while patriotic music filled the air. It sounded like a war zone, as we could almost feel the ground shake, with the explosions happening all around us. I reminded myself that these were not the sounds of battle, but of victory. My heart was bursting with pride and gratitude for our freedoms, our independence, and all the blessings God has bestowed on our great country. As I took my eyes off the fireworks, and glanced at my family, their faces were aglow, not just from the lighted sky, but also from the pure joy and happiness of the moment.
Day four was uneventful until the bus ride back to our room, when our daughter started feeling a little queasy. By bedtime, she was spewing Galactic Gobblers and other magical treats she had consumed that day. This continued all night and into the morning when we were supposed to leave to go home. Knowing what kind of nightmare a seven-hour drive would be with a vomiting ten-year old in the back seat, we opted to stay another night in our hotel so that she could fully recover, which put yet another dent in our wallets.
The next day, on our way home, after laughing about the mishaps, misery, and all the money spent, my husband smiled and asked, “So when are we going back?”
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