Friday, August 30, 2013

The Magic of Youth

I'm no spring chicken and I'm okay with that.  It is great for the soul and the body to act like a child from time to time.  I recently had an opportunity to act like a kid and I took full advantage of it.  Friends of ours provided us with some free passes to Magic Mountain in Moncton, NB. Our traveling partners for the day would be the Burke family whom we often hang out with at other sporting events.  Our kids are relatively the same age and get along really well and all were excited to spend time together at this great water park.

We left early on Saturday morning and the weather was very promising.  We had no worries heading into the day and our moods were light and fun.  We got our passes and made our way into the park and instantly applied sun screen.  See, I bet you thought I was going to say ran up to the top of the slides.  Don't worry, while I went to the washroom the three other guys raced to the top of the "Tornado."  When I made it back to our chairs I saw Seth come down with Connor with a big smile on his face.  He was hooked and I could easily see a building excitement in his eyes and an eagerness to do it again.  I was in for a great day.

I didn't hesitate to grab him and take him up for another ride down.  We did the "Tornado" again and I was surprised at how much of a rush it was.  We then tried a couple of the other intermediate slides but I could tell, and I was slightly scared, that Seth wanted a greater rush.  "Dad, let's go over to the taller slide." he hollered without knowing he was hollering.  I looked at Terry and I could tell that he and Connor likely wouldn't be joining us on that slide.  I truly thought that Seth would chicken out when he got to the top.  I was sadly mistaken.  He first tried the "Turbo Tunnel."  He listened to the attendants instructions and then stepped up and away he went.  When he got to the bottom I seen him hop up and give Terry a high five.  Terry had to restrain him and tell him to wait for me before he could rush back up to the top.  It took me less than 5 seconds probably to get to the bottom and out of the slide.  Seth was eagerly waiting and likely saw that I too had a big grin on my face when he said "Ok let's try the other one!"  His voice now an octave higher than it had been earlier which indicated a growing sense of excitement.

Next we went to the "Torpedo."  On this slide they put you in an upright tube, close you in, and then yank the floor out from under you.  I have to be honest, I wasn't sure I could make myself do it.  Seth on the other hand showed no hesitation and was at the bottom in 2 seconds.  I stepped up and as they counted me down I was thinking "Heck just push the button before I change my mind."  Before that thought processed however, I was at the bottom.  I instantly realized that there was no way I could do the "Kamikaze" if Seth asked.  The torque on my aging and often aching, lower back would be to much.  I quickly informed Seth before he could ask that if he wanted to do the "Kamikaze" I would walk him to the top but he would be on his own from there.  This was enough to keep him from pushing it any further. 

We did go up and do the "Racer" and I gave him a big head start but at about 2/3rds of the way down I
passed him.  He loudly hollered "Hey! No fair.  You weigh more than me!!"  At 8 years old I was surprised he knew about the physics of gravity and I was further impressed by his ability to voice this while racing down the water slide.  We took a couple more runs down the intermediate slides before taking a break.  I think if I would have stayed with him he'd of kept going all day.  Honestly I was grinning as well and if not for my parental and partner responsibilities I could have hung out with him all day.

We found Michelle and Shaylee and they wanted to try one of the intermediate slides and were waiting in line.  This gave Seth a chance to make another run as well while I waited at the bottom for Shaylee to reach the bottom.  Her introduction to the intermediate slides was not nearly as joyous as Seth's.  When she hit the pool at the bottom she briefly went under and when she came up she was just out of my reach and turned away from me.  Scared, she started to cry, and vowed she wouldn't do that again.

It was off to the wave pool next, then the "Lazy River" which Seth and Connor turned into Bristol Motor Speedway.  If, indeed, it was a race, Terry and I were definitely off the pace.  From Bristol we then went to the splash pad to find the girls again.  Seth tried every slide there as well.   He was like a pin ball bouncing from one obstacle to the next.

I asked Michelle if she wanted to try the "Tornado" and she agreed before fully understanding maybe what she was getting into.  We waited in line with our double tube and the whole time she asked if it was scary.  I stated that I didn't think it was scary, not entirely a lie.  As we got to the front she realized it was a tunnel and she started getting nervous.  That is the best thing about adrenaline rides, the way it messes with your head.  We boarded our tube and as we floated through the slight waterfall at the entry of the slide Michelle let out a little scream.  The rest of the way down she screamed louder with every tight turn and drop.  I had to focus on keeping my mouth closed while laughing.  When we got to the bottom, like Shaylee, Michelle said she'd never do that again.  God bless her for trying.  Did I mention Michelle is not an adrenaline junkie whatsoever.

The lines started getting really long and so we decided we'd call it a day.  A bit earlier than I thought and I know Seth was disappointed but he didn't make a fuss.  It was a great day and I felt like a kid the whole day through.  I'm not kidding I think that one day made me feel about two years younger.  Letting loose and acting like a kid has that psychological effect on your mind which I think reflects positively on your body as well.

I love this photo because you can see Seth already wanting off to go again.
I have to send out a big thanks to Terry, Amanda, Connor, and Ava for providing us with the chance to act like kids for a day.  I also have to thank Amanda and Terry for the photos in this post.  They take some great photos and have started their own photography business.  
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