Disney Vacation Recap: Part Two

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life90 Comments

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So there I was, walking down the jetway to board my AirTran flight headed for the Magic Kingdom, sans camera, and feeling strangely fine. Coleman had settled down. Aidan had bought me a Recess Peanut Butter cup to cheer me up (because if you think I was counting points on this trip, you’re certifiably insane), and I really had shaken it off. We took off, each kid with a video-playing iPod in hand, and I resigned myself to the next obvious question at hand: how bloody soon ‘til we land so I can find some sort of friggin’ camera. I mean, sure…I’m going to LIVE my life, and not worry about scrapbooking those memories, but I’ll be damned if I am LEAVING WITHOUT PHOTOS.

Once we made it to the lovely, mid-priced Disney Port Orleans Riverside hotel we knew we were too toasted to attempt hitting one of the parks, so we settled on a boat ride down the man-made Sassagoula to spend some time in Downtown Disney. In one of our guides, it said there was an actual Disney scrapbooking store, and I had faith: if a scrapbooking store in Disney doesn’t have a camera, then no one will.

See, part of the problem when you stay at a resort and you don’t have a rental car, you’re sort of a prisoner of DisneyWorld. A happy one, normally, but a prisoner of the system nonetheless. Target and Walmart aren’t readily available. In a way, that’s like losing a limb or something. Go ahead. Close your eyes. Imagine Target is no longer available. Gone. Forever. Feel the shudder? Oh, now you’re feeling me.

So once we found the store, I learned two things: one, Kodak is the official sponsor of Disney and two, do you want this EasyShare model? Or this one? I chose this one. It was more expensive and in my mind, more expensive means less crying when I see the final prints.

And that was it. I had a way to take pictures. And I put it all on our interest free til August Disney credit card. What’s another 300 bucks when you’re already going to be scrambling to pay the vacation off anyway?

The best part? My darling, soon to be turning 43 on Thursday and extremely frugal husband Dan, didn’t even blink when I bought the camera. Now THAT is love.

There isn’t really much more to say about the trip. I mean, you know the old saying, nothing is more boring than OTHER people’s travel photos? Kind of a similar thing with our trip.

Except for our first day in the Magic Kingdom. One story worth telling… we are all in line for Splash Mountain (keep in mind, Dan and I aren’t really ride people, but we seem to do okay on water-based rides with no spinning) and Dan decides to call the Minneapolis Metro Transit Authority to check one more time, to see if maybe someone had turned in the camera. (The first call netted a big fat ‘no’ to the same question.) Then as the line was moving steadily forward, into the bowels of the mountain, I heard him say, “Oh, that is fantastic news. Thank you so much.”

Someone turned it in.

So I may not be getting a new Canon 5D afterall, but my faith in the sheer honesty and goodness of random people has been officially restored.

And in a way, therein lies the REAL magic of the whole trip.

p.s. and you know what else? That new little camera in my pocket? I’m thinking it did just fine!

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Cathy ZielskeDisney Vacation Recap: Part Two

90 Comments on “Disney Vacation Recap: Part Two”

  1. #1
    sue Treiber

    Hey! I stayed at Port Orleans too. I thought it was pretty cool. Loved laughing at all the poeples riding those big bike things. 🙂
    YOur pix are great, but I’m glad you got your baby back!

  2. #3
    Melissa Raphael

    I am in awe of the person that picked up your camera and turned it in. I want to find them, hug them and say, “thank you. thank you for being so honest and for doing the right thing.”
    Because they are few and far inbetween.

    Glad you had fun with the Mouse…

  3. #6
    Jennifer

    Wow, that is so awesome! Seriously awesome that someone would turn that in. I can honestly say if it were me, that I would turn it in but that’s just me. I know several people that would not.

    If I forgot my camera bag, and like you it has thousands of dollars worth of equipment in it, I think I would want to give them some type of reward or something nice for being a good citizen. But that’s just me. I’m not saying you should. That’s just the way I operate.

    Sounds like you had an awesome time. I loved Sanibel Island by the way. I love Florida too!.

  4. #7
    Claudia

    Seems like there are still some decent people left in this world…
    BTW, my previous p&s was a Kodak and I loved it. Then it unfortunately died. I couldn’t find a similar model so I switched to a Canon from the PowerShot range. And now I have to wait forever after taking a photo for it to be ready to take another shot (which I hate ’cause I’m an impatient sort of girl). So Kodak isn’t all that bad. But I can imagine your relief after that phonecall 😉
    Also, thanks in advance for the additional tags!

  5. #8
    Kelly Byrom

    ahh, what the hell did i type up there, i meant it totally got me, not had me got me, whatever that means. and i dont think i used commas correctly either.

  6. #12
    JennC

    You know what? I think it’s the photographer and not the camera that makes the difference, Cathy. I think you did just fine capturing what was important, with the Little Camera That Could. Glad you got the other one back tho!

  7. #13
    Margie

    A friend of mine lost her camera in her stroller at Disneyland in Calif and it was also turned in. She had a very nice Nikon DSLR and of course was devastated. Apparently someone had walked off with her stroller on accident and when they realized that, just abandoned it somewhere in the park. Lucky you!

  8. #15
    sharon

    Cool about the camera! And now you have a P&S that you can train Aidan on or make sure you never leave without a camera. LOVE that pic of Cole and the sword. He should win with that look.

  9. #16
    Jana

    My parents picked me up from college once during break, and after a lovely meal at a local fav. restaurant, we headed for home, an hour & 1/2 away. Once we arrived I realized I’d left my camera bag slung over the chair at the restaurant. Being a poor college student with a new SLR & the lenses to go with it, I was devastated! We immediately called the restaurant & happily, someone had discovered the bag & they tucked it away until my brother could swing by later to rescue my camera bag and bring it up to me… So glad your lost camera has a happy ending too!! Yes, more people are kind than not in this world—sadly we don’t hear about them enough!

  10. #18
    Robyn

    I am happy your trip went well, and relieved for you that you got your camera back, but the main reason I am posting is to let you know that I keep staring at the Mickey photo, waiting for him to come into focus… and he never does… yet I keep waiting.

    Come back, Mickey. Come back.

  11. #20
    Kristina

    Whoo Hoo for the person who turned your camera in. That is awesome…glad you got the little camera to capture the magic! Looks like you had a great time! Thanks for sharing!

  12. #21
    Susan Westberg

    It just goes to show there are still lots of good people in the world. Glad to hear you’re vacation is documented in pictures and you created wonderful memories!

  13. #23
    falwyn

    I think there is something to be said for a little camera to just tuck in your bag. At least till they invent a dSLR as big as my palm.

    Oh, I am so SO SO glad for you. I couldn’t even comment before because the intense horror of it all made my voice (err, fingers?) shrivel up. Mostly because I can totally see myself doing the same thing. Hooray for the restoring of faith in humanity. God bless that honest person. 🙂

  14. #24
    Shannon

    For some reason when at Disney everything is magical just like the wonderful person who turned in your camera…..I would love to see more pictures of your trip…I was just there in December and then just returned from a weekend trip to DL on Sunday so as you can tell I am a “DISNEY FREAK” and love all things Disney….come on share your pictures….

  15. #25
    Karol

    Oh my gosh, can you believe that I actually shed a tear at the end of your story!!? I have chills just thinking of some good person turning in your camera. That is such great news. Way to tell a story!!! 🙂

  16. #27
    Marian

    Soooo funny that you would mention being a prisoner of Disney. I just returned last night from a 5 day trip to Disney World with my daughter’s drill team. The first day of walking through the park(s) rewarded me with a huge blister on my heel. I didn’t bring any shoes without backs and therefore was desperately searching for a place I could buy some inexpensive shoes. So being in “disney world” my choices were flip flops with some interesting disney character adorning them or crocs in black, pink or red with mickey heads instead of holes. Needless to say, I borrowed some shoes from one of the other mothers. On one of our bus rides from the hotel to the park, I commented how this place was like LOST – we were prisoners of the “disney initiative” – a place where there was loads of fun adventures, marginal food (but we certainly didn’t starve to death) and lots of greenery to mask what we would see around the next corner.

  17. #28
    Charlene

    Honest people abound at airports and Disney! I’ve lost cellphones and keys at Bush and Hobby Int’l. (both in Houston) too many times to count. Always got them back! I lost my entire wallet and all the contents in a ride late at night last year in Disneyland. Got that back the next morning fully intact too (after I’d cancelled/closed everything in a panic the night before). Glad to hear you got your photo gear back and had a great vacation!

  18. #30
    Alexa

    Way-hey! You got the camera back! True magic. Great retelling of your story, by the way. Over here in the UK, we’re not sure what ‘Target’ is or means for you all but we get the drift …! Love the tag, and am continuing to make ’em too… Alexa

  19. #31
    Houston

    I had something similar happen to me at Disney, my Nikon gave out on day 1 and we were there for 8 days. I, too, bought a Kodak Easyshare… I love it, easy to use, decent editing choices and I no longer am horribly worried about what might happen to it. I am so glad someone turned in your camera, but keep the Kodak, it’s great for hikes and day trips where you might want your hands a little more free. Glad you had a great time!

  20. #32
    annie

    So glad you got your camera back! The tag book looks cool, I am working on one too, thanks for the inspiration. I thought the saying was about wedding pictures.

  21. #34
    Anastasia

    A big woohoo to the person responsible for turning in your camera. Had the same thing happen to me a few years back at the Children’s Museum in Indianapolis. We just walked away and left it behind on a bench. I have to say, you handled it way better than I did! And mine was worth way less…like a thousand dollars less. I freaked, to put it mildly…my husband stayed calm and tracked it down like a blood hound. It just goes to show ya, bad people suck, good people don’t…end of story.

  22. #37
    Sharon F.

    Wow – I felt like I was just on Cathy’s wild ride! What a hilarious story and it does warm the old cockles to know that down deep we citizens of the world can come up big when needed and do the right thing….

    thanks so much for sharing…or is that EasySharin’?

    Sharon F
    Oakland, CA

  23. #38
    Bethany

    No Target? It feels so very, very cold…

    It looks like you did just fine with the EasyShare, and I’m so glad to hear at least one of the good people who take Light Rail turned in your camera. (Now some of those bus passengers are a different story–I once saw a guy peddling burned DVDs to everyone he could on the back of the bus. Not sure that guy woulda called Metro Transit to get the camera back to you…)

  24. #39
    Kathleen Noriega

    Hooray to human kind. There is hope after all. I was touched by your experience and all I could think off is that good deserves good and that “good things do happen to good folks”
    Enjoy

  25. #41
    stephanie

    the new camera did a really good job. these photos look good.

    i am glad someone turned your camera in. i think that even though you had canon on the brain, nikon is really the best fit for you. like that old saying about if something you lost comes back then it was meant to be. and i am not saying that because i totally love nikons either.

  26. #42
    Tracey

    Oh, that is so awesome! My dh and I are amazed…and so glad that someone turned your camera in. He and I just returned from Florida on Friday. Darn it, I just missed ya. 🙂

  27. #44
    Gayle

    Oh my goodness. My heart dropped when I read your first post about your trip. NOw, I have faith restored that there are good people in the world!
    Your After reading about taking pictures with a disposable in C&S Part 2, your pictures would be fantastic with whatever you take. I can’t wait to hear more and see more about your trip!

  28. #45
    mindakms

    not NEARLY as important as getting your camera back, I have a little story of my own.
    We were coming back from a retreat that very same day and stopped at a Burger King in Eau Claire Wisconsin to use the toilets. About an hour later I wanted to use my cell to call my husband for an updated ETA and realized it WAS NOT in the car. UGH. I used another girls phone to deliver the bad news to him. Told him I thought it must have dropped out at one of our two stops along the route home.

    When we arrived home, about five minutes after we walked in the door, my parents called. They wanted to know if I wanted to know where my cell was. Seems they got a call from someone at a gas station in Eau Claire…about a block and a half away from the Burger King. They found my camera in their parking lot and if I would give them my address they’d mail it to me. I’ll never know how it got a block and a half away, but I’ll have my phone back tomorrow. Goodness abounds!

  29. #47
    mindakms

    not NEARLY as important as getting your camera back, I have a little story of my own.
    We were coming back from a retreat that very same day and stopped at a Burger King in Eau Claire Wisconsin to use the toilets. About an hour later I wanted to use my cell to call my husband for an updated ETA and realized it WAS NOT in the car. UGH. I used another girls phone to deliver the bad news to him. Told him I thought it must have dropped out at one of our two stops along the route home.

    When we arrived home, about five minutes after we walked in the door, my parents called. They wanted to know if I wanted to know where my cell was. Seems they got a call from someone at a gas station in Eau Claire…about a block and a half away from the Burger King. They found my camera in their parking lot and if I would give them my address they’d mail it to me. I’ll never know how it got a block and a half away, but I’ll have my phone back tomorrow. Goodness abounds!

  30. #48
    Janet Katz

    I’m so happy you got your camera back. And now on to more important things. I think all us comment ladies should chip in and buy dear Alexa from the UK a round-trip ticket to Target. Any Target. She too deserves to feel the magic of cool products, nifty prices, and a purse department I never get enough of.

  31. #49
    AnnB

    Silly girl, if I like reading about your dog-sitting, point-counting, music-loving every day life — of course I’d want to read about your vacation adventures, don’t under-estimate the power of your stories!! I was really hoping somone would return the camera, yippee.

  32. #50
    heather

    First, WHOOOHOOOOOO on the person turning the camera in . . .that’s terrific!
    Second, thought my eyes were going when I saw that fuzzy, fuzzy photo of the mouse!
    Third, gotcha on the prisoner thing at Disney. We ended up with a $350 visit by a dr. to our room when dd came down with strep. Was easier than finding a cab, finding an ER/doc in the box and waiting.

    Can’t wait to hear more about the trip.

  33. #51
    Bev

    This UK girl has to hire a car when she visits Disney, because it’s the ONLY time she ever gets to go to Target or Walmart, and that’s nearly as important as visiting the mouse.

  34. #52
    Tina

    So glad you got your camera back – I agree, it has to restore some faith in people! My daughter is turning 18 on Thursday and will flip that Dan is too (well not turning 18, but you know) – she too loves reading your blog. Great pictures btw!

  35. #53
    MNScrapbookmom

    So glad that someone turned in your camera… That just makes “MY” day. There are honest people in the world. Can’t wait to see more pics. Enjoy !!! ¥

  36. #54
    Cynthia B.

    Your pictures look great! And I love little cameras that fit in the palm of your hand. This was the best “Disney” ending to your story. Remember the magic! 😉

  37. #55
    gabrielle

    glad you got your camera back, but I thought you’d of gotten a throw away.. I had one for years and they weren’t that bad! Glad I have my new one but the pictures outside were decent. Glad you had a good time!

  38. #56
    Karin

    Well, congrats on getting your camera back. But since I work for Canon, you have done nothing for my profit sharing ! Guess it’s the thought that counts!
    ; )

  39. #57
    reyanna

    SO glad they found your camera! Yay! And it *totally* restores your faith in humanity, doesn’t it?!

    Yeah, I lost my wallet in MANHATTAN on WALL STREET, and it was turned into a police officer in front of Ground Zero… and we were JUST around the corner. So THAT was almost the most traumatic five minutes ever. Thank God it was only for five minutes. 😀

    Note: Keep all your phone numbers (including cell) updated with all credit card companies… this will come in handy when some Danish tourist turns in your wallet. 😀

    Can’t wait to see more pictures! I love pictures of WDW because… well, after all, it is the most magical place on earth!

  40. #58
    Stacy R

    Hope Dan has a great birthday tomorrow and you have a great birthday on Saturday! How cool that your birthdays are so close.
    Stacy R

  41. #59
    Melissa

    Did you envision this?

    Your camera bag, left alone in an airport terminal.

    Someone sees it and alerts Security.

    Security brings in the bomb squad, the robot, etc. to check this UNATTENDED PACKAGE left in an AIRPORT.

    Your bag, the bomb squad… on the local news.

    You? Blissfully enjoying yourself in sunny Orlando.

  42. #60
    Teresa

    First I’m so glad you found a camera. And second I glad there are still the honest ones out there who turned in your other one. I hope you have fun on your vacation! And we love your pics!

  43. #61
    Cat Geiger

    There are good folks left in the world..several years ago we went to San Antonio to visit, went to the Zoo, stayed downtown on the Riverwalk, etc. I left my camera on the little trolley that zips you around downtown. When I realized it was gone, I just about cried, but decided there was nothing I could do. The next day, I thought I would just check with the company that runs the trolleys, and wouldn’t ya know it? The nice couple we chatted with on the trolley realized we had left it and turned it in!! Like you, faith restored. Of course, on the way home, I accidently deleted all the photos I had taken by hitting the “format” button. Faith in myself pretty much destroyed…lol.

  44. #62
    lynn whelan

    OMG, of course i haven’t seen them all, but that picture of your little man’s face, pulling on Excalibur, is it? That’s worht the whole trip! i love it!!! scrap it, scrap it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  45. #63
    bobbie

    WAY cool on getting your camera back!! Hugs going out to the person who turned it in ~ nice to know there are still honest people out there…

  46. #65
    Terri B in Oregon

    My faith in people is partially restored. I know there are good people out there (after all I am one!) and am happy that you received your camera back. And great pictures, and sounds like a wonderful vacation. All is right in the “Z” household!

  47. #66
    debbie cook

    NO WAY!!!!!!!!! well, just when you think you know how things happen these days…
    wow. totally surprised. and totally happy for you. and i agree, that little pocket cam did a great job! 🙂

  48. #67
    Linda

    So glad you got your camera back! Cute picture of Aidan with the ears. Can’t wait to hear more. Thanks for sharing Cathy.

  49. #68
    Sophie

    There is kindness and goodness left in this world! Nice shots, nonetheless, with the Kodak…I have a similar model…and it’s truly not all that bad…not your good ol’ camera, but not all that bad. So glad everything ended “happily ever after” at the Happiest Place on Earth.

  50. #69
    Sandy

    Soooo happy for you. What goes around comes around. Keep doing good and good will follow you! 🙂

  51. #70
    Sandy

    Soooo happy for you. What goes around comes around. Keep doing good and good will follow you! 🙂

  52. #72
    Nancy C.

    I’ve had a 6MP EasyShare for about 3 years and I love it. The pics are beautiful. It’s a great camera to throw in your pocket and go. I teach second grade and I use it almost every day in my classroom. You’ll love it!

  53. #73
    Sonda T

    Cathy, i just love reading your writings. makes me laugh so hard.
    Glad to read someone turned in your lost camera. I actually GASPED! Yes I did! :O Shocking! There are still honest people in the world!
    Thanks for posting pics of the trip! 🙂

  54. #74
    Rhonda P

    Such frickin fantastic news about the camera! But your vaca pics look awesome. luv the one of Cole. AND by the way…Castro is my fav as well. Loved him last night and he’s just so utterly adorable.

  55. #75
    Vicki

    “…how bloody soon ‘til we land so I can find some sort of friggin’ camera. I mean, sure…I’m going to LIVE my life, and not worry about scrapbooking those memories, but I’ll be damned if I am LEAVING WITHOUT PHOTOS.”

    Stumbling across your blog was the high point of my day! I don’t read much that makes me laugh out loud – thanks for bringing some fun to my day! God bless you!

  56. #76
    grandmagina

    Oh goodnes! I’m so happy you got your camera back. I had a similar experience at Disney only it was my son’s Make A Wish trip. On one of the last days I decided to splurge and take my two kids to one of those Japanese restaurants. When almost done eating I realized NO CAMERA. The people next to us saw us start looking around and inquired and then asked where we were staying. When I said “Give Kids the World” he knew exactly and said, “which one” and I said my 12 year old son. I left to back track and my girlfriend stayed to pay the bill. Well the couple with their children at the same table paid for our over $100 meal and a couple hours later we found the camera still sitting where I had left it. I never could have recreated those pictures and would have been devastated. There are truly so many wonderful people in the world! Glad you had fun! Thanks for sharing your pics!

  57. #77
    Terri

    faith in human kindness is right ….WOW!
    Fantastic pix! My best digital was under $300.
    Can’t wait to see DW at it’s best myself this summer (what was I thinkin?)

    Even made a prototype album shaped like mouse ears hat…check it out on my blog…

    Blessing to you and yours, C!

  58. #78
    Kay D

    Okay so it may seem dumb but maybe you should put a little thank you blurb in the classifieds. Even if the person who returned it never sees it, maybe someone elses faith in humanity will also be restored.

  59. #79
    Amber

    I am so glad that you got the camera back! With that said you are a much better women than I am. If that had happened to me I would have had a total meltdown and I don’t know if I would have been able to have a good vacation. Kudos to you!

    We went to Disney for the first time last August and my DH talked me out of taking my SLR and I took my Kodak EasyShare. I was upset the first day b/c I knew I was not getting the best shots. However, when I returned home and uploaded the pictures and printed they turned out just fine.

    I would love to see some!

    Did you ride Mt. Everest? I got an awesome picture of the mountain.

  60. #81
    Lisa

    Okay, it’s official. My day is now less crappy thanks to the redeeming power of a story about the basic goodness of human beings. I forget that sometimes.

  61. #82
    Kymberly

    Congratulations Cathy on the safe and memorable trip, super cool (and super cute) spouse and the awesome goodness of people raining down on you in the form of the returned camera.

    I hope the “finder” who didn’t “keep ‘er” has a wealth of good karma and good feelings coming his/her way.

    I feel better just reading this.

  62. #84
    Kim C

    That is totally cool that someone turned in your camera. It does restore your faith in people. I have a SLR but I just got a pocket Cannon Elph. It is great to have a pocket size camera.

    kim

  63. #85
    Denise

    Great story Cathy! I’m a bit behind in reading your blog but just wanted to tell you I’m so happy your camera was turned in! Very cool! Love reading your stories!

  64. #86
    denise

    everyone already said it, but WOW! that is way cool that someone kind and honest found your camera! you gots good kharma going ur way!

  65. #87
    Jenny Rebecca

    Hey did you have beignets at Port Orleans? That might be the French Quarter restaurant…

    Not only happy to hear someone found your camera and turned it in, but glad they didn’t blow it up as a suspicious package left on a train!

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