Let me tell you about this Schlitterbahn experience.
For starters, going on a Tuesday was not effective. Thousands of other people had the same idea, so lines and crowds were just as bad as always, and the heat was predictably hot. Duh.
It wasn't so bad, though. Schlitterbahn has three parks on two different lots. Schlitterbahn West and Schlitterbahn East, which breaks into two parks called Surfenburgh and Blastenhauf. We parked at West, the main park, with the giant hot tub with in pool bar.
We were there maybe two and a half hours and got to ride three rides, when suddenly there was this deafening exploding noise. Everybody stopped to look around. Then the water stopped pumping on the water slides and the tube chutes. People got stuck mid slide as the water went down into the pool but the pumps couldn't bring it up. The vendors lost power in freezers, refrigerators, and margarita machines.
The power was gone.
Well, those of you who have witnessed a transformer exploding know exactly what happened. Why the transformer exploded is the far more interesting story. A teenage boy, probably texting while driving, drove his car straight into a pole, and thus the transformer exploded, knocking all of Schlitterbahn West into a rideless, filterless existence.
We couldn't ride anything. We couldn't even enjoy the pools because the filters were no longer running, and with all of those people in the water I couldn't even consider the idea of dangling my feet. As for my margaritas? They were melting slowly in their machines, unable to be sold because Schlitterbahn employees couldn't do hand made tickets for anything except cash, and I had no cash. Just my card.
So we decide to take the tram to the other park after lunch, and it's about two when we finally make it onto a tram (because everybody was leaving West hoping to have fun at East) and we get in line for a ride. And we get to ride two rides because East parks are still running, and then I look up and I see a cover of blackness coming towards us.
We find ourselves in the middle of the worst drought Austin has ever seen, we go to a water park for a little fun, and then a huge storm finds us. We immedaitely decided to go back to West and pack our things and leave. It's already four thirty. Everybody seems to have the same idea, and after waiting for twenty minutes for a tram, the rain starts pouring down on everybody waiting outside. The wind picked up and cut viciously through the scanty protection my swimsuit and skirt offered me.
And then a tram pulls up for us, opens the doors. We think, "Thank you! We can get out of the cold!"
And then a huge swarm of people from the end of the line rush forward and cram onto the tram, pushing over employees, those of us who were next, and people crossing to the parking lot trying to get to their own vehicles.
I don't know what the fuck their problem was. They were all soaking wet from the rides anyway, and we were already cold. The employees finally got them under control, but they couldn't tell who had already been on the trams and who had rushed from the end of the line. Rather than punish everybody, they decided to let them all go. Then a woman and her five kids pushed forward and begged to be allowed to go on, her husband was already on the tram.
We all started shouting, "No, it isn't fair! Make her wait! Make her husband get off!"
Her husband stuck his head out. They should have made him get off since he was obviously one of the people who rushed the line. How else could he have been on board but his wife and kids stuck at the end of the line? But they let them on. And then let the families of everyone who had sneaked on go, too! We were outraged! We were standing there, the rain pouring down, the lightening striking, thunder clapping so loud we all had to cover our ears, and for what? For a bunch of selfish idiots to break the rules?
When we finally got let on more people tried to run up. And we sent them happily away, yelling at them that they had to wait just like everyone else. When they just decided to stand in the isles and try to wait it out, the bus driver ordered them off, screaming that the tram couldn't leave with people standing.
When we finally made it back to our stuff we found it mostly dry thanks to having been under the table. And on the way out we got passes to come back another day, free of charge, because between the power outage and the rain it had just been a bad day.
I hope it's not nearly as bad next time.