When I was younger I went to Alton Towers with my family. I was old enough to ride the famous Corkscrew solo and I did just that sitting in the very front left hand seat. As the ride jerked and struggled its way up the first mechanical slope I realised that the locking mechanism had broken on my harness and the black rubber would not hold me in springing into an upright position. Calmly I thought about the problem and realised that I could not call out and would need to wedge myself in as best as possible and see the ride out to the end. In my mind my only fear being the double loop and trying to hold myself in and not being flung across the park.
Clearly I survived the ordeal and as I stepped off the ride mentioned in a nonchalant manner to the ride controller that the seat was broken and went off to meet my family. This experience is one of my most vivid memories as a child and I have told the story countless times.
There is one very slight problem though. I do not know if this really happened or if I just dreamt it. I have gone through the events countless times in detail but it sits in a surreal void since I was on my own and there is no shared aspect. Perhaps if this was driving me to insanity I would consider doing some investigation but I don’t think it is. I will leave it in the obscure space that it occupies, and I will use it as a reminder of the importance of a shared experience.
In an ideal world I would like to share many more of my experiences. Some are purposely solo endeavours but the most are the type that you would like to talk about and share with somebody since it is often the communication that gives them meaning and hearing the account of another that gives it dimensions. The ones that only exist in my mind have a surreal coating to them and as time progresses I find myself questioning “Did that really happen?”
As achieving my goal comes to and end and the earlier stages of my trip fade into distant memory, I can be confident that my cycle across the European continent did happen thanks to this entry from Ken.