Just yesterday I got back from my 14th trip to Disneyland Paris, this a family stay with my wife Denise and 5 year old son Lucas. Of course I have many things to talk about (you can follow the new Dedicated to DLP Instagram account for photos – username dedicatedtodlp), from a visit that saw quite a few firsts. Before I get to that however, I need to address the Cast Members of Disneyland Paris, to include everyone who works there and has worked there.
To the Cast Members of Disneyland Paris
In my previous 13 visits to Disneyland Paris I have always found you Cast Members to be as much a part of the experience as any of the rides or entertainment, and on this 14th trip that was even more the case. Without exception you were all friendly, helpful and full of Disney Spirit. This adds to our stay in Disneyland Paris so much, and many of the great memories we have involve something you have done or said.
There are some people out there who might think that is part of your job, why should I thank you for doing your job? Apart from the obvious answer that a job well done always deserves praise, I believe the Cast Members of Disneyland Paris go out of their way to go the extra mile and do more than just what is in their job description. Holidays are something we save up for, look forward to and remember for a lifetime. To spend that time away surrounded by people who are doing everything they possibly can to make it as magical as possible is absolutely brilliant, and is one of the main things that differentiates a visit to Disneyland Paris to anywhere else.
On this recent visit you were great to my wife and I, but the way you treated Lucas and how special you made him feel is something I will always be in your debt for. We taught him a few words of French and he would always try to use that when greeting Cast Members, something he would always do without fail. Whether it was going on a ride, entering a shop or having a meal, a Bonjour or Bonsoir from Lucas was received and reciprocated so wonderfully on each and every occasion during our 5 day stay. This was just the tip of the iceberg and what follows are a few, but not all, of the extra special moments that I wanted to mention.
– Lucas, before this trip, has always been afraid of characters, both in Disneyland Paris and where ever else we have encountered them. On Tuesday morning we were walking through Fantasyland and Captain Jack Sparrow walked past with his handler, upon which Lucas said Jack’s name, pretty amazed to see him in real life. The Cast Member with Jack noticed and told Lucas to follow them, as she led Jack through Fantasyland and to an undercover point where he could conduct his meet and greet out of the rain. She made sure Lucas kept up the whole time and held his land for the last stretch to make sure he didn’t fall behind. She did it in a really warm and exciting way that Lucas didn’t think twice about heading off on this chase to meet Captain Jack. Upon reaching their destination she made sure Lucas got a photo with Captain Jack, and he himself was great too. This was Lucas’ first ever character meet and photo, and only came about because of the amazing way it was handled by that particular Cast Member.
– On the same day, and just an hour so later, we had our first character meal for lunch in Cafe Mickey. Encouraged by his encounter with Captain Jack Lucas had no problem meeting Geppetto, Rabbit, Chip & Dale, Mickey Mouse and Goofy. They were all fantastic, and were very calm and friendly around him, posing for many photos and playing with him. It was after this meal that Lucas professed his love for meeting characters, something I didn’t think possible just a few hours before, but had hoped would happen one day.
– On Wednesday we were walking towards Frontierland from Main Street, U.S.A. when we saw Chip or Dale (I’ll have to check the photo to see which one) who was surrounded by people having just got off the Celebration Train. As is unfortunately the case some of the kids, and adults, had decided not to queue but to push and barge their way through in an attempt to get a photo and/or an autograph. We didn’t think we had a chance to get a photo but Lucas was happy enough to stand nearby and just watch the chipmunk at work. Not long after we’d been there, his handler looked across, stopped the surging kids who didn’t want to wait and called forward the little boy in the Star Wars jumper. That of course was Lucas and he got an unexpected opportunity to get a photo with one of those cheeky chipmunks, and his day was made.
– Being a shareholder we got to enter Disneyland Park via Salon Mickey, and on Tuesday or Wednesday (days become a bit muddled in Disney!) a really friendly female Cast Member chatted to Lucas and joked with him. When we returned on Thursday morning, she was there again, and not only made a fuss of Lucas but had also remembered his name. I was pretty shocked that someone who meets so many people throughout their day would remember the name of one small child she’d seen fleetingly 1 or 2 days ago.
I could go on as this trip was full of occasions like this and never before have I known such a high level of cast member excellence. Of course the ones we see are just the tip of the iceberg, there are all the people behind the scenes and those who have worked on making Disneyland Paris the superb holiday destination it is today. They all deserve recognition too.
So to all those Cast Members past and present, thank you for what you do and the way you do it. Thank you for making our holiday so great and for making the dreams of a 5 year old boy come true. If ever you are having a bad day, for whatever reason, just remember that what you do touches lives in a most special and magical way. Keep doing what you are doing, we as a family appreciate your work and kindness more than you will probably ever know.
Thank You Cast Members of Disneyland Paris
from Steve, Denise and especially Lucas