A few days ago a I read a fantastic blog post written by John Adams from Dad Blog UK called “Daddy Will You Come On The Rollercoaster”. The post was fabulously entertaining and although I shouldn’t have laughed I couldn’t help it at times, because like John, I too have an innate fear of rollercoasters. Although I found it amusing, I also had great sympathy with him. It also brought back memories of two such occasions when I couldn’t avoid going on a rollercoaster.
Rollercoaster Ride Nightmare 1
The first such occasion was about 8 years ago when my two of my older children were teenagers. Of course this means they are fearless and yes totally indestructible. It is a shame that you learn fear as you get older but in my case fear was there from early childhood, I used to avoid the swings and roundabouts in our local park when I was small child. My stomach was simply not made to be left behind or turned around 360 degrees for supposedly searching out an adrenaline rush. I guess you are now getting the idea, yep, Im not an adrenaline junkie haha!
So one day we decided to go on a trip to a theme park about a two hours drive from where we live. My children had been asking for ages to go so after relentless pressure I gave in and on a sunny day in the middle of summer we went. It was my three older children as the twins were not born yet and my wife who I might also add loves rollercoasters.
On arrival my two eldest daughters couldn’t wait to get started and headed straight for the biggest and fastest rollercoaster called Speed. They were instantly in the queue, and before I knew it they had been on it twice! I was pretty sure that my wife had been on it at least once by this stage. My daughters, I have to say love rollercoasters and the bigger, faster and more scary the better it is for them. Thankfully my son is like me and doesn’t particularly like rollercoaster rides so of course being just 10 years old somebody had to stay with him. Phew! Which I mistakenly thought was letting me off the hook.
It wasn’t a let off, after lots of pressure and convincing me that everything will be ok I relented and said I would go on. The fear and dread just waiting in the queue was building up inside of me whilst everybody around me was smiling and laughing. I was turning white with fear, and one single thought kept running through my mind ” jeez what the hell are you doing you idiot”! So finally we were all locked in and it climbed to the highest point of the ride and then wham! It let go! The ride which is called speed lived up to its name and a lot more! It had twists and turns, it went upside and it went on forever! Well not quite! It was actually 38 seconds. I asked! I managed to do the whole ride without opening my eyes and screaming and wailing get me off! This ride was torture. If I had a state secret and MI6 was trying to find out what it was, all they would have do is threaten to put me on a rollercoaster, and I would spill the beans in seconds!
So I got off and felt decidedly unwell instantly and I quickly found somewhere quiet to vomit and vomit some more! At which point I had no sympathy from anyone. I was left sitting at a picnic bench recovering and they went off to the next ride, telling me to catch up when I felt better. Thanks Guys!
Rollercoaster Ride Nightmare 2
My second and I guarantee last experience of rollercoasters was just last year on our visit to Disneyland Paris. Thankfully our six year old twin girls are too young and not tall enough to go on the really fast rollercoaster rides or at least I thought.
Disneyland Paris has a ride called Crushers Coaster Which is based very loosely on a scene from Finding Nemo. Like a lot of rides at Disneyland you have to queue and this was no exception. It was a two hour queue! The fact that it was ok for my six year old twins meant I thought I will be fine, how wrong was I.
We queued and finally when we reached the point of no return I had a bit of a shock and a massive dilemma. A sign on the wall said anybody suffering from high blood pressure should avoid this ride. Really! Having had a stroke a few months earlier which was caused by high blood pressure, this was a huge dilemma. The problem was simple. Do I say no I’m not going on and let one of the girls down or do I go on so the girls can have an exciting time on a rollercoaster? Well I did what every sensible normal thinking adult with high blood pressure would do and I said come on let’s do it! This was commitment to your children’s enjoyment on a whole new level!
Oh! how I wish I hadn’t initially said yes to going on Crushers Coaster. The ride moved quickly away and took a sharp corner and I thought that’s not so bad, then we went through some curtains and the ride looped and turned to what seemed like a hundred times at a very high speed, spinning around constantly, but in reality I think it was about seven times. We apparently at one point were outside in the park, not that I would have noticed I had my eyes closed as usual, haha! I came off the ride white as a sheet totally white knuckled, but I was alive! Every cloud has a silver lining!
I have decided I was not designed or made to ride rollercoasters, and I will avoid them at all costs.
As I get older my bucket list will not include adrenaline filled activities like sky diving, bungee jumping or tightrope walking,l. It is more likely to include finishing a game of monopoly or completing a jigsaw.
I actually would rather amputate my right hand with a pen-knife than ride another rollercoaster.
Do you like riding rollercoasters? Or like me do you hate them? I would love to hear in the comments below.