Where do I start to describe the best day ever? It was perfect. The only thing that could have made our spur of the moment trip better is if I could have shared it with more of the people that I love. Other than that, it was perfect. I've always known, but I see it more and more as I get older, my dad will always be my favorite Disney partner. He's the only one I've been with that knows the park better than me... he could probably (definitely) navigate the boat of the jungle cruise, and tell you every scripted joke, and then some. I'm pretty certain he will be one of Marlowe's favorite Disney buddies too.
At the risk of sounding crazy, I cry every single time I visit Magic Kingdom. I never want to, it's just the way my mind and body works. Over stimulation, joyous overstimulation. I turn numb with sadness and I'm a self proclaimed "non-cryer", but give me a moment of happiness---- especially for someone else, and all that goes out the window and I'm fighting the tears. I want to cry at the site of happy people hugging at the airport, I cry at strangers weddings, and I cry at Magic Kingdom. To be able to step into a park with so many beaming kids... and walk up to this large fairy tale castle that can resonate with so many of my own childhood memories, with Marlowe ecstatically proclaiming she wants to give everyone (especially cinderella) hugs, it's this feeling of over-stimulation that just gets me--- luckily behind dark sunglasses.
The park was crowded--- really crowded. Being a last minute trip--- and being with my dad who never plans or looks into these things (I rarely do too), we didn't know we would be stepping into a huge event weekend with the park, for the first time ever, being open until the early hours of the morning. It was hot, very hot. Think mid 90's. The lines were long, 45 minutes to Peter Pan. And we were with Marlowe, a toddler, in the heat, and the people, and the lines, with no nap and no stroller. And you know what? It was awesome. Really awesome. I hoped for no melt downs for no problems, and better than that, I got not one whine out of the little girl. Not even one complaint. I'm always proud of her, but especially in these situations, I'm just blown away at what a good kid she is. She stayed by my side with my hand or on my hip the entire time. Sometimes she would let my dad or brother hold her, but usually not-- which was fine for me. Each line, I explained that if she wanted to do something fun, we would have to take turns, and wait in line, and she did. We danced, she sang me happy birthday, and she was cool. For her first ride ever-- she went on dumbo with my dad and I stayed planted on the ground, because really, rides aren't my thing. I mean, I love me some Peter Pan or the Haunted Mansion, but give me something that flies, spin, or drops, and I'm out. Marlowe and I went off with just the two of us for a bit, so my dad and brother could enjoy Space Mountain. Just the two of us, hightailed it across the park, waited in line 45 minute, and both experienced the little mermaid ride, for the first time ever. She met Goofy and Donald and gave them both hugs. Her choice-- she passed on Minnie. We lived off junk food. She had french fries for two meals. She had popcorn. She had lemonade. And she had chocolate ice-cream (thank's disney for a vegan option!). If we had known the park was open 24 hours, I probably would have brought the stroller, just to give her a nap and stay into the late hours, but it didn't happen that way, and it worked out just fine. It was perfect. I can't wait to go back. Alex and I are already planning a September birthday trip for her. I can't wait.
Marlowe's hat c/o urban baby bonnets.