Monday, November 1, 2010

Music of the Night...

Do I enjoy the spirit of Halloween?  Yes, I do.  Do I like to think it's fun to dress up and pretend to be someone else?  I believe it frees us from our own mundane lives to live as another person/object/creature for a day.  Do I believe that running scared and screaming like a baby in the dark is a good idea?  Although it provides for a bit of an adrenalin rush and an emotional release, I could live without it my entire life.  My sister, on the other hand, loves that kind of thing.  I remember having to bring her to one of the "Nightmare on Elm Street" movies when I was a senior in high school and hating every minute of it.  So what had she never had a chance to do?  Go to one of those scary hayride/mazes where people jump out at you around every corner.  So last Friday, my sister, her step-daughter, Becca, Harry, and I visited "The Trail of Terror."

First stop-the haunted hayride.  Now, I have to admit that I quite enjoyed this part of the trip.  The weather was beautiful for a late October night in MN. Low 50's and no wind.  You could smell the leaves and the bonfire at the event.  As we boarded the hayride, we planned to position ourselves as close to the middle as possible to avoid direct contact with any monsters or bloody creatures we might encounter.  Unfortunately, we ended up sitting on the side of the hayride with our feet dangling off the sides, just waiting for some "freak of nature" to pop out of the dark and attack us.  The good news was the hayride was pretty tame.  Yes there were a few scares here and there, but for the most part it was low key.  If you ask me, it appeared that a lot of the workers had not arrived for their shift yet.  There were long stretches of the hayride with no scares or thrills.  Perhaps as the night went on, the ride became scarier...

Feeling pretty confident after the hayride, we went off to some of the "haunted trailers".   I should have known my fairly calm demeanor was about to change as we encountered a man who appeared to be a "scarecrow with no face."  Now that might not sound scary to you, but faces and eyes are my "scary triggers."  At the age of 8, I watched the movie "Omega Man" with Charlton Heston and I have never been the same since.  All the zombies in the movie had weird eyes with tiny pupils, since they don't go out in the light.  The end of the "Thriller" video when Michael's eyes got weird?  Hated it!  To this day, I can't watch the Blue Men Group, with their strange blues faces and their unnatural blue eyes.  In the picture above, Bella put on some scary eyes and even that freaked me out a little.  Anyway, when we arrived at the first trailer it was called "Phobia Frights".  From the outside, it was just a brown trailer, but inside?  Let's just say I became a different person.  It was like a maze inside the small building with people jumping out at you at every corner and not just jumping out.  They FOLLOWED you as you tried to run away.  It was terrifying!  After the first scary turn, I walked behind Harry, using him as my human shield to protect me from the horrifying displays and characters.  Healthy, right?  Hey, I'm not proud of it.  All those protective mothering instincts kind of flew out the window and I was all about personal survival.  Harry was actually not that scared and proceeded to go into other trailers including the 3D circus and the Butcher house.  I survived part of the 3D circus, but after being chased down one corridor by a bloody clown with a pretend knife, the 5 of us went out the closest door marked "exit", which evidently was not the correct way out.  The scary clown actually tried to tell us she would take her mask off if we wanted to try it again.  Nothing like feeling like a 2 year old who is frightened of Santa.  I did not venture back in to that trailer, mask or no mask...

Taking a break from the scary portions of the event, we all decided to venture into the psychic tent.  Now I am a sucker for a good psychic reading!  I have had several readings during my life.  It's not that I believe everything they say, but some of the stuff is spot on, so who knows?  Becca and Harry have never had a reading so it seemed like as good of time as any.  Becca was told she should stick closer to home to help people (she had talked about joining the peace corps after high school for a year) and Harry was told he was a bit of a math genius who was born too late.  She said he could have invented "Facebook", but that if he works hard to study he will develop something on his own that will be fabulous.  I was told that I should start a charter school for special needs children (that was with me not telling her about Bella and her issues!)  Kind of freaky and not sure what to do with that.  I'm going to keep it a day at a time at this point and not go there.

Final Stop-The trail of terror.  We stood in line for 40 minutes to enter this thing and Harry made a good point to me.  He said, "It's just like one of those trailers we just went in, but super-sized."  Kid had a good point! I spent the rest of the time in line fretting about the experience.  Someone in line asked if it was "scary".  The worker said, "It depends what you think is scary."  So true!  Scary is very subjective and personal.  What scares me (driving in confined parking ramps that spiral around) may not scare you at all.  Still, I think most everyone found something to be frightened of at "the trail of terror."  Once we got inside, we were greeted with spooky music and loud noises such as thunder.  For the next 3/4 of a mile we battled more spooky clowns, black lit rooms with lots of blood splatter, and various other horrific scenes.  At one point a miniature spooky clown started following Harry and every time he stopped to see if she was still behind him, she would shriek in his face.  By the end, Harry was running away to escape her wrath.

Happy to say we all escaped unharmed (in case you were worried).  The last unsettling element of the night was when we couldn't find our car.  Becca and Harry kept saying they were sure the car had been stolen, as we walked up and down the aisles searching.  After 20 minutes of looking, we found the car and were ecstatic to leave the monsters, ghosts, and clowns to scare someone else.

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