Sunday, July 27, 2014

Disney enthusiasm - by Nicole

As writing this with Disney music playing in the background,( specifically the world of colour soundtrack), trying to bring back that sense of nostalgia-I've came to an realization that it is possible to change a person in just 5 days. It wasn't just about going to thrilling rides, and hanging with friends ; no, it was about facing fears you never knew was possible, creating inevitable bonds you didn't know you could make, and creating a leader that you’ve proudly become. To say that this experience changed my life would have been a part of it, as this journey had changed my outlook, as I’m Possible. To Beyoncé and Sharkishia inside jokes, near-death ride experiences, singing frozen and dancing under the captivating night lights of Disney, and to late night and morning singing sessions by the pool - I happily say that this experience has been one of the happiest moments of my life. I proudly thank Disney for providing a group of crazy Beyoncé obsessed leaders to their landmark, and the most thanks to Mrs.Becker for awarding us this amazing opportunity that has truly changed my life in the best way possible.  

When I first stepped onto Disney, I can just feel the magical aura that came along with it. Its as if all your problems went away, and all you could feel was the happiness fluttering inside your stomach. Lets be honest, nobody had really expected for the Disney leadership program to impact us as hard as it did. On our first day, I had learned to be flexible, to create your goal with the materials you've got. We had been taught of how Walt Disney came to succession, his struggles, and his game plan to over come them. After listening to his  moving endeavours,  I  realized that although I wasn't happy with my problems in my personal life - I knew I had the power to change my unhappiness and my mentality through the situation. Next, we had ridden on Space Mountain. At the time this ride was horrifying to me ( due to my excessive fear of roller-coasters), but as I rode this whilst gripping on Rashid’s arm, towards the end I felt proud that I overcame somewhat my fear. We also went to the Haunted mansion to test our ability to listen and care about our peers, which Rashid was my partner for. The purpose was to see if you can listen to your partner, while being distracted by objects around you. It was really funny because as we rode the ride, we were so competitive to  try to really success ourselves. Although it was challenging at times, we pulled it off. We also did some team building exercises, which was to prepare our trust and leader commands to our partner. One particular part I remembered was when there was objects all over the floor, and we were blindfolded so our partner can guide us to safety. As I was trying to listen to what my partner was commanding me, I heard his frantic voice at times through the course of the activity. At the end, I was told that our program facilitator was moving all the objects around as I was walking. The objection of her shuffling was that everything wasn't going to go our way sometimes, and we had to manoeuvre ourselves to get to our goal. Over the infinite selfies, and photo-bombing that day, new revelations were made and conquered. It was an incredible first day, to an amazing saga ! 

I think some might agree that the second day was the best out of all the five days. Maybe because it was the fears conquered or it was the endless laughter that came along, but this day was the highlight of the trip. Although we were accustomed to Disneyland since yesterday, it was still the same experience as you walked in. However, instead we walked to California adventure! From the name alone, it screamed the vibe of risk and dangerous experience. First, as were walking and discussing overcoming fears, we stopped in front of Hollywood tower of terror. I’m sure my face went white, and my stomach dropped. I though that I overcame my fear by going onto space mountain, but that soon vanished as I heard the screams of terror coming inside the dangerous building. For a second, I contemplated of going out, but then I came to an conclusion that I knew I would regret it if I didn't go in. I was pretty much shaking, and so I sat next to Pallvi and Rashid. I felt bad for Rashid yesterday, so I opted for Pallvi to grip onto. Honestly for me, it was one of the scariest rides. I can faintly remember the sound of terror as we were  going up, and I still shudder to this day. Although it was supposed to be the opposite effect, because of the ride it kind of put my morale down. I said to myself that if I cant even ride Hollywood tower of terror, I couldn't ride anything else. However, the leadership program went on and we discussed that I AM POSSIBLE, and how to achieve our career choice and goal in life. We also talked about what legacy we wanted to leave behind, and soon we rode Soarin over California. It was such an breath taking experience, and I truly felt we were flying. Sooner than I anticipated, the leadership program ended that day, and we were by ourselves. Our facilitator even had said that we were one of the most inspiring group of leaders she had worked with in a while, even saying that we inspired/taught her! (Shout out to Kimi!)
 The first thing everybody wanted to ride was California Screamin’, but first they wanted to ride the Ferris Wheel. It was Marco, Shiraz and I in one booth, and I was internally panicking on riding California Screamin’. I said that to both Shiraz and Marco, and they had told me they were also afraid also. One of them told me that if I did it, then they would. I then set myself to do it for them, as I didn’t want them to be robbed of the thrill of California Adventure. However, as we were walking from the fast pass lane to the ride, all thoughts blanked out. I kept telling myself, you cant do it- you’re too scared. I looked for my friend for his end of the bet, but I discovered he wasn’t going to do it. Thus, Janelle was my riding buddy. At that point, I told myself that because he’s not doing it (and a couple of other people) then I shouldn’t do it. As they were sitting and buckling their seat belts, I actually got out of the ride and almost walked out. However, I saw Maureen and Shiraz waiting in line for the next seats. At that moment, I had a sheer epiphany as I looked at them ; they had told me of their horrendous fears for this ride- and I thought that if they could do it, then so can I. I was seated next to Janelle, and went for the ride of my life. I couldn’t believe that one push of confidence could really conquer my fear. Ever since that ride, I became such an adrenaline junkie, and I anticipated for the big drop and fast rides. To be honest, to a point that ride had changed my outlook, and every ride was deemed boring in comparison. I had even rode Space mountain again, and it wasn’t even that scary!  At the end of the day, with my fears truly conquered- a new person was brought up ! 
At the end of the night, we had watched the World of Colour show. I had watched it with some of my homies( inside joke ), and it was such an experience. Later  when the show ended, whole student council(and a few teachers) sang and danced under the night sky and twinkling lights of night Disney - as we walked through the hustle and bustle of the after math. 
For the next day, we had done the scavenger hunt which was a blast! I loved it because we actually explored Disneyland, instead of going on every ride (which we did). I was paired with my lovely team Nadia, Janelle, and Shweta. We were the last ones that had entered Disneyland, and all we could see was everybody sprinting in all directions. Then all of a sudden, this man in a Disneyland vintage car approached us, and offered us a free trip to go to Fantasyland. We took a gamble and said yes. As were riding by, we saw a huge line for ship and dale (one of the scavenger hunt necessity), and a few groups waiting for them. As we rode by, we took a selfie with ship and dale, (they even waved at us!) and saw the look on Justins astonished face was priceless. When we arrived to fantasy land, we saw PETER PAN! We honestly could not believe our luck, as there was no line for the large attracted character. After encountering Peter, we were on cloud 9, and skipped all over fantasy land. However, we heard Mrs. Becker and Vanessa calling us- and they were almost in the front of the line to Anna and Elsa! Our luck just got bigger and bigger as we hugged and said “I love you” to our awesome chaperones. After being stars strucked by them, we were on a roll and we couldn't back down. We met Jasmine and Aladdin, explored every inch of Disneyland, took selfies with Storm troopers, and overall had such a fun time. Even though we hadn't won, it was okay because we honestly had the best time that morning. 

Disneyland was and will always be the best experience in my high school career. Although in this blog post I hadn't included the last day, and a thousand inside jokes, I figured this post was too much. To yelling Beyoncé and sharkishia on the rides to starting random applauses in large crowds, this trip was filled with my new found family, and memories that will last a lifetime. :) 

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