austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

We'll find a way through the mad rushing crowd

With Great Adventure abandoned by so many because of the rains the park gave us a wonderful, almost unthinkable delight: we could ride anything. As many times as we liked. There's rides we just simply love, such as El Toro --- a wooden roller coaster with a stunningly smooth ride --- and hopping off of it, checking on our ride photos (I looked as I ever do, and bunny_hugger sometimes looked better than average), and going back around through is fantastic. This reached the point that the ride operators were telling people they could just ride again.

The ride operators took some interest in bunny_hugger because she wore her GateKeeper T-shirt from Cedar Point --- feeling the need to represent our home park, after all --- and a good number of the roller coaster operators wanted to know what it was like. One person in line for the Safari ride even got bunny_hugger attention to ask how it was; we needed a moment to realize he meant GateKeeper, not the Safari ride we were still waiting for. The guy hoped to get to Cedar Point next year. At a Six Flags park, apparently, GateKeeper ride shirts are the equivalent of chicken purses.

This is how empty the park got, though: when we realized we'd ridden Kingda Ka on, literally, walking on, no wait, we went back around and waited for a front-seat ride on what had been the world's fastest, and I think is still the world's tallest, roller coaster. We had to wait one ride cycle. We'd figured on never getting a front-seat ride for this because we'd never have the patience to wait as long as we'd need to. We got it.

Kingda Ka, by the way, from the front seat is a fun ride, as good as such a short and really one-trick coaster is. You get an unobstructed view of the speed, if that makes sense, and of the breadth of space around you, and of the long drop back down (and of the extra hill which makes Kingda Ka a marginally better ride than Cedar Point's Top Thrill Dragster, although neither is that much of a ride). bunny_hugger feared she'd lost a contact lens. I'm pretty sure I lost some eyelashes.

Our last roller coaster for the night was Bizarro, on which we and a pair of guys looked like we'd be the only ones, so, front row and again a walk-on ride. (As we left I saw there were a couple more seats filled, possibly from people just re-riding.) I mention this because part of the Bizarro theme features flamethrowers, and they didn't operate, and the guys we rode with mentioned that as we approached the platform. bunny_hugger gamely asked about that when the ride operator asked how the ride was, and the operator admitted, the flame throwers don't work when it's been rainy. Too bad.

The park was trying very hard to close --- for long stretches it seemed we were the only people there, at least the only patrons --- but we got to the carousel for the last ride of the night. Possibly we irritated that operator as she'd been closing the ride up. But we finished off the day and the lights turned off and we wandered through the little remnants of a fantastic day together.

Trivia: Fred Allen and Mary Portland's wedding, originally scheduled for 10 am, began late: it was preceded by a funeral mass, which also began late. Apparently several of the funeral-goers chose to stay when the wedding took over the Source: Fred Allen: His Life And Wit, Robert Taylor. (The story further goes that when Allen and best man Charlie Lane got to the altar, he looked over the mourners and whispered ``It's a good thing we're not playing this for percentage.'')

Currently Reading: Anywhen, James Blish.

PS: And The $64 Question Was ... as I learned a trivia about game shows that might be useful more generally.

Tags: amusement parks

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