Our View From Here

Perspectives of Five Women

When you wish upon a star…

on September 21, 2010

Nothing terribly interesting happened this past week. Well, husband had minor knee surgery, and I was actually thinking he might provide interesting source material for my post this week, but the anesthesia and pain killers really didn’t affect him much, which yes, is a good thing, but kind of disappointing when one is looking forward to be entertained. We all have our crosses to bear.

So, absent interesting surgery stories, I was forced to dig deep into the annals of my childhood to come up with an interesting and whimsical story. Here goes.

When I was 5, my parents took my sister and me to Disneyland. They of course told us about the trip in advance. I didn’t know much about Disneyland at that point (because this was the 80s and kids spent their time playing outside rather than watching tv all day, but I digress) but I had seen a commercial about it. The most memorable part of the commercial for me was when the camera panned to the Dumbo ride. The sky was beautifully blue, the elephants glimmered in the sun, and the family looked like they were having the time of their lives. If THIS is where my parents were taking me, I was sure to have a great time!

At this time in my life, Dumbo was probably my favorite movie. I witnessed the birth of Dumbo, felt sad when the other elephants made fun of him, cried when he went to visit his mother in jail (alright, fine. I STILL cry when he visits his mother in jail) and cheered him through his triumphant end. Yes. This was going to be a good vacation. And I was going to ride the Dumbos.

Perhaps with all this lead in, you can see where I’m going. We got down to Disney and after talking about the Dumbo ride ad nauseam since the vacation was announced, we finally arrived in front of the Dumbo ride…..to discover that it was closed for maintenance….and projected to be so for the entire week we would be down there.

Here’s what my stuffed Dumbo looked like. (From Amazon.com)

I was devastated. This is the thing that I had been looking forward to the most of the entire vacation. My parents were very patient. I’m sure they felt badly for me too. Every day we went to the park, they indulged me and walked by the Dumbos, just to make sure they didn’t get the repairs done early. Alas, I was not to ride the Dumbos that trip. I still had a great time, and my parents bought me a stuffed Dumbo, but I was always disappointed I didn’t get to ride the Dumbos.

Fast forward 10 years. My friend’s family had a time share down in Disney World and invited me to go down with them over spring break. My parents gave me their ok and we were off! I somewhat timidly asked my friend if she would mind if we rode on the Dumbos. After all, at this point I was a freshman (…or was I a sophomore?) in high school and I didn’t want to seem to be a total dork. I told her the story and she enthusiastically agreed to take me on the Dumbos. Part of me tried not to get too excited. I didn’t want a repeat of the last trip.

We got down to Disney and rushed into the park. If I recall correctly, we went straight to the Dumbos. AND THEY WERE OPEN!!! I swear, I think I was more excited than all the little kids in that line….combined. My friend was so obliging. She was excited for me and when we got to the front of the line, she helped me secure a yellow elephant because that was my favorite color. She had me sit in my elephant and took a picture of me. The ride was amazing. The sky was brilliantly blue and the elephants glimmered in the sunlight….just like in the commercial. I’m sure it was the 10 years of anticipation more than anything that made it so memorable, but even as I write this, I have a big stupid grin on my face remembering how happy I was at that moment as my childhood dream had finally come true. Just like in the commercial of old, I’m sure I looked like I was having the time of my life, and it’s probably because I was.

The Dumbo Ride (Image from Disney)


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