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Photo TR: Being Chuck's Account of TPR's 2007 Japan Tour


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Wow... I hit Fuji-Q 2 weeks after the japan trip and amazingly, the park was dead!

 

Well, dead in their case mean a 45 minutes wait for Dodonpa, 2 hours and a half line for Eejanaika and a 15 minutes wait for Fujiyama. The mouse was a 5 minutes wait and the rest was all walk on. The Hamster coaster never opened and I never found the hospital walkthrough!

 

The only ride I liked was Dodonpa. Fujiyama was running really bad and Eejanaika was horrible.

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Wow... I hit Fuji-Q 2 weeks after the japan trip and amazingly, the park was dead!

 

Well, dead in their case mean a 45 minutes wait for Dodonpa, 2 hours and a half line for Eejanaika and a 15 minutes wait for Fujiyama. The mouse was a 5 minutes wait and the rest was all walk on. The Hamster coaster never opened and I never found the hospital walkthrough!

 

The only ride I liked was Dodonpa. Fujiyama was running really bad and Eejanaika was horrible.

 

Hmm--then perhaps there is something to be said for long waits (more time to recover between rides).

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Chapter 15: Déjà Vu by Daylight, Seashells by the Seashore, and Blinded by the Lights: La Qua, Sea Paradise, and Yokohama Cosmoworld

 

Well, I wasn’t going to South Korea, so this was the last day of the tour for me—but what a ride it was (literally "trains, planes, and automobiles"). My thanks to Robb and Elissa for always going that extra mile—and often a mile or two beyond that—to make sure that all of us had the best time possible.

 

We hit La Qua again that morning, just to make sure that everybody had a chance to see the place by daylight and snag all the credits possible there (Linear Gale went down, unfortunately—that’s life). My plan was to check out The 13 Doors, a haunted walk through that I’d missed the first night, but it opened late in the morning and had such a long, slow-moving line that I had to pass on it. Oh, well—a few more rides on Thunder Dolphin wouldn’t hurt, and I just had to check out the weirdness of Geo Panic and Zombie Paradise again (Robb rode Zombie for the first time ever that day and was as puzzled by it as he was by Panic).

 

Next up was Sea Paradise, which seems to be Japan’s answer to 1970s era Sea World. It’s actually quite a nice place, with a real “park-like” atmosphere and a laid-back vibe—not to mention one credit. Surf Coaster is a non-looping Togo that doesn’t hurt; in fact, it’s actually fun, and I love how its layout extended over the water. There was but one funky little transition to remind you that it was, indeed, a Togo.

 

However, the Blue Fall Intamin drop tower was the best ride there. This is the one with the “false” drop that stops after about ten feet before sending you on your way, but I think the “full” drop side is more fun (fast and thrilling). There’s a nice scenic elevator, too. All in all, a good place to relax for a few hours and enjoy an ice-cream crepe.

 

Cosmoworld offered a nice, more-hectic contrast—especially after dark. Like Pal Pal, this is another massive arcade with a “pay-per-ride” amusement park tacked on. It’s a popular “date” spot, as was clearly shown by the enormous line for the park’s requisite enormous Ferris wheel (these rides are popular “make-out” spots in Japan, where public displays of affection are discouraged). There are three coasters, too:

 

Diving Coaster Vanish—This is a decent ride, but I doubt I’d wait nearly an hour for it again. The sad thing is that this wait could’ve been halved if the park had better operations. They ran one train, but that wasn’t the worst of it. The train returns; the operators wait until all the riders grab their belongings from lockers and exit; open the air gates; let just enough people in the station to fill the train (who also have to put all their stuff in lockers), and from whom they have to take tickets; then dispatch the train without bothering to let more riders into the station and checking their tickets (one wonders why they bother with the air gates at all). It would help a lot if Cosmoworld would fill the station and check the tickets while the train cycles, but perhaps there’s a reason for the extra caution that I don’t understand.

 

Family Banana Coaster—This is an OK kiddie coaster in the park’s front “carnival” section. It’s tricked up with plastic palm trees and Christmas lights.

 

Spinning Coaster—This was, unfortunately, not operating that night, but it looked like a pretty standard spinning mouse. (I’m sure Elissa was bitterly disappointed.)

 

There were a couple of dark rides in the arcade—a shooter, which I rode, and a haunted house, which I didn’t (wished I had—oh, well). As for the arcade, I did take on Falafel Girl in a rousing armadillo race, which I won. I think. It was kind of hard to tell.

 

It was good way to finish up the Japan tour. Once again, I can’t thank Robb and Elissa enough for TPR’s “adventure” tour of Japan—one of the best vacations ever.

 

Thanks for wading through all this, folks.

 

EDIT: "thank . . . enough." Fixed. D'oh!

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Next stop, Cosomoworld. More pics to come.

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The glass is a bit dirty, but you can see how Surf Coaster literally just hangs over the surf. and, yes, you can see the helices that seem to be required on all Togo coasters by Japanese law.

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Here are some pictures from "Miles's Skull Observation Tower."

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Now they're gettin' down.

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Whe-e-e. . . oof!

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I wonder how happy he is now?

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Chris looks pretty happy while waiting for Blue Fall.

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But here's the park's star attraction.

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Much less painful than having an observation tower grow out of your skull.

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But it's good--really.

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The Windjammer-like trains do nothing to ease your misgivings.

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Here's Surf Coaster, which make you think, at first, "Uh oh! Togo!"

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Next stop, Sea Paradise: The blue tower is Blue Fall; the observation tower is growing out of Miles's head.

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As for me, this was the "Big D'Oh!"

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The now spent train returns.

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. . . as is the "Little O."

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But the "Big O" is still very satisfied . . .

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Thunder Dolphin doesn't have any more airtime at day than it does at night.

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First up, La Qua: The Tokyo Giants were playing that afternoon, so their fans were staking out their places in line with plastic mats, tape, newspapers, etc.

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And now, the last park in Japan (well, on the tour, anyway).

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. . . a refreshing can of Texas Select beer? (Thanks to Joey and Dan for giving me a can of this distinctive beverage.)

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A fun place in one awesome country. Japan was even better than I'd hoped. So what could be better than topping it off with . . .

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Yokohama towers over Cosmoworld.

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I bet you're all salivating for corn dogs and fried Oreos about now.

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Looks like they've put up their Valentine's Day tree a bit early this year (or they're just late taking it down).

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Look--it's the Eternal Prince of Darkness rendered in yarn! Isn't that adorable?

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Yes, that's saved for the plunge into the pond.

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Sorry, Ferris wheel--no "Big O" action for you.

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Waiting for Vanish is, truly, a hairy experience.

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But my lousy score relegates me to the role of "goofy sidekick."

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As you can tell from this moody shot, Bob is ready chew bubblegum and kick ass on Cosmoworld's shooting dark ride. He is Fresno's action hero!

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Vanish? Still there, as near as I can tell.

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. . . Wonder Amuse Zone!

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But the sounds of so much heavy making out coming from above draw us to . . .

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You see it's got monkeys and bananas and palm trees; all it lacks is Gilligan.

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. . . Banana Coaster!

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This is the permenent "street carnival" section of the park, where you'll find . . .

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And, sniff, here's the entrance to Cosmoworld.

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. . . and past this sculpted tribute to Joker's Jinx.

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. . . past this ultra moderne version of London's Tower Bridge, . . .

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It's a bit of a walk from the train station to the park, past this proud sailing vessel, . . .

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Once again, I can’t thank Robb and Elissa for TPR’s “adventure” tour of Japan—one of the best vacations ever.

 

...Personally I believe an "enough" should have been fit in there somewhere, but that's your opinion, not mine.

 

Awesome x100 TR, Chuck. I'd either be thrilled or scared to meet you in a public place.

 

Or any place where you take a camera.

 

Or any place, period.

 

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Once again, I can’t thank Robb and Elissa enough for TPR’s “adventure” tour of Japan—one of the best vacations ever.

 

...Personally I believe an "enough" should have been fit in there somewhere, but that's your opinion, not mine.

 

Awesome x100 TR, Chuck. I'd either be thrilled or scared to meet you in a public place.

 

Or any place where you take a camera.

 

Or any place, period.

 

 

Oops! Fixed.

 

Oh, I'm perfectly harmless . . .

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