Magical moments

What is a magical moment? Is it witnessing a proposal in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle? Is it taking your children to meet Mickey Mouse for the first time? Or is it the smell of the Main Street Confectionery filling your senses as you breathe a sigh of relief knowing that you’ve finally arrived home?

The truth is that your magical moment is anything you want it to be because it’s YOURS. You can have a magical moment at any time.

My magical moment happened October 3rd, 2016. It started out as a typical day in Walt Disney World: a leisurely wake-up, a Mickey waffle (or two), a quick stop at Disney’s Hollywood Studios for a delicious pastrami sandwich (at the now closed Starring Rolls Café) then a short ride to Epcot with time to spare before my Frozen Ever After FastPass.

Upon entering Epcot and strolling by Spaceship Earth, I passed by Pin Central. A quick glance at my watch proved that I had more than enough time to pop in and see what types of pins they had available. At this point in my trip, Pin Trading was still a relatively new concept to me. Months later, I’m still learning the ins and outs. My current course of action is finding my favorite characters and either purchasing them outright or trading when possible.

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I am a huge (and I mean HUGE) Main Street Electrical Parade fan. Elliott from Pete’s Dragon is my favorite float from the parade and during its final run the first week of October, I made it a point to watch it almost every night. My plan was to add some additional Elliott pins to my collection if and when I found them. As luck would have it, Pin Central had several bags of the Disney Mascots Mystery Pin Sets still available. Elliott was featured as part of this set but the catch was that you never know which pins will be in the blind bag.

Several moments later I was suffering from a painful case of indecision. I was holding at least five bags in my hands while simultaneously picking more up off the rack and switching them out. Begrudgingly I narrowed my selection down to three and walked over to the register all the while thinking that I would not be lucky enough to select the correct bag.

Immediately I greeted by a Cast Member who appeared to give off an aura of fun. Her huge smile was infectious! After a quick glance at her name tag (Katy from Genoa City, WI), I proposed a question.

“Hi Katy, would you be able to give me a hand selecting which bag I should purchase? I would love to add Elliott to my pin collection and I can’t make up my mind on which bag.” Her smile broadened as she took in the task at hand. Katy assured me that she couldn’t be happier helping me select the winning bag and that she was honored to do so. She closed her eyes while her hands gracefully moved the bags around on the table as if she were performing a magic trick. “I have a really good feeling about this bag,” she said while handing over her selection. I thanked her profusely and paid for my purchase. After the transaction was completed, Katy went over to the opposite side to assist another customer with their questions.

In one swift motion, I opened the bag and dumped its contents onto the counter. As I slowly flipped each pin face up my heart began to sink. None of the pins on the counter were Elliott. Turning over the last pin I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. This wasn’t the last pin! The last pin had fallen a few inches to the left of the pile face down. Mind racing, I placed the pin in the palm of my hand and slowly flipped it over. IT WAS ELLIOTT! I couldn’t believe it. I scooped up my mess and made my way across the floor.

“Katy!” I shouted. Her head snapped immediately to attention. “You did it!” I watched her bright eyes widen in slight confusion. Brandishing the pin high in the air I exclaimed, “You found Elliott!” Katy’s reaction was priceless. The high-pitched whoop she projected was loud enough to turn everyone’s heads in our direction. I placed the pin in the palm of her hand, urging her to take it all in. I must have thanked her a million times during that moment and her smile told me everything I needed to know. We were in agreement that something magical had just happened.

Katy if you’re reading this, thank you for the magical moment. Being a Cast Member is no small feat. That day in October, you did more than just your job; you gave me a magical moment that I get to cherish for years to come.

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