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Photo TR: Megan's China Trip with TPR!


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All that smog reminds me of LA...

 

I knock LA all the time, but it really doesn't even come close to what it's like in China. I believe we saw the sun and blue sky 2 out of 16 days. One day, it felt like I was breathing in raw coal dust.

 

It's a shame, because when they 'cleaned up' for the Olympics it was amazing and beautiful, and showed everyone that it was possible to get rid of the pollution with a little bit of effort, now they've pretty much given up.

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Going up on the Great Wall was one of those things I never, ever thought I'd get to do, and it's still one of the coolest things I've ever seen. Forbidden City wasn't as interesting, but still glad I saw it. Another reason why TPR trips rule, you get to see all sorts of cool stuff along with all the parks!

 

The salespeople at the various factories are REALLY annoying. I chose not to spend money at the silk one when one woman would not stop bothering me. I also found the street merchants in China to be the most aggressive of any country I've been to. I remember being accosted by some while crossing the street. Anyone that's seen people drive in China knows the last place you want to stand around and buy things is in the street!

 

Loving this report. Really glad I went in 2008, because the pollution was non-existent compared to your (and others) photos. Such a shame, as they showed they could control it if they wanted to.

 

dt

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All that smog reminds me of LA...

 

I knock LA all the time, but it really doesn't even come close to what it's like in China. I believe we saw the sun and blue sky 2 out of 16 days. One day, it felt like I was breathing in raw coal dust.

 

It's a shame, because when they 'cleaned up' for the Olympics it was amazing and beautiful, and showed everyone that it was possible to get rid of the pollution with a little bit of effort, now they've pretty much given up.

 

The good thing about experiencing something like that is that it makes you thankful.

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Loving this report. Really glad I went in 2008, because the pollution was non-existent compared to your (and others) photos. Such a shame, as they showed they could control it if they wanted to.

 

dt

 

They didn't control the smog, they shut down their industrial complex for months. It was a sham, but was also the best possible time to visit the country, probably in our lifetime.

 

And I missed it, damnit. Although I was in Japan instead, so that's a win.

 

-R

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Day 2, Part 1: Beijing Shijingshan Park

 

Originally I was planning on putting all of day 2 into one post, but both parks we visited that day are large enough that I decided to separate them.

 

The day began at Shijingshan Park, which has eight coasters plus one SBNO. The reviews I read going in were that this was a place of quantity over quality and I have to admit, that actually had me looking forward to it. Today was the day to see if all the horror stories about Chinese-manufactured rides were true, and even if I walked away thinking none of the coasters were memorable, I figured at the very least, the day promised some humor.

 

But oh, the coasters were memorable, alright.

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“Good morning, everyone! I am so excited for Deathtrap Day with all of its fake SLCs, Golden Horses and shuttle loops of pure, unadulterated fear!”

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Welcome to Beijing Shijingshan Park, which looks pretty nice from up here…

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…until you get a little closer. The best part about this is that there were kids peeing in here. There was this one little boy in particular who was having the time of his life running back and forth doing little squirts in the water. In China, little kids have pants with slits in them so they can just pop a squat wherever they want.

 

I really wish I was making that up.

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Once inside, it was past the rainbow cats…foxes…what are these supposed to be?...creatures…

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...and past this real cat, whose name was Lunchme…what? They did that one already? Oh.

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It is time.

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The story is this: The train does not have enough momentum to clear the loop on the return trip. It falls. Literally. As in, you feel yourself dropping and hear the train slam down onto its upstop wheels, which in this case aren’t really wheels so much as pads that skid and shudder through the rest of the loop with a kind of convulsion that pierces you to your core like the sound of nails on a chalkboard.

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I knew that going into it. The best part is that is takes about a minute and a half to reach the top of this hill, so I had plenty of time to think about it.

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Truly eloquent renderings of various Urban Dictionary terms resound from here.

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But I survived and headed over to the Mine Coaster, feeling very relieved.

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Until I saw this.

I know it’s not the greatest picture, but that is a HUGE ASS SPIDER. I reacted the way Scottish Steve does when two Maglevs pass each other.

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And of course the spider had to make its web dangerously close to this section of track here. DUCK, CHUCK!

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So that's two major catastrophes avoided. Let’s ascend this completely non-handicap-accessible-never-in-America staircase. I wonder what lies yonder?

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Oh bloody hell.

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Cheryl's face says it all.

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Allow me to summarize this for you: Smack. Bang. Body slam. What are those clicking noises? Knock. Clobber. Why is my seat swinging back and forth? Thud. Whack. Seriously, there’s something wrong with this train. Thump. Crash. Hurt. Pain.

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No. Just…no.

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Tremors 5: Whack the Worms, a SyFy original movie premiere coming this fall!

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AWWWWW YEAH, easily the best ride so far.

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“Okay, this is the first Golden Horse spinning coaster of the trip,” announced Robb. “You will be riding about 7,000 of these and they all equally suck!”

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Well, THAT was a bold-faced lie. The most ubiquitous ride in China, and most of them would be closed. I want my money back.

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Lemon lime? What luck! That’s my favorite lice flavor of all!

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Atomic Coaster was surprisingly smooth, alarmingly overgrown and ornithologically friendly.

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On our way to the next coaster, we passed through Shijingshan’s children’s area, which wasn’t lacking in color…

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…or such lovable, cuddly friends as Handgun Hare over here.

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Okay, so we get to the next coaster, called Spinning Batman, which we’d heard was SBNO. Robb decides to take a peek inside the station to confirm whether or not this is true. He runs back with this amused expression on his face and declares “The station has collapsed!” Say what? Of course, we all had to see this for ourselves.

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Well, the crumpled tissue and actual yes-those-are-for-real bones theming is meticulously intact, so how bad could it be?

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Pffft, just a little bit of dust. I’m sure it’ll be open by this afternoon.

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Next up was the indoor Jurassic Adventure, which, if it went as blurringly fast as this extremely terrible picture suggests, would not have come to a dead halt in the middle of the course. The first group of riders got Exclusive Push Time at the hands of the ride ops. I was a little disappointed I wasn’t on that train…

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…because it would have put a more interesting story behind this :)

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The next stop at EPCOT today is the Crazy Mouse…wait…last time I checked, there was no Crazy Mouse at EPCOT.

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See, I knew I was right. No Crazy Mouse at EPCOT.

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The last credit at Shijingshan was Space Trip, which really was a fun little thing—very reminiscent of a Schwarzkopf in layout.

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Well done on the clench & squish, boys. Well done. (Contrary to what it may seem given the many updates on Facebook, Robb and Hanno are actually still stuck here. Last I heard from them was that the Rate Your Morning Dump on a Scale of 1—10 game was getting old really fast. Someone might want to help them soon.)

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After Space Trip, we had some time to wander around. We found this haunted walk-through, where we first encountered what would be a common theme in many Chinese walk-throughs: it is far too dark to see any of the effects. There was green rope lighting in here. That’s all I remember because that’s all I could see.

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Gotta give credit where credit is due, and that is a creatively themed Top Spin.

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Same old joke, same old joke. Looks nice, though.

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This was the same style ride as Desperados at the Happy Valley parks. It’s similar to a shooting dark ride, except all the seats face a screen where the targets are displayed during a short action film. Your pointer fingers will be sore after this one—that is, if your seat comes equipped with a gun (which, as you can see, most did not). Oh, and if the gun actually works (which most did not).

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Finally, there was the American Adventure dark ride. Well, not really. I never got the chance to do this because time was running out and I didn’t want to pull a Josh and blame being late on inanimate objects like elevators :) I know some of you did this. How was it?

 

 

With that, it was off to the bus, where we waited to head to the next park. And waited. And waited. Shijingshan is one of those parks where each ride costs a certain amount of points. You buy points and they’re loaded onto a card that you carry and swipe at each ride. Robb and our tour guide, Bruce, had stayed behind to see about getting refunds on our unused points. Nice of them, right?

 

Unfortunately, this turned into an epic disaster, as apparently Shijingshan lacks the super duper advanced technology necessary to read card balances.

 

But whatever. It’s all part of the adventure!

 

Thanks for reading; Sun Park is next!

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Man, I totally (nearly) blocked out

all that time we waited on the bus

for poor Robb and Bruce

getting - the - refund ..............

back.

 

But they stuck to it, and got some

$$$ for all that time spent....I hope.

 

And the re-counting system was truly a marvel.

I mean, who knew that using your fingers

and a good sharp pencil still worked?

 

Who knew???

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I am amazed that shuttle loop is still standing. I thought for sure it would have fallen down by now. The noises that thing made when I rode in 2008 were just terrifying. It's still the scariest coaster I've ever been on.

 

And Spinning Batman? Oh yes, be thankful it was closed. It is death.

 

I'm really enjoying your PTRs. Looking forward to the next part!

 

dt

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