Make-Believe Reality

Hong Kong Disneyland, Sunny Bay. December 2, 2011. Spent Kathleen’s 19th Birthday in Hong Kong Disneyland. This is my first Disneyland experience ever and I know people criticize this particular park because it’s so small compared to others. But that day was awesome, and I’m posting this ahead of others I should share purely because I want to share the awesomeness. Haha. Well, basically we rode rides (funny sounding), watched shows and the parade, took tons of pictures, smiled and laughed a lot. The day was filled with rainbows and butterflies and magic. Seriously. So, I shall share my favorite parts which made me feel like I’m living a fairytale. (Corny, toink, pagbigyan.)

Orchestra at Main Street, USA. Just a few seconds after entering the park and reading the sign “Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow and fantasy”, I hear orchestra music and they’re playing the Pirates of the Carribean theme song. The orchestra was from a high school in Singapore and I assume they were invited to play. It was pretty awesome and it gave me goosebumps. I’ve always liked intense classical music and that was pretty intense for me. I kept saying in my head (and at times out loud), “Something’s coming now!!! Some turn of events has happened and it’s just about to get exciting”. Haha, nerdy. Well, it definitely placed my expectations in the right place. That day was just about to get exciting and… magical.

Space Mountain, Tomorrowland. So, I have never been the bravest one in any group. Sad to say. :)) I usually skipped out on Jungle  Log Jam and Space Shuttle in EK. And yes yes I know Space Mountain is still not a rollercoaster and is probably not scary for most people. But yes, I was pretty scared both times we rode it but the lights were awesome. What’s even more awesome is my sweet sweet Melissa suddenly had this monstrous voice (I call it her exorcist voice) because she was as terrified as me. At least, I’m proud to say my screams, though lasting throughout the whole ride, resembled my voice and did not turn into some scary-ass sound. Haha.

Flights of Fantasy Parade, Main Street, USA. I knew there were parades and mascots and everything in Disneyland but I would’ve never guessed I would be standing with one leg on a lamp post with the other leg kneeling on a trash can just to see the show. I’m not trying to be cheesy but Disneyland really does bring out the child in you. I was happy, more of, ecstatic when I saw the mascots and the other performers in costume with the Disney songs I’ve always loved. I guess you never really outgrow these things. Plus, the floats were really awesome with the trampolines and the waving princesses and everything.

Festival of the Lion King, Theater in the Wild. I honestly wasn’t that excited to see the show. I wanted to just try out all the rides instead of watching shows which I thought were for kids. I imagined magicians and hosts saying “Hey kids, meet Simba” stuff like that. When I heard the ever famous Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba, however, I knew I was wrong. The show was awesome, it gave me goosebumps, brought me to a higher high and even made me tear up when I saw this girl dancing on ropes and everything while Can You Feel the Love Tonight? played. These people seriously know how to amaze crowds. Awesome awesome show.

The Golden Mickeys, Storybook Theater. We almost did not make the last showing because we lined up for a picture with Woody and Jessie. But thank God, we made it. So, the show started out in Chinese with subtitles projected beside the stage. I thought it was going to be like that the whole show. Mascots plus a host plus video clips projected on the screen. Once more, I’ve underestimated the show because suddenly different production numbers featuring the less “trademark” Disney shows came out. I loved everything except Mulan. We were expecting a lot from it because we all love it and watched it in the dorms together but it was just okay. I loved the production of Little Mermaid, the jellyfish were awesome and of course Ariel floating in the stage was awesome. It really looked like the sea. The finale was of course the best. It was Beauty and the Beast and the stage was exactly as I remembered it in my huge storybook before. Plus, the ‘transformation’ of the beast was awesome. It was so cheesy; and so perfect.

Mad Hatter Tea Cups, Fantasyland. I’ve always wanted to try a teacup ride. I always see it in movies but in EK, there’s none and that’s the only amusement park I’ve been to. So, I was so excited to try this one and I wanted to spin really fast. And we did. And it was awesome. The whole view was just trippy. With the lights swirling like crazy, everything else was darkness and in front of me I see Jihed getting crazier and crazier as we spun the cup. Awesome moments.

Ice and Fire, Main Street, USA. And so, after the teacups we just went back to Main Street to look at some souvenirs and to grab some food. As we went out the bakery, white stuff started coming out of the roofs of the stores. I just stared and said, “Ooooooh is it snooo-oow?” and our friends who are so used to it were just laughing at us. And yes it was snow, artificially made yes, but still snow. Haha. Those minutes were really priceless. I was already in this super high high and then show literally starts coming down from everywhere. It was night and really cold with colored lights illuminating everything in a dreamlike fashion. It was one of those moments I just had to pause and take everything in, this was awesome, this has been awesome and I can always just go back to this night and I know I will remember how I felt. This is how you create moments, again, respect Disney, respect. After getting over the snow (well not really, just a little bit), I went inside to buy a shirt then came out for the fireworks display. Melissa and I were separated from the rest, so we came out to the fireworks display with I’ll Make a Man Out of You playing in the background. And just as I thought, the night couldn’t get any more surreal, it did. This song is one of our favorite songs (Melissa, Jihed, Kathleen and mine) and we have been singing it throughout the day as we desperately tried to look for Mulan-themed stuff. We sang it in English and they sang it in French while people stared at us. We’re cool that way. Haha. I was freezing already this time so I just watched the whole show while hugging Melissa. Cheesy moment again, but, I would have never imagined myself watching a fireworks display with Mulan playing in the background and with snow on my head while hugging a French girl who has been so much more of a friend than I hoped for.

And so, ladies and gentlemen, these have been the highlights of my Hong Kong Disneyland experience. I don’t care if the Disneyland in Paris and the ones in the US are so much bigger and are so much ‘more worth it’ as people said, because as I had learned that day, it’s not about the rides or the size of the park – it’s about the people you’re with and the experience you get to share with them. Okay, maybe it’s also a little bit about Disney’s impeccable showmanship (hoho), but still. It was the perfect day with the most wonderful people in a magical place. It did seem like fantasy at times, but at least I know, even when it’s time to say goodbye, these people have been a part of my life and I will forever be thankful for being with them and this, along with the countless other memories we created, I know I will remember forever.

Note: Sorry for the extra cheese (even my title is extra cheesy), we started saying goodbye this week and everything has been very cheesy and sentimental. I love these people but I will write about that another time. 

(Comme un homme.) You must be swift as the coursing river…

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Hi, I'm Timmy. I believe in writing as a therapy, global warming and true love.

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