Monday, January 16, 2012
I USED TO BE A DISNEY "LOCAL"!
It's really strange to think back to the days when I was a kid growing up in the Southeast Los Angeles area of Southern California. Relatives visiting from out of town always meant a trip to Disneyland (and the beach). It was just something you do. And it seems to me that my thinking was always - YOU ONLY GO TO DISNEYLAND WHEN YOU HAVE COMPANY! I don't know how I got that way, but that's pretty much the way I thought back then.
I packed up the family and moved away from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1988. And now nearly a quarter century later, it is so strange to read web sites or blog posts that talk about "locals" at Walt Disney World, or Disneyland. I was "a local" and never even realized it! I never really thought of it in those terms. Tourists and Locals ...what a concept!
I wonder what it would be like now that I'm a "Disney Nut" - to be living just miles from Disneyland and California Adventure? Would I be dragging my Wife (don't worry - she's a "Disney Nut" too!) with me to DCA and Disneyland every other weekend, and on days off with annual passes in hand? Hanging out at Downtown Disney? I mean, I can't imagine what it would be like!
Would it be great? YES! But, it's also great to be 1,000 miles away from Disneyland (give or take a few hundred miles), and 2,000 miles away from WDW. Why? Because, even though it costs an arm and a leg to fly there once, twice, or even three times a year, It's a big adventure! I don't think I would be planning trips and doing touring plans etc. like I do, if we lived just 15 miles from the Disneyland Resort's parking garage. And for me, the planning is half of the fun (OK, maybe 1/3 of the fun, but it's still fun!).
I don't know if I would have become such a Disney theme park fan if it weren't for 2 things. 1. Moving Far Away, and 2. The Internet.
Moving away gave me that feeling of longing for Disneyland, and that feeling of nostalgia for a place that was always fun, and never let me down. And the Internet gave birth to the great Disney websites, groups, blogs, and podcasts that feed my insatiable thirst for that refreshing water that comes from the deep Disney wells.
It's hard to imagine a world where Disneyland or Walt Disney World are just around the corner. But I guess if I lived there, it would be hard to imagine living so far away from the place that I love!
It's all "relative". But now it's not all "relatives".