The Disney World Adventure

Anonymous

Throughout my childhood I can recall many memories that caused emotional delight as well as emotional devastation. My memories go back as early as conquering my fears of sleeping in the dark to acknowledging I was never going to learn how to skate. Those few examples don't compare to the one childhood experience that still haunts me today.

I couldn't wait for my family and I to take our annual vacation. It was during those times that I enjoyed myself most. I had anticipated this vacation to be the best. After all, I was going to the greatest place in the world. Little did I know I was about to embark on a journey that would leave a scare in my memory, permanently. The incident took place more than twelve years ago, yet I can recall the date and time as if it were yesterday. The date, Saturday, June 13, 1987; the time, 2:00 in the afternoon. The sun was at its peak and it felt as if it was hot enough to fry an egg in the middle of the street.

As the large doughy hand reached down to grab mine, I began to panic. My palms began to sweat and I could feel my heart pumping wildly. This giant monstrosity before me was huge. I'd never been so frightened. The closer the hand got to mine the more intense my heart beat. The faster my heart beat the more frightened I became. I could hear my mother's sweet, faint voice from beside me saying, "Go ahead, honey, shake his hand." I remember looking at her and looking at the hand getting closer to me and immediately taking off. I wasn't running to escape fear. I felt as if I was running to save my life. I ran through hordes of people. People who were talking so loudly I couldn't hear myself think. I had no idea where I was going. The sweet smell of cotton candy was in the air. I could feel gum underneath my shoes and I could see traces of peanuts on the ground. I continued to run faster and faster. As I continued to run I could hear a song repeating the same words over and over again. The words were simple yet very agitating. It's a small world after all, it's a small world after all, it's a small world after all, it's a small world after all. Those words rang in my mind then and I can still hear them today.

There were lots of other kids around that looked to be my age having the time of their lives. Yet I was beyond frustration and I would even say I was having the worst time in my life. I eventually slowed down to take a closer look at my surroundings. Just when I thought it was safe I saw another giant coming my way. This giant was almost identical to the one that had approached me before but, it wore a dress with polka dots on it and a big red bow was sitting at the top of its head. It appeared as though it was trying to get me, too. It's funny because over the hundreds and thousands of voices in the air I could, again, hear my mother's voice. The sweet, faint, sound of her voice I had heard once before had changed into a voice of frustration and anger. The truth of the matter was that she was having to go through the same crowds of people I was going through to catch me. She was pleading for me to stop. She didn't understand that my feet were unable to stop running. She didn't understand that each time I tried to stop another giant quickly approached me with a huge smile, resembling that of the Joker from Batman. She didn't realize I had to continue my journey into the unknown. I had to run as if I was on some great mission for the FBI. This great mission would decide whether I lived or died.

Something strange happened next. I thought I had lost the giants and that I was safe. I said to myself in a whisper that if I could run up the approaching steps to take a look out at what was going on behind me I would