Thursday, March 8, 2007

The Alpengeist

Here's another chapter in the story of "My Family VS Natural Selection"...

DH, the boys, and I drove down to Williamsburg last August for a two day excursion. It was drizzling the whole way down to VA, but we remained hopeful. We got to the time-share late at night and went to sleep almost right away. The next day, it was cloudy, but we'd already paid for passes and drove 7 hours, so we were going to Busch Gardens. The first day turned out OK till about 3 in the afternoon when we got a downpour.

The second day at BG, it was drizzling when we headed out. This actually turned out to be a good thing. The precipitation cooled down the August heat, and kept the traffic in the park sparse. We gleefully enjoyed ride after ride, with no lines and no waiting. We rode in the middle of the coaster, then the back, then the front, over and over.

The pinnacle of Busch Gardens in an inverted coaster called The Alpengeist.

The Alpengeist is:
the world's tallest, most twisted inverted roller coaster. Alpengeist reaches a height of 195 feet and a speed of 67 mph. Alpine "skiers" are launched on the most chilling ride of their lives as this snowbeast twists an innocent ski lift into six staggering inversions and a 170-foot drop.

We rode the Alpengeist, despite my terror, on the first day of our vacation. It did a real number on my stomach, and made my head feel like Jelly, but was a pretty cool ride. On day 2 with virtually no lines, we were able to get right on this coaster too. We walked around and rode rides for a couple hours, then it started getting colder, cloudier, and raining a little more heavily. We knew we'd have to go soon, and that would be the end of Busch Gardens for us. We decided to give the Alpengeist one last spin. We were pleasantly surprised to find there was no one waiting for the front car, which usually has a very long line. We were soon to find out why the line was empty.

My family has a real knack for not putting two and two together. Hmmm.....extremely fast moving, extremely tall, looping roller coaster, moderate chilly rain, front car of coaster with nothing in front of it....what happens???

Yes, we were PELTED with what felt like hail. The sudden realization came at the first descent, but we had no choice but to close our eyes, brace ourselves and follow through. If that weren't bad enough, rain water poured off the top of the car on one side, completely soaking my 11 year old son, who had insisted on sitting on that end. We were all pretty soggy by the time we got off. DH and I just laughed hysterically, shivering, and questioning, "Just how do we stay alive everyday, when we do such dumb things?" Moreover, how could two idiots like us be in charge of children?

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