Friday, December 29, 2006

Knott's Berry Farm
Where do you go with a group that isn't too far? Yesterday, Don drove Dana, Kal, Alan and me to Knott's Berry Farm. It is a western-style theme park at this time. There are also Peanuts cartoon characters. It is on Beach Boulevard off Interstate 5 and so easy to find.

Kal just turned 12 and Alan is about to turn 15. Dana is our elder adult daughter, Kal's mom. Don and I are edging toward senior citizen status. Don doesn't really like rides but isn't afraid to go on them. He went on one roller coaster with Kal. Alan is losing his taste for wild rides. He did go on the scrambler with Kal and Dana and the bumper cars.

I really don't enjoy most rides. There are some at Disneyland I will go on but at Knott's Berry Farm I didn't see any except for the steam engine train which we all went on. For those of us who actually rode trains back in the day when they were pulled by steam engines, it was nostalgic. However, the Canadian Pacific Railway cars I rode on were the more luxurious kind compared with the ones on this short train. Just the same, it was fun for me.

The park is clean and has both kiosk and sit down restaurants. We went to the on- site Johnny Rockets which had a long wait. I waited, mostly, while the others went on more rides. Now we have cell phones to summon people who have wandered away.

The best thing we all did together in the park was the Native Indian magic show. It was held in a longhouse that is modeled after those in British Columbia. Apparently, the natives at Alert Bay, British Columbia, were the main consultants, although local native tribes had some input into the pre-show discussion. If you happen to have read I Heard The Owl Call My Name, it is a little bit like that book. The show is extremely well done and not at all scary. It is a native re-telling which I found life-affirming.

It was a cool day and I became chilled once the sun went down, despite having on three layers of tops. Dana bought a padded jacket for each of us. It made the evening bearable. She and Kal went on the roller coaster which is like a boomerang. It took around an hour to wait. The drop of the roller coaster takes three seconds. Kal said that going backwards on that roller coaster was the most fun of the day for him.

Traffic going home was not as bad as going down since we had no slow downs. The speed through three counties, mainly through downtown Los Angeles, was hairy for me. If you aren't afraid of high speed driving on our freeways, it might be thrilling for you. For me, it is the reason we don't go to these places at all often. Don took Alan to Knott's Berry Farm two and a half years ago while I attended a daylong conference. That isn't exactly often. Alan can wait nowadays just fine. The period of getting a disability pass for him is long past. However, there must be some at Knott's because the attendant came each time the roller coaster ride loaded while we were waiting for Dana and Kal to see if anyone had a pass.


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