7 December 2012

FWN EPCOT: Disney Love

Future World North, EPCOT within the Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando holds many happy memories from my program. Even now over one year on I'm still feeling the Disney Love and know in my heart that the friendships that I made will stay with me forever! My current stay in the USA has allowed me to reconnect with some of my dear Walt Disney Internship friends!

Being a New York City Boy I made it my first challenge to see my darling friend Ritika Kumar. Being that Ritika lives in Upstate New York and I currently reside in Newark, New Jersey we met in the middle Yes, NYC Baby! There's truly no other place like it for a Disney Love reunion. Our first encounter saw us take on the 'Empire State Building', I will not lie I was quite worried about the height but things were fine! We got slightly lost around Manhattan but eventually found our way, things got hectic towards the middle of our afternoon so we made it our mission to find an Applebee's to have some food. We decided to call Zach Airstarr because our Disney catch-up made us miss our Future World North favourites just that bit more! The drinks started to flow and before we knew it, we started downing some tequila shots! Things got pretty crazy but had a great first meeting but NYC was ready for us! No, not at all B!

Our second meeting took us to Central Park, where if I may add that the weather was sublime. This time around Ritika's older sister came along for the ride, we had a great time at Central Park for we just lazed in the sun and continued talking about our post Disney lives. Also during our second meeting we saw it necessary to visit the Disney Store in Times Square to be reminiscent of our time spent in Orlando, I bought a New York City Minnie Mouse plush and the cashier thought we were a couple, how odd?! Both of our meetings concluded with a visit to Applebee's, too many tequila shots and good times we have had at that epic American eatery. We're meeting for our third and final time this trip but I will making my way to Ritika's home in Upstate New York where we will no doubt find a Applebee's to terrorise! Ritika, I was genuinely blessed to have had this opportunity to see you again, until next time Ritika! If you made the cut, we're friends! No, life is not made of magic!

Life in Orlando as a Walt Disney World Cast Member was pretty damn fantastic, I worked in the happiest place in the world with a great bunch of people that opened my eyes to a whole new world. Lots of my colleagues were from Central, Latin and South America so the mix of Spanish spoken back stage, on the shop-floor and outside of work was amazing to hear. I met people from England to but it was amazing to forge new friendships with people from the USA, I had been to America many times as a tourist but I had never had that kind opportunity before, I was loving every moment! Accepting that job during my first semester at university, I made it to the USA! We can dream but only with hard work they can come true! Yes!

September 2012 saw me take to the skies to the 'Enchanted Island' of Puerto Rico, home to two of my fellow Cast Members who I worked with at EPCOT's Future World North. I had an amazing five days seeing the sights and enjoying the culture of that Spanish infused American Commenwealth nation but unfortunately I didn't get the chance to meet Valeria or Janice. I got on with my Puerto Rican holiday, spending most of my time within the timeless Old San Juan protected centre. Puerto Rico called my name because away from FWN EPCOT I made some extra special Rican friends who made my experience unforgettable! Let's just say I fell for the charms of Puerto Rico before I had even arrived on the island! Maybe one day we'll meet again, but we undeniably had fun in Orlando!

Breaking from the borders of the United States I made the journey to Toronto, Canada. I totally loved Toronto because Alexandra my Canadian lovely lives in this city! Getting to Toronto turned out to be a very stressful journey, missing my flight to then miss my coach connection that day to see Niagara Falls. I must admit that because of my unfortunate situation I was able to see Alexandra on my first day! After reaching Toronto I took up the challenge of exploring the city of Toronto. Later on that day I was reunited with Alexandra, we went out for a lovely dinner and got our drink on! Crossing the Canadian border was so easy, the immigration officers even wished me a nice stay, they predicted right because my weekend in Toronto was amazing! It's very crazy to think that my Toronto weekend inspired the title of this blog by Alexandra's caption for our photo together! I have a few secrets to tell!

As my current Industrial Placement in Newark, New Jersey is nearing its completion date I will soon be jetting off to see my Disney Diva, of course that has to be Zach Altstatt! He introduced himself as Zach Airstarr on the first night that I arrived at my Chatham Square accomodation, I was like 'has this fabulous guy named himself after a trainer?' I was very wrong but this lover of all things Lady GaGa became an amazing friend of mine, we even went out some shady nightclubs in some sketchy Orlando neighbourhoods with Alexis from Chicago but we slayed on the dancefloor nonetheless! I'm going to see Zach and his boyfriend, Dawin during the first week of January 2013 before I fly back to England. I honestly cannot wait to put the world to rights with Zach because we are quite the pair when we're in each others company! I know that I have thrown back my Walt Disney memories more than once but I wanted to give this post to celebrate my Disney friends who come from afar B!

Disney Love Lasts Forever!

Joseph Harrison

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