Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Disney World- The Magic of Disney

What makes Disney World so special to adults and children? What is the Magic, not only of the Kingdom, but of the entire property? For me it is how dedicated everyone is to insuring that I have a good time. Everyone who works for Disney does his or her job well, from top to bottom. There is a super work ethic. And everyone does it with a pleasant disposition and courtesy. No one waits on you in a store talking on a cell phone, ignoring you when you walk in. No one is annoyed at you when you bother them to wait on you. Everyone is pleasant and friendly. People make eye contact and want to help you have a good time. The staff of all Disney properties work tirelessly for your benefit. Things run smoothly and on time. The bus system, the food system, the park system- are all though out and planned. They are not cheap but they are well run and I feel like I get my money's worth.

The other major ingredient of the Magic is the imagination and showmanship that goes into the program and entertainment in the parks. The rides and shows are superior in quality and design. Every time I have returned to Disney World there is something new added. They are always thinking of some new ride or event to add to the parks to keep returning guests excited. The special effects are brilliant, the art is creative, and the overall effect is always entertaining. My favorite activities include the African Safari, the Lion King Show, the 3-D movies, Peter Pan Ride, Winnie-the-Pooh Ride, It's a Small World After All, Barnstorm Goofy Ride, Race Track Ride, Magic Carpets of Aladdin Ride, Dumbo Ride, and the Little Mermaid Show. Remember, I bring a five year old with me- no Splash Mountain for us!

The entire concept and development of Disney World is from the ingenious mind of Walt Disney who imagined all of this.

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you anywhere.

Albert Einstein

Photographs by Linda Dubin Garfield

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Disney World- My Favorite Ride

Everyone of my trips to Disney World, whether with my 16 year old son, my sister or each of my 5 year old grandchildren, has included the It's a Small World ride. Most people find the repetitious song cloying by the end; it is sung over and over and over... ad nauseum but I enjoy it. The boat ride travels through the dioramas of twirling dolls dressed in many countries' themed traditional dress- saris, peasant outfits, a chasidic wedding, Mexican dancers, etc. All the dolls are happy and adorable; the artwork is lovely, colorful and clever. There is so much to see- great eye candy- so much, you can get visual diabetes! It's a delightful 10 minutes and a ride i look forward to on every visit.

I think also love the ride because I believe it really is a small world after all. I enjoy meeting people from all over the world and seeing how our similarities are so much more significant than our differences. Our hopes and dreams, our fears and worries are similar- what we want for our children... these important things are the same. What we eat and wear are different, our music is different, but the basics are the same. I also love when I bump into people I know far from home. It happens often because it's a small world. So a high school friend's daughter is waiting in the airport in Zambia, Africa right next to me on a 5 hour delayed flight! Isn't that great?
Small world, hey?

Photographs of It's A Small World taken by Linda Dubin Garfield

Monday, April 19, 2010

Disney World- for the 7th time!

Disney World in Orlando, Florida is a magical world of suspended reality. I find it an oasis from real life. The place is always totally clean; everyone is friendly and pleasant; the cost is outrageous but you charge everything to your room key so it is not like real money. You are there to enjoy yourself and have fun- and you do!

My first visit was with my son when he was 16. He really did not want to be with his mom and often left me to go by himself. I called my sister from there (on a pay phone to let you know how long ago this was) and asked her why I had gone with him and not her? I thought you needed to go with a kid. I had no idea that adults could go to Disney World alone. The next visit my sister and I went together and had a ball!! We stayed at Port Orleans- Dixie Landings which is now called Port Orleans- Riverside. I still stay there. It is on of the Disney Resorts and is a moderately priced hotel on the Disney grounds.

Then I made a promise to my grandchildren that I would take each one to Disney World when they turn 5. I figured 5 was a good age: old enough to remember the trip (after spending all this money, I wanted them to remember our going) but young enough not to want to go on the scary rides I would not want to go on. So far my system has worked.

I just got back from taking Ari, my 5th grandchild to turn 5. When we discussed going when Ari was around 3, he did not seem so excited about it. But as he 4th birthday approached, he told his mother he decided to skip being 4 and was ready to go directly to 5. She explained it did not work that way and he had to be 4 before 5.

Then he met his future kindergarten teacher who told him that he would be in her class when he would be five.

"No," he told her. "I can't be in your class when I am 5."

"Why?" she asked.

"Because I am going to Disney World with my Bubbie (Grandmother) when I am five," he answered.

Photographs taken at Port Orleans- Riverside by Linda Dubin Garfield

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Costa Rica- Magical Rain Forest

The beauty and lushness of the tropical rain forest is amazing. Everything is bursting with life and energy. The color, freshness, and vitality awakens you to a heightened level.

This first mixed media print in the series "Pura Vida," inspired by my travels in Costa Rica, is a multi-media experiment. I knew I wanted to do something more than I had done before to express what I had seen and experienced on my visit to Costa Rica. I have combined digital photography, monotype traditional printmaking, colored pencil drawing, chine colle, collage, as well as pastel to create a fantasy rain forest replete with the butterflies and lush greenery that remain forever in my mind's eye.

Image: Magical Rain Forest, Mixed Media by Linda Dubin Garfield

Friday, April 2, 2010

Costa Rica- San Josecito Beach

The lovely San Josecita Beach is a short 25 minute boat ride down the coast from our hotel on the Osa Peninsula. This quiet beach is further along the same path as the town and Cocatito Beach we had walked to. There are shaded areas and places to snorkel. We went later in the day and stayed for sunset which was truly magnificent. A boat from the hotel came back for us right around sunset so we drove through the Pacific Ocean while the sun was setting.