I survived Great Adventure with Chloe and her friend today, despite some serious obstacles and funny observations – enumerated below – and an earlier than anticipated departure from the park – see #7 below.
(1) The log flume and Rolling Thunder are just as I had remembered them – still fun, even though they’re showing their age. People must have been a lot thinner in the late 1970s, because the seats in those old rides are infinitely narrower than the seats in the rides built within the last few years.
(2) On the same “Americans are way too fat” note, some of the thrill rides offer a “test seat” at the ride’s entrance so that “large” people know whether they should even bother waiting on line, since these attractions have strict size restrictions
(3) We went on the Congo Rapids ride and I was unfortunate enough to sit in the sucker soak seat. And of course, I had left my little rain poncho in the locker (see #5 below). I might as well have taken a shower in my clothes. It took a few hours for me to dry off.
(4) Speaking of drying off, the park offers “family dryers” for $3. Up to four people can stand in this contraption. I was desperate enough to pay my $3 to try it, but it wasn’t working. I then remembered this classic “Mr. Bean” scene, and paid homage to Rowan Atkinson by making good use of the Xcelerator hand dryer in the restroom. I discovered that I am much more limber than I thought.
(5) A propos of said locker. Guests are not allowed to bring bags on any of the thrill rides. Even the mini-thrill rides. So they charge $1 for a 2-hour locker rental. And if you open the locker before the two hours are up, you have to pay again. Ridiculous.
(6) Even more ridiculous, Chloe’s friend had to wear her t-shirt over her bikini top because no bathing suits are allowed in the park. I can sort of understand that rule when it comes to adults (especially given the crowd the park attracts). But 10-year old kids? Who makes up these inane rules?
(7) We were almost at the end of our ride on the Dark Knight Coaster when the power in the entire park went out. Pretty exciting stuff. For about five minutes. We made our way out, and it took about 90 minutes for the power to come back on…slowly…since they had to restore it ride by ride. Needless to say, our day was cut short. Can you believe it? Thirty years ago I was foiled in my attempt to see the Andy Gibb concert and today, we were foiled in our attempt to go on more rides. Is there such a thing as a Great Adventure curse?