Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Verdant Kansas & Kansas City

I always had a mental picture of Kansas being a very dry country only suitable for range cattle (much like Eastern Colorado was), but it was really quite verdant & hilly so reminded me far more of Ohio or Southern Ontario. The drive was a long one and we stopped part of the way across in Garden City.

En route we picked up the National Parks version of Monopoly. You haven't enjoyed chaos with kids until you've tried playing Monopoly in the back of a bouncing RV as it crosses Kansas. Every time we came to a small town (of which there are many), I'd yell, "Mom's maneuvering!" and we would all grab the board and any pieces on it. I think that listening to Cheaper by the Dozen earlier this week got me in the mood for that game.

Then the next day we managed to get to WOF early enough to get in several big rides except for The Mamba. My favorite was The Prowler, a new wooden roller coaster. It was really fast for a wooden roller coaster. I can't think of anything I have been on like it. This is making me even more excited to check out Kings Island which has my all time favorite woody "The Beast." There's apparently also "The Son of Beast" now which is even better.

Rant coming - if you prefer not to read rants, skip to the next paragraph. In addition to The Prowler, they have another woodie, The Timberwolf. Also an excellent ride. Both are vastly superior to Santa Clara's very lame "Grizzly." I had been wondering if my memory of wooden roller coasters being so good was just because I was young. No, that's not it. Santa Clara's roller coasters are lame. Incredibly lame. Even the steel roller coasters are lame. Flight Deck (nearly 10 yrs old?) is crushed by the similarly designed, but vastly superior Silver Bullet (Knotts Berry Farm) and Patriot (WoF). The Mamba (WoF) was surprisingly good for such an extreme coaster. Better than Accelerator (KBF), and there is nothing to compare it with at SCGA. The best roller coaster at SCGA is Invertigo or perhaps The Demon. The fact that The Demon is one of its best says it all IMHO.

That night we were treated to a spectacular thunderstorm. Paul, Sarah, Martha and I lay on the back bedroom, watched the repeated lightning strikes and listened to the heavy rainfall. It was quite the show. James read or played lego.

Today was a perfect amusement park day. Rain, heavy at times. But no lightning, so no reason to shut down rides. There were no lines to speak of. Any ride we wanted on, we pretty much got directly on. Leveraging the RV we napped from 1-3p, except for James who hit the waterpark next door. We hit still more rides until 8p when we came back for dinner. After that, James headed to the RV park pool to get in a little more swimming. He is a fish. The pool closes in 5 more minutes at 10p. We expect to see him in a few minutes.

Unfortunately, I have no pictures of the last two days. On the plus side, I am now caught up!

We leave tomorrow in the wee hours to hopefully make Cincinnati, or something reasonably close. Kings Island and "The Beast" await!

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