On Saturday, it was the Silcoates Juniors (years 3 to 6) annual trip to Alton Towers and this year, daddy managed to get an invite to go along to accompany the children 🙂 Elliot was also going but claimed that he really didn’t want to – guessing it was to take him away from precious Terraria time on the iPad :-(. We managed to get a lift on the Drewett Express that was passing through at 7am so we were waiting at school for the coaches from about 7:20am.
We all departed (after receiving thorough instructions for the day) just after 8am and together with a stop at the services at Tibshelf we arrived at Alton Towers at around 10:30 or so.
Daddy (and Lee and Amanda – who were also going to accompany the children) was set to take around some of the older kids who wanted to go on the thrill seeker rides so we head straight for the newest ride – the Smiler. There was an 80 minute wait for this ride and even though this was longer then the pre-agreed maximum waiting time of 60 minutes, we all went in. Sadly two of the 12 children in our care immediately hit the panic button and stated very clearly that they were not going to ride on the Smiler. It became super clear that these two had selected the big group through peer pressure but were not about to go on any of the large rides that were the main point of interest for this group, so Amanda quickly figured a plan to get them into a group where they would be participating in the fun rather than sitting on the side lines getting bored watching the rest. The Smiler queue ended up being more like 2 hours sadly so another of the group (thankfully a boy) determined that at around 1hour 30 minutes in, he could not hold his need for the lavatory any longer 🙁 Daddy suggested weeing into a bottle and that Lee and daddy would cover the situation using our backs as suitable shields. We waited for the queue to reach a suitable corner and emptied a water bottle in preparation – sadly the poor mite got stage fright and simply could not perform as required so he had to admit defeat and wait it out 🙁
The Smiler was a truly awesome thrill and certainly worth the 2 hour wait – there was a little rain while we waited but nothing to soak us in any way.
It was then over to Oblivion and then on to Nemesis (while eating our lunch on the trot – Mrs M was not for stopping and it ended up being the right strategy) before sampling Air. We head back over to Rita via the ski lifts (to save our legs as the kids thought it was quite a long walk through the gardens when heading over to Nemesis etc from the far right of the park earlier on) and waited for about 40 minutes for Rita. Rita is an experience that you can simply not prepare yourself for – the sheer acceleration is mind blowing.
The penultimate ride was a trip into Hex which was a surreal experience where both the seats you are sitting on AND the room itself are spinning (in opposite directions) to give the illusion that the seats have run completely upside down (kind of like a pirate ship ride) but in slo-mo.
Finally we ended with a 20 minute wait for a ride on the Sonic pinball – a fun rollercoast that spins the unit itself while running around the track – laughter from start to finish on that one.
Finally, back to the coaches and home – back in the school carpark for about 7:20pm.
Sadly Elliot did not seem to enjoy the day as much as he really should have so we are not sure if he will want to go again next year – daddy hopes he does as daddy would definitely be up for it again (assuming he gets an invite from the school of course 🙂 )