Sunday, October 30, 2011

Roller Coasters & Haunted Houses

The parentals are in the front row

A few days after the pumpkin festival, I was lucky enough to have another Halloween adventure with my Dad's side of the family (minus sister Rachel).  Last Friday we drove up to our local amusement park where, in addition to the usual rides, they were hosting some Halloween events.  Two thoughts struck me on this visit.

Observation No 1: Man, I am getting old.  I remember the days when I would get off a roller coaster and go right back on -- no problem.  I aspired to ride The Colossus (the behemoth of Utah coasters when I was a wee girl) at least ten times.  I usually achieved, and occasionally exceeded, my goal.  But now...wow, I'm just old.  I left each ride feeling dizzy and nauseated.  It took me a good half hour to regain my equilibrium and gear up for the next go-round.  I managed most of the roller coasters once, but in general I found myself gravitating towards the mild attractions, like the classic carousel.  And I'm not even thirty!  What happened?!  What will an amusement park visit look like ten years from now?  Will I be driving around a little motorized cart (you know, the tiny vehicles generally reserved for senior citizens), because I can't even handle walking anymore?

 I'm on a pig!
By the way, I love carousels
They remind me of Mary Poppins

Observation No. 2: Why, oh why, did we ever come here in the summer?  Going to the amusement park was a summer tradition when I was growing up.  We sweltered in the July heat while inching our way through an hour-long line for a 90-second ride.  But in October...the weather is perfect.  Slightly warm during the day, just chilly enough at night to require an extra hoodie.  The lines are shorter, and you get all the added Halloween features as a bonus! I revelled in the ghosts and pumpkins; the synthetic fog; the dressed-up employees whose sole objective is to wander round the park frightening the patrons.  And while I may have clutched tight to my family while walking through the haunted houses, I rather enjoyed myself.  Except for the maze of clowns. Everything about clowns is so, so wrong.  

 I loved the faux gravestones with hilarious epitaphs that littered the park
Like this one
Bonus points for the skeletal hand popping out of the earth
A picnic for lunch
Lovely fall leaves
The family gets ready to blast off on The Rocket
The Sky Ride
Courtney and me on The Terror Ride
 Dracula's Castle
The spiderwebs are an October treat
Dad on the Bumper Cars
A ghoul searching for prey
Jack-O-Lantern Pyramid
Like father, like daughter

Wow, what a fantastic day...even if I received an unwelcome reminder that I am rapidly approaching senility.  Thanks to my family for this October treat!

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