|(that cute little ride is very evil)|
For years I've cheerfully supported my husband's love of roller coasters, when actually I can think of at least three hundred other things I'd rather do than a) step foot inside an amusement park or b) get on a ride that will make me want to heave.
But he loves them... so, I'm a sport and have a healthy breakfast, wear my comfortable shoes, slather on the sunscreen and take one for the team. He's been on vacation this week and offered up the idea of going to Great America. I (again) cheerfully said Sure!
I forget how much I hate being tossed about in small metal death traps and instead remember things like funnel cake and cotton candy. It seems like a good idea when we're not actually at the amusement park.
So, we went... We got there early and went directly to a ride called the Vortex. The best part about this ride is the long switchback line that lets you observe the next generation, sort of like Margaret Mead. The ride twists, turns, drops and loops and the harness thing smells like a rank gym mat. Fun! I kept my eyes closed and tried deep breathing with lots of clenching. As soon as the ride stopped the pre-puke burps started. Thankfully the burping didn't escalate and the fun! continued.
Then we rode the Grizzly - the wooden roller coaster that's actually pretty cool. That was like getting fourteen major chiropractic adjustments in five seconds. I thought my head might snap clean off my body but when we got off my neck actually felt pretty good. It really may have had some chiropractic benefit.
Then I had to pee. As I sat inside my stall I hoped that there would be some sort of major emergency and we'd have to leave the park immediately. Unfortunately, no alarm sounded. I freshened up and marched right back out to continue the fun! We found a nice little ride – looked like a pretty tame coaster-thing – I thought now this is something I can manage. It was called Psycho [Danger] Mouse, which should have been a clue.
Each adorable mouse-themed car sits only four people and we had a car to ourselves. We began by going up, up, up toward the sky – and then the evil little mouse dropped down only slightly – still about 25 feet above ground – and began its course through several switchbacks at a very high rate of speed. At each turn it seemed certain that the car would fling right the hell off of the tracks and plummet you to a painful, idiotic death. I had to shut my eyes and practice deep breathing while shouting obscenities.
After that we walked around for a bit. We thought about eating something, but every line was miles long, it’s all too expensive and it's all utter shit. It's amazing, really, how much all this costs and what passes for "food." The one place we saw that offered a somewhat healthier option - a fruit smoothie - was closed. So we shared a pretzel and I took some advil. Then we decided we’d try to ride the Grizzly again.
By that time the park had really filled up and the line was very long. I stood there thinking, He can’t want to wait this long… I know he can’t be happy about this ginormous line that isn't even moving… but I didn’t say a word. I cheerfully observed our surroundings, snapped a couple of pictures… and then I heard the magical words I thought I’d never hear...
“Maybe I’m getting old, but I just don’t have the patience to wait in a line like this.” Sweet baby Jesus wrapped in a funnel cake. I almost cried hot sticky tears of joy. I said, “Whatever you want to do, I’m fine either way.” I really was - I would have rallied and stayed - but I was ecstatic when he said "Yeah, let's go." We headed to the sky tram thingie that takes you clear across the park... toward the front... and the EXIT.
Standing in line for the sky cam David said he was officially aware of being too old for this. We were both knackered after only a few hours – hours spent mostly standing in line. But he said the next time he suggests such a thing I should tell him No way and that we should see a movie and drink tequila instead. YES!