A reliable “happy place”


A couple of weekends ago my mother and I made a trip out to the Bay Area. And while we were there we must have hit up every shop around.
But, there was one store that I had to go into.

Right in front of us was the Disney Store and I made my mother whip inside. I know what you’re thinking: Fresno’s Fashion Fair Mall has a Disney Store — what’s the big deal?

It is true, however, that in San Francisco all the shopping is bigger and better.

As soon as I walked in the Disney store I felt like I had entered the “Happiest Place on Earth!�

The smell of cotton candy wafted about the atmosphere and the bright and cheerful colors decorated the entire store.

Disney characters were scattered everywhere.

Each character, from Tigger and Pooh to Nemo had its own section, all scattered throughout the store. I quickly skipped over to the Princess wall because it had the biggest area dedicated to little girls’ fantasies.

In case you haven’t figured out, I’m a 22-year-old who hearts Disney films.

As I turned a corner, right in the middle of the floor was a huge screen that was playing “Sleeping Beauty.�

I stood there for a good 10 minutes before realizing that I was not at home on my couch secretly pretending to be Princess Aurora.

A saleswoman tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I was finding everything okay.

I excitedly asked her if she knew when “Sleeping Beauty� was going to be put on DVD so that I could toss my VHS tape.

The woman looked at me and said, “I’m sorry. You just missed it. It was released and has already been put back into the vault possibly for another couple of years.�

I turned with tears in my eyes and my mom patted my head to tell me that everything was going to be fine.

But, I reverted back to 5 years old when all I wanted to do, was do what I wanted to do and not listen to anyone. I wanted that movie.

The Disney Store was not the happiest place anymore for me, but even though I was disappointed, I still couldn’t make myself leave the store.
I started to get drawn back into coffee mugs and hats, key chains and charms.

Before I knew it, my arms were overloaded and I started to hand my mom things to carry.

No, not everything was for me. Gosh! I do have nieces and goddaughters to think about.

But, truthfully, the majority of it was to feed my own obsession.

Needless to say, I cashed out with a receipt that tallied up to close to $100. My mom did nothing but shake her head with a slight smile.

When we turned around to leave my happy place, another worker wearing the Mad Hatter’s top hat informed me that “Peter Pan� was going to be released from the vault next week.

I looked at my mom and she knowingly nodded and we both made a mental note.

After traipsing back to the car to drop off our bags, we started on down the San Francisco streets and she started to chuckle.

When I asked her what was so funny she said that I hadn’t changed one bit.

And she was right, through many years of trying to find out the person I am and who I want to be, there are certain things that always pull me back into who I was.

And I give my thanks to Disney.

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