I'd planned the start of my latest coaster adventure around an afternoon flight to New York, timed so that I could do a full day of work prior to flying and thus avoid an unnecessary day of annual leave. My employer generously allows staff to work from home occasionally, a benefit that meant that I wouldn't have to drag my suitcase into the office. As it turned out, this was particularly fortunate, as the zipper broke off during packing, resulting in a frantic last minute visit to my local department store a few hours before my departure.
I've recently qualified for the Aer Lingus Gold Circle Club, and while the earnings ratio on this card is quite possibly the worst in the travel industry the benefits are worth having. One of these is immediate check-in and fast track through airport security, meaning that I'd checked my luggage, cleared all formalities, and made my way to the lounge within ten minutes of arrival at the airport. Better yet, my flight arrived in New York half an hour early, and extremely efficient handling had me driving my rental car out of the airport more than an hour earlier than my most optimistic projections.
Luna Park NYC
19th July 2012
I found a parking space in the immediate area of Coney Island just after 8:15pm, and headed directly for Scream Zone, the latest addition to the amusement parks of New York. The new park is very small, but it does hold two roller coasters in addition to a reverse bungee and a skycoaster. I got to enjoy a solo ride on Steeplechase (#1776), followed in short order by Soarin' Eagle. The latter was surprisingly enjoyable despite being a relocated version of a fairly awful ride; perhaps the manufacturers refurbished it in the move?
Security staff were in the process of locking one half of the park gate as I made my exit, but I thought nothing of it as I walked the five minutes across to the nearby Luna Park. By the time I got there, however, those gates had been locked, and a security officer was allowing the last few patrons to leave but nobody new to enter. Though a pleasant evening, park management had taken the decision to close both parks two hours before the published time of 11:00pm.
Lady luck was clearly smiling on me to a certain degree tonight, as I'd have missed both parks entirely if I'd arrived in Coney Island on my expected schedule. Be that as it may, I'd like to ask why these parks bother publishing opening hours given that they apparently don't adhere to them? If I'd known about the change before arriving then I'd have been able to run between the different rides and have a reasonable stab at riding all three. As it was, I was left with one missing credit and several non-refundable ride points that I wasn't able to use. I had a go at using them up on the Cyclone, but I was two points short and the ticket window had closed when I tried to buy the missing ones. Thanks, guys.