The planning began and after months of knowing it was coming and asking and dreaming on the part of Magdalena, the weekend was upon us. Magdalena, Augustus and Frida's excitement was infectious and I got really excited. Who knew? We arrived at the park and the first thing we saw was the parade. And can I tell you, there is nothing as incredible as the look on my daughter's face when she saw Pooh, then Mary Poppins, then (GASP!), The Princesses! I cried the kind of tears that are all gratitude and love and wonder and thanks and goodness and awe. I cried because my daughter was with my mom and it was pure magic. I cried because who knew I could be so moved by spectacle? I cried because there is an innocence in us all, and it broke through my cynicism and I was filled with joy, absolute joy. Watching my mom up front with Magdalena and Frida was magical, the kind of magic that I imagine Walt Disney himself thought of when he dreamed up Disney. Disney's theme is "Where Dreams Come True!" and you know what, they do in a crazy veneer sort of a way.
As we entered the park, a park official asked Magdalena if she would be kind enough to autograph his book, to sign in for the day, and of course she was thrilled to write her name for him. He didn't ask us, he didn't ask the littles, just Magdalena. Imagine.
Bring on the magic!
But wait, there's more...
Now, I thought I knew what to expect at Seaworld. I went a when I was little, I remember Shamu, I remember the amazing dolphins. But theater? Acrobats? It seems that Seaworld has taken a page from the Cirque du Soliel book and created a wonderful combination of theater and sea mammals and birds that takes magic to a new level because, basically, it's real! The theme or slogan of Seaworld is "Believe". Believe in yourself, believe in your dreams, believe you can do whatever it is you want to do. Believe. And after a day at Seaworld, I believe.
Our weekend adventure turned out to be a stellar, smashing success that went beyond my wildest imaginings of what it would be like. I went braced for conspicuous consumption, staggering consumerism and the attack of a marketing juggernaut, which we got, but what I didn't expect, or what I forgot about or didn't know about, was the magic, the pure magic of the whole thing. The optimism of a place where dreams come true, the joy and pure fun of Disney and the unexpected brilliance of Seaworld. Think about it, all those people, all that machinery, all that energy just to make you, and you, and you, feel special and for just a moment, feel like all that magic is all there is and really, all that matters.