As I mentioned in my last post, I recently visited Walt Disney World. To explain my relationship with WDW, you can read this article from xojane that I didn’t write but sums up my relationship with the place perfectly. It is my Mecca, my Western Wall, my L. Ron Hubbard. In my everyday life I am a horrible, cynical person; I harshly judge strangers for wearing running sneakers with jeans and I fantasize about punching someone in the face at least once a day.
But at Disney, I am transformed. A beam of pure joy encompasses my body and I feel like the world is on my side and it can do no wrong. Colors sing out, happiness radiates from inanimate objects, and laughter fills my ears. Kind of like a mouse-fueled acid trip.
I’m wearing sunglasses to hide the fact I’m secretly weeping from the overwhelming joy
That being said, there are some things about Disney that were surprising, and I’d like to take a moment to share them with you here.
1. The Bathrooms are Just Bathrooms
The thing that separates Walt Disney from other theme parks is their attention to detail. They put so much effort into making sure everything is perfect that even waiting in line is an experience. Hell, there are entire websites dedicated to finding the over 1000 hidden Mickeys, and despite the fact that tons of people visit the parks each day, people are still finding new ones.
Which is why its upsetting when you walk into the bathroom and see this:
The toilet in the Tommorowland bathroom. The toilet of the future.
A bathroom with no more pizzazz than your local Wendy’s, complete with broken stalls and ominous wet spots on the floor. They were clean, yes, but when you come in from a world of magic to the worst part of every bar I’ve ever been to its a bit of an upset.
I’m just saying, if I need to relieve myself in the Norway pavilion of Epcot, I want to do it as the Norwegians would.
I’m just a kvinner with a dream
This is an important note because you will use the bathrooms a lot in Disney World because:
2. You Can Drink There
I went to Disney World with my father, because my mom had a conference and my dad wanted to go to the parks without looking like a pedophile.
We went to Epcot our first night there, and I was blown away by the amount of alcohol you can purchase. Frozen margaritas in the Mexico Pavilion. An assortment of wine in the France Pavilion. Disney’s classic Dole Whip with a shot of rum.
And of course beer. At every one of the “countries” there was opportunity to purchase more beer. Not always the finest or most representative (Norway, for example, had Bud Light and Carlsberg) but nevertheless ubiquitous. And it didn’t stop in Epcot, every park except the Magic Kingdom has plenty of opportunities to drink to your hearts content (provided you don’t mind spending $13 per drink).
Maybe it’s because most people go to Disney only when they’re either little children or responsible for not losing their kids in a crowd of 1,000 other kids, but I had no idea the “Happiest Place on Earth” could be happier. Another thing I was not aware of? Beer + any ride with more momentum than “The Haunted Mansion” will result in a strong urge to vomit.
3. It Will Completely Change Your Mind About Kids
Its no secret that Disney World is an immensely popular place, and that they don’t choose who comes into their parks by parenting styles. You will see the best and worst kids in those parks, which is why the experience will change your mind about having kids, about once every 15 seconds.
It doesn’t matter what side of the fence you’re on; you want kids or you don’t, you will question your beliefs over and over again. Example: at the Magic Kingdom, I saw a little girl in a princess dress, completely mesmerized by one of the characters. When they asked her name she said “Cinderella”, and my cold heart melted. I barely had time to turn my head when I saw a frazzled woman pushing a stroller while her six year old hung off the side and repeatedly kicked her in the shins.
Which brings us back to why they sell booze