Sunday, 16 August 2009

Me v Rameses Revenge

Welcome to my blog. If you're a regular, how you doing? If you're a newcomer, lovely to see you.

Well here in the Independent Republic of.., it's been another lovely week. A couple of dips in the sea and rock-pooling with Friends of Shoreham Beach yesterday. The dead eel and poisonous jelly fish were tremendously popular with the boys. Ugh!

This week we're off to Chessington World of Adventure and, determined not to have a repeat of the Cobra incident,* I decided to do some research.

Bless their hearts, Chessington's website gives a ride guide; mini, junior, family and experienced. Knowing my little darling all too well, I decided to look at the section on completely inappropriate rides for anyone except a lunatic.  It didn't take long to find it. Rameses Revenge. "This monster of a machine turns you upside down and spins you round and round - only to end up in a deadlock upside down, lowering you head first over water fountains... definitely not for the faint hearted." Come again? Which genius at Scary Rides Inc. thought that one up? Bet it wasn't the accountant.

If I was a kid, I'd be heading straight for that ride so I've decided that Rameses Revenge is my enemy, a determined monster that will stop at nothing to attract riders. It'll fail with Tom. He'll need a responsible adult to take him on and I'm ruling myself out, but what of his 6 and 9 year old cousins? These guys have Merlin passes and they can read. Fobbing them off with, "no look it says ten years old" won't wash.

Returning to the Chessington website, I searched under "convincing excuses," and "closed for maintenance." Alas, the cupboard was bare. I broadened my search to Legoland's website, on the basis that they just sounded more sensible. They didn't let me down. Under a description of the Laser Raiders Ride, the lawyers had clearly pinched the pen and run a muck: "not recommended for guests with back and neck problems, heart conditions, high blood pressure, broken limbs, pregnant." But why stop there I thought? Why not help us emotionally blackmailed parents and extend it to cover invisible paper cuts, bruises, inexplicable sneezes, phantom tummy aches, and itchy backs? Surely, that's what they really meant to say about Rameses Revenge, not just "not for the faint hearted?"

I have decided that this is an understandable oversight, and one which I will selflessly correct. When we arrive at Chessington, I will take an inventory of all the illnesses, injuries, old and new, imaginary or real of the 4, 6 and 9 year old. These will be carefully noted and mentally added to the imaginary list of "not recommended if..". When Rameses Revenge beckons and three excited little ones ask breathily "can I? oh please oh please oh please," I will refer to my list, sigh mournfully, and explain that they cannot go on the ride because they had hiccups, an itchy back or a bruised shin, etc. As I steer them towards the nearest ice-cream shop, I shall slowly turn back and give Rameses Revenge a victory wave. Not this time matey!

I'll let you know if it works. See you next Sunday.

*see very first blog. Footnotes to a blog !

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