Fear stalks the land. Dark venues dripping with evil beguile unwary visitors with their siren songs of excitement and pleasures. Screams fill the skies, but mesmerized visitors don’t turn back.

Beware, you are entering the realm of the theme park.

You will willingly thrust yourself into long queues to the abattoir of your senses. Grinning demons of hell clamp the willing victims into their thrones of torture.

The companion grins wildly, exclaiming about the fun they are about to have. Not even poor fools suffering Stockholm Syndrome have ever demonstrated such love for their captors.

Moments pass as awareness breaks, panicked looking around for escape, but the locks are secured, the gates of hell open.

Thorpe Park, theatre of terror swallows another victim.

A rumbling sound as the vehicle rolls forward, the rumbling of anticipation, the deep breathing, the clammy hands and aloft ride the visitors. Up high, but vast vistas glorious elsewhere are here but a brief pleasure as the contraption reaches its apsis, and plunges.

Stomachs left far behind scramble to catch up as people are flipped and swung around, upside down for a moment, shoulders clamped into their harnesses as minds disagree with logic.

A few moments and the device slows and comes to rest. A shudder and we wonder if that is all, or is there more. But relief is at hand. The device conveys is shaken victims to base once more and with trembling hands, locks are released.

This victim staggers away, to the laughs of his companion. A rest, a wait, leaning on bins to steady nerves. Maybe it wasn’t too bad. Hardly what he would call fun, but tolerable.

But worse is to come. This was but the introduction.

The brain knows the rides are safe. The heart screams in terror. The stomach never forgives.

Within moments, the stomach shall have its revenge.

Late at night, locked outside the park, nearby bushes are given copious doses of bilious fertilizer.

A bus is missed after the driver took one look at the suffering passenger and drives off. The victim recovers enough to manage the second bus back to town.

Barely. Muffed pleading to be let off just as the bus approaches the train station, and a rush to a dark corner.

The victim, for once grateful he didn’t eat that night has evacuated his innards to the point that deepest empty space contains more atoms than remain in his stomach.

More torture, a train ride home. Half spent in the toilets, half spent in close proximity to the toilets. Nothing left inside, but a howling anguish from the stomach seeking to inflict more punishment on those who dared to despoil its evening.

At Waterloo, the travellers part, one with a grin, the other with grimace.

Seeking to settle down before riding more trains, the correspondent decides to walk to the next tube stop.

People barely seen in the haze of despair look disapprovingly at the deceptively drunken fool seen lurching along the pavement.

Staggering along the street barely able to walk, drained to the point of desperation. A taxi is seen, its yellow light a beacon of hope in the benighted city.

The taxi driver looks warily at the victim. It’s not alcohol he protests weakly and the driver acquiesces. Grasping the door handle, he sits with face next to the window, concentrating as only a person can when trying not to throw up.

A pause to be ill, but nothing’s left, just an urgency to get home, to bed, to sleep.

Phones in sick the next day.

I don’t like roller coasters.

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One comment on “I don’t like roller coasters
  1. Annabel says:

    But Ian, you *knew* you got travel-sick, look how rotten you felt when your friend drove you down to Imber that time! Anybody who goes on roller-coasters who doesn’t have a cast-iron inner ear is bound to be going to be sick afterwards. I refuse to go anywhere near them for that very reason!

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