Mini-blog #6 – You can’t teach an old dog new tricks

OldDogI am a creature of habit.  I find something that works and I stick with it.  End of story.  This is true of my Disney travels as well.  When I prepare for a trip I buy both the Official and Unofficial Guides to the parks.  The Official Guides give us pretty color photos and trivia and all sorts of interesting information.  The Unofficial Guide gives us THE PLAN.  THE PLAN is the fully researched guide to navigating the parks based on logistic, traffic flow patterns, and attendance records.  THE PLAN is amazing and keeps us from standing in too many scary lines.  THE PLAN rocks!  It is also virtually the same year to year.  Get there when the park opens, and head immediately to Tomorrowland.  Fast Pass Space Mountain.  Ride Buzz Lightyear.  Head to Autopia.  And so on.  It is good.  However, on our last trip THE PLAN changed!

Imagine my shock and horror.  Not only did THE PLAN change, but we met family at the park and they had young children who didn’t want to follow THE PLAN.  They wanted to ride things that weren’t even on THE PLAN.  Plus they wanted to see characters who, as you know, have the power to completely disrupt any plan known to exist.  I had to (gasp) be flexible.  The shocking thing was: even without a plan I (double gasp) had fun!  Did we spend more time in line than we usually do?  Absolutely yes.  Did I mind?  Honestly, I did a little bit.  Was the time spent at the park with family (including 8 year-old twins) worth it?  Without a doubt.  Will I happily relinquish THE PLAN next time?  Not on your life!

Can you teach on old dog new tricks?  Possibly not.  But some old dogs can be flexible enough to try to learn even if the lessons don’t sink in.  And while we may not learn the new tricks, we can let go of the old ones long enough to let the young dogs have some fun.


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