Monday, August 25, 2014

A Trip Doomed - To Succeed...by Gina Waite

Have you heard the expression, "you can't judge a book by it's cover?"  No?????  How about "it's what's on the inside that counts!"  Similar expressions that basically mean the same thing...try not to determine how you feel about something based entirely on the appearance of that thing...make your decision only after you witness the entirety of that experience!  I can tell you I put this expression to the test when a recently anticipated trip to Lagoon Amusement Park went completely awry...then turned out to be one of the BEST Utah trips we've had in a long time!




Picture it...Beautiful summer day...all is right with the world and Interstate 15!  We've got our favorite playlists, playing; our favorite snacks, packed AND a most agreeable sixteen-year-old boy who has volunteered to drive, which means, Mom gets in reading time!  A darling pre-teen girl who is busily engaged in ready a parent-approved book...perfect scenario for a perfect day!  As discussions turned from what song to listen to...to which restaurant we should stop at for dinner ... a noticeable difference in the van temperature occurred!  As the van started to feel warmer and warmer, I quickly realized we were in Utah  and not the cooler temperatures of the Snake River Plains found in Idaho!  It only made sense that the adjustment in air conditioning temperature was a direct reflection of the warmer temperatures in Utah ... which seemed reasonable until the air conditioned air started feeling more like air heated from a heater!




I looked around my son's driving arm at the van's engine temperature gauge as it was nearing the middle of the HOT RED ZONE!  As we were navigating to our destination in post-work traffic (right around 5:00pm) I decidedly called my mechanic back at home to get any helpful advice..."Gina, turn the heater on full blast as it will draw heat off the engine and cool it down!"  If it were December, this would have been a welcomed and lovely statement...but it was July!  Can you say with me "100-Degrees-Fahrenheit!"  The air temperature outside felt cooler than what was coming from the vents in our van and we quickly pulled off the Interstate to let the van cool down!  "Don't worry kids!  We'll get this worked out and have a wonderful time at Lagoon," I said determined to convince myself as much as I was my kids!





Diagnosis...not one, but TWO radiator fan motors!  Thankfully, a wonderfully kind cousin (Thanks Richard) loaned us his extra car...and we were quickly, and almost painlessly, on our way to our lodging for the night as excitement filled the car in anticipation for our day spent at Lagoon!  Lagoon the next day, seemed more inviting and fun than it ever had before...AND it was fun...UNTIL the apocalyptic dirt, wind, hail storm hit the park when the weather turned from heaven to hell in about 45 seconds!  As we were driving back to our hotel, in a car we borrowed from a cousin, a melancholy mood descended over our little company!






As we sat inside the hotel room and looked out of the rain-streaked windows I kept thinking how much my kids wanted to go to Lagoon and how we only had a couple summers left before shipping my oldest off to enjoy the realities of life.  At that moment I was determined that my kids would enjoy Lagoon because our trip would be what we made it!  "Kids, get your swimming goggles that you packed for the pool...let's go pick up some rain poncho's...we're going back to Lagoon!"  My kids looked excitedly at me and raced to accomplish the task I had asked!  Donning yellow rain poncho's (purchasable at the Lagoon Park entrance...FYI) and swim goggles, we were of the few who braved the park that evening!  As the lightning had stopped the park was fully opened and readied for the poor-weather-rider-opportunist!   


The rain didn't affect us as it pelted our swim goggles instead of our eyes and with our poncho's on...we didn't get the least bit wet!  Because of that storm, we rode The Colossus-nine times in a row, Wicked-five times in a row AND never had a second thought about whether we would have to stand in line to get on a ride!  The ride attendants were waiting for us and obliged us with staying in our seats for a second, third or fourth ride instead of exiting the ride each time! My van didn't make it back to Idaho for some time but the occupants of the van, did!  That post-Lagoon day, driving home in a car we borrowed from a kind-hearted cousin (thanks again for the use of your car, Richard) we reminisced about the previous day's events and noted how many things went wrong to lend itself to a trip that really went right!  My son said, "Mom...you need to write a Nutshell about this trip and title it, 'A Trip Doomed-to succeed!'" My response, "I think I will!"

♦ Hope you'll share YOUR stories and photos with us at: nutshellstories@gmail.com.