“Y’all are going to Disney, again?”
We get that question a lot…like there is a limit to the number of times one can go.
The first vacation we took as a couple was to Walt Disney World. I took over a new responsibility at work, that was making me feel really stressed. (Funny, now it’s the one I worry about the least). I just wanted to get away. Mrs. Nola Nerd Couple’s best friend lived in Orlando and so we had a place to stay. In fact, her sister was going to UCF so we had two places to stay. This covers the biggest hurdle for repeated visits: having a place to lay your head.
However, we still have a blast. Yes, we still enjoy riding rides even though we don’t just ride rides. We enjoy the food if you go beyond just quick service (and even some of those are better than others). We enjoy shopping at the different shops, even though we don’t buy all that much. We definitely love people watching. We look for meltdowns by kids and parents. We look for the newlywed couples that are starting their new lives by returning to their childhoods for a week. We enjoy watching the family reunions and seeing the oldest in the group act just like the youngest when seeing a character.
Other vacations are work for us. Going to Europe, driving across country, doing study abroad, these are not relaxing vacations. Because we have been to Disney so many times, it is relaxing for us. We don’t have the pressure of making sure we have to do everything. We don’t have the pressure of running to a fast pass across the park. The closest we have to pressure is making sure we are at our reservations if we have time.
Sometimes, we do enjoy staying on grounds, and in particular camping at Disney. In fact, if your child is old enough to recognize Mickey Mouse, but not ride rides, then Fort Wildness is a perfect way to have a Disney experience. They have two major pools, tons of activities, and character experiences. There is a character themed restaurant, and Chip and Dale often have a campfire event. If you are tent camping, it can get really cheap.
For us, Disney World will always be special. It’s where I had the courage to tell Mrs. Nola Nerd Couple I love her for the first time. It’s where we took my sister after she graduated from college. Her family has more than one reunion at the park. We have run races there. Mrs. Nola Nerd Couple’s sisters have completed their first half-marathon there (you can read about one of those stories here). It’s a place where memories do get made.
We will be going at least once over Spring Break since we will be there for Star Wars Celebration. We will bring our new camera and try to see the parks with fresh eyes again.
I know we are not the only Disney fanatics out there. We have tons of friends who go, some even more often than us. I think it’s because we have one thing in common. We forget how old we are there and turn into kids ourselves. Sure, we are falling into the marketing trap, but if we are having fun, who cares?