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Chuck's TPR Shameless Nostalgia Trip Thread

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^That currywurst was amazing--best I've ever had! On to more amazing stuff in . . .


Japan 2018


What? Japan, again?


Yes, indeed. We met in Tokyo, but took a train to Osaka the next morning.




Past TPR trips found us weathering typhoons and very hot, steamy weather in Japan. This time we had an earthquake, on the first "official" day of the trip, in Osaka. We were all waiting in the train station when it felt like Godzilla was kicking the platform in the side. For my part, I clung bravely, resolutely to a handy vending machine. (What else was I going to do? We weren't too far from the epicenter.)


The trains shut down, which was hardly a shock. Even so, we were able to carry on that day, only a bit later than we'd planned.


All in all, a memorable start.


Yes, not even an earthquake could deter us from riding the only Wild Mouse ever built by Hopkins at Misaki Park! It was . . . interesting.


This happened too. Perhaps the quake affected them more than I thought.


Some of us pushed on to Adventure Park, while Elissa took some of the group back to Osaka (train schedules were still a bit dicey).


But yay for coasters themed to pandas and bugs!


Universal's only remaining Jaws boat ride was closed for refurb, which made Bruce the Shark very angry!


Hogwarts looms ominously over Jaws.


Flying Dinosaurs was closed the day we were to visit, but we were able to ride it later. It was very good.


Sigh! Even the sign for Jaws makes me miss the one in Florida.


This was the best part of the park's parade. These raptors would "escape" their cage and run around the street.


Washuzan Highland was themed to Brazil--and stairs.


Remember that viral video a few years back of that scary cycle monorail? Here it is.


You can ride this crazy looping coaster backward part of the day. It's fun, but made me feel a bit queasy.


New Reoma World's Vivace was a pretty good mine train.


What's nice about the park's dark ride is that you can feel stoned without ingesting any illegal substances.


Bing Crosby Galdalf was only five miles from the quake's epicenter at Hirakata.


Have you ever wanted a walking tour of someone's fridge? Hirakata has you covered.


If you like SeaWorld Orlando's Manta, you'll like Spaland's Acrobat. After all, they are the same ride.


Arashi was fun, but still a "one and done" for me.


Hmm--I wonder whatever became of this project? ;)


This sums up the Arashi experience.


It was rainy at Parque Espana, but this guy was available to shoot the bull for a bit.


I'd forgotten about this shooting dark ride where you confront renegade water heaters.


The rain stopped, and the park was able to give us ERT on Pyrenees!


I took nearly the same photo back in 2007. The donkey was no more amused this time.


I had to break up a fight between Godzilla and King Kong at Legoland.


The park's Miniland was amazing.


That is one happy fish.


This is the best Lego Miniland I've ever seen.


The JR Museum was pretty cool, too. More to come.

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Are you ready for still more Japan?


Hamanako Pal Pal had changed a little since 2008, but this coaster was still surprisingly decent.


I'll open with a pair of Crouses.


Dan seems a bit confused by Lagunasia.


Aqua Wind hasn't changed a bit.


I took a Catbus back to Tokyo.


Thunder Dolphin is still satisfying the Big O at laQua.


"You want a piece of me, punk?"


Best room number ever.


Fuji Q has made some steady improvement. I liked Dodonpa's new loop (even though I missed the crazy air time of the old high hat).


This new area of the park was quite nice.


And Takabisha was still kicking butt all over the place (just a bit more roughly).


I think two people may have died on Benyland's Cyclone.


I think these poor souls haunt the park to this very day.


Experience culture at Lina World!


You can also experience having your brains beaten in on this coaster.


OK, do I really have to say this park's name?


I gained a new appreciation for how beautiful Lost River Delta really is.


Right, Senor Mouse?


Still the best Magic Kingdom park.


The world's happiest janitor.


They really improved on the original Disneyland and Florida's Magic Kingdom here. I love this view.


I bid you greetings!


Twilight at the Mysterious Island of Captain Nemo.


Aquatopia takes on a whole new aura after dark.


How to make a great dark ride even better.


Night in Fantasyland.


I can now say that I have seen the Enchanted Tiki Room with Stitch. I can, indeed.


This park just gets better and better at night.


Shiriki strikes!


And that's a wrap from the Tokyo Disney Resort.

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Chuck, thanks for reminiscing about that amazing trip! It was such an incredible first trip to Japan for me and I ache to get back. I get reminders of that trip all the time, and how much I miss being there: from the large number of souvenirs scattered around my apartment, when the TDR 35th anniversary theme come on when I'm listening to music, and cleaning out a drawer and finding KT's "warrant" to search my room in Osaka.

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^Megan's Spider-man keychain might have gone missing one morning while waiting to for the group in Osaka, and Sarah and me were the prime suspects in the investigation


"Hurry, Watson! The game's afoot!"



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I'd forgotten until now that an aftershock shut down some of the rides at Disney for a bit, too. I never even felt it--just heard about it afterward.

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Europe 2019


I've enjoyed taking you on this nostalgia trip, but we've reached the end--for now, at least. I'm not taking you that far back in time for this last leg--just a year ago in the Netherlands, where RMC has extended its domination; Belgium, where Gerstlauer did some impressive work; Poland, where Vekoma has come on strong; and Sweden, where B&M shows that it still has a trick or two up its sleeve.


So, let's look back at parks big and small, old and new--not to mention eccentric (or just plain weird). But first,




. . . how about some tasty poffertjes? You can get this with marijuana and chocolate in Amsterdam, you know. I settled for strawberries, whipped cream, and Nutella.


Ah, Amsterdam! A unique, beautiful city of art and canals, good food and beer. But remember . . .


. . . what happens in Amsterdam, stays in Amsterdam.


Our "pre-trip" park this year was Bobbejaanland, which has changed a lot since my last visit.


Fury is a unique Gerstlauer creation in which riders can choose to ride forward or backward. (The latter was fun and very intense, but I prefer going forward.)


Efteling has also changed a lot since my last visit. Baron is a good, well themed Dive Machine, but for my money, . . .


. . . Symbolica is the best ride at Efteling.


This trackless dark ride rivals the work of Disney and Universal.


Yes, more poffertjes. Don't judge.


Joris en de Draak was a pleasant surprise--one of the best coasters GCI has built (IMHO), with some clever theming.


Another pleasant surprise: Toverland's Fenix is the best of the B&M Wing coasters.


I love this new section of the park. Merlin's cave under the Fenix station is very cool.


Troy has held up pretty well, too.


RMC is now rocking what used to be Robin Hood at Walibi Holland. This ride is amazing--better than Steel Vengeance (at least to me).


XPress is a bit clunky but fun.


And whether it's green or blue, Goliath is still great.


From Robb's rider cam--one of the few on-ride photos of me that I like.


And now, an interlude before we fly to Poland. Drievilet's Formule X is still a great little launched coaster.


And they still have the mysterious pig-cat!


Duinrell is a nice park in a beautiful setting.


It's sort of like a summer camp with rides.


I liked Energylandia's Hyperion, but it wasn't the best ride in this Polish version of Six Flags.


Formula was the real star of this park--a fun launch and plenty of air time. Well done, Vekoma!


Zadra wasn't quite ready for prime time while we were there, but it looked great.


Legendia's Lech Coaster was a another triumph for Vekoma.


I grayed out a bit on this ride, too.


This was surprisingly decent for an "off-brand" double looper.


I really liked Valkyria at Liseberg--a better dive coaster than Efteling's Baron and Cedar Point's Valrayvn.


Helix was fun, too--great views of the city from this ride.


Liseberbanan was sporting shiny new trains . . .


. . . and Balder remained great.


"Welcome to Kolmarden. I am your host, Mike Meercat. May I offer you a refreshing beverage?"


Wildfire . . . well, what more needs to be said?


"Yep--best not to talk Wildfire to death, pal. Just enjoy it. Want some leaves?"


Meanwhile, back at Grona Lund . . . you guys OK up there?


Twister gives new meaning to "eccentric." What a crazy layout this ride has.


Decided to skip Insane this trip, but I'd like to ride the park's new B&M Invert someday.


The last beer of the trip--that's all.

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Awesome look at ....well, everything Chuck! I miss a lot of the stuff and places you visited, last year.

Thanks for a quick look-see, at what it was all about.

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Ugh, such a great trip even with the country trying to kill us multiple times!


And you used the word 'dicey' (which that day certainly was!) so I can't wait for Dan or Joey to see it!


Elissa Panic Meter Adjective Rankings:

1. Scary

2. Crisis

3. Dilemma

4. Wild Mouse (when used to describe a particular alternate route through the French Alps)

5. Dicey


This is science. There is no debating it.

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  • 1 year later...

Thank you for sharing your memories of these beautiful journeys! You inspired the nostalgia of the old days. I hope that someday the world will be the same and open for free travel.  Many condemn the process of globalization, but it seems to me that this is how we will become a big nation of a green planet. Last year I was in Hawaii and was impressed by the unforgettable local views. We managed to visit almost all the attractions from our list, even https://planneratheart.com/the-road-to-hana-stops/. I hope to see new posts from you to plunge into this atmosphere of adventure.

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