Magic Mountain

Vacation ’98, Day Four

A snag. The plan for today was to visit the new Getty Museum complex in Los Angeles. Unfortunately, it’s already booked to the end of the year.

So, in the same cultured and heady spirit of the great artistic masters, I endeavored to select something similar as a replacement. A place of learning, a place of priceless works of art in the midst of beautiful gardens and architecture high above the metropolis. In other words, Magic Mountain.

The good fortune I’ve been having on this vacation continued today. This time I were smart and avoided the heat by getting there late (around 2:00 p.m.), and surprisingly there was nobody at the park! Not a line to be found anywhere. I ended up riding Viper six times, Riddler’s Revenge (the hottest new ride) twice, and so on. The only bummer was that Flashback, my favorite coaster, was closed. I also hit Colossus, Raging Rapids (got totally soaked), Psyclone (aka the PAIN machine), Buccaneer (yawn), Revolution, and Freefall. Batman was also closed for some reason. Probably weather. There was a major downpour around 5 p.m. which lasted for about 30 minutes, but again, it all worked in my favor. I had time to eat, then play carnival games. I won a stuffed Toucan bird on my first try. Well, actually I didn’t WIN it. The game malfunctioned and so I won by default. Plus, as you must know by now, I love the rain. It was a great day, no exhaustion, no burns, just a great day.

And for the comic event of the day, I got trapped on the newest roller coaster, Riddler’s Revenge, and had to wait for about 20 minutes while they figured out how to free us.

I don’t know why people insist on getting to theme parks, zoos, etc. the moment they open. And the ones who stay till closing time weather they want to or not are just nuts. By then you’re exhausted and miserable. It’s so much nicer to get there late, avoid the heat and crowds, and enjoy yourself.

I swear, I’m getting old. My father could have written that last paragraph.

Upon returning to Irvine, I found the sky was grey there too, but for a different reason: there were huge forest fires burning nearby in Santiago Canyon. Ash covered everything. It looks like the day after a nuclear war.


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