Westways Magazine Publishes My Disneyland Memory
Westways, Disneyland and A Travel Writer
Disneyland celebrated its 60th year and Westways, AAA’s magazine for Southern California, shouted out to the general public for favorite Disneyland memories. As a travel writer, I’ve visited Disney’s iconic park many times. Too many. And sometimes, Disneyland travels with you.
Yet, after recalling the touching stories Westways had run for the 50th, I sent in my own, figuring that I wouldn’t make the cut since thousands of submissions would probably pour in.
Then, at the Book Passage Travel Writers & Photographers Conference, Westways Travel Editor Elizabeth Harryman told me they were thinking of dropping the article altogether.
Ah, well, the life of the long distance travel writer. Then something strange happened.
Walking into the Encinitas Library one fall day, I spied a box marked “Free” outside the bookstore. Sitting right on top lay a copy of the Westways November/December issue, an issue chock full of Disneyland memories.
I searched quickly to see if I had made the cut. And (Yes!) I did. Thank you, God!
If you can’t read the tiny article posted above, here’s my Disneyland memory in its entirety. It’s a sad memory from a rough time in my life but traveling helped me heal.
Disneyland wove its magic.
Walt Disney once said he designed Disneyland so that visitors could not see the world beyond its walls. He wanted us to feel as if we were inside another world. I have a long-ago snapshot of myself standing in Town Square taken by my husband, Rob. We had just endured a mean year of fighting his cancer with a brutal chemotherapy that eventually saved his life. Living daily with fear, we longed to feel normal again, so we escaped to the Happiest Place on Earth like a couple of giddy kids. Our Disneyland day was a precious break from the cruelties that adult life can dump on you. Just as Walt had envisioned, we felt completely unaware of the outside world.