Traditions.

Helloo!! Just a quick one about last nights antics before I get on to the main shenanigans of today. Rain Forest Cafe. You. Are. Beautiful! Seriously, its gorgeous. I had never been before so my house mates decided to make it a need.  We couldn’t get a seat inside as there were nine of us, but sitting out side was perfectly fine as it had cooled down slightly. And also there were about twenty fans and spray things pointing at us. However, we didn’t really get the full rain forest experience, so I suppose we will just have to go back =D Food wise, we shared these incredible ‘Lava Nachos’ for starters. They were almost filling. For mains I got parmesan chicken. That was just yum, but it was way too big. They give you two massive slabs of chicken with fusilli pasta in tomato and basil sauce and two pieces of garlic bread. I ate one piece of chicken, some of my pasta and half a garlic bread. Should have ordered a shrimp salad. But anyway after that came Sex and the City 2. AMAZING! It felt good being able too  see it a day before it was released at England too!

So Traditions was today. Good start as I got a lye in, and didn’t start my class until two. Four of us from the house were all at the same bus times so dressed in our business wear we walked reluctantly to the bus stop. Business wear and Florida sunshine really do not mix. Especially when your in tights. But the actual class was ace! Loads of Disney history and heritage, videos from Walt himself and Mr. Bob Iger. Half way through we had a tour through the Magic Kingdom tunnels, even saw Belle, Cinderella, Snow White and Ariel! I so want to be one of the Disney princesses. Remind me to apply for that next time, apparently I’m no where near too tall =D We also got taken out in to Magic Kingdom. In the presence of all the guests. That was a weird experience. We had ear pieces in so we all felt very important. We gained our Disney IDs to. This gives us the free access to all the Disney parks. Whhuuu. About an hour and a half extra of talks and presentations, Mickey Mouse made a guest appearance. I nearly wet myself. He gave us our very special Disney badges. I had such a ‘certificate smile’ collecting mine. Brilliant. I loved it. It’s actually real now. After all this time. This whole thing lasted around five hours so I got back around 7:30pm. We were going to go to MK but when me and Jade got home, no one was in and we found out it shut at nine, so another night maybe.

Thanks again for reading :) I’m up at 7am tomorrow for more training so I best go to bed. Good night!!

Sarah
xxx

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Touch down!

I am now safely in Orlando! The trip was good, aside from the fact we didn’t have seat back tvs! :( But they had The Blind Side showing on the over heads which made me happy again! Leaving my family at the airport was horrible! I did promise myself the night before that I wouldn’t cry…So what did I do? Create a flood. Right in front of security, goddamnit. But I swiftly cleaned myself up and vacated the Escape lounge…Oh yes! Free everything thank you very much. I was in there for about 2 hours chillaxing, before going to my gate. All the way through the flight though I was crapping it about customs and Atlanta airport, but seriously I queued for literally 15 minutes before I got everything checked. And my visa went through smoothly. The guy was getting giddy for me, bless. And also, Atlanta isn’t as scary as I imagined. It’s so unbelievably simple. I got to my gate 2 hours before my flight, but they wouldn’t let me transfer onto an earlier one :( So I had my very first Chick – fil – A burger. YUM! is the word.

So I land, collect my bags, meet Helen and Nathan at Mears to get our shuttle to Vista Way and then we are indeed, on our way. This is where the main excitement kicks in. We had a game of “First one to spot a Disney landmark, wins”, I don’t actually know who won though.

At Vista Way there were a bunch of Cast Members standing outside waiting to greet us. After we dumped our bags with them we went into the check in pavilion to collect our keys and schedules.  I am in Chatham Square, right next to the Orlando Premium outlets…Hell yeah. Helen and Nathan got placed in Vista Way, which is quite far away :( However, I have the nicest room mates! I’m living with four Mexican girls and three other English girls. One of them even goes to UCLan! ‘It’s a small world after all’.

After a house meeting, and checking over the schedules we landed our heads on the pillow at around 11pm, which would be 4am UK time. And guess what, I wake up at 6am. Not as bad as previous times I guess.

Orientation day one was interesting. Lots of form filling and stuff and a massive Walmart trip, which we nearly didn’t make it on the bus due to all the bags. Imagine four girls carrying eight bags each standing up on a full bus. Yeah thats us. I managed to get a phone aswell, cheap and cheerful Nokia. $30 with $15 free credit. Waaahoo. Its slightly confusing to get the sim card working but hey, it works now. So if anyone wants my US number, email me :)

There was a pool party last night but I didnt end up going due to major jet lag. I was In bed for 9.30!!

Today, 27/05/2010, I found out where I will be working…MAGIC KINGDOM!!!!!!! Outdoor food cart! Waaahoo. Bring on the tan. I’m so happy. I was worried I would be in a kitchen or something, but YAY! My training starts on saturday at the Disney University. Tomorrow Traditions starts which is an insight to the whole of the Disney franchise which should be good. So anyway, for the rest of the day today we have a meeting about our benefits which should be finished for 3.30pm then we are off for a meal at Downtown Disney and to watch SATC2 =D
Also, we have a TV!!! The mexican girls managed to get us one for free! No one is complaining.

Thanks for reading!!!!!

Sarah
xxx

A whole new world…

So this is my very last post before venturing west to Orlando, FL, tomorrow. Oh my word. I don’t exactly know what my emotion is at this very moment in time. I mean, I’m obviously excited and also nervous and sad and happy; but none of these emotions have set in yet. It still doesn’t see real that I will be one of Walter Elias Disney’s employees. I’ve read books about or by Disney my whole life and every single one mentions something about dreams, and that they can come true. Now I know Disney does not lie. This is a dream come true. I keep having flash backs of times when I was two, or seven or ten or whatever and I’m stood in front of Cinderellas castle, and now I’m thinking “Wow, in a couple of days I could find out that that is my staff room” It’s such a scary thought.

But anyway, on Saturday, my parents held a leaving house party for me. It was absolutly brilliant. We had a USA theme, with USA cakes, and hot dogs and pizza and anything you could imagine. It was also the last proper drink I will have for 3 months. So thank you everyone that came. You made my last few days. Also thank you to Mum and Dad for putting the show on, you wonderful people. It was actually an emotional time too, saying goodbye to my closest family and friends. Although I havn’t cried yet, it was still sad. I think the excitement and nerves are dominating every thing at the minute.
I also said goodbye to Mr. Kieran Sweeney today. That was sad. Its his birthday tomorrow and I’m so gutted I can’t be with him as he enters his twenties. I’m sorry :( He’s flying to South Carolina next Tuesday, to work at Disney’s Hilton Head Island resort, so a massive good luck to you!

I just finished my packing too…I added a few bits to my list including sun cream and an England flag, considering  I’ll be supporting my country from another.  I can also stick things on it like photos and notes etc. instead of on the walls. My case weights 18Kg now. It feels so much heavier. I just hope I don’t get place on a top floor, like at uni. 1st day my Mum and I lugged boxes and cases up 4 flights of stairs at least 6 times. My arms didn’t work for weeks.

So, the next time I post will be in the USA. I’ll try to update you in Atlanta, if I’m calm enough. If not it will be at WALT DISNEY WORLD WHUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!.

Thanks for reading, see ya real soon!!

Sarah
xxx

Packing.

Oh my, what a pain in the derrière. It probably wouldn’t have been as bad if I hadn’t just, literally, just moved out of my flat. Packing to unpack, to pack again and then unpack again. PAIN. It’s taken me 3 days so far, but to be fair things have been getting washed so every other piece of clothing/toiletry/linen has had to wait for the suitcase door to be closed.

I may have slightly over packed (I will list my things in a couple of seconds). I kind of had to unpack all my stuff a few times to find the smallest possible way each thing could be folded to be able to fit everything in. However, it isn’t my clothes fault, it’s the stupid sleeping bag. A few people have told me not to bother as the temperature will be enough; but don’t forget the air con. I have been to Orlando, a grand total of 12 times, before and they really whack the air con right up. Also, it is quite costly to purchase bedding in the states. I don’t know why, but it is. My theory is, if I can fit clothes and shoes and what not on top of my bedding, I know I will have space to come back with as I will be leaving all that there :)

So the main things that I’ve packed and some that I may have forgotten are:
Bed Linens (Quilt cover, mattress protector, bottom sheet)
20 Tops (Including 2 which I will be travelling in and 2 business shirts)
3 Skirts (Including 1 pencil skirt for Traditions)
6 Pants (Including 1 pair of leggings and 1 business style trousers)
2 Dresses (1 summery and 1 formal)
2 Bikinis
2 Pj’s
7 Pairs of shoes (Including 1 business pair, 1 pair for walking round the theme parks and 1 formal pair)
Tights and  socks (Just in case…Tights are unbelievably hard to get hold of in the states, and they are expensive)
Straighteners (Not all GHD’s will work in the states)
Card reader (For transferring those all important photos to your laptop)
Chargers (Ipod, DS, Phone, laptop etc)
Bag (Medium sized for carrying round the parks. Small enough not to get in the way, big enough to fit a bottle of water in)

That’s pretty much what’s in my suit case. Don’t forget you can take a small cabin case with you as hand luggage as well as you regular bag. Use it to put a set of business clothes in just in case your main luggage (god forbid) goes missing. Business clothes are the hardest to get hold of in the states. Also, don’t forget the liquids restrictions; Nothing permitted over 100ml or 100g. And if your taking make up on board with you place it in a clear plastic bag. God I sound like an airport commercial. Oooh I also squeezed my pillows in that little case too ;) Quite a handy bag I would say.

So here it is. 3 months of my life packed away in 3 bags. Just my laptop to join them.

Hope this helps some of you. And if I have forgotten something, anything, let me know!!!
Thanks for reading!!

Sarah
xxx

Last day of the first year!

Today the one week countdown begins!!! Excitement overload! But first about my weekend. It has been a very emotional one indeed. Sunday was my last day in work for 3 months, so I imagined it would be quite fun, slightly laid back (as far back as I could go without there being no point in having me there) and very Disneyfied. However, one hour into my shift, our best friend the ash cloud arrived. If you didn’t already know, I work at Manchester airport, so this puff of crap can make things quite eventful. The air-space ban was due to come into play at 1pm, so all the trans Atlantic flights were trying to hurry up out of the airport before being grounded, meaning some went before their actual departure times…This caused passengers to either run to the gates in stampedes or completely zone out and forget who their flying with. Which also meant absolutely no one came in the shop. After 1pm the airport closed, film crews arrived and all terminals resorted to ghost town. Seriously it was eerie. On went the Disney songs on full blast, and we got on with some work ( cleaning, stocking) whilst having a song and dance. Come 5pm Mr. Boss rang and said we could go home as the airport wouldn’t be reopening within the hours we were supposed to be there. Waaahoo. For a goodbye/celebratory drink we ventured to the Airport pub to watch all the planes take off…Lol. So that was my last day in work.

Today was moving out day. In the past few weeks I have been taking things back home so I wouldn’t have as much to carry; I kind of forgot that buying more stuff after you’ve taken things home makes nothing easier. So there was a lot of stuff to cram into the car…but Dad and me managed just fine. It was the sorting out, when I got home that was a pain. I’m still doing it now! I started packing too today. Even though I bought lots of new stuff, I still have quite alot of room. I’m very impressed with myself!! =D

Moved out and finished work, started the packing and working on the tan, I just need to photocopy all my documents, transfer some cash into my Caxton FX card and say goodbye to all my family and friends. I dread the morning at the airport, just about to part with my parents…If there’s a river that forms from Manchester airport Terminal 2, I apologise now. I suppose I wont be the only one.

Actually, before I forget, I had an idea for bedding!! If any of you have an old sleeping bag, unfold it and cover it with a quilt cover. This will save you spending a fortune on a quilt when your out there or using a thick one, and also you have to pack less clothes to fit it in your case! So if you leave your sleeping bag in the US after your end date, you have more room in your case to bring back goodies!! Tadaaahhh!!

Anyway, back to unpacking my stuff to pack it back again!

Thanks for reading,
Sarah
xxx

“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” – Walter.E.Disney

Less than 2 weeks to go. Oh my! I have almost finished my shopping and packing up my uni room, then it’s home for a week…and then, the most exciting day in the universe is here! Waaahoo! You can tell its close as I’m already planning my airport outfit. I need to wear something casual, comfy, warm enough for British weather but cool enough for the Floridian tropics. That may be a tricky one but I have a few things in mind.
I ordered my dollars today. I must say the rates a rubbish, but I found a decent website that has the same pick up and delivered currency of $1.46 to the pound, unlike some which differ, and also they do free next day delivery…It’s called The Change Group. Click here for the website! I said in a previous post the crowncurrencyexchange.com was the best rates, it still is but you have to have at least 2 weeks between the delivery date and your departure date. So I stupidly left it too late. But what the heck. I’m sure I can survive without an extra $2.
Helen, Nathan (my two house mates who are also flying out to Disney on May 25th) and myself held a Disney fancy dress party on Monday. Let me tell you…It was AMAZING! Everyone had brilliant costumes and we al felt like kids again with the added difference of a very large alcoholic punch. To add to the childishness we had Disney songs and pass the parcel (with drinking forfeits, which made the night messy!) But it was brilliant. Anyone having a farewell party, this is the way to do it!

If you have any questions or anything, please ask! :)

Thanks for reading guys!

Sarah
xxx

One Swing Ahead Of The Sword…

So I got a few emails from Disney themselves last night, which was a very exciting time seen as we very rarely get those special emails. They sent us really fun stuff like…reminding us about the Disney look and things to bring with us, then the transport from the airport followed by a few cheesey videos. You know, the kind of stuff that gets you proper hyped up! Then the last email just ruined it. The programme assessment fee. Forcing us to pay another $100 plus $4.50 for processing. I died a little inside. This experience is financially draining! And I’m not even there yet! Daaaaaaaaayum. To be very honest though…some people only get to do this once so I’m completely going to put my all into it =D
One of the emails had a $5 voucher for Mears shuttles from the airport, which is very nice of them. My very lovely house mates have said they will wait for me at the airport (their flight gets in before mine) so we can get the shuttle together…so if anyone gets in for 6:30pm  then you could possibly shuttle share with us! Lets just hope none of the flights are delayed!

I need to start thinking about getting some dollars to be fair. I mean, I have my card pretty much sorted as I can top that up whenever, but the cash dollar rate keeps going down. Like today the best I found was $1.51 on www.crowncurrencyexchange.com. Pretty crap really considdering this time a couple of years ago it was $2 to the £1 :(

Anyway, off to do some Iplayer catching up!

Thanks for reading…
Sarah
xxx