Something I haven't touched on in talking about Morey's Piers: they are gorgeous. I mean, any amusement park (or pier) has a certain appeal because everything is trying to catch the eye and the price of admission, and even if nobody tries to make a theme of anything it's still got all these lights and sounds and people squealing with delight, and as it's on the ocean there's the water beyond and the beach below, but Morey's Piers went way beyond what we expected.
A case in point: they had a spinning-teacups ride, which many places will and which are pretty good everywhere. These were painted and, apparently, pretty recently, which again is about what an amusement park with a good maintenance budget and attitude will do. But these were particularly painted to evoke the Delft style, with striking and intricate patterns of white and blue and looking like the teacups you're afraid to use because you just know you'll drop one and that'd be horrible. And it wasn't just the ride, but the station itself; the whole thing was gorgeous to look at. We'd have liked the ride anyway but the effort put to making it a memorable production left us so very much happier.
This attitude, one of teasing the senses until they overflowed, covered pretty near everything. The rides and props and sets were magnificently done, and detailed, and just more than they needed to be to be satisfying. For another --- and more sinister --- example, they had a ghost ship walk-through ride, walking through the wreckage of ``Philadelphia Experiment'' survivor the Ignis Fatuus. This wasn't just stocked with actors --- some who grab you, by the way, which is disorienting when you're used to the Cedar Point-style Halloweekends with their strict no-touching rule --- or pop-up shocks, or taunting little windows saying ``Do Not Put Your Arm In Here'' (I might have, if we weren't really hoping to hurry along at that point), and ``rat-tail'' whips slapping your ankles, but also fresh and claustrophobic items like walls which ``collapse'' on you (tarps with air blowing into them and surprisingly difficult to penetrate for that).
That was a difficult walk-through, not just for me bunny_hugger, but for a poor kid, maybe ten years old if he's small for his age, who was ready to quit about a quarter of the way through. bunny_hugger did her best to reassure him; the grown-ups he was with kept promising that they were almost done, a promise that has to have gotten pretty flimsy after ten minutes of this. There's a little patch of the ride where you're in the open air and we expected, from the usual pacing of these things, that it meant we were nearly done; no, though, we had just about as long to go yet. It's a fantastic attraction, but it's filled to overflowing, which is its own kind of greatness.
We were so relieved to get through it, though, and bunny_hugger warned me she was never going back into that building. We had to go back into the building, as it's the station for both a gondola ride that took us on a wonderful curled path over the water park (on the pier!), and for a pedalled seagull-boat track that goes along a different path. (Our pedalling the path was interrupted by an actual seagull on the track who kept staring at our fiberglass replica with an expression of No, Not Having Any Of This Nonsense.)
Trivia: The French Republican calendar month of Floréal was translated into Italian as Fiorile, into German as Blütemonat, and into Dutch as Bloemmaand. Source: Mapping Time: The Calendar and its History, EG Richards.
Currently Reading: Colonies in Space, T A Heppenheimer. I wonder (a) whether Heppenheimer is at least a little bit embarrassed by the poem he co-wrote and used as the header, and (b) whether anyone's done a ``The Gernsback Continuum'' treatment for the 70s Space Colonies That Look Like Rural Ohio Only Whiter And More Concave thing.