Remember when you were younger, how exciting it was to wear matching outfits to the school picnic at the local theme park with your BFF? Well, I don’t. I mean I wasn’t a total loser back then to where I was going to amusement parks alone, but my friends and I never wore matching Lycra bike shorts and BUM Equipment tshirts, is what I’m saying. Lots of other kids played the matching game though, and more power to them, you know? As long as they weren’t line-jumping (that’s cause for rival from the park), I didn’t care who wore what.
All of that is to prepare you for when I tell you that 20 years later, I put some thought into my amusement park game and arranged for Chooch and myself to both wear Emarosa tanks.
Henry felt left out as usual. #lifegoalsonlock
It’s been over two weeks now since we were at Busch Gardens, but sometimes when I’m sitting at my desk at work, I get flashbacks of the BEST RIDE I HAVE EVER BEEN ON.
I knew nothing about this ride when Chooch declared it was next on our route. The three of us mindlessly wound our way along the empty queues and chose our spots in the station. Chooch and I waited for the second seat, leaving Henry to ride alone behind us. A recording of a German broad speaking in cheery lilt played over and over while we waited for one of the coasters to make its way back to the station. There were four running that day, so the wait was quick and painless.
As our coaster departed, I was under the impression that this was more of a tame, “for the younger kids” ride. But then we approached the entrance to a building, and our coaster fucking shot off and went barreling into the pitch black vortex and I just screamed and screamed and screamed. I LOVE WHEN ROLLER COASTERS TURN INTO DARK RIDES! The idea was that we were careening perilously through the Black Forest and there was this one part where the coaster slowed to a halt and THEN DROPPED several feet to another track.
Then you shoot back out of the Black Forest, and the rest of the ride is outdoors.
“You know I’ve been to the Black Forest, right?” I asked Chooch because I love to brag to him about how much richer (literally) my childhood was than his.
“Oh, of COURSE you have!” he cried angrily. And then, “….was it just like the Verbolten?”
YES IT WAS JUST LIKE THAT, OMG. Here, look at the battle wounds on my back from that time a TROLL grabbed our Trafalgar bus right off the road when we were trying to go to a goddamn cuckoo clock store to buy really expensive souvenirs.
We rode that sonabitch three times that day, and it still wasn’t enough. The scariest was the time we were in the front seat and I had seemingly lost all memory of what to expect and proceeded to scrape the lining off my throat with my forceful screams.
“Huh. Beer is pretty cheap here.” -one of the few things Henry said all day.
Omg the Lochness Monster was a pleasant surprise! I thought it was just going to be your standard steel upside down coaster, but there was an entire part where we shot into a cave and just kept spiraling and spiraling down. I LOVE WHEN COASTERS GO INTO TUNNELS, ETC!
While I made a quick pee-stop at some point that day, Henry did this really charming thing where he buys himself and Chooch a cold beverage but conveniently forgets that I too am a human being, at risk of dehydration on a summer scorcher. So I came out of the bathroom and see those two assholes chugging their way to pale yellow pee while my kidneys felt like they were being used as bongos.
When I opened my mouth to bitch, Henry slapped a five into my hand and told me to “be a big girl” and get my own beverage.
This was one of the many times I called up my favorite image: Henry’s balls wrapped in acid-dunked barbed wire while being crushed in a vice.
So I’m standing in line to pay for my water and the man in front of me asks the cashier where she’s from, because he detects an accent.
And she says Romania.
“And I wasn’t going to say anything, but then it was my turn to pay and the next thing I know, I’m blurting out, ‘so….I’m obsessed with Romania and I think I was born there in a past life and it’s my dream to visit, hopefully sometime in the next few years!'” I hysterically brayed when I rejoined Henry and Chooch with my independently-purchased cold beverage.
“Oh. Wow. And did you say it just like that?” Henry asked, with that idiotic smirk of his.
“Yes!” I answered triumphantly.
“You’re a creep,” he mumbled, and we set off for France.
He’s just jealous that I made a friend at Busch Gardens and that I might have a place to stay when I move to Romania, the country that gave us Bela Karolyi.
THE BEST GYMNASTIC COACH IN THE WORLD.
I have to remember to pack my homemade Bela t-shirt.
Henry won Chooch this dumb Pokemon stuffed thing. (Bulbasaur? I can’t tell what Chooch is calling it mostly because I’m not listening.) This plush fucker became the bane of my existence for the rest of vacation. I kept hoping he would forget it at a hotel along the way but no dice.
I was adamant about taking a boat ride and the other two were very against this.
It turned out to be 15 minutes of dumbness plus the “lake” is man-made and fake bodies of water make me feel uncomfortable, like it was put there to hide something.
Several of the coasters at Busch Gardens have been on Coaster Wars, or whatever that roller coaster show is that I sometimes catch on whatever cable channel (probably the Travel Channel, let’s not act a fool here). The Griffin is one of them, and I was honestly scared as fuuuuuck to ride this beast. It’s one of those really wide coasters that seat something like 15 people across. I could look it up but I’m writing this on my phone while laying on my bed, listening to “Dreamweaver” (IT JUST CAME ON, OK) and not actually in a smoke-filled office with a typewriter while wearing a visor and dinging a bell for no reason. So basically, I’m half-assing it again.
When it was our turn to load in, some Busch Gardens broad came over and made us all move down a seat and she totally caught me off guard and made me nervous to the point where I couldn’t remember how to sit in a seat and I ended up SLIPPING ONTO THE FLOOR OF THE COASTER in front of all the people who were in line! Chooch shot me a disgusted “Drunk much?” scowl as I did my best Pee Wee Herman & brushed myself off.
Seriously though, a stepping stool would have been helpful.
Or a toadstool.
Speaking of stools… that ride was one mother whomping shit softener. When it gets to the top of the hill, it STOPS so you’re just casually chilling a million feet in the air (again—research, what’s that) and staring straight down at the ground while your life flashes before your eyes and you wish you had known you were going to die that day so you could have told everyone to FUCK RIGHT OFF on Facebook. And somehow, over top of the screaming, you hear a quiet, metallic click. And then BUHBYE.
God that ride was everything. Henry didn’t go on it because he too scared.
There is a sick dark ride there, something about a DarKastle. The walk to the loading area for this one is really long so I suspect it must be popular on a busy day for it to need a queue that long, but on THIS day, the day of Erin Rachelle, Chooch and I walked all the way through to the front and then immediately boarded a car with a scene couple. IT WAS BAD ASS. I wasn’t sure what to expect and I prayed that it wasn’t going to be like all of those boring shooter dark rides that are all the rage lately, but it turned out to be more of a 3D simulation type of ride and we LOVED IT. I should also note that all of the best rides were in the German area.
The Alpengeist was awesome! It’s supposed to to be like you’re on an out-of-control ski lift and it has the distinction of being the last ride Henry rode that day because it knocked him out of commission.
It was right around then that it occurred to me that beer was cheap there because ANHEUSER-BUSCH.
I was excited to tell Henry of my revelation and he just gave me a NO SHIT sneer.
Although it appears that douchey SeaWorld owns it now.
Alpengeist, Loch Ness Monster, and the dumb boats.
“I wonder what DONNA is doing right now,” I mused while eating the messiest, wettest waffle cone of my life. “Probably being the best at whatever it is.” Henry actually kind of laughed.
“Yeah, if she was here, she’d have the Quick Queue,” Chooch piggybacked.
And we all laughed into our fast-melting ice cream. Donna, bringing our family together since one day before.
And then around 7:00, we tired of each other’s company and had exhausted all the coasters. So we left and on the way back to King’s Creek, Chooch and I verbally eviscerated Henry because we were hungry so he locked us in our cottage thing and went to get Subway.
UNTIL NEXT TIME, B.Gard!