Oh, Mouseketeeria beneath Magic Kingdom. How I value our daily lunch dates! From your Disneyfied soda machines to your Subway sandwich station, I know I will never go hungry. (And although your lunch choices are not healthy, I am too ravenous to care.)
Somehow, even during the noon lunch rush, a seat is always open for me, providing a key vantage point from which to observe the fellow peasants and princesses that nosh alongside me. Oh, Mouseketeeria! How you bring everyone together!
The trainees with their red “Earning My Ears” name tags can be seen with their trainers, nodding and nibbling at their food. A herd of Entertainment cast hurries by, made up to the nines, the dancers walking as though their calves ache. Old friends catch up. Loners on lunch breaks read, text or blog (self shout out, woohoo!)
A multitude of languages can be heard conversing. Disney lingo is tossed about with casual indifference. “I got an ER,” someone brags. (Early release.) I stare at the clock, the larger than life Disney-decorated timekeeping machine that watches us come and go. I still have five hours to go, most likely even more.
But oh, Mouseketeeria! How you provide entertainment as I nosh on my buffalo chicken wrap. Look, there’s Tinker Bell with a salad in her hands, Belle close behind with a carton of grapes and a cup of coffee.
I stare at my sandwich.
I look back at their salads.
Back at my sandwich.
Apparently princesses must maintain their girlish figures…?
But oh, Mouseketeeria. You are indiscriminate. You will not judge the third cup of coffee I’ve purchased here today. (Shoutout to the awesome lady who gave me a free cup this morning! You made my day.)
No, Mouseketeeria, I owe you. You have preserved my sanity, given me a break from the madness over the grill, the overpowering aroma of marinated salmon.
But look! Here comes Snow White. Soon, Peter Pan wanders by. He’s truly awesome and unashamedly flamboyant. (You have to be, wearing that hat. That takes some confidence.)
Peter sits at the table adjacent to mine. “Don’t stare,” I order myself, as though sitting near a celebrity.
Yet before I know it, my break is over. I must don my apron and get back to work. Goodbye, Peter Pan!
I need not worry. Oh, Mouseketeeria, you’ll be here when I return tomorrow. My love for you shall never die.