The first time I rode on the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, I was small enough to fit between my mom and dad in one seat… sort of. I remember hearing so many interesting sounds and feeling the rush of wind against my face. What I don’t recall is seeing anything except for these bones. I was far too busy being made into the kind of sandwich that had mistakenly been sat on on the way to school, with a slice of mom on one side and a slice of dad on the other. As a child, I was frustrated. I felt like I had missed out. But it is just that kind of memory that fills me with gladness and brings me back to Disneyland time and again. And you can bet when I have a child who is sort of small enough to fit between my wife and me, we’ll be headed straight for the “wildest ride in the wilderness” to have ourselves a sandwich.
If you’ve never taken a few moments to stand here and watch one of the trains of Screamin’ launch into coaster bliss, you’re missing out. On a moderately busy day at Disney’s California Adventure like the one this shot was taken, they really crank the trains through. It’s a lot of fun to watch the butterflies of excitement flutter, as riders anticipate being thrust back into their seats and propelled up the hill. The sounds of the boardwalk music and the countdown to launch race across the water to Ariel’s Grotto until the air is filled with screams and laughter… and of course the brightly colored train barreling up to fifty-five miles per hour in four seconds. It always brings a smile to my face.