The Plot Thickens

Photo: Taelar Pollmann ⋅ The Sentry

Photo: Taelar Pollmann ⋅ The Sentry

The Souvenir

It was my family’s second trip to Disney World. The first time we ventured down to Orlando had been during February. This time, however, was in the heat of the summer and that meant not only were there loads of people but the water parks were open. 

Disney World has two water parks: Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. I don’t remember which park we went to first, but I do remember we bought a souvenir cup. This was not just any cup, mind you, it had a magical barcode on the side that could be scanned at any soda fountain in the park and be refilled with your desired drink for the entire day of purchase. It was probably some outrageous amount of money, and I would like to think that middle-school me recognized this and wanted to make sure my parents got their money’s worth out of the deal, but I think the case was more likely that I just really, really wanted to drink Fanta Orange all day.

Regardless of the reason, I spent most of my time going on water slides, heading to a soda machine for a free drink, then heading back to the next slide. What I don’t recall is going to the bathroom. Like, at all.

At the end of the day, we boarded the shuttle back to the hotel and I suddenly had the urge to pee. It was rush hour. Most, if not all, of the parks had just closed for the day, and the roads were crowded. I told my dad, who told me to hold it. I asked if maybe I could tell the bus driver to just let me out for a minute to run past the treeline at the side of the road and relieve myself. That was apparently out of the question.

But you know what wasn’t out of the question? The souvenir cup. And yes, I mean that in the worst way possible. What had been my biggest joy of the day, turned into my tormentor, then into my savior.

My father escorted me to the back of the not very crowded shuttle, opened the top of the cup, and…I think you get the idea.

I’d like to say that I learned a valuable lesson from the experience, but I’d be lying. The next day when we went to the other park, another souvenir cup was purchased, and little, stupid me drank so much Fanta.

The (perhaps) worst part of this entire story has to be that we kept that fateful souvenir cup. For years. It sat in with all the other plastic cups in the cabinet, and I definitely tricked one of my best friends into drinking from it. Don’t worry though, we threw it out before moving to Colorado….or did we?

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