Friday the Thirteenth
June 13, 1997

Friday the 13th… June…1997… with fellow radp-ers (persons from the newsgroup rec.arts.disney.parks)… about 2:30pm… I was herded the back way, before I could change my mind, onto the elevator car that would become the "vehicle" for the *worst* picture *ever* *ever* *ever* I will allow to
be viewed by friend and foe.

And I am *still* shaking from the experience!

Now, I *didn't* go on ToT without first sending a Sacrificial Lamb… I sent my third-born child 🙂 *laugh* I figured if *she* could make it, perhaps *I* had a chance.

Cast of Characters:

Moi ([email protected])

my 13 year old daughter

my 11 year old daughter

Kenny Cottrell ([email protected])

Sam the bartender ([email protected])

Brian Pastor (and he *was* visible after all! [email protected])

[email protected] (CM)

Michele (Pooh Peon, [email protected])

her hubby Andy

Rhona Grumet ([email protected])

Rhona's son and daughter

Bill Sears ([email protected])
his 13 year old daughter Cacie (with whom I *totally* bonded!)

Chris Caines (CM/Puppeteer, whose computer blew up and now doesn't have an email address *frown*)

Aaron (Jumpyboy from irc!)

and last but *not* least, Brian43 ([email protected], a
self-described Super-Lurker!)

It was *pouring* rain at the 13th hour on our Fri the 13th radp meet. Once we got to go through the line (s-l-o-w!), I saw the library place (the "pre-show"?) for the first time and didn't find it terribly interesting… but then again, I *was* a nervous wreck even tho' I told everyone I wasn't going on the ride so guess I didn't pay a whole lot of attention. My oldest daughter was nervous, too, and *she* didn't go either! Geez, the
power of the mind, eh?

See the First DROP!

right front row, l to r: Bill Sears, Sam, Jumpyboy (Aaron)

second row, l to r: Kenny, Rhona's daughter, Rhona Grumet

third row, l to right: unknown jumpseater, my youngest daughter ducking into Genie's arms, Genie, Brian Pastor

top left row, l to right: Andy, Michele Pooh Peon, and Brian43

When we got to the stand-on-number-1-6 place, we discovered we had
*13* radp'ers to go on the ride! Woo Hoo! Gotta love it 🙂 When the riders came downstairs, my youngest had indeed survived, but was crying (poor dear), and Genie, who had been assigned her keeper for the ride, was the only radp-er who didn't have his hands flying over his head because he was holding her down in her seat (!)… she'd wanted to
LEAVE! Too late!

My ride, we got to go to the VIP way (thank you Brian Pastor for your connections and to those who donated their head-of-the-line passes!) and we were standing on our assigned numbers (mine was TWO, assigned by the radp-ers, of course, which put me in the front row *ack*!) within 5 minutes of deciding to go once again.

We filed in with some expert guidance from the CM for the clueless
Guests who couldn't count and load properly… and then, as he feigned banging his head against the door in frustration… it took *everything* I had to not scream, "GET ME OUTTA HERE!"

I then re-conjured what was the final convincing remark that got me on this darned thing anyway; Sam, our bartenderfriend, made some tender and kind remarks (that would embarrass him to death if I shared, so I won't) that touched my heart… and then said, "but it *is* just like a Democrat to chicken out in a tough situation." *Well*! That was *IT*! I felt my resolve build to Herculean (hehe) proportions and remembered how terrified I was on SplMt and BTMRR when I'd gone with Deb Wills in May *and* how I ended up *loving* those rides (thanks Deb for *your* courage!)… and next thing I knew, I was lowering that bar
into my lap (*squishing* it down is more like it since I learned the tricks from RADP how *not* to fly and thunk down in the seat, wary still of hurting or damaging my bum leg).

I had the Radp-Voices Senssurround Sound (sp) guiding me every step of the way during the ride. I was encouraged to open my eyes during the "pretty" parts and can only remember the eye that shows us our picture (but didn't see the pic) and the 3-D stars. *laugh* And people make such a big deal about the ride before the ride! *laugh* They must be NUTS having their eyes open!

Then, I get the "We're only moving forward" chorus and I am
*clutching* that bar for dear life, leaning into Brian's lap… when the picture is taken, "Smile!" I hear… and I know I am just going to be sick all over my friends. Then it's "Here's the first drop!" ("halfway down!", I think I heard)… then "here's another!" then, "just a little one" and lastly… "Here's the big one!" (Forgive me if I have the order wrong, a Jaunt Report was the *last* thing on my mind and I *wasn't* taking notes! *laugh*). I didn't *ever* look out so couldn't tell you how beautiful MGM is from up there.

I remember feeling queasy when the elevator was going *up*! What an odd sensation! I remember the weirdness of going down… but don't recall any kind of weightlessness… however, as hard as I was clinging to the bar, I don't think I was going to move *anywhere* (and I was the big thigh person in that row, too). I was *ever* so thankful I peed *before* going on the ride (and my seatmates were too, despite BrianP's joking that he felt a wet sensation coming from my direction!). I remember thinking that the ride is *fast* over and I could hang on for that much longer (laughing my head off as I write this… my stomach in *knots*!) and when it was over… everyone applauded! I, however, did not.

I lurched out of the car and remember looking for something solid to lean against until I re-gained some of my bodily senses. I said my leg didn't hurt but I *had* to sit or lean or I was going to fall down! I was shaking so hard I couldn't believe the adrenalin coursing through me! I think if I *had* hurt my leg, I wouldn't have *felt* it for an hour! They said I looked quite pale. I don't know… did I sit? lean? The gang was so great taking care of me while we waited the few seconds to see the picture come up… and when it did, they all *howled*! I couldn't see it so well… had that vertigo thing happenin'… but when we got it (and the first radp ToT drop's pic as
well… we all chipped in two bucks for the both), I was *mortified*!

Oh my GAWD! I look *horrible*! *laughing* Every person who has
looked at it has asked if Brian's lap was soiled. *laughing loudly* Poor dear. Now, the *rest* of the folks… well, they decided to "present" me to the camera (and y'all!) but I would/could have *no* part of it… I look positively horrid. You can even *see* how ghostly white I was! Whatta hoot! (if only it were someone else!)

See gardenia Take The FALL!
left front row, l to r: Sam, Kenny, me!, Brian Pastor

l to r second row: Brian43, Genie, Michele Pooh Peon, her hubby Andy

We continued on with our day… and altogether the main group of radp-ers went on: ToT, GMR, HoND, and Star Tours… varying group members did and did not go on/in certain attractions… but most of us ended up together again at HoND, watching a most fabulous presentation with the best Quasi we had all ever seen.

It was a *great* day!

And to answer everyone's question whether I "liked" ToT or not…
"like" was not the emotion that came to mind. Would I go on it again? I am thinking *yes* at this point… and might even open my eyes! But then again, I'm not standing on that number 2 either 😉

aka (TDC) gardenia
<who thanks her dear radp-friends for their hands, hearts, laughter, and sarcasm!… oh, and Genie's puns! *laugh* Whatta group we are!>

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