Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Once Upon A Time In Anaheim

When I lived in California, it didn’t take much of an excuse to get me out of the house and out to The Happiest Place on Earth.

For seven years I enjoyed my Disneyland annual pass (I took my last pass with me to Colorado in 1998). Since then, nearly every year, I’ve visited friends and family in California at Thanksgiving, usually taking a day to visit the park. For most of this time I was single and I could just sorta drift through the various lands and take in everything from the landscaping to the architecture... the music to the costumes... the shows and signage. I was my own grandpa and, although there was a certain freedom to such aimless wandering, something was missing.

After all, Walt Disney designed Disneyland as a place where parents and their children can come to enjoy shared experiences.

Now I have a wife and a daughter. I always expected we would enjoy Disneyland together but we live a thousand miles away and things are different than I had envisioned.

Last week, I had the opportunity to preview the upcoming Disneyland 50th Anniversary DVD at the Broadmoor Hotel here in Colorado Springs. Forest Rose Productions, a company co-owned by Jan C.J. Jones (a colleague of mine from Pikes Peak Writers), produced it. This Julie Andrews hosted film, directed by Jan's business partner Bob Garner, was a breath of fresh air and I can’t wait to pick up the DVD when it comes out in July. But with all of the hoopla surrounding Disneyland’s 50th anniversary, I find myself again longing to share the park with Lori and Melody.

Sure, we can go at Thanksgiving but rushing through the park during the holidays isn’t the same as really savoring the details.

Lori really wants to go home.

Perhaps I do too.

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