And snap. Just like that, summer vacation is over. It felt like that in high school, and it still feels like that today. It’s like time goes by at three times the normal speed just to make sure that you’re paying attention to all the little details of each moment.
My husband is already back in the States and E and I have returned to our regularly scheduled programming. It kind of feels like this past week was just a snapshot from a particularly happy daydream of mine. Still, we got quite a lot done during the short time we had together. Lots of family time and even a couple of trips. One of the big events (especially for E) was Tokyo Disneyland and Disneysea.
Now, going to that place in the middle of obon is just…well, not a very smart idea. The place was PACKED. And I mean like wait-in-line-for-four-hours-to-get-on-a-ride kind of packed. Yeah… We didn’t do that though. Obviously. Although many people happily lined up in the rain.
We went to Disneysea on the first day and Disneyland on the second. Not only was it raining on the first day, but my camera also ran out of batteries after about an hour. I usually have a second battery with me but I completely forgot to bring it with me that day.
Yes, total Mom Fail.
But, here are the few shots that I did manage to get.
We stayed at a hotel near the park with an amazing view of Tokyo Bay. I had originally wanted to stay at the hotel within the park, but the place was completely booked during this season.
It was all good though because, well, check out our view.
We were blessed with sunny skies on our second day. It was a perfect, albeit scorching, summer day, but it also meant that Disneyland was basically like the Yamanote Line during rush hour. I’m the kind of person who likes to sit alone in secluded spaces, so the amount of people made me sort of nauseous. But it was worth it after seeing E’s face light up when she met Mickey and Minnie. We didn’t line up for four hours to go on rides, but we did line up three times for forty minutes each so E could take a picture with her favorite mice. (Okay, I just read what I wrote and realized wait a minute, we DID wait in line for hours!)
Anyway, E patiently waited in line, singing the same song over and over again (driving the other people in line absolutely insane, I’m sure) and even managed to say “Zutto aitakattayo” (I always wanted to meet you) to Mickey.
And lastly, a very long side note.
I wonder what it is about the whole Disney experience that makes everything seem sort of magical. I’m not a huge Disney fanatic (although I love Pixar movies) but I gotta admit that the parks have a way of making you happy despite the crazy crowds and jaw-dropping lines.
While we were eating at one of the cafes at Disneysea I noticed a woman at a table next to ours who was looking through the pictures on her camera with a huge grin on her face. She looked like she was in her late fifties and she was alone. She had bags and bags of Disney stuffed animals and other goodies beside her. I thought maybe she was waiting for her children, but it didn’t take long to realize that that wasn’t the case.
We were seated on the second floor, where we could see the parade from above without dealing with the crowds. The moment the parade started, the woman stood up and began waving at the characters with both hands, smiling from ear to ear. She was in her own, happy world, totally oblivious of the people around her.
She was ecstatic. She was emotional. She was having the time of her life.
And I was totally inspired.
Well, not by the waving both hands at Mickey part, but by the fact that she could be so passionate about something. That she could lose herself in the moment and be so carefree.
How great is that?
Now, I know I won’t be a Disney fanatic at fifty, but I sure do hope that I’ll have that certain “something,” a passion, that keeps me going.