Today was a great day to make the trip to Arlington. The weather was great - temps in the high 80s, low 90s with a nice breeze, but it was a little on the humid side. Also, Wednesday is an awesome day to make the trip - very short lines! Our goals were to ride as many of the roller coasters as we could and enjoy plenty of junk food. We almost met our goals but not quite.
First for our Lessons Learned:
- Do visit Six Flags on a Wednesday. Don't bother with the Flash Pass; you won't need it.
- Don't bring aerosol bottles of sunscreen. Those are confiscated at the gate.
- Don't bring a bag at all. We consolidated our stuff into one pretty small shoulder bag. Each of us only brought the essentials - wallets (travel size for me), sunglasses, chap stick, Advil, and tissues. Six Flags has instituted a strict No Bags policy for most of the Thrill Rides. To help their guests keep their belongings safe, SF has lockers (see Loose Articles) near most of the Thrill Rides that guests can use for $1.00/120 minutes. I'm sure they have their reasons for this policy, but there were several rides that we could have tucked the bag in the seat with no problem. Looks like a way for SF to earn some extra money.
- Do bring a non-rider to hold your bags to avoid the locker fee.
- Do get a Pink Thing. They're only sold near the entrance, so make sure you get one on your way in or on your way out. Better yet, do what we did and get one and take a break near the Merry-Go-Round.
Back to our day and the reason for the title of this post. Again, understand that Natalie and I LOVE roller coasters and thrill rides and Six Flags in general. I'm usually the first person on the ride and the last person to leave the park. Catch the adverb - usually. We first rode Flashback (AWESOME ride; no bag storage required) and then paid the dollar to stow our bag to ride Batman and Tony Hawk's Big Spin (both great rides...we scored front seats for Batman). The Tony Hawk ride was my first indication that this would not be a typical SF day for me. I made an unscheduled trip to the restroom with some tummy difficulties...something I've never had to do at SF. After spending $3.50 for water and munching on a snack bar we smuggled into the park, I thought I was good to go. For insurance, we made it to the front gate and found Pink Things which really do help everything feel better. So, we found yet another locker (and spent another dollar) and rode Titan and Runaway Mountain. By the end of Runaway Mountain, I knew that this day was going to end sooner than I wanted. Add another trip to the restroom, a Sprite (Chris's go-to drink for all tummy upsets), two Pepto-Bismol tablets, and a stop in the Crazy Horse Saloon to rest in an air conditioned room. We walked around a little more, but I was certain that I'd toss my cookies (and Pink Thing and everything else) if we tried another ride. That means that we didn't get to ride Shockwave and Superman and Runaway Mine Train, three of our favorite rides. Reluctantly, we made our way to the front gate, got Ethan a super Batman shirt with cape, and left Six Flags behind.
Before you think that all's well that ends well, think again. By this time not only did I feel pretty lousy but we also were pretty hot and sweaty. We were ready to get into the Jeep, kick up the AC as high as we could get it, and head to Paris. Sounds like a great plan, right? The AC died while we were in the park. We found someone to check the coolant for us (the "Coolant Low" reminder had been flashing) but it was all good. Evidently we have a bigger problem. So, Nat and I drove from Arlington to Paris through Dallas rush hour traffic with no AC.
There were several wonderful things about our day:
- We had a great time riding the roller coasters and screaming our heads off.
- We took a much deserved break from wedding planning (altho I'll admit that we made a list and talked about a few details as we were driving).
- We enjoyed a wonderful dinner at La Madeline, one of our favorite "girly" restaurants.
- We made it home before the storms hit.
But, by far the best thing of all was spending a fun day with my daughter. These times have been far too few and far between lately (wedding shopping and planning don't always count as fun), and I realize that those days will become much more infrequent after June 27. I'm going to miss hanging out with my favorite daughter.