Friday, October 26, 2012

Disney week 1: The Journey begins.

The first week of my externship was mostly getting to Florida and getting settled in. We finished loading the car and left Indiana the afternoon of Sunday, 30 Sep 2012. We drove straight through to Florida, and arrived in the early afternoon of the following day. We got a motel a few miles from the check-in place and tried to relax. But I was far too nervous to relax.

After a brief nap I woke up and couldn't get back to sleep again before checking in the following morning, so we just stayed up and drove over to the Housing Check-in at Vista Way. They started at 9am, but since housing is first-come-first-served, it was recommended to be early. We arrived shortly after 7am, but weren't allowed passed the gates yet. Though, the other cast members arriving by taxi or bus from the airport got to sit inside the gates, so they got first dibs... :/

Here's me on my way to check-in:

It was quickly apparent that everyone checking in for the Disney College Program that day were in the culinary program. At least one other person in the group was also a Baking & Pastry student. There were only about 30 of us that day.

We hiked across the complex to a building at the back where we checked in, signed paperwork, and had our photos taken for our housing ID cards. We also received our housing assignments. So after finishing up there, we all departed to our new assigned living spaces and allowed to unpack before being required to meet again at the casting office for more background checks, I-9 documentation, direct deposit, and so forth.

The next day was a housing meeting, were we went over rules and stuff, and found out that Iron Chef Cat Cora would be giving a presentation, demo, and Q & A the following day, and we were all invited to attend! I was able to capture all but the last couple questions of the Q & A on video when my phone decided to stop working. But it was an amazing experience to say the least.

When asked what the most difficult Secret Ingredient she ever had on Iron Chef was Barracuda. “That is one ugly fish. It’s got teeth. It’s got no meat on it. It is the toughest, wiry, chewiest fish you have ever put in your mouth. It’s not a salmon. I did rock it and I did not make ice cream out of it.”

She answered one of my questions, which was “As a female Celebrity Chef, do you feel pressure to wear make-up? And if so, do you have any tips for those other females in the kitchen on how to try to feel that we look professional and pretty but not have it melt off our face while we’re trying to cook?”

She said that she doesn’t feel any pressure to wear make-up, she just loves make-up. But she didn’t wear any of that for a very long time in kitchen. Everything has its time and place, when she’s on Iron Chef she doesn’t wear high heels while she’s running around. She said, “You should wear what you feel good in. If you don’t love wearing make-up don’t wear it. If you love jewelry, wear it. You should do what you feel comfortable as woman, don’t ever feel pressure from anybody to do what you don’t feel good in.”

The remainder of the week was spent getting settled in and starting Traditions training. I will never forget that the four keys here are, in descending order of importance: Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency.
Some pictures from Traditions:

Am I the only one who draws parallels with coming to The Happiest Place on Earth and going to The Castle with working to get to The Celestial Kingdom and going to The Temple? .... hmmm. Just some food for thought.

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