Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Yo ho, yo ho!

I've been REALLY busy since I last posted. Holy cow have I been busy. But it's a good kind of busy! Here's a quick review of what's happened since I last posted:

On Friday I went to my Disney Traditions class. Traditions is a class that every single employee takes. It covers a little bit of Disney's history, and they cover the Disney Basics. The Traditions class at Walt Disney World also includes a short walk in the Magic Kingdom. You also get to go through the utilidors, which are the tunnel system that is under the Magic Kingdom. Fun fact: The park is actually the second story. The utilidors were all built on the ground floor, because you can't dig in Central Florida. If you do, apparently you just get water.

A word on water: All of the tap water here is gross. Seriously. It tastes like gross new plastic times eleven. It even tastes gross from the fountains at the Magic Kingdom, which totally kills the fantasy. Crystal Lite and bottled water are my new best friends. I ran out of Crystal Lite the other day, and I was chugging milk and grape juice just to stay hydrated. The water here seriously makes me gag. Even ice tastes gross.

Saturday, I began my training. I learned how the register works. It was strange, because I was the only College Program(CP) in my class, and everyone else had already had a couple of other training days besides Traditions.

On Sunday, I had some location-specific training. The first thing I did that morning was get my costume! I was already excited about it, because people had been telling me that they were like pajamas. They weren't lying! The general Adventureland Merch costume really does look and feel like pajamas. The pants even have a mesh panel up the side, which is great for the hot and humid weather here. I can wear that costume in any of the shops in Adventureland, but I also have a pirate costume that I can wear when I'm working in the Pirates of the Caribbean shop. There's a third costume that I'll wear when I'm working the Glow Carts, but I won't have that training until the end of September, so I'm not even going to worry about it.

Costuming was a huge pain. Those of you who read Alyssa's post already know- costuming is no place for vanity. The important thing to remember is that the sizes for the costumes are meaningless. They act as a general guide- for example a Large Long pair of pants should be longer than a Large Regular pair of pants. But I had to try on every single pair of Large Long pajama pants before I found two pairs that were long enough. So for future interns: Don't get too worked up over costuming! And make sure to try on a whole bunch of everything! Something will fit you.

After we did costuming, we did some e-training and then walked around Adventureland for a while. Our facilitator showed us a few things and had us interact with the guests pretty frequently. We had lanyards for pin trading, which was so much fun! I love pin trading with the little kids, especially. The grown-ups are sometimes kind of rude about pin trading, but apparently it's pretty competitive, so that sort of makes sense. I'm going to try to stay out of it on a personal level, since it looks like an expensive hobby.

When I got home from work, I got changed for church. They have a late sacrament meeting for the LDS kids who have to work at the parks during the morning session, but it was canceled for a CES fireside. We went anyways- it's good to go to some church. After that, we headed BACK to the magic kingdom for... the cast preview of Mickey's Boo to You Halloween Parade! We waited at the cast bus stop forEVER, until they finally let us into the park. We went through the utilidors and came up in Liberty Square, where they had all of us stay in a big quick-service restaurant while they got all of the guests out of the park. After they let us out of the restaurant(at midnightish), we were herded into... the Haunted Mansion! I was totally geeking out at this point, because it was my first time in the Magic Kingdom outside of work, and going on the Haunted Mansion ride at midnight just felt so epic! As we got off the ride, we were directed to the parade route, and at 1, the Headless Horseman rode! IT WAS SO AWESOME. The rest of the parade was fun, too. I've still got the song stuck in my head, but I don't mind, because THAT is how good it is.

I had Monday off. Woohoo sleeping in! I went to the Magic Kingdom and played in Adventureland and Frontierland and Liberty Square for a few hours, and then headed back home because I was out of milk and had to go to the store. Woohoo grocery shopping!

On Tuesday I had my Magic Kingdom Orientation. Yeah... most people have the BEFORE they actually start working in the Magic Kingdom. Woopsies. :) The orientation was FANTASTIC. Yes, I said fantastic. The Magic Kingdom is all about fantasy. Our facilitators for the orientation were super, and I could really tell how much they loved working at the Magic Kingdom.

Today, I had my first day of register training. I got to work in every single shop in Adventureland and interacted a lot with the guests. I didn't mess up too much, and my facilitator was nice/seemed to like me. I'm getting more familiar with the utilidors and all the backrooms. I'm still a little confused when it comes to figuring out where the shops are in relation to the utilidors, but hopefully I'll have it down tomorrow.

WDW does a really good job of training employees. I have gotten such fantastic training. I'm getting one-on-one training for sixteen hours, and that is so incredibly helpful. The correct onstage behavior is constantly modeled for me, and the facilitator is able to answer any questions I have right there on the spot. It's a very effective way to train new employees, and it seems to be working well. I've only heard of one person who wasn't fully prepared for work on their first official day alone.

Aaaaand that's it! Life is going good. I'm definitely getting more used to the humidity. I haven't been seeing as many little lizards around... it must be getting cooler? The bus system has become my friend. The bus drivers, not so much. I've got the whole laundry thing figured out, too. No quarters necessary, thank goodness. We use little moneycard things. It works pretty well. The washers lock while they're doing a load, so you had better be certain about the wash settings before you start the load! But the locking is great, because you don't have to stay in the laundry room while your clothes are getting washed.



  1. Great adventures, I'm going to send this to Emma to read. Do they give you any inside scoops on Hidden Mickeys? My kids love trading pins when they are Disneyland and it makes it so much more fun when the person trading with them is so nice about it. Can't wait to read more, oh and I need a picture of you in your costume (pajamas).

  2. Hehe, I TOTALLY know what you're saying about costuming. I'm a 12/34, but the markings are wrong sometimes and all the pants are different sizes anyways. So you're pretty much depending on luck of the draw.And you don't want to get the ones that happen to be tight in places where pants shouldn't be tight.