“Your focus determines your reality.” – Qui Gon Jinn, Phantom Menace
Through a little bit of faith, trust and (you guessed it) pixie dust, I have now put week six of my Disney College Program in the history books. Like every week and everyday really, it has been an absolute BLAST and am cherishing every minute of my time down here. Despite doing the regular stuff I’ve been doing, some things changed for me this past week. *As you probably can already tell
For starters, I got to do a few things for the first time that I had been putting off for quite some time now. I got to enjoy those times by myself, went to my favorite water park in the world with someone new, went to my home park with someone from work and was given information about a new experience coming to Disney Springs!
All in all, like I said, my time here has been wonderful and couldn’t ask to be in a better position in my life. I’m making huge strides in becoming the person I’ve always meant to be and am starting to look the part more and more each day. I was able to do a lot this past week, so instead of just sitting here glorifying about it, lets get into the explanations.
Like last week, we’ll start with my Disney Adventures list. As of this morning, Magic Kingdom still reigns on top of the leader board as I’ve now been there seven times on my program. Hollywood Studios is keeping up though at six, followed by Animal Kingdom with five, and Epcot still at two. Yes, I know, I need to get to Epcot more. I will. For the water parks, I have now been to Typhoon Lagoon twice and to Blizzard Beach, still got a donut there. Also, just found out this week that, Disney will be closing BB down in September for the rest of the year to go through modifications and for attendance control. So, my opportunity is dwindling there as the days go on, but I’ll be just fine. I’m swimming and not sweating.
Now for the overview. This past week at work was great, for the first time since I regularly started working, I was able to get three off days for the week instead of two. In addition, my hours still have been somewhat up to par and, with the paycheck I got this morning, I have officially eclipsed over 150 hours! Which means… I get three, free one-day park hopper passes! Although I may not get them for about a week or two, the fact that I get that for just 150 hours is crazy to me and such a deal. Especially considering each ticket is around $160-$170 after tax. So for 150 hours, I’m living. Just hope I get them in time for when my brother gets down here at the end of the month.
Another thing I did, was I went to Disney Springs to learn about the new NBA Experience that will be opening on Aug. 12. At first, I had read somewhere that tickets for this, would be upwards of $90. When I went into their NBA merchandise store attached to the building, the workers told me some exciting news as tickets would only be a little north of $30! With this experience, you’ll be able to feel the crowd as you come out the tunnel to fan screaming at you, have the chance to dunk, shoot and get taught how to dribble by NBA players. In addition, you’ll get to live some of the experiences players dream of having like, getting drafted and taking a picture with commissioner Adam Silver, hit a game winning shot and get the chance to win an MVP and NBA championship. Sounds like a lot, right? Needless to say, if you’re a huge NBA fan like myself or just like the game in general, I’d suggest doing this. Once it opens though, I’ll try it out and let everyone know just how great it is.
Lastly, this past week, me and my roommate Sam, went to Port Orleans French Quarter (where he worked at during his first program) and got to try beignets with alcohol and the fanciest chicken and waffle I have ever seen in my life. At first I was somewhat skeptical of them, but when I saw them in person and took that first bite, I was instantly hooked. If you ever want a little taste of Rum Chata with fried dough, definitely go and try these. It’s literally, the perfect snack and for $11 you get basically three shots of stuff, plus the beignets? Great deal.
Trust me, they’re both as good as they look!
Better Late Than Never
For this weeks BLTN, I got to do something for the first time that I had been having the thought of since I was 10. I got to explore a Disney park by myself! This past week, I went to Animal Kingdom late and was able to explore the park with just me, myself and I. For starters, it was very, very weird not having anyone next to me or walking with me throughout, but I had a great time and did a lot at my own speed. In addition to doing that, I also got the chance to close Animal Kingdom down for the first time ever! Definitely was different seeing the park at night since it’s been a park I haven’t stayed past 7:30 in, but seeing the Tree of Life, plus Pandora at night, definitely a must do for any average Disney goer. A plus that came of that night, I was basically able to get a VIP tour through Kilimanjaro Safaris with my roommate Sam. It was a great time sitting front row, going through the savanna and listening to him give his version of the tour. Was an awesome feeling going on an attraction and being like, “I live with this guy.”
In addition to doing Animal Kingdom by myself, last night I got to do Magic Kingdom as a single rider. Despite it pouring for one of the four hours I was there, I got to cross off a few bucket list rides for the park that saw me go on my favorite childhood ride and character Peter Pan! In addition to going on the rides, I was able to finally sit down and watch the full fireworks show. Only took me on my seventh try, but it was great to watch them in front of the castle and see all the projections. Still to this day, it’s the only firework show that can give me goosebumps for minutes at a time. That’s the power of Disney and why I love it so much. Just for that reason only. It inspires me, makes me come out of my shell more and brings me the confidence to become the person I’ve always meant to be.
Overall, it was a great week and I even got time to go and play basketball for the first time of the program as well. My movement and feel for the game is sorta off right now, but with a couple more days of practice and feel, I should be good to go and back to me regular playing days.
Highlight of the Week
To no surprise, my HOTW is my big announcement that I posted on Monday. For those who have missed it, I have been selected to go and work for the opening team of Star War’s Galaxy’s Edge. The immersive land opens on Aug. 29 so I have some time to get ready, but the situation just still doesn’t feel real to me, being it’s been four days since I found out. From what I’ve been able to make out, I will be working at Olga’s Cantina, which is a bar type restaurant so I’m looking forward to getting back into that scenery that I’ve been around since the day I was able to work.
As you can imagine, I’m very humbled by the opportunity and have no idea how lucky I am to be able to go over there, not just to work, but to be apart of the opening! Something I would’ve never guessed would happen when I applied for the program. To be part of the only 5-10 other CP’s to go over there from my position, just shows how lucky and fortunate I was for this position.
However, like ay new position, job or whatever you want to call it, it brings new challenges. But, like I was at the start with working at Sunset Ranch, I accept the challenge and know I will concur it, just like I do with any other one. I know with being in this position, it will be packed and will have to be at my absolute best. When the time comes, I will be. I have some time to get ready and brace myself and when Aug. 29 hits, I’ll be ready to go and give guests that best experience in the galaxy.
As always, I appreciate everyones love and support throughout this week, with this announcement and for my weekly posts about my program. Life is so, so good for me at the moment and I can’t wait for everything else that is out there for me. As for myself, my best side is still in progress, but I can firmly say today, I’m beginning to knock on the door. Much love!