"I'd rather regret the things I have done than the things that I haven't."
No regrets. That's what Mom said last summer when I asked if she had any regrets about her life. She was in Hospice Home, in the final stage of lung cancer. Isn't that a marvelous thing to be able to say at end of a long, productive life?
Of course, I didn't wish to remind her of the one regret I could ever remember her mentioning...something she hadn't done instead of something she had. A year or so after Daddy died, she went on a cruise to Alaska with a Senior group from Pickerington, OH. She didn't expect to enjoy it as much as she did. She had a blast, including that once-in-a-lifetime helicopter ride out to a glacier! After that trip, she said "I wish I had done that when your Daddy was alive. He always wanted to go to Alaska, and he would have loved every minute of that cruise." Ah well...
So now that's become my personal guiding light. No regrets. Not if I can help it.
And that's how I wound up in Orlando with Missy M at Disney World this week.
Did I need to be in the heat and humidity of Florida, where it felt more like August than October, before I have fully regained the stamina that Bell's Palsy has robbed from me? No.
Did I need to be in the brutally bright tropical sunlight so soon after cataract surgery? No.
Was I fully ready to handle the heat, humidity, eyeball-blistering light, AND the crowds? Oh h3ll no!
Do I regret going? Not in the very least! Lucille Ball was right.
Missy M and I have tried to get together for what I have called our annual Mother-Daughter Bonding Trip (MDBT) every year since we travelled together for a week in Washington in 2001 or 2002. Actually, the idea was probably germinated in 1998, when she and I spent a couple of months together in Sophia-Antipolis, France, while I was on assignment for SEMA Group Telecoms and she was on break from college. Good grief! That was over 14 years ago!!
Anyway, when M made plans to attend a training conference on the WDW property, she asked if I wanted to go with her...and play with Mickey the week prior to her conference. I couldn't say "yes!" fast enough. (I am my mother's daughter, after all..."Edith's got one foot in the road and the other crooked to hop"...as Nananny once said about her. Me? I keep a suitcase half-packed and handy at all times!) Having lived in Kissimmee for a brief time, and having enjoyed the benefits offered to Missy M when she worked at Epcot in the College program 2002-3, I'm a big fan. And it's always fun to see what's changed. Our last visit was 3 years ago...and there have been many changes and updates. Plus, Epcot's International Food and Wine Festival is in October...need I say more?
Both of us have battled health problems this year, as you are well-aware. M is still dealing with issues related to her broken foot, and Disney World is known for being spread out. Yet both of us were determined to do this MDBT this year. Determined was actually too mild to describe us. Try resolved, resolute, driven.
M wore a pedometer every day to see how many steps we did:
Wednesday - 21,855 steps (Hollywood Studios)If you consider that M's "step" is about 2.25 feet, and that there are 5,280 feet in a mile...well, you can see that we averaged about 8.5 miles of walking each day!
Thursday - 21,387 steps (Epcot)
Friday - 16,824 steps (Magic Kingdom)
...for a grand total of...drum roll, please...60,066 steps!
What happened on Friday, you are probably asking? Well, in short, we hit The Wall. Remember I mentioned heat, humidity, intense sunlight, and overwhelming crowds? Yeah. By late afternoon on Friday, we had both endured about all of the above that we could take. Or, as M said: "Tink! My pop-up timer has come out. I'm done!!" We were too tired to stay for the fireworks...now that's tired, folks!
No matter. We enjoyed the time together as much as the trip itself...more, even.
So, Patricia...what was your favorite part of the parks this time? I loved the Behind the Seeds Tour of the sustainable agriculture greenhouses in the Living with the Land pavilion in Epcot. Fantastic!! Disney...and gardening...be still my beating heart! I also loved the Toy Story Mania ride at Hollywood Studios every bit as much as I did 3 years ago...what can I say? My inner Buzz Lightyear is strong.
Here are some of the shots I took on the Seeds Tour to share with you:
First up, turnips growing big in sand:
Then, a pepper bush gets a Mickey haircut:
And finally, can you see Mickey in Red Sails lettuce in the back? Soon, the front lettuces will say "Epcot":
So, today was my travel-home day, with a flight back into Raleigh where Mr. T picked me up. Tonight, Duke is playing North Carolina in football. Busy day. No worries...tomorrow, I can rest.
Any regrets? Not a one. Not a single one.