Tales from Disney World – Hannah Deyo

Where do I even begin?  How does someone describe the best time of their life, and that the time has only lasted two months with four still left to enjoy? 

These and many other questions constantly go through my mind as I drive under the “Walt Disney World” sign on my way to work, or when I enter the parks on days off.  

The biggest question, however, is when did my life become a walking dream?  

Nothing could have ever prepared me for moving my life 1500 miles away from my family and starting a new job for one of the biggest companies in the world. However, in every way possible, it was the best decision of my life.  

After passing every test and obstacle Disney and Gustavus threw at me, I was finally accepted and just had to wait until January 22 for my life to begin.  

I moved into my apartment, met my seven roommates, and started settling into my new home and family.  

Most of my life up til this point was in a ‘Disney bubble’ but a few days after moving in, I started on-the-job training, and my bubble popped.  

I discovered that I would be working and making magic at Rockin’ Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith.  

Not only do I get to wear an amazing parking attendant costume and yell “How about some backstage passes?” every three minutes in Studio C, but I met the best group of people I could have ever hoped to meet, and I am proud to call them my work family.  

A typical day in my life as a Cast Member consists of mostly 12 hour shifts that start as early as 5:30 in the morning.

“After all, who can be stressed when your boss is a mouse?” 

We get breaks, we pull rotations, we go to new positions, we operate the attraction, we make magic for the guests.  

As much as it may make me want to pull my hair out when people don’t follow the instructions or when they make the entire ride stop because they dropped their bag in the track, I never want to leave when my shift is over.  

My love for a job has never gone this deep, and I consistently ask to come in early and work late, even if it means the bags under my eyes will never go away.  

The Cast Member rewards are nice as well, but the best part is seeing everything that goes on behind stage.  

I am legally not able to disclose what goes on behind closed doors, but I can say that I will never be able to look at Donald Duck the same way again. 

I visit the parks any chance I get and have strengthened my relationship with the food there (FYI, if anyone ever visits, the Pecos Bills nachos are your new best friend).  

“Nothing could have prepared me for meeting so many amazing people and realizing how I want a future with this company.”

As much as it sounds like a fun time, the job does take a toll on many people.  

Dealing with angry, upset guests every five minutes because they are mad the wait time is so long, or having to turn a child away because they are too short breaks my heart a little each time.  

Hannah is taking communications classes through Disney College while working full time at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

But, as more people yell at me for things beyond my control, I feel my skills of dealing with people strengthening by the second.  

Also, when you see an old man throw up for literally five minutes right in front of you, it changes you and makes you stronger. 

Chocolate milk has lost its appetizing appeal for me now.

I miss Gustavus and everyone there like crazy, thinking of all the things that are going on and wondering how the semester is going for my Gustavus family, but I know that I am where I’m supposed to be.  

Everything just worked out right and I couldn’t have asked for a better semester.  

I am learning and growing so much as an individual (not to mention thriving as I can see fireworks any time I want to), and I often forget that the outside world exists and that I will have to go back to Minnesota in just a few short months.  

I’ve learned so much about how to deal with people I don’t like, guests who I have just met, and how to deal with situations with best friends or roommates that are messy. 

Nothing could have prepared me for meeting so many amazing people and realizing that I want future with this company.  

I have found my place and I never want to leave, but I am so excited to come home and talk to all my friends and family about my time here and everything I have experienced.  

Even though the days and weeks can get long when you work four 12-hour shifts, or the guests can be rude after they’ve waited in line for almost three hours for a ride, it is all worth it for the amazing experiences I have gained.  

After all, who can be stressed when your boss is a mouse?