I simply could not wait to get there. When we finally did I was ecstatic! The day was perfect; warm, almost hot, but not quite, with a gentle breeze creeping inland over the magnificent blue lake. Not a cloud in the sky above. The air smelled of sweets and treats and the sizzling cooking grease that was used to deep-fry the delicious delights.
Above me was where I found my eyes constantly searching. The coasters were magnificent and my heart beat faster when I pictured myself strapped on one of the steal contraptions, flying hard, high and fast like hawk in attack mode. And the sounds that echoed forth accompanying the sights of flight were every bit as exhilarating. The screams and shrieks that involuntarily ejected from the passengers aboard only boosted my excitement.
We moved toward the living legend and entered into the snake of waiting. With each step closer to boarding I lost a little more breath. The line wasn’t long but with my heightened expectation and excitement time seemed to crawl. Finally we reached the loading zone and I climbed aboard. With my sweating hands I clasped the belt and then tugged the loose end until it was snug against me. I lowered the shoulder-locking device into position and was now ready for blastoff.
Click, click, click, we climbed skyward, higher and higher up to the peak. We inched forward, creeping now, seconds from freefall, I could hardly breathe, and my pulse was the only thing that I could hear. Suddenly I was falling, yet flying at the same time. It was like no feeling I had felt before. My stomach was still at the crest, my knuckles were ghost white with a death grip on the handles, and I screamed.”AAAHHH!” It wasn’t a scream of fear, as I thought it might have been, but a scream of delight, release, joy, and pride. I would be the first among my friends to claim victory over the Magnum XL 200 and in my own childish way I began to see myself as a man.