We planned to have a nice mother-daughter lunch, or even High Tea before the show... but that was before my brain forgot days and dates and there was, of course, the Dawn Dash to get back to Auckland in time, which meant no time for fancy lunches. Barely time to slap on some war paint and change my shoes.
But we made it! And off we went, two little girls giggling in the back seat of the car, oh-so-excited.
And why wouldn't you be?? Disney on Ice is magical, for girls of all ages. I think us mummies enjoyed it as much as our girls did. And we were surprised how many 20-somethings were there, without even a borrowed neice to justify their attendance.
The set is clever, the skating inspired (apart from poor Aladdin who landed on his bottom a few times). It is a mix of all the Disney princess movies... all the best songs, all the favourite characters, joined together with leaps and twirls and fabulous costumes.
I had to keep turning to look at my princess's face: big eyes, mouth dropped open in awe, with a sound track of "Oooohhh!", "Ahhhh!" and "Wow!!!" followed by frenzied clapping as yet another wonderful leap or impossible landing is beheld. Fascinating.
At intermission, I overhear her friend Ruby say to her: "Isn't it wonderful???!!" A warm fuzzy gladness spreads through me. I am glad we spent an extra $15 each on better seats. It was worth it.
Then comes the finale... Cinderella in a sparkling coach, every Prince and Princess out on the ice together, spinning and leaping, and a great crescendo with fireworks. It is over. We all cheer and clap... then the princesses skate towards the front row of seats, waving and shaking hands with those lucky little girls...
Princess leaps from her seat and begins to run down the stairs: "I want to shake hands with the princesses too!" she exclaims as she runs. I see the locked gate, and disaster ahead...
Come back! Honey you can't go down there! I call over the hubbub.
She turns, and I see that bottom lip drop. Why can't she shake hands with the princesses??? Those other girls can, Why not her???
My brain scrambles for an answer...
"I think those children are from the hospital... they are sick, that's why they have special seats... (Well, it could be true? They might be sick kids... better to think that than they are rich brats whose daddies paid hundreds of bucks that us peasants couldn't stretch to??)
She starts to cry. Of course she starts to cry.
Around me other mothers meet my eye and nod in sympathy; I overhear someone else telling their daughter the same yarn... (hey we don't know, it could be true, right??)
Come on, I encourage my deflated daughter, let's think about how you got to see this amazing show, not about one little thing you couldn't have, OK?
Around me again, those sympathetic nods and smiles, as other mothers wrangle their princesses away from the $22 plastic tiaras (that can be had for $2 at the mall) and other (vastly overpriced) Princess paraphernalia.
Ahhhh yes, but still, a fabulous outing, a magical show, tears are dried and once again my Princess skips along (apparently skipping is an indicator of happiness??)
And off we go to a cafe with our special friends for a fluffy and a cake. Lovely.