In the past 10 years I (Lisa) have been to WDW every summer for a 10/15 day vacation, but I’ve never written a trip report. Mainly because I don’t think I write that well, but also because when I’m in the bubble, I just relax and enjoy myself to the point I even forget to take pictures, let alone be active on social media. Why is this time different? Read along and you’ll find out!
A little bit of background first. I’m the daughter of an Air Force MSGT, Charles, who fell in love and married an Italian lady from Naples, Italy, my mother Tina, in 1952. My brother was born a couple of years later, while I waited until the family was stationed in Paris, France to come along! After living in France, California and Germany, my father retired and we moved to Italy, where I’ve spent most of my life since I was 10. My sons, DS18 and DS21 were born in Italy, but have been raised bilingual since birth.
One of my first memories is visiting Disneyland when I was 5 years old, but my attachment was formed when visiting my brother every summer in the late 1980s when he lived a little over an hour away from Epcot. We would often drive over to spend the day, and I got hooked.
Then work and family got in the way of costly intercontinental trips, so I decided to wait until my boys were old enough to enjoy all the rides before returning to WDW. I was definitely more excited than anyone in the family when we finally set foot on Main Street in May 2011. Since that memorable day, we’ve been back every summer, a break in the two glorious summer months we would spend on Cape Cod, in the beautiful home that is no longer ours.
My father passed away in March 2019, and his wish was to be buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Not a straightforward process since he died in Italy. But my brother and I were absolutely keen on making his final wish happen, and we did. This trip to WDW starts on August 13 2020, the day my sons and I flew to MCO from BWI after attending my father’s poignant burial service.
DS21, DS17 and I had arrived in the Poconos at the end of July to spend two weeks with my brother and his family. We had flown from Naples to Paris, where we stayed overnight at the Hilton which is walking distance from the Charles De Gaulle airport. I was truly incredulous that we were finally travelling after having been though 10 weeks of lockdown, during which not one but two perfectly planned trips to WDW had been cancelled, one over Easter, and one in June to celebrate DS’s 21st. The airport in Paris was eerily vacant, and no food was to be found when we landed at 8pm. I was prepared, though, so I had made a “frittata di maccheroni” before leaving home. (If you’d like the recipe feel free to PM me)
So we happily dined in our nicely appointed hotel room – me with a nice French white wine that had been offered on our Air France flight, which I squirreled away for the end of the day when I knew I’d appreciate it more. The next morning we walked back to the terminal, where we boarded our flight to Philadelphia after having a quick breakfast. I was looking forward to this trip because as a splurge, and also because I had found a tempting deal, we were flying business, for the first time in a long while since our bichon Daisy usually flies with us in cabin, and dogs are not allowed in business class. This trip, though, Daisy stayed in Naples with her daddy.
The Delta One cabin was so comfortable that I was almost sorry to leave it when we landed 9 hours later! My brother was patiently waiting for us while we worked out a missing suitcase issue, and a short ride later, mercifully with no traffic, we were lovingly ensconced in my sister in law’s warm hearth, surrounded by her incredible homemade pies and expertly mixed cocktails. We were finally back in the USA!