Diary of a Dream Coordinator
In 2017 we ran our first group trip Disneyland Paris this is a blog from Michelle, dream coordinator on the trip
27th June 2017
Full of excitement I packed my suitcase the night before and headed to bed ready for an early start. Wendy picked me up at 7.20 so I had time to do my steps before work. My suitcase was twice as big as Wendy’s – I have brought too much.
Arriving at the office I finished the last few bits for work and set my out-of-office. It was finally time to catch the train to Disneyland.
The Great British weather was in full flow as we arrived in London and made our way to the hotel. We stayed at The Renaissance which used to be an old railway station.
After dumping our suitcases, we went to meet Robbie, one of the children coming on the group trip and his parents. Robbie is unable to communicate but has the most amazing smile.
Wendy and I went on a ‘reckie’ wine carrier in hand, we had a mission to get six large bottles of water for a girl called Samantha who would need this to wash her equipment in whilst we were in France.
Achieving our mission it was time for dinner and Prezzos was just the ticket. Robbie was very agitated with the different sights, smells and company. All too much for him to take so he was unable to eat anything even though his mum Tania put his dinner on his own yellow plastic bowl. It brought home just how tough life is for the families we help to do the little things we take for granted.
28th June 2017
It’s a good job I’m not on a diet and counting my steps because breakfast was too scrummy to miss with a full English and fruit and yoghurt I was ready to step all day!
The hotel was great and provided us with a porter to take all the luggage right the way through to Eurostar check-in.
Arriving in Disneyland and time for the Dream Team to get to work.
Challenges for the first day included;
- The new ticket for Robbie’s return journey was on a different train to that of his parents.
- Robbie’s oxygen tank is not the correct one.
- Mattress protectors not supplied
- Forgotten medication
- Our 6 bottles of water won’t last the whole trip…
- Samantha would prefer a special seating pad for the return journey.
- Samantha’s shower chair provided is of no use. We need to get this changed tomorrow.
29th June 2017
Slept well but Wendy did not – her mattress was way too hard. Wendy rang for a kettle and some coffee for our standard room – however, they wanted to charge for the coffee – we declined the offer.
After sorting the families and eating breakfast it was time to tackle the challenges of yesterday.
By lunchtime we were able to join the families for lunch. Delicious buffet lunch. Robbie loved Daisy Duck – more interested in his favourite spaghetti bolognaise than meeting Minnie Mouse despite his mum’s best efforts. Took some great photos. Mickey, Minnie, Pluto and Daisy Duck came to meet the children who were thrilled to see their favourite characters.
After a short break we took Sammy and her Mum Irene to Val de Europe to get the water needed to wash her equipment. As girls do they got side tracked with some shopping!
Getting back to our hotel I breathed a sigh of relief to have no emergency messages from the rest of the families. Time for dinner and firework display, incredible how they use the castle as a backdrop.
Most steps I’ve done so far – 25000+ and after midnight when we got back to our room.
30th June 2017
Today started nice and early after breakfast we checked in with Robbie’s family who now have everything they need.
I am keeping notes on useful info to tell other families booking Disneyland one will be book breakfast and dinners before you get out here.
I had a long chat with Sam and Irene about Sam’s condition and how they nearly lost Sam. What an amazing family. We took Sam and Irene to see Mickey Mouses’ magic show – FANTASTIC. The rain was really heavy so it was nice to have somewhere indoors where a wheelchair could be. Sam is not able to transfer so rides and tours are very limited for Sam. We took Sam and Irene over to the main Disney Park to watch the parade for 5.30, luckily the weather had improved and we found a perfect spot for us to take it all in.
Finally back to the hotel. We helped Irene to her room. 10 minutes to go before our restaurant booking at 7.30. Cape Cod restaurant was fabulous.
1st July 2017
Well breakfast at the New Yorker was disappointing – the only really good things were the orange juice and sandwich I made for lunch.
Met 2 families to take them to Val De Europe – shopping. Raining again – the weather has not really been kind. Turns out, the best things I personally purchased was a plastic see-through poncho.
Getting back to the park the weather finally cheered up and the sun came out for the rest of the day. Wendy and I took the families to Buffalo Bill show and meal. It was very good – the families really loved it as Wendy had arranged for them to meet some of the characters. She thought that it was only going to be Mickey but Minnie was there together with Pluto, Chip and Dale. Heading to our final fireworks display of the trip I soaked it all up, what a brilliant trip.
2nd July 2017
They say time flies when you’re having fun and it certainly has for me, so must be like lightening for the families.
Over to the parks for the last time, surprise surprise, it’s raining again…
All the families are doing their own thing so we decided to watch Stitch Live! (Definitely better for younger generation and by that I mean under 7).
3pm and its time to get on the bus to the train.
Finally we are off. The sun is quite hot through the window and as the French countryside whizzes by, it just seems like yesterday that we were going the other way.
Once in London, we said our goodbyes. Really quite sad.
WOW – WOW – WOW. Just an amazing adventure.
I love being a dream co-ordinator. What an experience.
Read about the Disneyland trip here.