I stood in my bathing suit, make-up-less, at 11:00 pm at the front desk doing my best to be charming and make the wonderful lady behind the desk feel sorry enough for me to help. My brother had ONE JOB, and that was to be in charge of the tickets to Universal Studios; yet, here I was after accidentally discovering we needed actual printed copies batting my mascara-less eyelashes and crossing my fingers.
Thanks to Disney’s brilliant hospitality, very little bewitching was needed from me before the cast member behind the desk was happily offering to print the tickets for us. Little did she realize that by offering to help me, she was also going to inherit my lousy luck with technology and what should have taken 30 seconds morphed into a 45 minute comedy of errors.
First, her printer stopped working.
Then, we emailed it to a manager to print off at another printer… email wouldn’t go though.
Then, we emailed it to another manager… email still wouldn’t go through.
Then, we tried a printer connected to wifi, and although it looked promising, half way through the print, the printer it ran out of ink.
Finally, we made one more email attempt to yet another address…. and voila, tickets!
Oddly enough, no part of me was agitated or annoyed at the circus that was being created, after all, brothers will be brothers and technology will always be my nemesis; instead I truly enjoyed the visit I had with the front desk diva as the manager ran around like a chicken with his head cut off on my behalf. Our chin wag covered a myriad of topics from family, to how we became the people we are today and included both laughter and tears ending with a supportive, ‘you’ve got this’ hug.
My favorite thing to bring home from any trip are people. I collect selfies with strangers like baseball cards, because they remind me that life really is about connection, kindness and knowing we are all in this together. Just like gems lose their jagged edges by rubbing up against other gems, I believe I become a better person with every individual I share a moment with.
Along with Lacharite, the Queen of the front desk, I brought home a fellow breast cancer survivor who just came up and embraced me like a long lost cousin after reading my ‘celebrating cancer free’ button and Bud, who I believe was the inspiration for the sloth in Zootopia along with being the most endearing of all the Magic Kingdom cast members. Each person I collect may have their own unique story but we share the fact that we all have good days, bizarre days, off the hook ridiculous days and are all just doing the best we can with what we are given.
The next night when we arrived back to the resort beaten down by the obscene Florida humidity, I was greeted by the fullest, most decadent bouquet of flowers I have ever seen. Although the card said it was magic from the resort staff, I knew that there was one Tinkerbell in particular who was behind it all. Lacharite told me later that she wanted to contribute to my celebratory week and what better way than with a surprise.
Our stories may be different, but connection can always be made when we realize that at our core we are all love.