The guy at the motel’s Disney counter looked surprised when I said I wouldn’t be visiting with Mickey and the gang during my stay in Orlando.
“I’m here for Spring Training. You know, the Braves? Down the street at the ballpark?”
He didn’t really get it.
There’s a Disney counter at every motel here in the Orlando area, and the desk clerk at checkin always has a reason why you have to stop there on the way to your room and hear the sales pitch for discount tickets. In this case, I had to see the Disney guy to get my motel parking pass.
(Seems like over staffling during this time of economic meltdown, but that’s just me.)
I got in late last night to my Kissimmee motel, the Taj Motel as I call it, and just wanted to get to the room and unpack. The Disney guy seemed sad that I would not be buying any of his fantastic discount tickets.
However, I am visiting a Disney park, in a way, now that I think of it. I’m here for a few days of photography at the Atlanta Braves training camp at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex.
I’ve been coming back here almost every year for the better part of a decade. I feel so much at home that this year they gave me the secret code to the elevator. I know the guys at the press credentials desk. I feel like the minor league managers and coaches are my old friends. Everybody says “Hi!”
I always take note of what’s playing on the car radio every year when I pick up the rental car at the airport, adjust the mirrors, and try to avoid turning on the wipers when I really want the lights. (I failed.) This year it’s an unfamiliar Ford Focus with — get this — Sirius satellite radio. Not too shabby.
The first song as I drove off was Bruce Springsteen’s “My Lucky Day.” Good omen.
It still felt like a good open even after I found out the motel’s WiFi was out and I couldn’t post last night. And even though the NBC TV affiliate was promoting “The crime war on Orlando streets — Tonight at 11” when I turned on the set.
No problem; the day I report to training camp is always a lucky day.
Much more to come . . .