It's kind of fun to do the impossible
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them" - Walt Disney.
Welcome to the wonderful world of Disney. Where all your dreams come true!
Welcome to the idea of Walt Disney.
Disney Land is a special place in every child's heart. It is a place where dreams come true, a land of magical adventures where anything, and everything is possible. When you visit this place your heart is filled with excitement and joy! You live out your wildest dreams. There is mystery and magic around every corner. Life is grand in Disney Land! Your dreams become your reality. Fast forward a few decades, you are an adult now. You have responsibilities to tend to, you have planted a garden, you have nestled your roots, maybe you have children of your own. When you think of Disney Land what comes to mind? Has your perception of the once magical awe-inspiring place changed?
This morning I posted a status on facebook asking people what they thought when they heard "Disney Land". I was expecting this.....
"a large power hungry profit driven corporation".
Surprisingly I also received this.... "magical, clean, timeless, excitement, adventure, endless possibilities"..... Thank god. They are both correct. Disney is a corperate money making machine, rich off our dreams. And Disney is a magical place, rich in wonder and possibilities.
Let's face it, much like the wonder that is Disney, our dreams have aged. In some sense they have become ugly, tainted with power, money and greed.
Our idea of Disney Land is different from when we were a child, we have a new perception. A more realistic approach to the once magical kingdom that is Disney. No longer blinded by optimistic ideologies, we see the world for what it really is....We see you Disney. We see through the glitz and glamour, and we question it.
My point, is when did we catch on? When was it that we stopped seeing the world through the magical eyes of a child? When did we grow up?
Walt Disney built his forture on an idea. The idea that dreams really do come true.
For a moment, let's imagine.....
The original idea of Disney was born in 1955 by Walt Disney. As Walt sat at a bench watching his daughters play at a small amusement park he observed people's reactions to different rides. He noticed the children's parents had nothing to do. They would grow anxious to go home, while their child were still having fun, and playing. Had we forgotten how to play? "Walt Disney had a vision. It was a vision of a place where children and parents could have fun together. The more Walt dreamed of a "magical park," the more imaginative and elaborate it became." ***** www.justdisney.com
This is where Walt was conjuring. He would build a new type of amusement park, one where children and their parents could play together. A place where everyone was welcome, a playground for all ages. A place where no matter your age, dreams came true.
A place where the adult you, would meet the child self. You could say Walt was a dreamer, Disney Land was expensive and elaborate. Walt once said "I could never convince the financiers that Disneyland was feasible, because dreams offer too little collateral." He had many obstacles in his way. To create a place where anything, and everything is possible, would take everything and anything he had in him. It was not going to be easy.
In 1955, a mere 12 months after construction began Disney Land was open to the public. Opening day was a disaster. A 15 day heat wave raised temperatures up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Due to a plumbers strike few of the water fountains were operating, asphalt still steaming only being laid the night before. After opening day, the heat wave continued and almost destroyed the park.
Against all odds, Walt Disney's dream lived on. The park did eventually pick up and by 1965, ten years after opening day, 50 million visitors had come through the gates.
I can only imagine opening day with Walt. A frantic, chaotic mess of a man with a dream. Having investing everything into one idea, this had to work. There was no back up plan, no safety net. Thousands of people relying on him and his work. And yet, Walt never gave up, and his dreams became his reality. I have a special place in my heart for the person that, against all odds, makes their dreams a reality. The simple act of doing it, makes all the difference.
"the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do." - Steve Jobs founder of Apple
Besides the fact that Disney Land is now a billion dollar franchise that many of us adults no longer visit as a "happy, healthy place" (maybe we are envious, I personally would kill to live in a castle there), there is an important life lesson here. Walt's idea of establishing communal grounds between parents and their children is a lesson many of us have forgotten. We most relate to children when we play. I respect his vision of unifying the old with the young, a gentle reminder to play on the playground, no matter the age, no matter how silly you look, just play.
On June 19th 2015, Walt Disney Pictures released the animation film "Inside Out". The emotional truths presented by Pixar and Disney in this film present phenomenal life lessons. Again, revisiting the child self and the many "firsts" we experience. The film's leading lady is Joy (the emotion of Joy inside her "persons" brain, her person is called Riley), followed by Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust.
"A girl named Riley is born in Minnesota, and within her mind, five personifications of her core emotions— Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Fear, and Anger—come to life. The emotions live in Headquarters, Riley's conscious mind, where they influence Riley's actions and memories via a control console. Her new memories are housed in colored orbs, which are sent into storage at the end of every waking period. The most important or "core" memories are housed in a hub in Headquarters and power five "islands", each of which reflects a different aspect of Riley's personality." - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inside_Out_(2015_film)
Riley's core memories as a child shape her personality as she ages into her adolescence youth. Is this true? What are some of the first memories you can remember? Do they reflect the person you are today? Have they shaped you, whispered hopes and dreams to you throughout your life? Have they guided you intuition in the choices you make today?
The core memories from my childhood have shaped me into the woman I am today, writing this. So what does "Island Ideology" have to do with Walt Disney's dream of Disney Land?