I have spent the last few weeks doing two things. The first thing I’ve done is consistently run into dead ends. No matter how I turn it, DH informs me that the small amount of money we’ve put aside will not cover the accommodations we need. The second thing I have done is compulsively view every last item in our extensive, free Disney Vacation Planning DVD library. I know that I must keep fighting the good fight, and the DVDs—which do an incredible job of creating WDW lust—provide me with the motivation I need to press on.
The DVDs make it clear that there really is only one type of accommodation for us—a Disney Vacation Club (DVC) villa. They have room for our family of five. They have fully equipped kitchens. They are on property. But we are not DVC members, and for a cash-paying occupant, the price reflects the quality of these great accommodations. What is a mouse-loving, financially-challenged NDM to do?
I am into my 87th hour of watching Disney image bombardment. At this juncture my depression is growing as my lust is building and my hope is fading. And then, just like Pinocchio in the depth of Monstro the Whale’s abdominal cavity, the solution comes to me. Salvation is in sight, and it takes the form of ebay.
I run to the computer and eagerly search for DVC accommodations in the world’s largest virtual auction house. A variety of individuals have DVC arrangements up for auction, but I find I am consistently impressed with the organization and presentation of one seller in particular, “bill.knows.disney”. So I contact Bill by asking him a question through our ebay accounts. His answer leads to another question, which—in turn—leads to another question. He suggests we exchange e-mail addresses and phone numbers.
During our lengthy conversation, Bill and I hit it off. His profession is to help DVC members rent out DVC points that they are unable to use before expiration. He loves Disney. He loves his job. He loves the people that he helps get to Disney through his job, and his DVC knowledge is vast because he, himself, has been a member since its inception.
I ask Bill a plethora of detailed kitchen questions and explain that I must have the answers due to my children’s medical diet. In a kind-hearted tone, Bill asks if I wouldn’t mind sharing more specific details of my kids’ condition. Since my NDM sensibilities make me partial to other Disneyphiles, I am agreeable to divulging this information. And so, I give Bill a “Minnie” account of the path my family trods.
Blue fairy wands and little pixie wings! It turns out that Bill has a son with a health condition on the same spectrum as my own precious offspring. He relays that his wife has been doing research on the diet and treatments that have helped my children. He sympathizes with our monetary situation. His family has struggled to finance the medical road for their son. The fact that DH and I are doing it for three munchkins weighs heavily on his heart. “We have to get you there,” Bill says with determination. “We are going to figure this out. It’s going to happen for you.” My heart soars because I feel that I have gained an ally in my “Disney Quest.”
We spend the next half hour discussing different scenarios in search of the one that is meant for my family. Disney’s Old Key West Resort is determined to be the most appropriate accommodation. Those units are the largest DVC units as well as the least expensive. Bill also guides me in selecting days of the week and a month with a relatively low rate. He crafts three different packages to be considered. And then, in his great generousity, Bill offers each package at a price that I know leaves him with very little profit.
I am stunned by this act of compassion. It is evident that the Mouse has heard the wishes I have made upon the entire universe of stars. What else could explain having found this amazing person who is willing to make sacrifices along with me to make this dream come true?
Bill and I end our uplifting conversation. Within minutes I receive three e-mails, each one detailing the specifics of a package that has been designed over the phone. There are pages of resort features, amenities, extracurricular activities, room layouts and other particulars. I swoon as I pour over each and every descriptive detail. Is this it? Could it be that the way to Disney has finally opened for me?
In my little Mickey-shaped heart, I hope that one of these packages will fall within the constraints of our budget. The final litmus test is yet to be passed, though, since DH is the one who knows the boundaries of our minimal funds. It is entirely possible that my NDM compulsions have finally led us to the solution of our Disney dilemma. But, ultimately, our fate lies with DH who will determine the final outcome.