Our penultimate trip for this year was a day trip to Scotland set up at relatively short notice when it became evident that a family coaster normally accessible only to those saying at a caravan park had been temporarily relocated to the town of Paisley, just over a mile south of Glasgow Airport. I was able to locate an outbound flight for just twenty euro despite peak season, and though the return flight was silly money I found an affordable alternative from nearby Edinburgh, allowing us to take in a second fair.
There was third potential hit at the Irn Bru Carnival in the Scottish Event Campus, but going there would have turned a relatively relaxed day out into a mad rush, and I decided that it was more trouble than it was worth. Maybe next time.
Paisley First Winterfest
23rd December 2017
Gilmour Street is a pedestrianised shopping area in the centre of Paisley, and the temporary home to a number of funfair rides promoted by local operator M&Ds, including a Star Flyer, Flying Elephants, a Carousel, and Wacky Worm (McIndoe), a Fajume-built model that is ordinarily resident at Craig Tara Holiday Park. Today the train was making some very unhappy mechanical noises on its way up the lift hill, but the comfort level was unaffected and typical for a ride of this time. We went for a quick walk around after ticking off our credit, then bought a ticket at the adjacent train station for the short journey into Glasgow for a traditional Scottish lunch.
23rd December 2017
We were able to catch an earlier than expected train from Glasgow to Edinburgh, a snap decision that turned out to be a blessing as signalling problems on the line meant that everything was running behind schedule. As it was we arrived at our destination shortly after three, and it quickly became evident that the area around the fairground was every bit as busy as one would expect for a city centre event two days before Christmas. There was nowhere near enough space for orderly queueing, though the staff did their best to maintain some form of discipline by holding "queue ends here" signs aloft. It took us about twenty minutes to acquire tickets for the roller coaster, making me rue my failure to buy online ahead of time.
Ice Dragon Coaster (Hill) is a respray and retheme of the Wisdom Rides family coaster that once operated at Old Town in the United States. The original signage is almost certainly still present on the ride; though partially obscured as the Wagon label has been covered up by a canvas print of the word Coaster and the Ice title has been added on top, illuminated by a purple coloured floodlight. The interior of the oval-shaped track has been spruced up with a pair of six foot tall fiberglass polar bears, making the ride look considerably better than the norm for something on the UK fair circuit. The ride quality was not great, leading us to proclaim a new definition of wise: "The willingness to not ride coasters from Wisdom Rides".
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