On our last day, Special Man took me to Marineland, which is an amusement/attraction park that has been open since 1961! My man has special memories of the place from when he visited as a child, and so I was eager to visit it and experience the fun that he had a long time ago. (Ok, maybe I shouldn’t say ‘a long time ago’ as if it were eons and eons past… he’s not that old! :P)
We went early –at 9:30 when the park was just opening up, and so there weren’t many other people besides ourselves, which was perfect! The day quickly grew hot, and neither of us wanted to spend too much time waiting in line for the rides.
Ok, before I continue with pictures… I just have to share this tip with amusement park novices like me who bring their bags along ‘for the ride’. Do Not!!! It’s best to have a very tiny cross-body bag, if you absolutely must bring one, but anything larger will not escape the attendants’ attention, and you will be asked to leave it behind on the ground, or in a receptacle. And if you are like me, you will not feel very safe about the idea of leaving your bag behind for a bit –I must admit it was a constant source of worry and stress whenever we got on a ride! I realise it is for safety purposes, so if you do decide to bring a little bag, make sure every pocket is zipped/snapped shut and that nothing will come flying out! And while we are on the subject, might as well mention that be sure to remember to put meaningful jewellery away, too. Otherwise, it might come off while you are zipping through an upside-down roller-coaster, and you may not ever see your expensive/family heirloom piece again!
Now on to the pictures…
There were a few more rides, none of which I took pictures of, as the crowds started to turn out in force… so we went to the Friendship Cove to say hello to the Beluga whales, saw the black bears napping lazily under the sun, and the bison who seemed a bit somnolent and whose furs were a bit matted and untidy. I’m sure the caregivers gave them some extra-special attention at the end of the day!
I even got to pet some elk who were only interested in you if you had feed to give!! Spoiled little creatures! 🙂
Special Man also took me on the Dragon Mountain Roller Coaster… the experience was definitely a jumbled mix of both adrenaline and white knuckles! He was laughing evilly all the while saying that he couldn’t wait to see how I liked the ride. And as a roller coaster did an upside-down loopity-loop close by, I asked him in consternation, “Is that the Dragon ride?” “Nah, it’s not,” he said (although it was the very one!) and ended with the advice, “don’t look at the rides going by too much, it will spoil the experience when we get on.” Ahh, Alex, I am onto your little tricksy ways now!! He definitely delights in frightening me. 😛
The very last ride that we took was the Sky Screamer. Currently the highest triple-tower ride in the world, this scary contraption launches you 450 feet skyward at 96 km/60 miles per hour! I tried to stay as dignified as I could, and managed to voice my fears with tiny screams and “Oh my word, put me down NOW!!!!” Even though I was scared stiff while I was on the ride, I’m very glad I did try it. The feeling of zero gravity weightlessness was very memorable, to be sure!
After that ride –and you have to walk a fair bit to reach it, and come back down– we left Marineland, and Special Man took me to see the Mount Carmel Spiritual Centre close by. I’d noticed it on our way to the theme park, and wanted to stop and visit the place.
It doesn’t seem huge, but that is possibly because half of the facilities were closed when we went. 🙁 But there was a cozy little chapel inside, and the steady flicker of votive candles assured us that the place had seen human footsteps and heard human voices not too long ago.
I suppose my summer vacation really came to an end in that reflective, quiet place. I left a few days afterwards for the routine life of work and study in Vancouver, and Alex went back to his military course and studies in Kingston. And even though I’ve transitioned back, and am enjoying being in B.C. again, I am also eagerly anticipating December’s arrival, so that I get to see him for one blissful month… and Christmas!
Any suggestions for favourite vacation spots in North America?
— Miss Cathie