We spent yesterday at one of the finer white trash establishments in Virginia, Kings Dominion. This is our second time this year, and I have to say the kids seem to enjoy it and it is not too busy. The last time we went was in June and it was overcast with bits of rain which caused low crowds and the lines for the rides were short and fast. This time we experienced a different type of natural occurrence, an earthquake. I will say, nothing scares people off like a natural disaster.
My friend and I took the kids for one last fun summer outing and about 2.5 hours into our day, we sat down for lunch and as we are trying to feed the kids and keep them from slapping each other and knocking their drinks over, the table starts shaking. I look around to see if it one of my kids doing it and get ready to give them a whack to the bottom. I realize nobody is doing it and I start seeing things around us shake. It takes me a few minutes to process what is happening and I finally realize what is going on. All the rides have stopped and people are standing around confused and not sure what to do, just like during any type of urgent situation.
Kings Dominion decides to take the ‘Let’s shut everything down and not make an announcement and see if anyone notices’ approach. I have to say, I think it worked for some of the people. We went from worker to worker trying to find out what the situation was and nobody could do anything except shrug and tell us they have no clue. After an hour or so we finally find some official looking people standing around and ask them for an update. They tell us the park will stay open but the rides are closed indefinitely. We ask about their refund policy, which they quickly inform us is non-existent, however if we want to come back within the next two weeks they will let us use our tickets on one of those days. They are short and curt with us and make us feel like we have inconvenienced them by asking the question. So let me get this straight, the only thing we can do is buy food, play games, get tattoos or face painting or visit the shops (meaning we have to pay for everything there is left to do)? Yep, that’s about right! They do tell us that the wave pool has just reopened and suggest we head there (with the other 1,200 patrons).
I stay with the kids while my friend goes to get our beach bags, the kids ask if they can hang out in the souvenir shop while we wait. As I stand in the entrance of that shop so I can keep one eye on the kids and the other looking for my friend I realize they are acting like animals in the shop. I go in and remind them how they should act and then I realize that I have just been told that I spent a bunch of money and there is a no refund policy, “Kids knock yourselves out. You want to hang from that display over there? You go ahead. You want to see if the candy will pour out of that sour tower thing by grabbing each dial? Have at it! Why don’t you grab those pop guns over there and chase each other around the store with them while yelling!”
My friend returns and we head to change and hit the wave pool. Not realizing that the waterproof bag around my neck with my phone and cash is bright red and has the + (Lifeguard symbol) on it I start moving around the wave pool. People start asking me questions and I have no idea why. Some kids start splashing and when I turn towards them they freak out and run. I finally figure out this bag has unofficially made me official. Like any other person that gets immediate power I start trolling around and giving warnings. The boys that splashed my friend and I were told they were in a “No Splash Zone” and needed to go to another pool if they were going to splash. The boy carrying his girlfriend over his head so everyone could see half her ass was given a stern look with a point and he immediately set her back down. I was like Bay Watch without the fake boobs, blond hair and 24” waistline. My friend whispers to me that she can’t believe people think I am actually a life guard, I tell her I don’t care that this is the most fun I have had all day!
After a couple of hours of swimming in what I can only guess is half water, half urine we head to change and see what else we can do to get our monies worth. The kids ask for tattoos and we head over where the sign says ‘Body Art $5’. The kids pick out the biggest, gaudiest, sparkliest tattoos and the artists set to work. After finishing, the girls tells me they will be $10.49 each. What???? The sign clearly says $5, what’s up with $10.49?” She tells me that she asked the girls if they wanted glitter and multiple colors and they said yes. Well of course they freaking did! If I asked them if they wanted a pony they would say yes, that’s why I don’t ask them what they want! She stands around for a tip and I don’t make a move; there’s a tip in itself, don’t assume what kids want and what parents will agree to are the same damn thing!!!!
We wind up playing some games that the kids will never win and I am thankful for that, I really don’t have any place to stick a 6 foot stuffed pickle or full size mirror with AC/DC printed across it. We go to get something to eat and find everyplace we stop has stopped making food or closed down. They do however have beer for $7.49 a bottle or soda for $3 a bottle. I am too cheap for either and start to feel like this whole earthquake thing may be a bit of a conspiracy. Let’s see, revenues are down, let’s shake the ground and close down all the rides and force people to only do things that cost more money. By the way, we know that their kids will be driving them nuts, so let’s charge $7.49 for a bottle of beer.
It wasn’t an awful day and the kids all said they had a good time. I think us adults even had a good time. AND I learned a valuable new trick, I can now impersonate a like guard and will be using this at our community pool. Watch out June, your kids will most likely be asked to leave the pool for no good reason and I may issue you a citation for being a cold bitch.