Wherever you go in Orlando, you can’t escape the spectacle of the Magic Kingdom fireworks.
As you drive around the city on any given evening, you see bursts of colorful light shooting up into the air. Then, they quickly cascade as though electrified streamers are raining down on passers by. Finally, the sparks disappear into the darkness as if they were never there. Those flashes of hope bring me back to central Florida again and again.
Nostalgic for Wonder
Even if Disney is too expensive, too commercial, and too corporatist (and it is indeed all those things), it brings me back to my childhood. A visit to the theme parks or one of the resorts reminds me of my wonder. My father, an Italian immigrant, was a workaholic. He never missed a day’s work, not for illness, not for anything. But when the season turned to winter and his landscaping company was on leave, he would take us to Disney World. The first stop would be Peter Pan’s Flight. The second stop would be the fireworks. He considered them awe-inspiring. They reminded him of the elaborate fireworks he would see from Buceto, the woods in Ischia, Italy, where he regularly camped out as a kid for certain religious feast days.
So, we return to Disney. Today, we watch Happily Ever After from the top of California Grill in Disney’s Contemporary Resort. The flurry of images projected onto Cinderella’s Castle cast a spell on us. Hearing the rush to silence from the sea of onlookers is magnificent. That booming launch of fireworks dancing in the sky, in beat with the music, stays with a person.
Standing on that rooftop with fireworks shaped like hearts dissipating before us, I clutch my little boy. His jaw sits practically on the floor. “I never want it to stop, Mommy,” he says. And I respond, “I know. I know.” Truth is neither do I.
Bridge to the Generations
My own parents sit right inside the doors of the restaurant. They preferred to watch the show from our table. Certainly, they long ago held onto my siblings and me in the same way. They too wished upon a Disney firework that we would stay little just a little bit longer. Of course, they longed to make our innocence and sense of security and cherished moments endure as long as possible. Now, they are doing the same for their grandchildren. As the fireworks enlighten us, we must accept that these years vanish in an instant – and there’s no way to get them back once they’re gone.
On an afternoon like this one, I find myself drifting into daydreams. My thoughts turn to travel, namely the kind that allows me to escape into another world, become a kid again, and shut down my brain even if but for a moment. For me, that means virtually visiting Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. I’ll admit, besides unlocking the memories in my mind, I seek out video on YouTube or read what’s new on some of the popular Disney blogs. Sometimes, I even delve into Disney history and read biographies of those who have made their mark on “the World.”
Some of my friends actually believe Disney is evil for its status as a multinational corporation and manipulation of children that has the company convincing them to buy their love of different childhood characters. I won’t even go into how they believe little girls are screwed up by all those princess fairy tales. If I’m being honest, they’re not wrong. Still, I’m walkin’ on the Dark Side, and I’m fine with that. Frankly, Disney is so good at getting you hooked, that I wouldn’t even know how to protest these practices. Here are some of the experiences that fuel my addiction and dominate my thoughts when I’m back home:
Yummy Treats – Hello Dole Whip! Only at Disney would the combination of milk and pineapple juice turn into a delightful, refreshing float that has people yearning in the way others seek true love. Then, there’s the moist, cake-like carrot cake cookie, replete with cream cheese icing filling, that might be the only draw at Hollywood Studios as it undergoes major renovation ahead of the arrival of Star Wars and Toy Story lands. Epcot serves as my own personal buffet of snacks – nachos in Mexico, pretzels and caramel corn in Germany, egg rolls in China, crepes and artisan ice cream in France, and fish and chips in England. The list of must-haves continues to grow as Disney expands its options and becomes more gourmet (at least by Disney standards).
Monorail – There are fewer sounds more soothing to me than the whizzing of futuristic trains that fly through the sky. Taking a ride on one is like a fantasy. As you swing around and visit each resort and the Magic Kingdom or head to Epcot, you are literally taken to another place, somewhere in a child’s storybook. I almost feel as though I’m hanging over Neverland. From your seat, you might catch a glimpse of the lit torches at the Polynesian, a wedding at the Grand Floridian, and Chef Mickey greeting guests at the Contemporary. Of course, you’ll see Cinderella’s Castle in all its glory, always beckoning you home.
Sound of Fireworks – The crackling explosion of colorful flames is like a lullaby. The best part is no matter where you are in the area, you can usually hear the fireworks every single night. Often, you can catch some of that color in the air. The sound of fireworks in Orlando is like a warm blanket on a cold day. It’s another way to get into your head and temporarily erase the usual to-dos and worries hanging out in there. Isn’t that the point of a vacation?
Peter Pan’s Flight – Everyone has her own favorite ride at the Disney theme parks, and this is one of mine. My parents took us to Disney just about every year when I was a kid, and this was always a must do. My father loved it because he said he flew away from his problems every time he stepped onto the flying ship. My mother hated it because she is afraid of heights and hanging a few inches in the air terrified her. She would clutch his arm and keep her eyes shut, but she never missed the flight. I think she wanted to be a part of our journey, which had us floating over Neverland, replete with Pan, Wendy, Hook, and the Tic-Toc Croc.
Mickey Mouse Ears for Everyone – The fact that it’s socially acceptable for full-grown adults to wear Mickey ears or capes or both makes Disney awesome. Grown ups like stuff kids like, including goofy string fights, chicken nuggets, and toilet humor. Normally, however, adults can’t admit this kind of stuff. Disney lets you be a kid again. In the World, you can wear the ears, take pictures with cartoon characters, and fill your plate with stuff from the kid’s section of the buffet. And nobody will judge.
All the Pretty Flowers – Flowers in a rainbow of colors, in a perfectly manicured bed, replete with water features or topiaries or statues inspire long, deep breaths and creative ideas. Coming from a family full of landscapers, I’ve been aware of this fact for as long as I can remember. While my family have the greenest of thumbs and have created gorgeous works of art with plants and flowers, even they can admit that Disney does it right. My father even learned a thing or two from Disney, like using cabbage as decoration in the fall and growing strawberries in a bag. Hello Land ride! Of course, all these gorgeous flowers and plants make lovely backdrops for your family vacation photos.
My Kid’s Smile – On any day of the week, my 4-year-old son has one heck of a smile, replete with a dimple on each cheek. Yes, I’m totally bias, but that’s not the point. When we are wrapped in the Disney bubble, his smile is wider and brighter. His teeth might actually sparkle and stars might circle around him as though he was in a cartoon.
Experts tell us that giving your child memories is a better investment than material items, such as toys. The pure joy I see in his smile when we’re on vacation at Disney proves that to me. Certainly, it helps alleviate the frustration at the significantly high prices of such a getaway. But it also makes me sure that when my son is older and I’m gone, these are the kinds of things upon which he’ll reflect. Sure, he’ll remember advice I give him and how I nursed him through the flu and all the stuff I will teach him (from tying his shoes to parking a car). But when he thinks about our bond – the love between us – I’m willing to bet shaking hands with Mickey Mouse and hopping on Dumbo’s Flight with my husband and me are going to be near the top of his list.
Planning parties has been a pastime of mine for as long as I can remember. Even when I was in high school and college, family members put me in charge of making invitations and I sort of, kind of, definitely took over the whole entire festa. Always. That hasn’t changed. Now, however, thanks to the Internet, I have so many places to turn to spark the imagination and come up with new ways to celebrate. And the kids’ parties are the most fun of all.
Two years ago, my nephew’s love of Disney’s Cars spilleth over, so we made that the theme of his birthday party. After scanning Pinterest, some birthday party planning guides put out by top publications, such as Parents and Better Homes and Gardens, I decided I wanted the kids to be able to dress up as their favorite characters, eat some themed food items, and take cool photos.
Since we’re Italian, the food always comes first. It’s the law. The thing nowadays is to have elaborate dessert and candy buffets. I know. But my people won’t accept a sweets-only affair. You have to give them some good food first and there better be more of that than the indulgences. You need to have antipasto (appetizers), at least one primo piatto (a pasta or soup), and a secondo piatto (a meat). Often, we have much more. Indeed, the same was true for this party, but I only photographed the principle dishes to get better images to show off.
One of the first pictures I fell in love with was a hero sandwich that looked like a car from an old magazine (seriously, those print editions still exist). I didn’t want to make sandwiches, so I cut out the center of the bread without cutting through it. I turned it into one long bowl. I filled it with a simple dip (a container of sour cream mixed with Italian seasonings salad dressing packet). I made a face on the front of the car by using toothpicks to attach two olives for eyes and a slice of red pepper for a mouth. Of course, sliced cucumbers served as wheels. And I loaded the “car” with passengers, including carrots, peppers, and more cucumbers. I left all the extras on the side for anyone who wanted more. It was really simple and super cute.
I made pasta wheels with bacon, peas, and olive oil. You cook the bacon (or better yet pancetta) first in a sauce pan. Then, you saute the peas (I used frozen) and add olive oil to the pan to heat it up a bit. Then, you pour that over the wheels cooked to al dente. It’s how they do it in Italy, and the kids love it (except my son who refuses to eat any pasta at all). Some of my relatives topped the pasta with grated Parmigiano cheese.
Finally, I heated a spiral cut ham that I topped with warm maple syrup and chopped pecans. I also made a fueling station in the kitchen that included water, juice, and milk for the kids and beer and wine for the adults. The highlight of the “bar” was the homemade strawberry lemonade that I made with fresh lemons and strawberries. Yum.
I decorated the eating area in a really affordable way. I covered the tables with black plastic tablecloths from the dollar store and taped white rectangles to make each look like the road. The kids put their Hot Wheels on top and raced them for real. And I used my son’s Tonka dump trucks to hold silverware and napkins. By the way, my sister-in-law bought a gorgeous Cars cake from the local supermarket. Other relatives brought desserts they had made themselves.
I never met a cardboard box I couldn’t put to good use. I took a huge one, which is not in the photos above, and turned it into a giant car, threw pillows inside it, and the kids used it as a play area during the party. They also had the photo prop I purchased from Oriental Trading that allowed them to pose as a champion race car driver (see collage above). Then, I took smaller boxes, covered them in paper, and decorated them to look like Lightning McQueen, Mater, and Sally from the Cars movie. I attached long ribbons to allow each child to wear the car throughout the party. They kept switching into different characters. You can see McQueen and Mater in the images above. At the time, the kids were still pretty young. If it had been today, I would have purchased the unfinished wooden cars to have them paint those. The fact that my son fell asleep in the box at the end of the party was a good sign that it was a great party.
There’s something supremely American – not to mention innocent – about spending the day bowling. But the game, once among American’s favorite pastimes, has lost some of its shine. Certainly, it’s not as popular as it once was. I remember attending bowling birthday parties on a regular basis, grown-ups being in leagues, and even watching bowling on TV. Now, there are few alleys around. In my neck of the woods, there is only one still standing. My son’s first school field trip was to that bowling alley. So, when we were staying at Universal Studios’ Cabana Bay, we just had to play at the resort’s Galaxy Bowl.
This is no old-school joint. It is made to look like something out of the 1950s, but it’s fresh and functioning. Despite it’s retro appeal, it has a modern feel. I really liked the colorful lights that lit up the lanes and the black and white photos of bowling alleys of yesteryear on the walls. The mid-century modern tables and chairs were kitschy and played well into the theme.
Since this was all about my 4-year-old son having fun, we immediately asked for bumpers for the gutters and a ball ramp, so he could more easily handle the ball. Like other players in the alley, we were able to order drinks and food and have it delivered to our lane. My son really enjoyed the chicken fingers, of which he is a true connoisseur, so his endorsement really means something. My husband sampled them, too, and said they were among the best he ever had. They weren’t at all greasy and they had a subtle seasoning that popped with flavor.
Because my son was having such a good time, we both kept giving up our turn for him. Regardless, we had the time of our lives. My son laughed. High fives were given all around. And we enjoyed the snack. For a moment, I felt like we were that perfect, wholesome American family. I was tempted to don pearls, June Cleaver style. Then, my husband got a gutter ball (despite the bumpers) and I heard, “Vafa…” and remembered we’re not even completely American, never mind one of those Golden Age TV families.
But I digress. The point is Galaxy Bowl is a cool place to spend an afternoon. Whether it’s worth it is debatable. As much as I enjoyed it, the diversion is on the expensive side. With the food and the game and renting shoes, we ended up spending at least $60. It’s not terrible, but the Orlando theme parks are already costly. We were in the area a weekend before our Disney trip was set to begin, so we had nothing else to do and it was within our budget. Still, I can’t deny that I felt a little taken advantage of. But on every vacation, don’t you find yourself dipping deeper into your wallet for stuff that you’d never invest in back home? After hemming and hawing in my head, I just tell myself to shut up and enjoy. It works. Frankly, if it doesn’t wipe out the bank account and helps my son create memories and bond with us, his parents, then it’s priceless anyway. Right?
To look at most people’s family albums, you would think that mothers never go on a vacation – or do anything else – with their kids. After all, they are always the ones taking the pictures, so it’s like they were never there. When the women of the family pass away, you’ll be longing for images to hang onto the memories, to keep their faces fresh in your mind. But you may never find them.
Well, Walt Disney World has fixed all this, at least whenever mothers travel there. You can purchase Memory Maker, which allows you to carry a card or a magic band on which you can save photos taken by Disney Photo Pass photographers, who are waiting at various points of interest within the park and sometimes the resorts.
What drew me to the Memory Maker was the price. See, I always liked getting photographers with professional cameras to take pictures of my family. Not long before we bought the Memory Maker the first time in 2015, I had paid for holiday photos of my son and his cousins.
We went to the local J.C. Penney for those, and I ended up spending nearly $200 on a CD with all the pictures on it. There were about 5 photos of my son alone, another 5 of my brother’s immediate family, and 20 photos that featured my niece and nephew and my son. The portraits were lovely, and a few of them made for a nice collage for my parents for Christmas. But it was only a few photos and my husband and I were not in them at all. In fairness, scheduling prevented our presence but having us there would have only driven up the price. And the gray or seasonal school-photo backgrounds were outdated and not all that appealing. When it was over, despite being happy to have the pictures, I felt overcharged, and the buyer’s remorse kicked in.
On the other hand, Memory Maker promised us the ability to take as many pictures as we’d like of the entire family or different factions of it throughout the entirety of our trip. The backgrounds would be the sites at Disney parks (unbeatable if you ask me). Some of the pics would undoubtedly be with Disney characters at the very moment that my son was meeting them for the first time (precious).
Since my parents, brother’s family, and sister would all be there, we’d have full family portraits that included all of us. And we would get all this for under $200, about the same as the price for the CD of about 30 photos from J.C. Penney. With Disney, we’d have a month to be able to download all the digital photos for ourselves. We could even include decorative borders provided by Disney if we wanted to. One of the coolest parts was the possibility of magic shots. This is when the Photo Pass photographer asked us to point to something or look in a different direction, and then we’d find a cartoon had been added to the picture. For instance, my son was asked to look cold and gaze to his left in front of Magic Kingdom’s Cinderella’s Castle and Olaf, not to mention snow, showed up in the picture when we were ready to download it. In another shot, we’re all in front of Spaceship Earth at Epcot’s entrance trying to pull down my husband who is holding a large bouquet of Mickey Mouse-shaped balloons.
Even if you don’t purchase Memory Maker, you still can have Photo Pass photographers take your picture. You can then look at the pictures online and decide if you want to purchase one at a time. That deal will bankrupt you. In the year before I bought the Memory Maker, I wanted a photo of my family from a character breakfast we had attended. The ability to download the one picture after our trip cost about $15 and that didn’t even include having it printed. I would have gone broke for the nearly 1,000 photos I downloaded the next year with Memory Maker or even the nearly 500 I downloaded after the February 2016 trip we just took.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind. Purchase the Memory Maker because it’s a great price. In fact, Disney lowered the price of advanced purchases back in December. I had bought mine for said February trip the day before the price drop was announced. Instead of crediting me for the $20, Disney made me buy something from the Photo Pass online store. The print outs are overpriced, so don’t buy into that. Instead, I print out the images through my local Walgreens or Shutterfly to get a better price. So, I still had $20 to spend, and I looked at the products. The calendars, mugs, magnets, etc. are all better priced and perhaps higher quality at other online outlets. I decided on a 5X7 wooden frame with Mickey in the corner.
But I had to shell out another $7 for shipping. I was annoyed. I would have preferred to have just received the $20 back on my credit card. Another important point is that you must buy the Memory Maker before your trip to get the best price and to maximize its value, so that you can start taking pictures as soon as you arrive.
Still, compared to everything else at Disney, which is becoming more astronomically priced as I write this, the Memory Maker is a great deal and a genius idea. By the way, if you can’t or don’t want to buy into it, you can still ask Photo Pass photographers around the parks to photograph you with your own camera or phone. They will always say, “Yes!” So, there are no more excuses. Mom, you better be in the next batch of vacation photos.
ITALIAN MAMMA’S NOTE: For full disclosure, you should know that a member of my immediate family is a Disney employee, and I have gotten into the Disney Parks for free as a result. I, however, have always paid for my resort stays and the Memory Maker. And I’m in no way influenced about what to write or my opinions on Disney travel.
Don’t ask me about the food at T-Rex in WDW’s Downtown Disney in Orlando, Fla. I haven’t eaten there but that didn’t stop my husband, son, and me from staying there for about an hour on a recent vacation. The exterior with its dinosaur bones captured Baby Boy’s 2-year-old attention immediately. He wasn’t going to let us pass it by without walking inside. There, he found a baby dinosaur and its mamma moving their heads and arms and roaring and a ceiling full of fun underwater dinosaurs and friends. There was a gift shop loaded with dinosaur goodies that he begged to have. We did not succumb. He left without any new toys, gadgets, or thingamajigs. Amazing, right? Not really. See, just outside the gift shop is a large sandbox, replete with brushes and hidden dinosaur bones for kids to dig up. It’s free to anyone who wants to hang out there. Baby Boy would have stayed there forever if we let him, and it didn’t cost a cent so I thought about it. In fact, the hardest parts of the latest trip to Disney was hanging onto his flailing, gelatinous body as we tried to get him out of sandboxes and other attractions he loved. Getting him to keep his shoes on in the sand – a rule at WDW – was a close second. Di Meglio is the author of Fun with the Family New Jersey (Globe Pequot Press Travel) and the Newlyweds Expert for About.com.
The flamingos, Mickey Mouse, and even those sun showers that often fall amid the humid, hot air are all part of what draw me to central Florida. I fell in love with the place as a kid, when my parents would take us to the Sunshine State for a little bit of summer magic in the middle of January every year. Sometimes, we would be bundled up in sweatshirts, but it was still warmer than back home in Jersey. And there was no sign of snow, except for the fake kind that Disney creates around the holiday season, when we’d sometimes visit.
While I’m thrilled to be back in the Garden State – despite the real snow on the ground – after nine months in my husband’s native Italy, I’m a little sad that our sojourn in Florida between Italy and New Jersey is over. We’ve only been home two days, and I’m already nostalgic. I usually feel refreshed after a stop in the sun. But this time it happened so fast, and I was so jet lag, and there was so much work to do – even while I was visiting EPCOT and Baby Boy was hopping on stage at the Spirit of Aloha dinner show at Disney’s Polynesian Resort – that it felt as though we were never even on vacation. The cooler-than-usual temperatures that turned to 90-degree summer madness on the last day we were in the state didn’t help, neither did Baby Boy’s bout of the flu (despite the flu shot he had gotten two weeks earlier).
Still, there’s something about Florida that gets me to dream, to think about possibilities beyond my everyday. Maybe it’s the inspiration of Walt Disney, the greatest dreamer of us all. “If you dream it, you can do it,” Disney once said. Or perhaps it is the lovely view of the sun as it both rises and sets amid those clear blue skies and puffy white clouds and creates that pinkness you only see in Florida. Or it could be the smile that my son wears as he pretends to be a pirate, races down a slide, or hugs his favorite cartoon character, Jake. Whatever it is, after being in Florida – even when it’s hard to savor the vacation – I feel like the future has potential and that I can accomplish just about anything I’d like. I must confess I’m addicted to the feeling, which might be why I enjoy planning these getaways almost as much as I enjoy the trips themselves. It’s like I’m getting a fix from home. I guess there is something to that old ditty that you often hear at Disney, “When you wish upon a star…”
There was a time when I led my classmates in projects, spoke up about stuff I didn’t like, and told everyone I was the boss. For instance, at 4, I asked my father to play bank and told him he could be the teller, but I was the president. But ever since I finished college, I kind of feel like I’ve been silenced. I try to make my demands, but there is no one around to listen. When someone is around, I back off. Sometimes, I even feel as though I am a carpet for others to use for feet wiping and balance. I want to be fierce, but I don’t want to lose any work or piss off any P.T.A. parents or come off as difficult. What happened to the little girl with the big voice? She could come in handy right about now.
Lucky for me, my 3-year-old niece is reminding me of who I once was. We recently vacationed together at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. And when a Disney bus stopped and it was time for us to get off, she exclaimed to a crowd of strangers, “Make room for the princess.” Needless to write, she was talking about herself. And when we ate at Via Napoli in EPCOT, she insisted I order her the adult-sized gelato frizzante, even though her kid’s meal came with a little ice cream sundae. When my gelato frizzante arrived, she grabbed it and said, “Thanks, Zia. This is what I ordered. Baby brother can have that other ice cream.” I loved her chutzpah, her pluck, the way she grabbed that gelato right out of my hands.
Throughout the trip, my mother was making comparisons between my niece and me and my son and my brother. Frankly, it is as though karma is biting us in the butt. We had a seriously bad case of sibling rivalry that only just recently died and now we’re raising each other. Go figure. Truly, my niece is perfectly suited to the Little Miss Bossy book my mother gave to me as a child. We’re kindred spirits. The only problem is that I was like that when I was a kid. Somewhere along the way, I lost that audaciousness. I don’t speak up nearly enough. I let other people tell me what to do – often. And I put up with stuff in my life that other people would never tolerate.
So, I find myself seeking the 3-year-old inside me, who would have told Nonno that he didn’t know how to make a nativity scene without me or would have grabbed that gelato frizzante without thinking twice. I’m not looking to be arrogant or bossy, and that’s not really what my niece is doing either. It’s about strength and confidence that far too many women lose along the way. I pray long and hard that my niece never loses that power, that belief that she is a princess for whom others need to get out of the way, that she deserves the gelato frizzante she ordered and more.
Find out how my husband and I are recovering from Disney’s Deluxe Dining plan, in which we indulged last week, in my latest Newlyweds post for About.com. Don’t worry, Baby Boy is going to have to recover, too. He won’t be seeing anymore of the delicious Mickey Mouse ice cream bars, which he is devouring in the photo above, either. Back to whole wheat bread, fruits, and veggies for us all. Maybe, we’ll have a little something sweet for Valentine’s Day, though. You can’t give it all up 1-2-3, right?
Disney’s Jake and the Neverland Pirates is my son’s favorite cartoon. It has been since he was very little. In fact, I would put on clips of it on YouTube to get him to sit in the high chair and eat when we were in Italy. On March 1, the Disney Junior cable channel celebrated Jake’s birthday with a special episode and free online printables (coloring book pages and games you could print out for your kids). If you were making a different theme for your party, you could conduct a Google search to find all sorts of free party and activity printables for kids. Since I was off from work that afternoon and my niece and nephew came over, too, we decided to make a day of it. We actually threw Jake a birthday party at our house.
Since Baby Boy is a big pirate fan, I had paper pirate hats and pirate birthday sign leftover from his party, so I took those out and reused them. You could use any supplies you have on hand or you could make hats and signs with some paper and creativity. My niece helped decorate the house. The kids colored the pages that Disney had on its site for the occasion and hung them on the wall. I put Baby Boy’s Jake tees on him and my niece. All three kids got into the pack and play to watch the show. You can’t see them in the photo, but all the dolls – the entire cast of Jake – and a Mickey pirate are joining them for the episode, along with all sorts of other soft toys.
Finally, we made red velvet cupcakes (from a box) in Jake’s honor (see photos below). The fun for the kids is in making the birthday cake or cupcakes, so I would just buy a semi-made boxed mix of your choosing. My niece helped me; she even cracked the eggs. We all decorated them, but Baby Boy mostly just ate icing. My niece did, too, but every so often she would make a design on a cupcake to give me a hand. And she looked adorable in her apron. Everyone had dinner and then the whole family, including grandparents, sang, “Happy Birthday,” to Jake and my niece and Baby Boy blew out the candles on his behalf.
By far, the best part of this party in a pinch was the red velvet. The kids all painted themselves with it, and we had to throw them in the tub all together after dessert. My bathroom looked like there had been a massacre with red velvet bits caked into the floor, and the red water the kids left behind. Perhaps, we can save this happy accident in our idea vault for our next Halloween party. Still, I learned I can make a memorable fete with very little supplies and on a very little budget. And I’m sure the kids, at least my niece, will hold dear to the memory of Jake’s bash.