zondag, september 19, 2004

Six Flags over Holland

For Ian's birthday, I gave him a day at Six Flags over Holland. We both like theme parks, so it was kind of a gift to me, too. Actually, we both like roller coasters more than we like theme parks, but you have to go to theme parks to get the roller coasters, so . . .

I knew Six Flags Over Holland was going to be special from the moment we got there. I'll have to back up a moment to explain why. We woke up early, drank lots of coffee, a smoothie and some water, then got on our bikes and rode to the station. There we took an 8:30 a.m. train out of Utrecht and then a bus in order to get to Six Flags in time for the park's opening at 10. Lots of fluid and lots of bumpiness. You see where I'm going with this.

Anyway, after the gates opened a little late we ran through them and found the toilets. (Why someone didn't plan for toilets just outside the theme park when they knew there would be several hundred excited patrons with full bladders waiting for the gates to open each morning just shows how similar the planning process must be the world over.)

At any rate, you can imagine my glee at being able to literally piss on this:
(Click to enlarge, if you can't read it...)

The first ride, Superman, was right inside the theme park - just after the toilets, thank God.

After Superman, we rode a wooden coaster in the "England" portion of the park. Sometimes, the wooden coaters shake you around - something I don't care for too much. This one wasn't bad, though.

Next was Goliath. This was the one you saw as you approached the park, but I'm not sure what area of the park it was in.

It's 46 meters high, has a first drop angle of 70 degrees and reaches speeds of 106 km/h.

Next we meandered over to the Mexican themed area of the park. We were a little hungry, so we stopped for lunch. There were no tacos or nachos to be found in this Mexico, but they did serve double cheeseburgers with fries and a Coke. After eating, El Condor was the next ride. The attraction to this one was that it had several loops and circles - always fun after a meal.

In the Canadian theme setting, we rode a log flume ride. This one (Crazy River) was nice because the drop was more like a roller coaster than a log ride. And we both managed to stay dry.

We decided to see a stunt show in the Hollywood area of the park, so Ian asked me to suprise him when I asked what he wanted to drink. Bringing him back a pint of beer at 1 in the afternoon certainly did that.

(And he calls himself British...)

What better after a beer than another ride! On to Italy and La Via Volte. I think this was my favorite of the day. You go backwards up a steep incline, then are released,

shot forward, around a circle and a loop, up the other side, then you retrace the whole ride backards.

We have a little side bet when we go to amusement parks. They always seem to have "Kentucky Derbys," although they may be called something else depending where you are. You roll a ball into holes, and where it lands decides how many spaces your horse will trot along a board. Sad to say that Ian won, here in Holland. (And no, although the park is in The Netherlands, it's not really in the Holland area of The Netherlands. Go Figure.)

Here he is with Ollie the Elephant, his prize.

One more ride and we called it a day. This was El Rio Grande - a river ride in a big, safe inner tube.

All in all, a great day (if you don't count my loss at the Derby...).

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