“Some families do not go on vacation. Others do. Either way, I do not care. I am too busy anyway.”
Some families do not go on vacation. Others do. Either way, I do not care. I am too busy anyway. Oh!! Sorry about my manners. My name is Erica, Erica Manning. As I was saying, I am very busy this summer because I have to catch up on some school work. You see, my mother and father are both explorers, and I usually go with them on their expeditions. I have seen many amazing sights, but I have missed a lot of school. Summer is my catch-up time.
Rumble, grumble. Oh dear, I think that was my tummy. In that case, I better head down to breakfast. At this moment, I was in Brazil, if you were wondering. I walked downstairs to breakfast, where I smelled something like cheese. No wonder, it was my mother. She loved cooking native dishes of the country we were in. As I got closer, the smell got stronger and stronger.
When I entered the kitchen, I curiously asked my mother, “What is this smell?”
She replied, “Erica, darling, it’s Pão de queijo, which is a little small-baked cheese flavored roll. Want to try?”
It sounded delicious, so I sat down on one of our chairs and gulped it down. It was amazing. No more rumbly tummy for me. Then, my father entered the kitchen. He had also tracked down the smell. Soon, he was gobbling those rolls down too.
“Guess what, Erica? We’re going to some place else. And this time, it’s not another city for exploring.” Now this caught my attention. My eyes were fixed on him. He continued, “Most kids your age go to this place for a summer holiday. We thought it would be nice for you.”
“Yes,” chimed in my mother. “We are going to take you to Disney World!”
I was astonished at just the thought of going there. It was supposed to be basically Mickey Mouse paradise. I remembered when I was little asking my mother and father again and again and again if we could go there. Finally, for the first time in my life, I was going to have a real summer vacation. I absolutely couldn’t wait. My head was bursting with a million questions.
The first thing that popped out was, “What! How soon? When?”
“Well, we are going to be going tomorrow at about 5:00 a.m., so you may want to go to sleep early tonight.”
This was really not a problem for me because I have been on airplanes at very early times a lot. Before I knew it, we were packing our bags.
“What should I bring?” I asked my mother.
“Make sure you bring some clothes that are good for walking with, and you might want to bring your Mickey Mouse ears, too.”
Obediently, I packed them and stuffed my favorite book, Robin Crusoe, in too. I couldn’t wait for the time to come. I got my wish. Since the plane we were going on was too crowded, we were put on an earlier plane right that night. When I woke up, I was soaring above Florida. All of the cars and buildings looked like little toy blocks to me.
An announcement came over the speaker. The captain commanded, “Please put your seat belts on for landing.” I looked at my seat belt. Sure enough, it was fastened. Must have been mother or father.
I told my father excitedly, “We’re landing? I can’t wait to see my first sight.”
Once we landed, I was jumping with joy. It was all kind of a blur, but I do remember getting into our hotel. It had long, silk curtains and a nice mini bedside table with all my necessities. I soon drowsed off on a very comfortable bed. After what I think was two or three hours, I was woken by my mother who was wide awake.
“Rise and shine, sleepyhead. It’s a special day today! You’re going in the shower after your father.”
I yawned. “What time is it,” I asked.
“It’s 7:30, we let you sleep in. You do look very tired.”
Once we did all the preparations, which seemed to go on forever, we finally headed out the door to Disney World. We jumped into a rented car and road all the way to Disney World. I could not wait for my first ride! Ta-da, there it was, the legendary amusement park I have been dreaming about since I was little. I couldn’t figure out what to do first. I ended up doing Aladdin and his magic carpets. It was amazing. You got to control your own magical carpet. We were all tired out after this amazing day, but we had one more stop to go. The gift shop, of course! I wanted to get a special pair of Mickey Mouse ears for my collection, but we could sense something was wrong when we stepped into the shop. We saw someone who looked very important pacing and mumbling under his breath. He seemed very unhappy.
I walked up to him and asked, “What is wrong?”
“You would never understand. My Mickey Mouse ears designer all of a sudden has gotten very ill with some disease, I don’t remember. She’ll be alright. Though the ears parade is tomorrow, and if I can’t find another substitute, the ears parade can’t go on.”
“Maybe our Erica can be a help,” my father said.
“We always knew she was a good designer,” my mother added in.
As he was making up his mind, I was bursting with anticipation. I really hoped he would let me do it.
“Fine,” he said. “What does she charge?”
“I’ll do it for nothing,” I replied. “It’s an honor.”
When I got home that night with my new designers pad and a job to do, I felt like I could fly. But that feeling didn’t last so long. As I carefully examined the paper, all of a sudden these numbers didn’t really make sense. Neither did all the graphs. I had to call on my mother and my father. And I still didn’t understand. Then, at around one in the morning, I turned it over. Ooooh, I thought. All that time I was having so much fuss over that one little mistake. It was turned over the wrong way! Then, I saw how sensible it was. I got to work knowing I didn’t have much time. I was feeling a little anxious. Though, now that I understood it, it was much easier. I made one Mickey Mouse ears with only one bow in the center. They weren’t pink, they were rainbow. In another one, I put a unicorn horn in the middle. I hoped that Mr. I don’t know his name would like them.
Even though I stayed up practically all night designing those ears, I thought it was fun. In the morning, I got the designs back to the director. We were supposed to meet up in front of the gift shop at seven. I could practically bounce off the walls. I felt like I was on the top of the world. I put my little pad in my little satchel. For some reason, I always knew that would serve a purpose when we went to Disney World, so I packed it.
My parents and I arrived at the gift shop at 6:55. My father always insisted on being there early. I saw from the distance a man coming toward us. He looked exactly like the director. He was the director!
So, then he got to the gift shop. I handed him my designs. I crossed my fingers that he would like them and put them in the ear parade.
As he looked at them, I could see a smile slowly spreading over his face.
“They’re fantastic!” he exclaimed, once he was finished scanning them. “Will you design the ears every single year for my parade? This is even better than my old designer.”
I couldn’t say no. Even though he was a middle-aged man, he looked as excited as a six-year-old on Christmas Day. I couldn’t let him down, so I replied, “Yes.” After all, it was enjoyable once I figured out I had the pad the wrong way.
“Little did you know, that you had averted a huge disaster. There could have been no ears in the ear parade.”
“Thank you. It was a pleasure. It was a real pleasure.”
“You know what,” my mother told me as we were leaving Disney World, “I knew it always a good idea to let a designer know about your talent.”
“This is for you,” my father said as he was holding up amazing gold Mickey Mouse ears with my name written on it in cursive.
It was a perfect day. I couldn’t wait to go back to Disney World.