I only agreed to go on the roller coaster with her, so that she wouldn’t have to ride it by herself.
But, it wasn’t until I was in the middle of the long serpentine line, awaiting the thrill that was to come, that I began to recall the last time I was on another such ride . . .
It must have been over 10 years ago. The hubs and I were dating and visiting another similar theme park. Many years before our children were born, we were there to enjoy the park as young adults do . . . by going on as many fast and exhilarating rides as possible. One of those rides would be my last roller coaster for many years.
The ride itself was not overly frightening in any way. Just your standard roller coaster. It started in an enclosed space, quickly turned a corner and shot up a long dark tunnel, only emerging into the sunlight as it reached the crest of that climb, on the verge of dropping down into open air. That was what was supposed to happen, anyway. But on this fateful day, something went wrong. As the ride took off and quickly turned the corner, shooting upwards towards the light at the end of the tunnel, that was when the fun ended. And so did the forward momentum. Because just as we were about to reach the top of that hill, the ride reversed and shot back down into the tunnel. Backwards.
It was one of the most horrifying moments of my life. I was positive that at any second we would be crashing into the car behind us as we fell backwards and they began their ascent forward. That didn’t happen, thankfully. Instead, we stopped at the bottom of the incline and sat there. In the dark. While they worked on the ride to try to fix it.
This might have been the most terrifying moment of my life, now that I think about it. Even though the car plummeting backwards was very scary, this was worse. Because I had time to worry. And to contemplate what would happen if they started the ride again and it wasn’t fixed. The mind is a cruel and creative creature. I wanted off of that ride. But we were strapped in and hanging from the track, so they wouldn’t allow it. So I sat, and waited, and worried.
I didn’t die that day. Luckily, the bright light I went towards at the end of that tunnel didn’t signify my end.
But here I was, many years later. Remembering that fateful day that scarred me for so many years. And standing in line to temp fate once again. And then I saw this:
Good Mental Condition? Well, since I was willingly standing in line to go on this ride, after the last attempt at roller coaster riding almost killed me, “Good Mental Condition” might be up for debate. However, we had twisted and turned around this line for over forty-five minutes now, so there was no going back. I was going on this ride, G Forces be damned.
When the fateful time was at hand, I sat in my seat and the bars came down and made a very satisfying click, holding my body firmly down in the seat. As I sat there, anticipating the first movement of the ride, with my heart palpitating at a surely unhealthy level, wondering why I ever allowed myself to get in this place again, I had one very distinct thought.
I am too old for this shit.
Hooking up with Yeah Write again this week!