We surely all have regrets at not having done more of things we know we'd have liked. One of my major ones is not having visited more funfairs and riding on rollercoasters.
I've always been fascinated by fairground rides of all types, including roundabouts, waltzers, ghost trains etc., yet haven't had the opportunity, or the nerve, to try them out - usually because I've nearly always been alone and don't want to look conspicuous by being a solitary rider. But rollercoasters are the ultimate.
There's only been one occasion in my life when I had the chance to throw caution to the winds and go on all the rides I wanted. It was at the annual Munich Beer Festival of 1985 which I attended with a German friend, with whom I still have contact, though he's long since been married to his boyfriend. At that time the Oktoberfest funfair was the largest non-permanently-sited fair in the world, and may well still be so, and by now it's certain to be even bigger! But it was simply huge even then, with so many different rides that I wanted to try them all, with the exception of those that turned one upside-down. (I'd still be a bit nervous about that.) I suppose the rides would be considered tame by today's standards but I vividly recall how exhilarating I felt after each one. It was quite addictive, and we went on several more than once in one evening. As neither of us were great beer drinkers, rather than 'wasting' valuable time in a beer tent, we spent all our time being spun and whizzed around, shaken up, twisted, rattled and jerked this way and that - really great fun. That was my only time. Even as a boy with my brothers I never ventured onto anything but the very safest rides and recall seeing them on their first time on a big dipper (as we called them then) and I was too frightened to join them, remaining on solid ground but watching them enviously. But that time in Munich - at the age of nearly 40! - was my first ever time on one, and I loved it. And I've never been on any fairground ride since.
We've seen TV programmes here about people who travel the world just to ride on the most extreme rides, and I really do wish I could be one of them. I'm not sure that, even if I could, it would be advisable to try out the very most extreme as, although having no heart problems (or so I'm told), I do suffer from high blood pressure, so it might not be the wisest thing. But there are sure to be many other safer ones to enjoy.
I'm not giving up hope that some time in the not-too-distant future I might be able to catch up on something of what I've missed. In fact I have a fantasy; when I win our National Lottery (note the 'when'!) and I can afford to visit my transatlantic blog-pals, I'm hoping that there might be an amusement park within accessible distance of where they live so that they can take me there and ride with me - and in return I'd promise to try not to embarrass them during any rapid descents by emitting an ear-piercing, nelly-type scream. Well I'll try!
4 hours ago