Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Disneyland - Martinis over New Orleans Square

If you do not know about Club 33, you are reading the wrong blog.

If you've never been there, my sincere regrets, but allow me to share a few choice moments from one of my visits.

I made it to the Club as a guest when a court reporting firm my law firm used told us that they had a membership and could get us in whenever we wanted because we were good customers.

I took them up on it as often as I could.

On at least one such occasion, we were seated at a table by the window that overlooked the Cafe Orleans, Haunted Mansion and the Frontierland train station.

I ordered a Ketel One martini (up and dirty, thank you, with three olives) and perused the menu. The food I ordered is not important.

The drink.

The drink came to me on a platter.
A bright young gentleman in a Club 33 waiter's costume gently lifted it from platter to a cocktail napkin on the table to my right.
The classically-shaped glass glistened with condensation.
It had been chilled perfectly.
The contents of the glass sparkled like Monterey Bay.
The olives sat almost frozen in the translucent, syrupy vodka.
They were skewered with a clear, plastic "toothpick" that looked as though it had come straight out of Superman's Fortress of Solitude.
As the waiter left, I was alone with my thoughts for a moment.
Here I was, a guest in Club 33.
The decor was perfect---think Haunted Mansion for the living.
The tablecloth was white (of course).
All my other Disneyland experiences flashed before me: the sun, the colors, the Mickey Mouse balloons, the smell of Pirates of the Caribbean, the exhaust of Jungle boats, the whirl of teacups, the scrape of pan and broom after a cigarette butt, you get the picture.
None came near the bliss of lifting that frosty glass and raising a toast to Walt.
The salty sip of olive juice and the cool bite of vodka mingled in my brain with the view from the window.
I looked down on this area of New Orleans Square that I had so often seen from below.
Yet I still felt a part of it.
I still felt the "Disneyland-ishness" of it all.
All those times in crowded lines, amid screaming children, or dumping trash (or scooping elephant poop), or waving a flashlight at a throng, they all crystallized like the flakes of ice in my Martini.
Here was a moment at Disneyland I never thought I'd see: a cool drink in an elegant venue right in the middle of the Park!
Let me tell you, Jungleteers, THAT was worth the price of admission.
Here's to Club 33!
More importantly, here's to Disneyland!
Many happy returns!