The happiest anniversary on Earth!

In just a few short days, it will be August and I don’t know about you, but I’m already wondering where most of July went.

In just a few short days, it will be August and I don’t know about you, but I’m already wondering where most of July went.

Half of summer almost over? If that isn’t proof of the existence of a time warp, I don’t know what is. I haven’t done one-18th of the things I had planned to do this summer, and I’m no mathematician but I don’t think 17 18ths divides into one-half very well.

I don’t think I’ll get to explore Europe, visit the Loch Ness Monster, get a picture walking across the Abbey Road album crosswalk in merry old England, have multiple beers with hero-author Dave Barry in Miami, or drive the Coquihalla Hwy on a perfect day in a topless sports car.

Oh, hold on — sorry, that’s part of my bucket list, not my summer list. My summer list is much more, shall we say, less ambitious, or more to the point: a tad mundane, run-of-the-mill, non-particularly exciting, or bucket worthy.

My summer list contains such riveting objectives as mow the lawn, have a nap, hit a golf ball less than 150 times in 18 holes, have a snooze, watch Canadian football on TV, have dinner on the patio of my favourite watering hole, maybe get a haircut, go to a couple of good movies and have the odd siesta.

But, as I may have mentioned, since our summer typically consists of 12 to 14 nice days, and 46 to 48 days of wondering where the days went and what on earth I got accomplished, I’m thinking I have about three days left to live my list and still have time for a little lie-down or two.

I shouldn’t complain, although I do find a person certainly does get a measure of pleasure from the act of complaining and it gets sort of addictive, and then when you’ve (I’ve) got nothing really to complain about, you (I) tend to either look hard enough until you (I) find something to complain about or make something up.

But like I said, I can’t really gripe about this short time-warp summer, on account of the Better Half and I already had an excellent pre-summer holiday.

OK, so it was only five days but in a self-employed freelance kind of world even a whole week off away from the old salt mines is kind of pushing it.

But this is a milestone anniversary year — and aren’t they all — in terms of our yearly tally of accumulated personal nuptial numbers. In fact, this one is so large you would never believe my young Better Half couple possibly be married that long. Especially to Yours Truly. The poor thing.

The BH’s bad luck and poor spousal judgment aside, the point is, this was such a landmark year for the two of us celebrating souls gamely making our way through the vast and impartial universe that we decided to return to the wonderfully romantic and perfect place we first went to for our glorious six-day honeymoon back in the Pentatonic Era.

It wasn’t Hawaii or Niagara Falls. or even Paris (Ontario) or London (Ontario). or any other typically popular traditionally romantic honeymoon destination. Instead, we chose the happiest place on Earth.

No, seriously, that’s what they call it in the commercials: “The Happiest Place on Earth!” And for the BH and I they couldn’t be more right on. We absolutely love Carrot River, Sask!

I jest of course, everybody knows the happiest place on Earth is actually Disneyland, and that’s where we went in married year zero and that’s where we went in June.

In between, of course, we’ve made sure to take our Rotten Kids to Disneyland and/or World (three excellent times) but we realized it’s been 10 years or so since the last visit with Mickey at his place.

So since the RKs are busy wending their own way through life’s rich pageant, they were very supportive that the BH and I go ahead without them so they could come home when we weren’t there and have various epic parties at the house.

So we went to Disneyland, just the two of us by ourselves, for the first time since the continental drift formed the continents.

Thank goodness good old Walt decided to build a phantasmagorical place for Mickey and his friends so that people like us could live some magic for a while.

So, suddenly, there we were, Mr. and Mrs. Elderly Demographic (well, one of us was) in Disneyland scurrying immediately to Space Mountain, wearing large Goofy grins and big bright red buttons they gave us that said “It’s Our Anniversary!”

This caused every well-trained, pathologically happy Cast Member (which is what Disneyland calls its every employee) to say “Happy anniversary” to us for five days straight.

We did it all — from the Radiator Springs car race ride to watching the real, honest-to-goodness Tinkerbell flying over Sleeping Beauty’s castle as the world’s most magical fireworks lit up the Magic Kingdom.

From the Tower of Terror (which perfectly describes how the Better Half felt) to the BH’s most favourite (Peter Pan’s Flight), we lived happily in a completely different land.

Now I know there are actual people out there who believe that Disneyland is an overtly commercialized, capitalistic corporate juggernaut that cares naught for anything but emptying their visitors’ wallets.

A place of endless lineups, crass ubiquitous merchandising, strange cartoon character mascots and waaay more cuteness than any place should be allowed to have. I’m sorry, but those people are obviously sad, cynical and possibly psychotic.

Or maybe it’s us who truly have the psychosis. After all, on our way home, me in my funky Disneyland T-shirt and the BH in her fashionable Tinkerbell top, we looked at each other and said two things: “When can we come back?” And: “Let’s bring the kids again next time!”

I wonder if we can make it back there before the summer disappears. …

Harley Hay is a local freelance writer, award-winning author, filmmaker and musician. His column appears on Saturdays in the Advocate. His books can be found at Chapters, Coles and Sunworks in Red Deer.

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