Dec 102022
 

Dollywood doesn’t open until 11am so we were able to have somewhat of a leisurely Sunday, which is almost unheard of for us when we’re traveling. There is not much room for “relaxation” with our vacationing style, lol. I tried to read on our little balcony for a little bit, and then we got a C- grade hotel breakfast downstairs. I mean, it was fine for people who don’t care about what they’re eating, I guess. But I am limited. I settled on scrambled eggs and it got the job done. Meanwhile, Henry tried to mansplain to some young girl how to use the pancake machine and she snapped back at him, which he proceeded to dwell on even a day later, like OK bro, god forbid you called out for being a know-it-all man.

Probably replaying the pancake scene in his head on the hotel balcony before we left for Dollywood.

On the tram at Dollywood! We arrived a bit after 10am because usually places will open the lots earlier than the park, so we try to beat the crowds. Sadly, the driver of the tram got on his little speaker thing and said that he was required to tell us that DUE TO HIGH WINDS, SOME OF THE RIDES WOULD NOT BE RUNNING TODAY.

He quickly curbed any and all questions but continuing, “Now look, I don’t have a list of the rides, but I’m obligated to tell you,” and then he went on to list all the non-ride shit that Dollywood has to offer, like meats and shows. Two things that I do not care for. We were pretty bummed about this but I tried to look on the bright side in that we’ve already ridden everything there (except for the new family coaster) and there are way worse places to be stuck at for a day than Dollywood, lemme tell you.

There was a small crowd already gathering at the gates and we were prepared to stand there until 11, but then they played the National Anthem at 10:30 and started letting people in! Let’s goooo!

DOLLYWOOD, I MISSED YOU!

We decided to take a chance and walked straight to Lightning Rod just to see, and there was already a small line that had formed. This gave us hope because there wasn’t a CLOSED FOR WEATHER sign at the entrance or any other type of crowd deterrent, so maybe the tram driver was given FAKE NEWS.

It did seem pretty windy though, which sucked because the rest of the weather was a bangin’ fall day, man. Sunshine, high-60s, bright blue skies. I was actually starting to sweat a little in my sweater and Chooch was mumbling about how this was why he wanted to wear shorts, wah.

I’m sure it’s park policy that they have to wait until the joint officially opens before the ride attendants can come out and give us the bad news, but it was still annoying that they let all of us coaster assholes loiter for 30 minutes before coming out of their hidey holes inside the station to tell us that the ride was not opening due to winds. Actually, they only seemingly whispered this update to the people in the very front, and not everyone was leaving so we weren’t sure what the fuck was going on until some girl behind us walked up and asked. Then we heard her tell her friends that they said NOTHING was running, and they left the line along with a bunch of other people, so we followed like the sheep that we are.

I was wondering if the carousel at least was running, and Chooch was like, “NO, NONE OF THE RIDES ARE, ESPECIALLY NOT THE CAROUSEL” because he has grown to hate carousels thanks to my obsession with carouselfies.

BUT IT WAS RUNNING!!!

I didn’t realize that they were both sitting in the same position, but they said afterward it was because they were both trying to get the seat belt on which wasn’t even required for adults. (I so badly wanted to end that sentence with “lol” but I my new thing is attempting to write more like an adult and not an AIM child. Bear with me, it’s a struggle.)

I love this sweater so much. I almost said I got it from Delia’s because my mind is clearly living its best life in the 90s but I actually got it last year from Mod Cloth. I usually have bad Mod Cloth experiences, but this one was a winner. You know, just a non-sponsored FYI.

I don’t know which one I like better: 1 or 3? Only one can go on the carouselfie wall!

Since all of the coasters were presumably closed, we took this opportunity to get some critically-acclaimed cinnamon bread. I had been dreaming of this moment. We didn’t know that this was a DO NOT MISS foodstuffs the first time we visited in 2011, because I had failed to do my due diligence, but we rectified our errors the last time we were there and can confirm that this is a park food that 100% lives up to its hype. Holy shit, this damn bread. They give you a whole tin pan thingie of it and it’s like a warm, sticky pillow of decadence.

We got TWO to split between the three of us because last time, we only got one for the three of us and craved more immediately after demolishing the pan in under 5 minutes.

We ate one and half loaves right then and there, and then devoured the rest later that evening because we are pigs for Dolly’s cinnamon bread.

LOL. Also, I begged him to bring other flannels but he of course just brought the one which is so annoying. “My shirts underneath are different every time!” he cried defensively, like that matters. (OK, it does, but Jesus, Henry.)

Then we casually strolled about, taking in the scenery. Dollywood is so cozy and woodsy!

Then something totally amazing happened: EVERY RIDE WAS CLEARED TO OPEN!! The day totally did a complete 180! So, my plan of, “Well, we’ll just have a leisurely, slow day at the park since the rides are closed. We can take it easy and go see some shows or something” turned into, “LET’S GO, BITCHES! GO GO GO!!” as we ran from one coaster to the next. More pictures in the next post!

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