HRH would catch bits and pieces of the cartoons, the video game (Lego version) supplied by his aunt, and of course, the merchandise. He begged to watch the movie. Andy and I discussed it and concluded that The Wizard of Oz was far more frightening than the original Star Wars. We set about making a fun family movie experience; shades drawn, popcorn, and all. HRH loved it. Let me say it again: HRH LOVED IT!
And a Star (Wars fan) was born.
When we visited Disney last month, we found the Star Tours ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Of course, HRH drank it in. But it wasn't until we exited the requisite gift shop that we saw the JEDI TRAINING ACADEMY. It's basically a stage show where young padawans are selected from the audience by a Jedi master and taught the ways of the force. It is at this point that Darth Vader and a few storm troopers arrive on the scene. Naturally, these recently graduated Jedi Knights are called upon to do battle against the dark side.
I don't think HRH blinked during the entire performance. Following it, we were treated to feats of strength, bravery, and Force use never before seen in this galaxy. It was nearing the end of the day and we had unfortunately caught the last show.
We agreed to alter plans and bring the boys back the following day, hoping to get HRH (thankfully, Gremlin was content to simply watch) a place in The Academy. We even bought the Jedi Training Academy sweatshirts hoping to increase our chances during the truly random selection process.
The next morning we arrived on site knowing full well that we were there for the duration. Our entire vacation had come down to this one event. If HRH was selected, it was a success. If not, doom. We made friends with the photographer, we asked her questions, we held our place in the front of the crowd, we had HRH stand a little apart so as to stand out, we made sure he jumped up and down raising his hands when the Jedi Master requested volunteers.
Each time, the show began and HRH was not selected, we sang the same song about how it didn't matter, it was still such fun to watch. All the while, knots are forming in our stomachs and we prayed silently, Please, God. Let him be chosen! After each failed attempt, HRH was stoic and watched in rapt fascination as other children were allowed to learn the ways of the Force.
Finally, at the fourth show of the day, HRH was chosen! Thank you, God! He handled is light saber like a pro and he defeated Lord Vader soundly! His proud and grinning parents were there to witness (and video tape) it as he was handed his Academy Diploma. The sweatshirt a continuing reminder of his courage, bravery, and stature.
The Force was in balance an all was right with this galaxy.