You reach over to turn off your alarm clock and pull the covers back as you smile. The sound of an alarm usually doesn’t warrant a smile, but today is different. Today you’re going to Disneyworld. You get up early to be there before the park opens. You wait in the long line of excited Guests waiting to enter. Then finally, it happens. A loud and joyous announcement is made declaring that Disneyworld is now open. As the lines begin to move forward, you join in with the eager chatter.
You can hear the sounds of children laughing, teens talking and parents delighting in the smiles of their kids. You are enveloped in the tantalizing smell of popcorn as you pass the lively machine. Then you see it. Cinderella’s Castle, tall and beautiful looming ahead of you like a perfect story book picture and you know it’s going to be a great day.
The sights and smells and sounds indulge your senses as you step into another world. The change of music and scenery as you pass into Adventureland draws you into a time and place of the past where you are the adventurer. You are now the character, the actor as you step from one world to another. The stage is set and the script is yours. You are an explorer as you journey down the Nile River, you become the toughest Ranger in the West as you survive a daring train ride through the wilderness in Frontierland, you are a renowned innovator as you step into the future of Tomorrowland and you are the beloved princess who rules Fantasyland. The past, present and future are yours as you move from one adventure to the next.
There is something in the air, charging the very atmosphere. You look around to see what this could be, but you see nothing. Yes, there is the music, the characters, the attractions and thrills which all lend to the excitement, but there is something more. You look around again to find this incredible force. As you look around once more, your eye catches something. Just in front of the Castle you can see a statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse holding hands.
“That’s it,” you breathe.
And you know, without saying a word, that the special element is that classic and ever present Disney magic. It began with Walt Disney as he claimed a vision and pushed the envelope to make a dream a reality. It began with Walt when he drew an optimistic little mouse on a blank page and brought him to life. His legend is alive in the sights, sounds and smells of this blissful world. Some call it Disneyworld; others call it the Happiest Place on Earth. But whatever it is called, the magic is alive and as Walt said, “I only hope that we don’t lose sight of one thing – that it was all started by a mouse.”