July 2nd, 2019

krazy koati

Ya won't get to it to get at it again

The next-priority roller coaster was in the kiddieland area, Planet Snoopy. Which you get to by crossing a bridge and walking under a rainbow arch. Which makes no thematics sense for Snoopy. It kind of made sense for the park's original incarnation, when this was a Hanna-Barbera-themed area. Not that, like, Yogi Bear did much with rainbows, but it makes sense as a frame for walking in to a cartoon setting. Along the way we passed a pond with a good number of geese. Also puttering along by the geese: swan boats. Not floating freely, like we're used to. They were on an under-water track. Like I thought only happened in Roller Coaster Tycoon.

Planet Snoopy has the Peanuts Character Carousel, the kiddie carousel which originally had, well, Hanna-Barbera figures. Now that you can't ride Snagglepuss's back anymore, what is there to ride? Such beloved Peanuts characters as: nobody. It's all horses and similar normal carousel figures. I don't know why they call it Peanuts Character Carousel except maybe as a spasm of misplaced marketing. On top of the Peanuts Character Carousel's house is a sculpture of three cherubs, a cute thematic resonance with the antique carousel's three angels.

Our target was the Peanuts Ghoster Coaster. Originally this ride was Scooby's Gasping Ghoster Coaster. That's the name bunny_hugger's brother knew it as when he rode it. It's got a haunted-house theme, with a spoooooky old manor house you walk through to get to the launch station, plus a comic-headstones graveyard out front and all. So you see how the original name fit together enough you wouldn't ask ``what's a 'ghoster coaster' s'poseter be?'' Besides a powerful assonance it'd be a fool to reject? Anyway, when Cedar Fair bought the park and they lost the Hanna-Barbera theming, Canada's Wonderland renamed the place Peanuts Ghoster Coaster and put up a sign showing Snoopy dressed as a vampire on top. What does Peanuts have to do with vampires? What do vampires have to do with ghosts? Look, just get on the ride, all right?

Peanuts Ghoster Coaster is a junior roller coaster, designed for two kids or for one adult and a kid in one seat. bunny_hugger and I thought, briefly, that we would be able to both fit in the same car. No, we are not even close to it. An adult and a kid could fit. We needed to ride separately but by the time we worked this out all the other rows were taken. I wanted to wait for the next car, but the ride operators didn't understand me and thought I wanted to just walk through and leave the station. I insisted on going back into the queue --- the gates hadn't closed --- and they let me, and I didn't inconvenience anyone because they were keeping people from entering the queue area until a train was ready to load. All right.

So, I waited for the next train --- they were running two trains --- and everything seemed like it should be okay. But behind me a father had two kids to ride with, and they wouldn't all fit in one car, a thing unforeseeable unless you read any of the signs warning only two people to a seat. That's all right. While I fumbled a surprisingly long time with my seat belt he concluded he could set both kids in one row and then come join me in my row. I ... had to tell him, that's just not possible, and he finally accepted this and went back behind the queue gates to ride next train. Meanwhile bunny_hugger's train had already finished its circuit and was waiting for us to go. So this was the time for a fresh hold-up. Someone came up the exit door asking about a lost hat. The operators gave him some time to look through the storage bins, but he couldn't find them, and was getting worried about this. Finally someone remembered: oh, yeah, they'd taken that hat out of the storage bins and put it in the operator's shed. So after a moment's delay for that, finally, our train could be dispatched. The Ghoster Coaster was another of the rides at Canada's Wonderland the day it opened --- they had three wooden roller coasters, which is great by any standard --- and it's a good junior coaster ride. It reminded me of Zach's Zoomer, at Michigan's Adventure, but they're not really that similar besides being small wooden roller coasters.

On the way out I was delayed even more by noticing another groundhog, and stopping to photograph this too. I tried to explain to bunny_hugger what all had happened and even I wasn't convinced it did.

We walked out of Planet Snoopy to the adjacent Kidzville, to what seem like older-but-not-yet-teen-grade rides. There we passed the performance pavilion where they had the Peanuts Gang Beach Adventure show going on. This was one of the handful of live shows running that day. It's people in Peanuts character costumes moving along to a recorded program about what a swell day they're going to have at the beach. You know, like you saw in Charles Schulz's comic strip all the time. We also passed Taxi Jam, née Top Cat's Taxi Jam, a kiddie coaster. A tiny kiddie coaster, the kind that takes your knees behind a taxi and whacks them with a cab. Should we ride it? Just for the credit of saying we had ridden it? But the line was short. But it would probably be painful. Fortunately the ride sign said no unaccompanied adults may ride it. So we could skip it, the way we both really wanted to, without feeling like we were choosing to pass up on something we could easily do.

And we stopped at a park Tim Horton's, for coffee and tea before thinking about what next to do.

Trivia: At the beginning of 1917 Daimler demanded a 50% price hike in vehicles made for the German war effort. The year before the company had paid a 35% divided to stockholders, and written off the entire book value of its production plant. Source: The First World War, Hew Strachan.

Currently Reading: DC Comics Before Superman: Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson's Pulp Comics, Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson.


PS: And I continue to tromp around the Cuicuilco Pyramid.

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This tree, tagged as number 8, is waiting for its order from the cafe and hopes to be served soon.


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Gentrification. Another look at the Cuicuilco Pyramid, showing off the sloped path you can walk up, with modern construction visible in the far background.


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And some discussion of the pyramid, giving useful stuff like its size and that it was built in several stages and out of volcanic stone. We'll come back to the volcano part there.