Stories from the Park: One of us

As I mentioned last time, I enjoy meeting characters and collecting autographs.  Not sure why.  I know that I am really meeting cast members, but there is something fun about playing pretend for a little while.  Plus there is the fun of finding someone new, collecting that hard to find autograph, or just beating the lines to get a popular character.  Every so often you get a special interaction with a character that makes your day.  I have had several of them over the years but this is the story of how I became a Guardian of the Galaxy.

I was in line to meet Star-Lord and Groot by myself, the royal court having decided that they needed to do some shopping.  In an unusual turn of events for me, I wasn’t actually talking to anyone.  I was sandwiched in between two larger groups who were all entertaining themselves.  Since I was a party of 1, I got to go into the greeting area with the larger group in front of me.

Being a veteran of these kinds of things, I got busy trying to watch the interactions without being too intrusive.  I noticed that I had a good view of Baby Groot and if I used by zoom function I could get a good photo while I waited without interfering with the people who were talking to Star-Lord.  I was kind of in my own little world a bit, not really paying attention.  As an added bonus, the Awesome Mixes were playing in the background.  Without really thinking about it, I started quietly singing along.  I may also have been grooving just a little.  Of course, this is the moment it became my turn and Star-Lord spotted me.

A moment that could have been embarrassing turned into something else.

“You know the song!” said Star-Lord. “Let’s dance right on over here.”  So I kept on singing and danced with Star-Lord over to Groot.  Baby Groot was very impressed.  (I could tell he told me, “I am Groot.”  So there you go.)  When we finished, Star-Lord informed me, “You sang the song.  You did the dance.  That makes you a Guardian of the Galaxy.”  We got a photo or two and I headed on my way.

So there you have it.  I am a Guardian.  I am not someone who laughed at for singing in public.  I am not someone who was hurried through a line because I was by myself.  I am important, included, and valuable.  We could all learn a little something from Star-Lord about welcoming, inclusion, and hospitality.  It doesn’t take much to become one of ‘us’.  It just takes someone reaching out a hand in welcome.

Or and invitation to dance.


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