SBox Stories: How I Almost Died at the Happiest Place on Earth

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I thought I’d deviate from my usual talk of video games and film to take part of Creators.co’s latest writing competition. For those reading on my main WordPress blog, Creators is my secondary blogging platform, and over there they hold little contests to help get the community inspired and win prizes at the same time. I may do these kinds of posts more often depending on the theme of the contest. In this case, the current theme is travel, which gives me the perfect excuse to talk about an odd experience I had at Disney World.

While I’ve yet to travel outside of the American east coast, I’ve been taking full advantage of the time zone. My most frequent travel destinations include New York and Orlando, especially Orlando, because my family and I are frequenters of Disney World and Universal Park. I’ve been to each more times than I care to count during the past couple years or so. It’s become a family tradition to pack up the car, book our usual hotel, and drive 2-3 hours to Kissimmee to spend the weekend.

We’re pretty much pros of the two parks at this point. We know all the tricks, the ins and outs of both resorts, what not to do and what to do. I can make a whole post about beginner tips I wish I knew my first time around, but today I’ll simply give you probably the sacred rule of the parks: Always… Drink… Water! Trust me when I say this story will save your life if you, like me, are a fool.

Back in 2014, we finally bought ourselves annual passes to the Disney Parks; something we’ve been talking about doing for years since we haven’t been since I was 3 years old. We planned on using the passes for the summer, when my sister and her friends from up North would gather for their Senior trip. After a quick test run the month before, the main event happened in June. One whole week of making up for lost time, here we come! Blizzard Beach on Monday, Magic Kingdom on Tuesday, then Hollywood Studios, Typhoon Lagoon, and Animal Kingdom, with the occasional Downtown Disney trip here and there. On the whole, it was a fun week, despite that bump in the road in Magic Kingdom.

It’s Tuesday morning, and for some reason my IQ is much lower than it was the previous day. Maybe it was the fumes from the vacation house’s pool or mental poisoning from the terrible tasting Orlando tap water, but I hatched a brilliant idea that morning. See, the day before I’ve become notorious for having to use the bathroom much more than the rest of my family, halting our progress at Blizzard Beach to take advantage of the nearby bathroom. In my defense, though, it’s Blizzard Beach. If you have to go, and you’re surrounded by lazy rivers and giant geysers, you’ll have to go, too. Anyway, I made it my mission the next day to not go to the bathroom as much. My method: in order to not pee as much, I’m not going to drink as much. That makes sense, right?

Again, I’m an idiot! Don’t ever do this, and let me tell you why!

As if I didn’t, you know, live in South Florida already, I neglected the fact that Florida is especially hot in June. This is especially true when you’re walking in said heat at midday with no wind and tons of people around you. I looked up the temperature that day: 91 degrees with a maximum humidity of 94! It was hot, and my dumb ass wasn’t drinking enough water. You probably know where this is going.

A few rides in and about 2 hours later we arrived at the Jungle Cruise. At this point, I’m running only on scarmbled eggs, a few sips of water, and an awesome ice cream cookie sandwich I got on Mainstreet. Now remember, June is prime time for vacationers; so all the lines were much longer than usual. I wanna say it was a half-hour wait or so, but this was where my poor decision making came to a head. For those who’ve gone through this before, you know the signs. First your lower back mysteriously starts to hurt. You don’t know why you’re hurting so much, but later on you realize that’s the feeling of your kidneys shutting down. You know, kidneys. Those things that need water! Though you think nothing of it, and move onto the next step: irony. Guess who suddenly has to go to the bathroom? But hey, it’s been a few hours. This makes sense, right? Well yeah, because your body’s defense mechanisms are at play! Not only do you have to pee, but you have to poop, too. Again, you think nothing of it.

Now comes the main event. We’re now next in line for the Jungle Cruise and we can’t wait. Sure my back is killing me and I feel like I’m about to shit my pants, but I can be strong for the ride. And right as we’re about to board the boat, I realize I can’t see anymore. A few seconds later I can’t hear, and then I can’t stand as my body goes into a sweat. Congratulations, dummy! You’re having a heatstroke. Let me tell you guys that heat stroke is not fun. It is the worst feeling I ever had in my life hands down. You’re literally dying, but the worst part in my case is that my ass won’t pass out like I’m supposed to. So, I’m feeling every bit of this now, waiting for either someone to save me or the sweet release of death.

Don’t worry, though, because Disney is ON IT! I’m placed in a wheelchair and wheeled out of the front of the line to the shade outside the ride. They then gave me water to drink as the Disney paramedics are checking my vitals and I’m questioning every decision I ever made in life. Thankfully, I gained my hearing back while I was being wheeled out of the line and my vision was slowly returning. To add insult to injury, there I was sitting in a chair I put myself in so I wouldn’t have to go to the bathroom… and I have to go to the bathroom more than ever.

Oh and remember when I told you about how I couldn’t pass out. The paramedic who was taking my vitals pointed out that my blood sugar was obscenely low and said, “To be honest, I’m surprised your even awake and talking to us right now.” Also, I was originally supposed to go straight to the emergency room, but was allowed to stay because my blood pressure was healing pretty quick. Turns out I’m the Wolverine apparently. I didn’t know that until now.

Things weren’t all bad, though. After nearly dying of stupidity, they gave us all free water and fast passes to some of the big rides, including the Snow White Minecart which just opened and had a wait time of 2 hours. I was instructed to stay in my wheelchair for at least an hour while the family got lunch, which was awesome because I don’t have to walk for a while. Plus, what better way to celebrate cheating death than a delicious Disney burger? They also told me to “drink until you have to pee, and then drink some more.” That meant that I can now pee without scrutiny for now on, something the family still keep in mind to this day.

And so I tell you, boys and girls, that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or else you’ll end up sweaty, thirsty, and in a wheelchair while having the runs in the Happiest Place on Earth. In other words, Always… Drink… Water!

I’m SBox180. Thanks for reading!

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2 thoughts on “SBox Stories: How I Almost Died at the Happiest Place on Earth”

  1. I remember you telling me this story! Disney is both magical and dangerous, but lesson learned I suppose. All Disney lovers have made this mistake, most not having actually gotten heat stroke but we all have less extreme versions of this story that caused us to be cautious for the rest of our Disney-venturing lives. You made it out alive and you’re here to warn us all about the hidden dangers of the most magical place on earth!

    Liked by 1 person

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