ValleyFair Fun

So Valleyfair was fun. We were there from around 11am to 7pm, which I think is more than respectable, and we did all but a few rides. We started with Vanna’s favourite (The Wild Thing) and finished with her least favourite ride, The Corkscrew. Why is it her least favourite? Well, it made her a little bit unwell.  By ‘a bit’, I mean ‘a lot’ as she was…hmm… you can probably figure it out yourself. I’ll just say we had to stop at her grandparents on the way home and leave it at that (but she’s feeling better now, so that’s something).

Not that she was the only one feeling a bit questionable, however. I don’t really have any issue with being flung around at high speeds (I don’t like it, but I can handle it) but there was something about the Valleyfair rides that did me in too. I wasn’t sick, but I had a headache for the longest time, and I picked up several new bruises too. The rides at Valleyfair aren’t exactly the most comfortable. If it wasn’t The High Roller (I dubbed it ‘old rickety’) throwing our heads around, it was Renegade destroying our kneecaps (well, my kneecaps). The rest of the rollercoasters weren’t much better, with the only exceptions being The Wild Thing and Excalibur (which ruined it’s rating by being utterly boring).

But despite these complaints, we did have fun (maybe I had more than Vanna). It would have been better if we had more cash (couldn’t afford any of the food, nor could I try out the go-karts), but there were very few queues, and we managed to get around to pretty much everything. I won’t go through all of it, but I’ll list a few of the highlights and lowlights.

The Wild Thing

Vanna’s favourite ride (as I mentioned before), and probably the best rollercoaster there. I probably would have enjoyed it more if I hadn’t been thinking ‘I’m going to die, I’m going to die, I’m going to die’ over and over again.

The Ferris Wheel

I’ve never been on a Ferris Wheel before, so that was pretty cool. And it was a pleasant break from the other rides. Even VF can mess up a Ferris Wheel.

The Carousel

Another thing I’ve never been on before, believe it or not. Again, not the most exciting, but a nice respite from the headache causing rollercoasters.

Vanna’s horse went higher than mine though. I wasn’t impressed with that.

Bumper Cars

Picture the scene: we’re hot, sweaty and tired. Walking hurts, and we are moments from going home. I turn my head and see something I’ve been desperate to do for years, and yet never knew existed (at least here)…the bumper car shed. We run in, and get into two cars. I’m revitalized. Vanna is too (she hunted me down in there; here was me thinking I’d get her, and every time I looked back she was there, giggling).

End result? We end up spending another two hours at the fair.

Water rides

Another thing I’ve never done. I was reluctant to go on any of them as I’m not a huge fan of water (especially not chlorine water), but they were rather refreshing to do on such a hot day.

What did we do?

Well, there was the waterfall canyon, where I was the only one out of six to get a proper soaking. Typical really as I was the only one wearing shoes…

Still, that was good.

Then there was this flume thing. Vanna and I got on a raft and clung on to dear life while we shot through a dark tunnel, getting absolutely soaked in the process. Vanna’s screaming (she screamed and giggled a lot yesterday…it was very cute) made it even more worthwhile.

Finally there was the wave. We shot down a slope into water, getting hit not once, not twice, but three times. And then we got even more drenched by the next group of riders as we walked over the bridge to the exit.

In fact, drenched doesn’t sum it up. I need to invent a word for it. Sokadrench.

Hmm. I’ll work on it.

Arcade

What money we did have, was spent at the arcade. We won a few tickets, which resulted in us getting the following;

Two rubber things that bounce (no, not bouncy balls) up when you push them in.

Two plastic rings (Vanna got an orange heart, I got an orange crown) which we wore for the rest of the day.

Two blue rubber dinosaurs (a stegosaurus and a Diplodocus)

A plastic frog that jumps

And…that was it. Totally worth the money, right?

Nah, in all seriousness, it was a fun experience even without the prizes at the end.

No queues

Seriously, the biggest queue was ten minutes. People who bought the fast travel thing must have been mad. Completely unnecessary.

Power Tower

Something else I was reluctant to do. But Vanna persuaded me to go on, and I was glad I did. After going slowly up to the highest point at the place (wonderful views), we then flew right back down at a speed so fast it felt like we were floating. I had so much anxiety on the way up, but it was good. Probably my favourite ride at VF. It was the only one where I shouted, so I suppose that is a good indicator of my enjoyment? I don’t know. I just wish I’d gone on it earlier. And that it was longer.

Now for the lowlights…

Ride comfort

I did enjoy the rides, but yeah, it was awful. It was bad enough trying to fit my tall frame into those tiny seats, so then being thrown around like a ragdoll didn’t exactly impress me. They were so jerky. And don’t tell me to expect it; I never had that problem at Alton Towers.

Prices

Oh, the food. So delicious looking. But so stupidly expensive. Water, too, was a rip off at $4 for a bottle. $4! Even when you convert that figure to normal money it is ridiculous. We’ll stick to the water fountains, thank you very much. And the Erbert and Gerbert’s sandwiches we bought beforehand.

The Weather

It was never going to be perfect though was it? At least it wasn’t so  humid we couldn’t move.

The dinosaur movie

Oh, this was on another level of awful.  I don’t even know where to start. A dinosaur movie with horrendous effects, wooden acting, stilted dialogue and the most ridiculous plot in the world. It began as one thing, drifted into another and then ended with…I have no idea. I really don’t. It almost made Wild Orchid coherent.

Bah. At least it had air conditioning.

Our illnesses

Understandable, I feel. Nothing kills your happy mood like a bad migraine. Or chafing (wet clothes are not a good thing to walk in). Or the desire to upchuck. We did our best not to let it bother us though. I still had a good time, and Vanna…well, I don’t think she regrets going (though she probably won’t go ever again), which I guess is a good thing.

And that was about it. A lot more positives than negatives overall (I covered all the bad points, but not all the good), so I’m going to class it as a good experience. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any pictures inside Valleyfair because neither of us wanted to carry Vanna’s bag, and we didn’t want to carry just my camera (which wasn’t really a good idea anyway as we did a lot of water rides) either. In our defence, it was hot and humid all day, so hauling a bag around with us wasn’t exactly a tempting proposition. We were struggling enough with the conditions already.

I did get some pictures from the outside, however. And some from the Garrison gas station, which is where we stopped to refuel. Why did we take pictures at a gas station? Well, it’s fairly self-explanatory. I’ll upload them later for you.

 

Right, now onto the sad part. This will be my last blog in America. Tomorrow afternoon I will be leaving to go home. I don’t think I have to explain how disappointing that is going to be. I’m already depressed about it. I don’t mind going home, but leaving Vanna behind…well, that, ladies and gentlemen, is something I don’t even want to think about. I’m dreading it.

Anyway, I’ll be back to blogging more consistently when I get home. I still have plenty of stories and stuff to talk about. For now though, I’m going to take a temporary break so I can spend what little time I have left with Vanna, with, uh, Vanna.

Speak to you on the other side,

Alex

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