Kid's response about not being able to go to Disneyland is the best thing to come out of all of this
Last week, the Walt Disney Company announced that it would be closing all of its theme parks around the world as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. From California to Florida, Hong Kong to Paris, thousands of vacationers have lost their magic.
But despite the thousands of lost smiles around the world, one eight-year-old Canadian boy has provided the world with an instantly iconic response when asked about the park closures.
While being interviewed by KTTV reporter Rick Lozano outside of the California park on March 13, Elias Sharf spoke candidly but reservedly about how he felt about his vacation being ruined by the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
"It’s closing for the whole month and we come from Canada. Took a long trip to get here," a very calm Elias said, before taking a sip of his Starbucks drink.
Honestly, every time I see that child take a sip of his Starbucks, I see the face of my disappointed father whenever my brother and I would ruin a family trip.
After being shared on Twitter by LA Times sports columnist Arash Markazi on March 14, the youngster's restrained response has since been viewed more than 5 million times on the social media platform.
And the results to Elias' interview are just as hilarious:
In a statement last week, Disney announced that they would be closing the Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure at their California resort starting on March 14.
"While there have been no reported cases of COVID-19 at Disneyland Resort, after carefully reviewing the guidelines of the Governor of California's executive order and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure."
Officials also said the California resort hotels will remain open until March 16 to allow guests to make travel arrangements.
This is the fourth time that Disneyland has shut down since its opening on July 17, 1955. The others were after President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, after the 1994 Northridge Earthquake, and after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
In a second announcement just hours later, Disney officials revealed that the theme parks at its Florida Walt Disney World Resort will also be closing "until the end of the month".
In Paris, both the Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park will close, but like the other two locations, the shopping and dining district Disney Village will remain open, as will the resort hotels.
Per CNN, a Disney spokesperson said in a statement:
"In an abundance of caution and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of our theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Paris Resort, beginning at the close of business on Sunday, March 15, through the end of the month.
"Disney Cruise Line will suspend all new departures beginning Saturday, March 14, through the end of the month.
"The Walt Disney Company will pay its cast members during that closure period.
"The hotels at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Paris will remain open until further notice. The retail and dining complexes, Disney Springs at Walt Disney World and Disney Village at Disneyland Paris, will remain open.
"Domestic Walt Disney Company employees who are able to work from home are being asked to do so, including those at The Walt Disney Studios, Walt Disney Television, ESPN, Direct-to-Consumer, and Parks, Experiences and Products.
"We will continue to stay in close contact with appropriate officials and health experts."
Disney's parks in Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Shanghai have also extended their closures.
However, there is at least some good news to come out of all this.
With the Disney parks currently mitigating a host of unforeseen issues, the Disneyland Resort in California has revealed that they will be donating all excess food to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.
Writing on the official Disney Parks blog, a statement from External Communications Manager Kyleigh Johnson read:
"The Disneyland Resort has an ongoing commitment to reducing food waste, and during the temporary closure of Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park will be donating excess food inventory to Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.
"While closely following food safety guidelines, excess inventory of dairy, fruit, vegetables, packaged goods and banquet meals is being donated to Second Harvest Food Bank, whose mission is to end hunger in Orange County."