Rather than subject you to another few hundred words of banality surrounding my dislike for going to work, and joyous news of more stuff breaking and going wrong, I thought I’d go back, way back in time to where this very unhealthy obsession with Florida started.
I’ve told the story many times about being talked into a Miami holiday rather than Majorca by a high street travel agent, and he does have a lot to answer for. Whilst at my Mum and Dad’s earlier today I had a look at some old photo albums from that trip, and whilst this is no attempt at a trip report, as I can barely remember last week never mind 1980, here are some of the highlights.
We flew (I think) with Air Florida, which of course is now long gone. The US air crew were our first real exposure to real life Americans, and they blew our minds with their service and film star looks. For a boy of nine they probably started my puberty!
(By the way, these photos, are actually photos of photos so please excuse the quality)
During the flight those old enough to, partook in the Miami Whammy.
Those not old enough simply practiced their Jimmy Osmond impression. My collars actually cut our flight time by about an hour.
This photo is at the end of the flight and includes some tired travelers and a tank top.
We actually stayed in Miami for almost all of our holiday, but crucially we drove up to Orlando for two nights to visit what was at that time the only theme park on Disney property. Epcot was being built at the time. Whilst much of the trip is now long forgotten, something obviously stuck with me, and rooted itself deep within my subconscious. Much of what we saw and did is still there today, but it is also lovely to look back and see how things have evolved since.
Some things are no longer available. This was taken inside the castle, which I think is still inaccessible.
You don’t see this guy wandering about so much either.
If you are below a certain age then this next photo won’t make any sense whatsoever. I can still remember going on this one….
For some reason we seem to have bumped into Earth, Wind and Fire in the Magic Kingdom.
Back in these days, my Dad was the party leader rather than myself. You can tell that as he has the balloon of authority.
Another ride that is no more is of course the Skyway thing that you could go on over the park. It closed many years ago amidst rumour and urban legend all around folks losing life and limb trying to get it to stop.
We did of course meet some characters, and in those days you could do so just wandering around. There was none of this waiting in line for three hours, or Fastpasses. Donald might just walk right by and be grabbed for a picture like this.
Of course, like all future Williams trips, ultimately everything began and ended with food. We started as we meant to go on.
Having spent a few hours looking at these photos, I have to say it hasn’t eased any of the pain of not being able to go this year. However, that is no reason not to look back on lovely memories whether they are from 1980 or just last summer. That is after all much of the reason that we all go is it not?
The place was very different back in 1980 as indeed were we. More parks and resorts have sprung up, expanding the World beyond recognition, but one thing is constant and that is the way the place gets into your bloodstream, infects you with the desire to return and makes you all misty eyed at the sight of a firework set to a Disney tune. I hope the break from the norm has been welcome, and that the old Disney stuff was of interest.
Rest assured next week I’ll be right back on the moaning bandwagon heading for nervous breakdown bay.
Till the next time…..