Here's the story of my favorite moment so far here at Disney World. I'm going to apologize in advance because sadly, I forgot my camera yesterday when we went to Epcot and Blizzard Beach, so there is no photographic documentation of this moment--or day.
It all started about 9 years ago. My big sister had a golf tournament down here, so my mom decided to take advantage of that and plan a second Disney World trip. Most of the time at the parks it was just me with my mom as Rachel was either golfing or sleeping. So on the day we went to Epcot, my mom bought me a passport for the World Showcase. If you don't know, the World Showcase is one half of the Epcot park. It's made up of 11 countries--Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, United States, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, and Canada. In order to work at the World Showcase, you must be from the country you're representing. All the architecture is from the country, the costumes represent the country, and they usually have very tasty food at one or two restaurants in each country. You can also buy things that the country is famous for, and see shows and presentations about the culture. Some of the countries--like Norway--even have a ride.
If you have an Epcot passport, you can go around to each country and get it stamped and written in from someone working there. They have designated areas to get them stamped. They people of course write in their own language and you put stickers on the page that have pictures of the country. Well, 9 years ago I got 10 stamps. The only country I was missing was Morocco.
Yesterday, when Dexter, Jenna, and I went to Epcot, I took my old passport. I have no idea why I kept it so long. It's basically just been in a basket of junk for the last 9 years and every time I would go through it, there was just something keeping me from throwing it away. My mom mailed it to me last week, so I was dying to go to Epcot.
When we walked through the World Showcase, we stopped to eat at Mexico, did the ride at Norway, and then continued on to Morocco. I stood in line with a bunch of 10 year old kids to get the stamp from a girl from the country. She wasn't too enthusiastic about the kids. She would ask their name, write something, stamp it, continue. But as I got to the front of the line, I got more and more excited. Literally more excited than the little kids. When I handed her my passport, I asked her to read to me what was written in Arabic. You see, I was very upset that Morocco closed before I got there, but one of the custodians for the restaurant wrote in my book anyway. She actually took a moment to talk to me about it, ask why mine was so different from everyone else's, etc. She flipped through it a little and told me mine is a lot cooler than the new ones they have. Finally, she gave me the stamp.
I was so happy, I literally had a new spring in my step. It's been 9 years since I got that book and I haven't spent more than a second thinking about it since then. All of a sudden it seemed to be the most important thing in the world again and I had to complete my book. The stamp is probably a little bit different than the old one, but after waiting a long time, I've finally completed my passport to Epcot.
I can't even think about it without getting a huge smile or even a little bit of a tear. That's the Disney magic for you.