Saturday, July 16, 2011

Friday, JULY 1, 2011!!!!

HAPPY CANADA DAY EVERYBODY!!!! AND HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAYMOND!!!!! It's really weird not being there for it but we had a total blast today at the park! When we showed up to work there were Canada flags everywhere and they had even decorated with all of our Provincial flags!!! SO SO cool!! We got to sing O Canada a couple times to guests and it was amazing!! We're all decked out in our red plaid and other Canadian attire and man we looked good!! haha!!! Lunch was provided for us, complimentary from our own restaurant in Epcot, Le Cellier, and in the break room they played Canadian artists on a CD player all day!! It was so so awesome!! I missed Raymond but this was SUCH a neat experience!! I wouldn't trade it for anything!!

THEN, that evening...
Kyra, Collin, Alex, and myself all went out to Jellyrolls, Disney's duelling piano bar. WHAT A CRAZY AMAZING BLAST WE HAD!!!! First of all, the talent of the guys on stage was absolutely incredible! I can't believe I've never experienced this before!! So awesome! So we requested "anything by the BareNaked Ladies" in honor of Canada Day, and I'm SO glad we did! See, most Americans have never heard of Canada Day and don't know what it is. We tell them it's Canada's birthday but they still don't get it, so we tell them it's like Canada's Independence Day and then they ask why we don't call it Independence Day... wow. Anyways, so the one guy that we gave it to was puzzled but totally ran with it, he wished everyone in the room a Happy Canada Day, and then he went on to play "If I Had A Million Dollars" which got the entire place singing along! It was the coolest thing! So then, all throughout the rest of the night he kept referencing Canada Day because he and the rest of the crowd had never heard of it! haha And finally during the song "New York, New York" (yes, DURING the song--he just stopped playing in the middle of the song) he decided he wanted to meet all the Canadians that were shouting and hollering the whole night. He was super shocked when only three got up on stage haha! Ya, we 3 were the only Canadians in the place (Alex is from France so she didn't come up with us but she took pics!!! yay!!!)! haha It was the best!! So anyways, we get up on stage and he has us stage kicking for the end of the song, because the song deserved a big finish and Canada deserved some recognition! haha it was the absolute best Canada Day I've ever had! SO SO awesome!!! Yep, I can definitely say I've never been so proud to be Canadian!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Today Kyra, Amanda, Javier, and I went to Hollywood Studios:) And it was really cool because Javier worked in this park during his last program so he knew like EVERYONE there so we ended up getting fastpasses to about everything:) haha it was a great time! The first thing we did when we got there was watch Beauty and the Beast!! SO AWESOME!!! The show was so amazing and Javier got us VIP seating so that was super sweet:) After we watched that we went across the street and rode the Rock 'N' Rollercoaster!! SO THE BEST RIDE!!! After that Javier and Kyra wanted to go on the Tower of Terror but Amanda and I didn't so we walked around and took pictures and window-shopped while we waited for them:) After that we went on the ride Toy Story Midway Mania! I LOVE THIS RIDE!!! It was def one of my favorites at Disneyland, and it is here too but the crazy awesome thing about it here is that it's completely decorated like Andy's room!! And from a toy's point of view too so everything is huge and SO SUPER COOL!!! I totally love it!! It's amazing!!!

Then we saw the new show, Voyage of the Little Mermaid. It was really cool and the inside of the theatre looked like the inside of a cave, and at some points there were lasers and mists of water above us so it seemed like we were underwater!! SO cool!! After the show we walked around looking at the cool stuff all around the park, then we went on the new Star Tours ride! It's now in 3D and there are more than 50 different scenarios that can happen on it so each time you ride it's different:) After Star Tours we went on The Great Movie Ride where they re-enact scenes from some classic movies, it was pretty cool and I was super excited! After that ride we grabbed a bite to eat (I helped Javi eat his turkey leg!!) and then we got our seats for the best show ever: FANTASMIC!!! Seriously, it's by far my favorite Disney show ever!!!!!!!!! This one here in WDW is slightly different from the one I'm used to in Disneyland but I wouldn't say it's better or worse. I guess I'll have to watch it a few more times haha:) It was nice because here it's still on water but it's a much smaller body of water and the seats where the guests sit are stadium-seats so you always get a really great view:) I LOVE FANTASMIC!!! Indeed it made me cry and I loved every second of it!!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Today I went to Wal-Mart with Kyra. haha and that's about it! It rains and rains and rains every time I go to Wal-Mart and this time was no different so I spent the rest of the day updating my blog! yay!! haha you're welcome:) miss you all!!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

DISCOVERY DAY!! We all went back to Epcot but not in costume this time and our trainers were Joshua and Frank. Joshua is so funny! He's tall and lanky and you'd think he'd be awkward but he isn't at all! He makes everything funny:) In fact he kinda reminds me of John Bytheway haha! But anyways they were training us about Epcot and Walt's dream for it and we got to see drawings of the original ideas he had. So cool! He wanted it to be the city of the future. Not just a theme park, but a for real city! Crazy but awesome! In fact hearing about it I wish they could have done it how Walt wanted it! Maybe someday. Anyways, we also got to tour around this park, and the first thing we did was ride "Spaceship Earth", which is the ride inside the "huge ball". (The Epcot ball, it's actually called the geodextrous sphere but whatevs:) It was super cool! It basically takes you on a narrated tour through time and advancement, starting with neandrathals and mammoths, ending with present day and then at the top its all stars everywhere and the narrator tells you now its your turn to decide where we go next. And then a screen pops up on your car and you get to "build your own future". It's pretty cool. I got a couple pics of the future that Mariana and I created haha. It's awesome because at the beginning of the ride they take your pic and then they put your face on the characters in the future you've built at the end haha:) pretty cool! So then Joshua took us around through the Innoventions building, showing us the cool activities that you can do there that are all about discovery and the future. Then he wanted to show us all the countries in the "World Showcase" (where we're all working), but instead of us all walking from pavillion to pavillion we got to take the ferry around the lagoon while he and Frank described each country to us. You know, it makes sense, but I didn't realize that the opening to each pavillion is the same size (to represent equality) but they extend back farther or not depending on how much money the actual country was willing to put into its own pavillion. Canada's is decent:) haha The other thing I thought was super cool is the fountain in the middle of Epcot, called the World Fountain. Yes, it's super cool because the water dances periodically throughout the day, but when Epcot first opened each country represented in the World Showcase brought some of their own water to dump into the fountain. Cool hey? And they repeated it again for Epcot's 25th anniversary:) Ya, super awesome. Anyways, we had a great time, and I was even able to talk to Joshua afterwards about who to talk to about becoming a performer (his reg position in the company is working with the characters and being in the parades)!! SO awesome!! Obviously because of my position and my visa I probably can't end up there this time but it's all about getting the contacts and the info and leaving my mark! BOOYA!!
It only went til noon then we had the rest of the day off so me, Kyra, Alex, Mariana, Arin, and Javier went to lunch at the Wave restaurant in the Contemporary resort:) It was really awesome and we got an awesome discount for being cast members too! oh ya! After lunch Arin, Mariana and I went to the Magic Kingdom:) Arin has only been here once before and she was nine only went on a few rides so I'm loving experiencing her first times haha! Mariana used to come here 2 or 3 times a year all growing up (she's from Mexico, slightly closer than we are) so she's like a veteran! haha but she's just as crazy about Disney as Arin and myself so that's awesome and she's funny too:) The first ride we went on was It's A Small World. Yep, laugh it up. I finally went on it, and willingly:) haha it was ok but I see no need to EVER ride it again haha! And hilariously it wasn't even the song that turned me off but the puppets, though oddly cute, are all really creepy, like something out of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and/or the Simpsons (the episode when the smokey aunts take Bart and Lisa to the amusement park... *shudder*). Ya, just a tad too creepy for me to endure again, but def interesting and I'm glad I finally experienced it first hand haha. We also went on the Carousel (which is Prince Charming's carousel here), Snow White's Scary Adventures (which was super cool but actually a bit scary), and we watched Mickey's Philharmagic. So awesome! Oh and PS: while we were walking around Peter Pan himself ran past me!! I was so in shock I didn't even think to get a pic I'm sorry Kayla and Kyle and Darren haha. I'll get one while I'm here I promise:) I also saw Rapunzel and Flynn Rider getting pics with little kids, it was so cute! They have their own spot right outside the castle:) After that we went on Big Thunder Mountain Railway, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Magic Carpets of Aladdin, and the Haunted Mansion, all of which were super awesome:) You know, they're all slightly different than the same rides at Disneyland in California, which I expected but I really think the lines here are much more efficient. I don't know for sure but I figure as much since it was built after Disneyland was so they prob wanted to work out as many bugs as possible. And trust me, here they're ALL about efficiency! And why not? In fact, quite a few of the rides actually have a couple of different lines and more than one track (like on California Screamin' in Disneyland) so you're not in line nearly as long. It's pretty awesome. At the end of the night we watched the Main Street Electrical Parade which was sweet! I so want to be in a parade!!! anyways, it was super awesome because I saw characters and floats that I haven't seen in forever, like Pete and his dragon! SO cool!! Disney never ceases to amaze even me! love it!!!



Monday, June 27, 2011

Today we headed back to the Disney University for our "Mechantainment" training:) Yes, that is what it's called, basically using merchandise to entertain the guests:) haha We all know I love doing that!! haha SWEET! Our trainers this time were John and Nancee, and btw Nancee is crazy just like me!! haha we had a hilarious time all day! The group was split into a couple different ones and this time I was the only Canadian in my group so I'm sure they all think that all Canadians are crazy now haha! You're welcome everyone!! haha no it was great:) We started the day off doing more training modules on the computers, then we trained on cash registers they have set up in a room at the University. It was super crazy! But awesome! Ya, nothing was super difficult for me on the registers~thank you Toys 'R' Us!~except that they don't have debit down here so that's kinda weird. AND they don't have chipped credit cards either which is REALLY weird since that's such a big deal in Canada now! crazy! But the registers are all computerized and touch-screen and nice!! (also not surprising but very nice haha) Anyways, it was a great day and I'm sure I left a crazy but positive mark on their day, just like they left one on mine! haha In fact, on Sunday Kyra and I didn't get ribbons that say "EARNING MY EARS" because Andrew said we'd get them on Tues but then everybody else got them on Monday so I was sad and Nancee ran all the way to her car just to get one for me! haha And John made an announcement and I got a little ceremony:) haha it was super awesome! Ya we had a great time! It's crazy how many different trainers we get for every different thing but it's awesome how super but unique each of them is! I'm having a great time! And like I said, I decided today to make it a goal to leave a positive mark on this company, even if I have to do it one day at a time, one person at a time. It's the only way I can move forward, right? Anyways, thanks mom and dad for teaching me that:) I love you all!

Day 12

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday was my first day at Epcot, in my costume:) No, I didn't think to get a pic of it but no worries, I'm sure you'll see it soon enough:) And then you can all laugh at my ridiculousness haha! And if anyone can tell me what cullottes are without looking it up 5000 points for you! haha I get to wear them and they are something else! Honestly they are the most difficult part for me thus far but it's all good because I'M STILL HERE!!! awesome!!!!! Ok so Kyra and I brought our boots in the morning and met our trainer, Andrew. He is from ON, much like most of the Canadians here right now:) (I think there might be one more Albertan, from Calgary, and there are a few from BC, one maybe two from Winnipeg, a couple from Quebec, and like 5 or so from the Maritimes but most are from ON.) The first thing we did was go get our costumes. As it happens pretty much everybody hates their costumes but they all look good to everybody else so I'm not worried or feeling left out:) haha I just figure it's all about the show and that's what the costume is for and that's what I'm here for so BOOYA!! Anyways, we spent the day with Andrew, he showed us around the Canadian Pavillion, we saw the store, we watched the 360 movie, and he took us backstage for the first time. It is also something else. Not gonna lie, a little part of me dies every time I go backstage because it's "REAL". Even in Epcot, going from the park to backstage is like leaving a storybook and getting a reality check:( Oh well, like I say, it's all about the show! And being here as an employee rather than a guest I realize that more and more and I want to keep it magical for the guests so that's really good:) We spent time doing modules on the computers like you do in pretty much any job but we also got to meet managers and other cast members and also we got to interact with the guests! Honestly it was SO amazing! People just come into the store and see you have Disney pins on your lanyard (every cast member is given a lanyard with 12 pins to trade with the guests, and it's like the biggest thing down here!) and immediately come ask to trade with you. I guess there are quite a few pins that you can ONLY get from a cast member so that's cool. Anyways, I had little girls coming up to me to trade pins and one girls mom took a pic of her daughter with me! Serious!! I got to be a part of their magical Disney vacation! CRAZY!! It makes me cry to think about:) All the pics you get with random people or things on vacation, and now I AM ONE!! But ya, definitely guest interaction is the best part of being here:) I thought it would be experiencing the magic but I didn't realize how amazing it would be to create it for someone else! It's so incredible! Anyways, safe to say I'm loving it!

Days 9, 10, & 11

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday all of us "new arrivals" spent most of the morning in another meeting, this time going over the legal side of living here for a year. We signed a bunch of things and then were given the rest of the day off so that was nice:) A few of us realized we had not gotten everything we needed from Publix the day before, but we figured Wal-Mart was too far away so we decided to walk to Walgreens, not wanting to wait for the bus. It was a nice walk, we learned a lot about our location and each other and then finally got there. haha it's located RIGHT beside Publix!! haha it was fun:) We picked up a few things and then walked back to The Commons (which is the name of our apartments). After a quiet afternoon nap we all met up again and spent some time at the pool. It was nice and warm of course! haha and I LOVE that when you get wet here you don't get cold! (at least outside you don't~inside the AC makes it feel more like home, so that's one good thing about the freezing I guess haha) So after the pool and visiting we went to a steakhouse called Santa Fe, which is apparently where all the Canadians in our program hang out on Thursday nights. Not gonna lie, I think Arin and I were the only 2 people there (out of about 60) who weren't drinking but we had an awesome time! I think it was because this time the attention was NOT all on us, so we got to casually mingle with everyone, and they all found out why I don't need to drink! haha I was so crazy hyper it was awesome:)

Friday, June 24, 2011

We got Friday completely off! And I had not been to Wal-Mart yet so I still did not have a pillow so that was the number one thing on our agenda for the day:) Me, Arin, and Kyra headed out on this rainy day. It was actually beautiful when we got there, and even after our shopping but then we had to wait for the bus which took about an hour to come! bah! oh well. the funniest thing was that Kyra had to go to a store across the parking lot from Wal-Mart so we all headed over there, not realizing that the cart would "lock" when it got to the edge of the parking lot... ya we got there and all of a sudden it wouldn't move! haha that was an experience! so Kyra went into the store while Arin and I stood beside a tree at the far edge of the Wal-Mart parking lot with our "stuck" cart of groceries and whatnot. And then it started raining! haha boy I tell ya, when it rains here it POURS!! Like I say at least it's warm, but still. Arin and I ended up using my 2 pillows for slight coverage!! oh it was awesome! And then as soon as the rain stopped Kyra came back outside:) She felt bad so we made her push the cart back but then she couldn't do it alone so we all helped and then waited at Wal-Mart for another LONG time for the bus to come, meanwhile the rain came back again so that was quite an adventure:) we had a great time!!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Saturday we had our first paid training day, called TRADITIONS, and we got to go to the Disney University for it! If you've never heard of it its because it is considered "backstage Disney", so "not-available-to-the-public", and as our trainer Rob says "It doesn't exist in the real world", so even if you search for it on a GPS or google you won't find it! Cool hey? But I am now officially a DISNEY CAST MEMBER so I'm now privileged enough to be in the know:) haha The training was so much fun! It was almost our entire arrival group except those working in the couple of pavillions at WDW that arent' actually run by Disney (like Mexico for example), called "Operating Participants". So unfortunately our friends Javier and Marianna weren't there but Kyra, Arin, Alex, Gabby, Colin, Gabrielle, myself, and a bunch of our other friends were and we had a blast! Our two trainers were FLOR and ROB and they were awesome! We spent most of the day in a classroom at the University, watching videos on the history of the Disney parks, learning Disney trivia, and doing group activities. Now at 'Disney-style' interviews and meetings such as this one, the trainers love participation so to encourage us to answer questions they reward each answer with Disney knick-knacks. This time there were 5 little Disney figurines and I don't want to brag but I got 4 out of 5:) haha It's probably not surprising, me speaking up! haha So when it came time for each table to pick a "Team Leader" I turned my chair to face my table and every finger was pointing at me! haha So I got to be the TEAM LEADER the whole day! I led my team to victory during the Disney trivia game, and I got to make sure none of my team got lost on our field trip TO THE MAGIC KINGDOM!!! ya that's right! We went on a tour backstage and also onstage in the Magic Kingdom! (sorry I was not allowed to take any pics of that part but it was amazing) And it was during one of the parades so of course I was dancing along! IT TOTALLY ROCKED!! No biggie, haha how many places take you to a Disney park to train you? BOOYA!! It was awesome:) Oh ya, and prob my fav part was that we got to eat in one of the Disney Cast Member cafeterias, called the Mouseketeeria (haha) and I TOTALLY SAW RAPUNZEL AND FLYNN RIDER AND PETER PAN and others eating lunch!!! I was SO SO excited!!! I texted Kyle:) haha It was the best! So then after our field trip we returned to the Disney University for the rest of our training day. But about an hour or so after we got back GUESS WHAT HAPPENED!!! MICKEY MOUSE HIMSELF CAME TO OUR TRAINING!!!!! It was so amazing!!! I definitely started tearing up when he came in!! SUCH THE BEST DAY!!! Oh man it was so awesome!
So when that exciting day was over we got our schedules for the next couple days AND OUR OFFICIAL DISNEY NAMETAGS!!! Not gonna lie, I almost cry everytime I look at mine and see "Raymond, Alberta" on it! I love my town!! haha We also got our schedules for the next couple days and Kyra and I realized we were expected the next morning with hiking boots so we ran out to the Outlet mall near our complex right after we got back. We found some boots and then ended up only paying half price for them because they were on sale and we're Cast Members!! SO AWESOME!! After we got back from getting our boots Kyra, Arin, Alex, and I all headed to Epcot to watch the fireworks show, "Illuminations". It was wonderful:) Disney always does amazingly cool stuff during their shows and this one has a spinning globe on top of the water, and all the continents on it are lit up with projections of animals and peoples from all over the world. It's pretty cool:) After that Arin and I wandered around Epcot, checking out the pavillions as best as we could (everything was closed). But we had a really great time:) What an amazing day!!