My dearest reader, I come to you a weary and wizened Cribsy. A week ago I was a fluffy marshmallow of optimism, and now, yours truly is a tooth-chipping Lucky Charms mallow of cynicism dipped in pure exhaustion. When I last spoke with you, I was off on our family’s one week journey to the Mouse Mecca, Walt Disney World, I promised to write and post while there. Obviously, I was drunk on optimism or goofed up on pills when I wrote that, because after a day of being wrung through the meat grinder of WDW, there’s barely energy to shower, let alone create. The world beats it out of you.
We’re fresh off the plane and I’m not yet ready to map out the MULTIPLE DISNEY WORLD POSTS I WILL NEED TO WRITE IN ORDER TO SHARE THE ENTIRE TRIP WITH YOU. Today’s post is merely the beginning, and it’s not even about the start of our vacation. It’s all about a Mother’s Day Eve miracle.
The Day Tom Ford Left Me
Lover fo’ Life is the exact opposite of me in many crucial areas. Sure, we agree on a load of stuff, but we are also at polar ends of the spectrum on some things. I’m Goofus, he’s Gallant. He’s the Boy Scout, I’m a recess villain, we balance each other out beautifully. Our daughter, is a perfect mixture of our personalities. While friendly and outgoing, she also has no tolerance for nonsense. While funny, imaginative, and cunning, she is also very logical, serious, and honest.
Months ago, my Mom Genes kicked in and I intuitively asked myself a question about our upcoming vacation, “What if she’s like her Dad and doesn’t like Disney World?” I felt a chill down my spine, all the planning, years of building up and educating about WDW, “What if it was all for nothing and I’m the only one in the T3 (that’s what we call ourselves,) who ends up liking Disney?”
As you can already plot spot, the kid was less than impressed with Mouse World at first. 5 hours after checking into the Contemporary Resort, we were waiting for the elevator when she exasperatedly told me, “Sheesh, everyone here is a princess,” she sighed and shook her head.
At that very moment, a staff member saw Valor waiting with me and cheerfully wished her a “Good evening, Princess!” Val’s eyes bore into my soul and silently told me so. Doubt seeped in, was this trip going to be a long and expensive waste of resources? Thankfully, less than twelve hours later, my fears were assuaged.
The next morning in the Magic Kingdom, Valor finally displayed signs of true joy and merriment. It was when she rode her first rollercoaster, The 7 Dwarves Mine Train. Crown jewel of Disney’s almost HALF A BILLION dollar expansion of Fantasy Land, the Mine Train is a rip-roaring rollercoaster (by Disney’s standards.) As Val’s screams of delight and maniacal laughter peeled through the park, one thing became abundantly clear; the kid’s a first-class THRILL JUNKY. We rode that sucker 4 more times, in a row.
The kid became instantly obsessed with Roller Coasters, so naturally, after a detour at the Haunted Mansion (WHICH SHE LOVED!!!!!!!!!!!!!) We rode Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, the 2nd of the park’s three coasters. She couldn’t get enough and Big Thunder was quickly proclaimed a kid-favorite, much to my sentimental joy.
For those of you who have never had the pleasure of Mickey cramming his ears down your fun-hole, Big Thunder is an impressively styled, mild rollercoaster. I’ve ridden it so many times over the course of my life, it no longer seems like a rollercoaster to me, I anticipate every dip and curve by muscle memory. Why, I even have the disclaimer spiel memorized:
“Hang on to them hats, and especially glasses, because this here’s the wildest ride in the wilderness!”
The Morning of May 6th, we were buckled in and ready to take our 3rd ride on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad when I decided to remove my sunglasses and clip them to my shirt. Being an old pro, I had no doubt my way too damn expensive Tom Ford sunglasses would be safe as a kitten. I think you know where this is going.
As we came into the last 3rd of the ride, Karma decided to kick me in pills. Tom slipped off of my shirt and into the bottom of my cart, I instinctively bent down to retrieve my beauties, only to have a front row seat to watching them fall out the bottom of my cart and somewhere into oblivion, helpless. Soon , my shock gave way to upset. “I lost my sunglasses on the roller coaster.” I blurted out to L4L when we reunited.
“Oh baby, I’m so sorry.” L4L sympathetically replied, “Let’s go find someone.” As I dazedly stumbled out into the streaming sunlight, I realized that my sunglasses weren’t just kickass and fabulous, with their bug-like massive size, and cocaine dealer dark tint, they had rendered me practically a mole without them. I began to feel a lump in my throat, NO. MUST. NOT. CRY. OVER. SUNGLASSES.
I stumbled my way through a sea of slap-happy dopes who didn’t just lose the PERFECT SUNGLASSES FOR THEIR FACE SHAPE AND SQUINTY EYES. See, Tom Ford and I have been in love since I first set eyes on the perfect black windshields four collections ago. These weren’t some trendy over expenditure TOM is a TIMELESS SIGNATURE FACE WINDSHIELD THAT I PLANNED ON SPENDING FOREVER WITH.
After what felt like an eternity of aimless wandering, I found two ride attendants who were exceedingly kind and helpful. The good news? I rode the coaster so often, I knew the exact curve Tom peaced out at. Impressed by my GPS like details, the gentleman in charge, explained how it worked: He was going to put in a request to comb that portion of Big Thunder Mountain, when it shut down for the night.
Apparently, Disney walks the rollercoaster every night at close, and collects anything they find along the way. The items are then turned into a central lost and found for the 4 theme parks of the world, and filed away neatly by ride and date. The two wonderful cast members at BTM, instructed me to call lost and found in the morning and go from there. I thanked them for the information, and just before I left, the guy, I think his name was Jeff? I do know he was from Florida, but all of it is a blur now. Anyway, Jeff(?) explained that there was an extremely good chance the glasses would not be in great shape if recovered, but they would do everything they could to retrieve the sunglasses.
We said our goodbyes, I accepted that all of this was probably for nothing, because the glasses hit concrete (or a track of continuously pulverizing train carts,) at 35 miles per hour. Tom Ford left me abruptly, and forever. The huge lump in my throat began to burn and I started to low-key cry. Yes, a f*cking grown assed woman in a THEME PARK with little crying babies and screaming toddlers, briefly became one of those crying brats. “I am so stupid! UGH! I can’t even!”
“Calm down muffin, you are not stupid. We’ll check in the morning with lost and found, and I’ll go online and track down another pair. For now, we need to buy you some sunglasses to wear for the rest of the trip, because I’m pretty sure Tom isn’t coming back alive.”
“Let’s go ride Pirates of the Caribbean; they have a rack of sunglasses by the register at the gift shop it dumps you out into.”
“Actually, they have a Sunglasses Hut in the Adventureland bazaar, I’d feel more comfortable getting you something a little nicer, I hate seeing you sad.” The truth was, I had already locked it up, and stopped showing outward signs of distress. This was the kid’s trip too, and I wasn’t going to let a stupid mistake sully her smiles.
“Nah, there’s a pair of el cheapos that will do just fine,”
In the 10 minutes that had passed since the dumbest rookie move in the history of Big Thunder by a veteran Disney Nut who knows better, L4L had already found a replacement pair online and purchased them. Sure, Tom was gone, but he would be returning in a week or so. It was time to move on and enjoy the rest of my time with the Mouse, I made my way to Pirates.
Muffin, I’d like you to come in with me and look at stuff in Sunglasses Hut.
Honest to goodness, I had never set foot in a Sunglasses Hut in my entire lifetime, my only memories of Sunglasses Hut were as I passed it in the mall back in the go-go 1990’s. I figured all that they had were Ray-Bans and cheezy music piped in to hide the roar of the douche. Thinking this would be a quick stop and then we’d move on to the post-ride pirate shop, I obliged.
Much to my surprise, they carry a lot of nice glasses at the Hut, actually, some of the fancy dancy names they stocked left me thinking that perhaps the name should have been, Sunglasses Manor. But I digress. With the cool air conditioning, and beautiful shades, L4L insisted I try on a few pair, “Just for fun.” Never one to pass up an opportunity to hog up cool air, I began to try on the shades he handed me, one by one.
“No, not buggy enough.” L4L announced and proceeded to tour the sales floor for the darkest, largest, and most extravagant pair he could find, it wasn’t long before he found an almost twin to my dearly departed. I tried them on.
“That’s it! A perfect match Hahahaha! How crazy is that!?” We chuckled at the absurdity of the theme park having a closely matching pair of high-end sunglasses, readily for sale, mere minutes away from where I’d lost the originals. “Yes, but you already have a pair of Islay’s in black coming to you next week.”
“Yeah, plus were not buying anything here, obviously. “ The back wall of the cool and shady shade shack had a beautiful pair of buggy, yet more approachable, Bvlgari sunglasses. “You HAVE to try these on, they are so muffiny!” I slipped the cold dark beauties over my visage and enjoyed the tasteful extravagance, these were truly the Joan Collins of sunglasses. “Very Nice! OK let’s go ride Pirates, grab me some stop gap shades and GET A CHURRO!”
“Buy them. “
What? NO WAY.
“Muffin, get the sunglasses, you look great in them and I want to make your day.”
Aw, that’s super sweet, but NopeNopeNope.
“Muffin, it’s Mother’s Day Sunday and I want to give you these as a gift. C’mon, you know you’d love these for Mother’s Day!!!”
Dude, it’s too much.
“No, DUDE, it’s not. You previously requested a shopping spree at Memento Mori’s for this year’s gift. (Momento Mori’s is the new Haunted Mansion Brick and mortuary store. )Well, you have most of the stuff there, and what you didn’t have you purchased this morning, doing far less ‘damage,’ than you promised to do prior to our arrival. Get the sunglasses, please.”
For the rest of the day, I floated through the park with my brand-new glasses, convinced the color and tint shade made everything look better, I put the regret of Tom Ford’s departure behind me. The next morning, after slogging through the Animal Kingdom and safely securing my new pretties on Expedition Everest, we headed back to the Contemporary for some pool side foolin’. While I waited for everyone’s sunscreen to dry, I decided to call Lost and Found. “I hope you find what you’ve lost, “ the operator sincerely offered.
I couldn’t help but laugh to myself thinking her sentiments could apply for many things regarding WDW. I waited on hold for 30 minutes, I hadn’t even gotten to talk to the Lost and Found people when L4L took over and sent us down to the pool, “I’ll come find y’all.”
An hour later, I texted L4L, I’d been holding a prime chaise lounge for him. While my stuff blanketed the chair, and time creeped by, I felt the need to release his chaise back into the wild, to be rightfully swooped up by a semi-drunk and over tanned Memaw who DGAF at the ready. I texted him, “Still on hold?” No answer.
OK I’ll give him 5 minutes, then, I’ll have to remove my perma-hold on this empty chaise. 4 Minutes later, I received this photo, no caption.
Not only had Tom Ford somehow found his way back to me via my one true love, HE WAS VIRTUALLY UNMARRED! There is one little “chew mark” on one corner that is barely detectable, that’s where Tom hit the ride, but apparently he bounced out of harm’s way because after 13 more hours of riding the rails, homeboy was recovered in near pristine condition. I sipped on my 2nd poolside Yuengling and slipped my old familiar friend on. For the rest of the day, Tom Ford rode my face.
There you have it my dears, a tale of carelessness, excess, and insanity, that can only make sense after days of being toyed with by a hi-pitched brutal dungeon master of a Mouse. If this endEARing tale of family bonding in the paved Floridian swamp has left you wanting more details of our Vacation, you’ll be happy to know, I’ll be back next time with another Dispatch from our week at Disney World. Don’t worry, fellow Disney Dorks, I had a wonderful time, even if certain ho-hums in our party disliked being called a Princess “I’m a Queen, Mom. Not a princess.”