Today was my last day of training before I get to wear my costume and follow someone around! I had to be to the Polynesian Village Resort by 8:30am. I left the apartment by 7:30 because I was worried I would get lost. I found the resort just fine, but I drove around for a while looking for a cast member parking lot. After driving through a golf course and trying to go through a “bus only” street, I gave up and just went to the visitors section. Luckily, the security guard working was very nice and when I told him I was there for orientation he let me park in the visitors area.
When I went inside, I decided to go ask the front desk where the Tiki Room was because I was supposed to meet there, yet it didn’t exist on a map of the resort. The concierge that was working happily escorted me to the “cast member only” area and showed me to the Tiki Room. Turns out the Tiki Room is only for employees which is why I couldn’t find it on a map of the resort. It was odd to see the employee area of the Polynesian. It is like there is a little world for employees tucked away in the resort.
At 8:30am our orientation started. There were ten other people in training with me. Some were college program participants, others were working as full time or part time. I was the only one being trained in as custodial. We first got an overview of the resort and went over a map of the property. We went on a walking tour of the entire property as well, but it was hot and we were all dripping with sweat. The Polynesian is absolutely beautiful. I learned that they have 75 different kinds of indigenous plants. Another unique feature of the resort is that they have two cultural representatives that sit in the lobby. Their job only consists of talking to people about their culture! They also give out real flower leis to people celebrating anniversaries, birthdays, engagements, etc.
After our tour, we stopped in the lobby and got initiated Polynesian style. We got flower leis and one of the cultural representatives for the resort taught us all how to hula dance in the lobby while an employee played the ukulele. We had quite the crowd watching us! Great news as well-I found out that I get a discount on dole whip there!
Later in the day after lunch, I had to do some online training, I met my leader, and I went and got my costume. I took me a while but I found the employee parking lot as well. Both costuming and the employee parking lot are actually in the Magic Kingdom parking lot. I am very excited that my costume is not all white like it would have been if I had worked in the parks. It looks very tropical!
*Fun fact-I found out that Disneyland would fit in Magic Kingdoms parking lot, and all of Magic Kingdom can fit inside of Animal Kingdom.
Overall, I think the Polynesian is going to be a great place to work. All of the cast members are very close to each other and the general manager himself came to talk to us which really impressed me.
After I was finished with all of my training I got my training sticker for my name tag! It lets everyone know that I am “earning my ears”. I was so tired after I got home that I decided to spend the night relaxing. I got a bunch of little things done around the apartment, hung out with some roommates, and went to bed!