The mist turned into rain as we looped around the Busch Gardens exit and spotted the “parking $15” sign. We almost turned back. And if we had, we would have missed out on the shortest lines in the history of theme parks!
It ended up being the perfect day to introduce Isaac to roller coasters. We could have been better dressed—I forgot to bring a hat and Isaac’s sweatshirt was a bit snug. Rain boots would also have been appropriate. But it was cool, breezy, and completely uncrowded.
Isaac wanted to go on the Battering Ram for his first ride. Eloise and I cheered them on from the sidelines. Isaac almost immediately tucked his head under Chris’ arm and refused to look. He was a little traumatized. He didn’t even respond when an excited 13-yr-old girl told him he was brave (although hours later, at home before bed, he told me, “at battering ram, that other girl talked to me. But I didn’t say anything a’cause I was looking at the ground a’cause I was scared. That ride was really scared.”).
It took some convincing to get him on some more tot appropriate rides after that, but Chris and I got to take turns riding with him. We flew flying machines. He went around in a hot air balloon. He flew a plane. He swung in circles. He drove in circles in the bumper cars. We went around in a dragon egg. We rode the train and the gondolas. Chris went on a really big roller coaster. Isaac was mesmerized. He had a really fun time. We had just measured Isaac for his passport Monday and were surprised to find he is tall enough for all but the biggest rides at 42 inches.
The real trooper here was ELOISE, who was a totally good sport in the car, hanging out in her stroller, taking a nap, eating all the food, and generally being the prettiest awesome baby you’ve ever seen. This is a different baby from the grouchy, hungry girl who wouldn’t eat two months ago. Everything has changed for the better.
So we get there, I buy a hat to keep the rain out of my eyes, we get some coffee and a cookie, and Chris pops Isaac up onto his shoulders. There was a weird pause while Chris and I turned to each other in slow motion. Over 10 years ago, before we were dating, when Chris and I first met, he told me over AOL instant messenger his dream for the future: couple of kids etc etc. And it was the weirdest thing. It was like seeing a photo: Chris, me, older boy (brown hair), younger girl (blond hair), heading into an amusement park. The girl was on Chris’ shoulders. And he and I were not serious at all at the time. That’s what made it so weird.