Dear Jasper and Kestrel,
Last night Auntie Olga, Cousin Liza and I had such an adventure. We drove all the way to San Jose for dinner and a show! The dinner was at Bluefin Sushi, a very pretty and delicious Japanese restaurant. We had the sushi sampler and Liza ate all of her California Roll. Liza’s glass of apple juice came with lots of ice, which she hates, so Olga fished it out …with chopsticks! The idea of having too much ice on our way to and show on ice gave us the giggles. I opted for hot tea, which felt very good on my Friday-afternoon-teacher-tired throat.
The GPS in Auntie Olga’s phone had found the restaurant, so we let it guide us to the parking lot, as well. There were only about 15 minutes until the show started, so the lot was almost full. We got Liza into her full Princess Elsa finery in and beside the car…pink and blue winter boots, sparkly dress over her school clothes, and a long blonde braid. We joined the flow of tiny princesses and their (mostly female) guardians and headed down the sidewalk.
The lobby at the top of the impressive staircase was packed with people, souvenir booths, photo booths, and snack stands.
We didn’t need any of it, so we high-tailed it to our seats. Having just come UP a long flight of steps, it made sense that we would go DOWN another, into the ice arena used by the San Jose Sharks hockey team and known as The Shark Tank. This evening it was less shark and much more princess…. magical lighting, mysterious sets tucked up on the high ceiling waiting their turn, and hundreds of spinning, sparkling, flashing lights on toys held by children.
I was amazed at how a hockey arena could be filled with light, lightness and color. Lights under the ice, moving light effects and music turned what is usually a noisy, collision-filled space with Disney magic.
I have been a Disney fan most of my life. The Disneyland Park opened when I was one, and I can’t count the number of times I have visited. I think I have seen every Disney movie at least once, and I can sing a frightening number of songs by heart.
Seeing this show reminded me of why I love Disney. The stories are about following your dreams, taking risks, and realizing your heart’s desire. True, in the 1950s the dream was finding your Prince Charming and holding on forever, but the stories have grown. They now encompass dreams of devotion to family, personal empowerment, literacy over ignorance, and embracing one’s different-ness. Mulan, Merida, Belle and Elsa are my heroes. And they were all on the ice in San Jose.
I will tell you more about the show tomorrow!