Friday, January 24, 2014

Fairy Godmother in Training

If you read my last post, you would know my current predicament. At least I was trying, but I was also doing it all in church so I'm sure that was a sign to pay attention in sunday school. Regardless, the show must go on.
So in the spirit of good blogging, I find it fitting to not post anything for a while. Its like a cliff hanger and leaves everyone guessing as to what could be occupying your time. Besides, what even is a blog unless it's forgotten about for a period of time. Well I can't really say I forgot; my mom and other relatives made sure of that. I've just been busy. (side note: I have rewritten this thing at least four times because my opinion of my job keeps changing)
I am a fairy godmother in training. Well, I'm training to be in training so technically I'm either training to be a fairy godmother in training or I'm a fairy godmother in training in training. As my name tag states, I'm earning my ears. I had my first day on the floor all by myself this past Wednesday and I can only say that it was an experience. Everything is just so...magical. The room is magical. The FGiTs are magical (fairy godmothers in training). Just everything is magical. We are always in character all the time. That's just what Disney does. Everything we do is intentional right down to the words we use. My favorite part of the day is when I get to visit the castle. When I work eight hours, I get to go twice for thirty minutes! I tend to avoid going to the dungeon at work because lets be real: no one likes the dungeon. For some reason, I can only ever go to my own dungeon never anyone else's and especially not a public one! Sometimes, little girls will bring Pumba with them to the salon and he's something we don't want to deal with. Whenever we find a girl that has him, we have to treat it carefully so as not to spread it. We find Pumba a lot with foreigners especially the Brazilians and the French. The good thing is we get to go to costuming to change just to be safe. Oh, did I fail to mention we are all in costume?? I feel like mine is the best one Disney has by far.

Yeah just be very very jealous you don't get to wear this for ten hours everyday. Yes I did say ten because that's the average number of hours I work a day. Today was eleven and tomorrow is twelve. Just one of the many perks of being an intern! The good thing is, I like all my coworkers. Besides me and the four other cp (college program) girls, its all middle aged Colombians/Latinos/Puerto Ricans ect; and everyone talks in Spanish or Portuguese very very fast. After training, I found myself going over techniques in my head and as I said things, they were in the same Colombian accent as my trainer, Patty. They laugh when I try and speak some Spanish, but I feel like I'm growing on them. Rosa even invited me to her Superbowl party next Sunday!

Speaking of training, I should probably mention what I actually do. As a FGiT, I make dreams come true. As cheesy as that sounds, I see it happen every day.  Here is a brief rundown: I greet the princess as she approaches my chair that the FGiT at the front assigned her to, I situate her and check for Pumba, let her pick a hairstyle (check with mom and she usually changes it) and all the other decisions with it like colors and accessories, complete the hairstyle and makeup, paint her nails depending on the package purchased, pixie dust the crap out of her, then do the big reveal. The end is my absolute favorite part! We call a royal photographer and they capture that exact moment when the princess opens her eyes and sees her transformation. That face is priceless. So are the faces on the family. I have seen fathers get a bit weepy at their darling baby girls looking all grown up. That moment really makes all the frustration with knotty and food crusted hair all worth it. I desperately wish I could take some pictures of being on the job, but that completely breaks character and a few Disney laws. Oh if you could only see how completely wonderful some of these princesses are! Just precious bright young faces looking at you with such wonder and pure delight. For some families, this is their only trip ever to Disney World or even America. Considering the time of year, this moment is what these princesses screamed over during Christmas. We have so many birthday princesses, whether its the actual day or a gift from a birthday months ago. Its so amazing to talk to these princesses and their parents about what brought them here to me today. I do feel a ton of pressure having their big dream placed in my hands. They just look to me to do it all perfect and expect me to make their transformation a total success. Granted, no one has complained and there have been no failures yet, but I just don't want to let them down! Some families save their whole life to get to this exact moment! I do feel a lot better when I get that excited hug from Cinderella or a kiss blown to me from Snow White. It really is all about the princess, even when there is a magical mom who clearly brought her daughter just because our age limit is twelve. 
I feel like I finally have the hairstyles down. Now that I have pictures of, but on mannequins.

My roommate was such a great sport when I was training and she let me practice on her!

It's quite bizarre to be here in Florida making magical moments for so many people. Last night, when the boutique was starting to close, my manager sent a few of us out in the World of Disney store to do some pixie dusting (side note: I work at Downtown Disney in the World of Disney store, not the castle in Magic Kingdom. There's two boutiques. Since we're public, we have just under 200 appointments a day). So I totally played up my character considering I could actually interact with people outside the boutique. Plus, I found a decent way to style my hair with that delightful headband we have to wear.

So anyways, I went out all bubbly asking people if they'd like some pixie dust. I totally forgot how many foreigners Disney World gets! I felt so stupid after talking to someone only to have them look at me super confused then say something fast in their language and run away hiding their children. With any public place, there's that great species of preteens that like to mess around. One herd approached me and they were pretty tall, but most people are taller than me. They were asking obviously dumb questions and practicing pick up lines on me while I tried my best to stay in character. Soon, I was circled. Everywhere I turned, there was a shaggy haircut that wanted pixie dust and my number. I saw one of the main DTD (Downtown Disney) coordinators watching the whole scene unfold. Once the tweens dispersed, the coordinator came up to me just so happy. He expressed his appreciation for my consistent enthusiasm (he had been observing me pixie dust others as well) and for staying in character. He filled out one of these lovely cards, which are a very big deal. They recognize outstanding work performance and go on your record!

Plus, the other coordinator he was with asked if I had ever thought about auditioning to be a princess because I could fit the part! Well, maybe I have just once or twice. Speaking of being a princess, the sweetest thing happened today! While I was doing a birthday princesses hair, another cp was painting her nails and asked her who her favorite princess was. The princess immediately turned around and pointed right at me. She said, "She is because I love her and she's beautiful!" Can I just tell you, I was already feeling a bit weepy over the last princess who told me I was the nicest fairy godmother she ever had, but this was it for me! That's what makes me okay with theses stupid twelve hour shifts! If I can have at least one moment like that a day, I can work as long as you'd like!
Needless to say, not every princess (or mother) is so sweet and I tend to measure time based on appointments. My roommates and others will often receive snapchats like this:

And, when I have to get up at six to catch the seven o'clock bus to make it to work by eight, I send out things like this:

At least I'm alive and well and mostly loving what I do for fifty hours a week. And when things with the princesses aren't going to well, there is always our next door location to help brighten my day.

Nothing like a free sample from Ghirardelli to make you forget about the tantrum you just had to handle while cleaning up Ariel's jellyfish gel. And tonight marks a momentous day: I finally got to refill the wands during closing! I doubt it will happen again because I enjoyed myself a bit too much playing with the pixie dust.

It was everywhere and it sticks like you have no idea. This was AFTER scrubbing my hands. My backpack is just straight up glitter. Not to mention I need to go to costuming extra early tomorrow to pick up a new skirt. Doubt I will have much sleep tonight, but at least I remembered to finish this! 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Blogging from your phone

Here's a tip: DON'T BLOG FROM YOUR PHONE! It doesnt save and you waste your time writing a whole post just to have it magically not show anywhere. Needless to say, my clever post about my new job is gone so here I go to try and rewrite it.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Orlando, Florida

I have always wanted to travel, but actually facing leaving home was one of the scariest things I have ever done. I deal with anxiety on the daily, so needless to say getting on a plane for the first time in eleven years was a bit overwhelming. There are no words to describe the fear I felt as my flight left LAX late Tuesday night. I wrote down a few thoughts as we flew.

There is no way this plane will take off. We are going way too slow. We're going to die. I don't know any of these people, but we're in this together. Why are we turning? We need to go back. Shoot, my mom told me I left my towel. I can air dry. This seat is tiny. (Mind you I have claustrophobia). This lady smells like cherries. Oh my gosh my stomach is on the floor. There's no way we're in the air. My ears are going to explode. Los Angeles is so pretty at night. Ew, gross that's all pollution? Hey I can see my house from here. Is that the ocean or a dark field? Where are we now? I swear this is like that one episode of breaking bad. My pillow is really soft. Pretzels or peanuts? I need to pee, but can't get up. Texas is huge. Now this seat is cozy. Wait we're already descending. Gah my ears! Florida looks like spread out islands. There's so much water. We're all going to splat on this landing strip. Brace for impact. I can't feel my face. Please let me get off now. I look 50 shades of ratchet.

We landed a little after 5 am eastern time. I couldn't check into my apartment until 8. When I was reunited with my 100 pound luggage, I paid for a cart so I could explore this massive airport. I felt a bit like Mr. Potter looking for platform 9 3/4.

God loves me because I found a Krispy Kreme right as it opened. I also stopped at a Starbucks. (side note: my roommate had a Chipotle bag and I almost cried). Thanks Florida for having some places I love.
I passed my remaining time by talking to security and making conversation with janitors. That place was a ghost town. After I waited way too long for a shuttle to get me (sleep with one eye open mears transportation), I made it to Vista Way apartments for check-in. The lines were long and it was cold. Little did I know, they were also taking ID pictures. I look like a tired cock-eyed fish with a weird glimmer of aspiration in one eye.
And yes they label you based on the wonderful age of 21 because if you're younger, you're placed in "wellness" housing (non-alcoholic). They have rules and regulations that are comparable to that of BYU-Idaho which I didn't think was possible. I'm not complaining because I think its great. They have constant security at the gate and you can't enter without your designated housing ID which will help put my mother's nerves to rest about strangers.
Wednesday was everyone's first day so there were plenty of mix-ups, but leave it to me to sleep through casting. I wanted to vomit and cry and set something on fire all at the same time. Thankfully I found a bus that took me to casting, but once I arrived, half of the booths were shut down. They told me to come back in the morning at 9 which didn't sound great, but there were only a few of us the next morning so it went by fast. BONUS: met important people, did some networking, and the doorknobs were top notch.
At our housing meeting, I met a video production manager for the Disney company. I talked to him after and he gave me an email to contact to set up shadowing at an upcoming event for the program! I was beyond excited to get that and can't wait to try and work more with this.
My apartment is decent. My roommates are perfect (we spent last night at the jacuzzi then worked out then watched girl code it was great). The weather is amazing. My job is fantastic. I start training tomorrow. I'm going to Magic Kingdom on Monday. I think I'm going to really like it here.

Thanks, Mom

I have a lot to thank my mother for. I mean that in the most sincerest of ways. She birthed me, raised me, dealt with me, and loved me through it all. I would not be who I am without her and that includes literally everything. I can thank her for getting me Facebook active and even have her to thank for this very blog. Through all the nagging that mothers deal out, there is a lot of good to be had by taking their advice. Lets keep our fingers crossed and pray that this is one of those times. So, here's to you mom. I started a blog.