What an emotional three hours I had just this afternoon.
I was invited through Western Mass Women Magazine, a publication I just began freelancing for, to attend the West of the River Chamber of Commerce Wicked Wednesday at Six Flags New England. I said yes right away, hoping to not only connect with my fellow magazine writers but also members of the local business community.
Within the first five minutes of arriving, I wanted to leave. More specifically, leave, and then cry.
It was pouring when I pulled in. I wore black capris, a light blue t-shirt and black sandals, figuring we’d be outside and also planning on a warm day and hitting some rides, as they said food and rides would be involved. Well, when I walked in, it was an indoor, catered space, and the four people there were in skirts/dress pants and nice shoes. I PANICKED.
I spoke to those there, though, and eventually fell into a conversation with a book publisher who grew up in the area but now lives in Boston. She looked at me and a man, Al, who was wearing khakis, a polo, and sneakers and said, “You guys dressed for this. I certainly did not. I don’t know what I was thinking,” as she was wearing a dress and wedges. And she meant it, so that made me feel a little better.
What made me feel even better was that the other women from the magazine walked in wearing sneakers and capris! So I truly was not undressed. Crisis #1 averted.
Crisis #2, the one in which I knew NO ONE, also fell to the wayside once myself and this book publisher woman started talking. We ended up chatting the whole two hours I was there, she gave me her business card, told me to hit her up for wine some time and to let her know when I’d be in Boston again. It was the perfect connection, one that gave me an insight into the industry and also into the area in which I live – she was so chatty about all the great things I could see and do in my time here.
I left after eating, walked out myself, and figured I’d go on some rides. I made my way to Bizarro, a purple behemoth set in the super hero area of the park. The park was pretty empty considering it was a downpour until 15 minutes beforehand, so I strode right in the single riders line and found only one person in front of me – wearing Batman earrings, nonetheless. We struck up a conversation, I found out she works as a food vendor at the park, is 19, married, knows how to weld, her husband is training to be a plumber and she, of course, LOVES comics.
Awesomely enough, right before Bizarro launched us into a 220-foot drop straight into a tunnel, she asked if I wanted company on the other rides – I clearly accepted, which was awesome, because she led me to Pandemonium (a circular four-seater on a roller coaster track wherein the cart itself SPINS as it goes) and Goliath – a monster of a coaster that had my heart hammering 15 minutes after we got off.
We ended up in the front row for Goliath, which is awesome for a coaster anyway, but was extra special here because the ride begins by pulling the car up BACKWARDS – so I had a front row view of the CONCRETE BELOW. It launches you through twists and turns at an insane speed before slowing down – leaving you staring straight up at the sky before dropping you into the ride again, this time all backwards.
Just. Here. Look at this video. Then you’ll know.
It was insanity. It was so fun. And she was so nice!
It was a day of going from nervous fear to adrenaline-laced laughing – and it was awesome.
Never a boring moment out here – I simply won’t let it happen.