Sorry I've been absent. Although we continued to cook, I have been sick and with school starting, it was all I could do to shower and brush my teeth before heading off to work, much less ironing my clothes, so I've been silent.
Sunday Dinner #5 actually doesn't count since we were in California. Luckily, our boys didn't make it to the finals so Sunday was a free day which we gladly spent at Knott's Berry Farm. Seriously, let's talk about rides first. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE roller coasters. I'm like a little kid, I drag my family around the parks. My grandparents always used to end any trip they were on by flying to Vegas. If I had my choice, we would end any of our trips in California. I love Disneyland, but one day needs to be reserved for getting down and dirty at Knott's Berry Farm. Disneyland is clean, wholesome goodness. Besides Tower of Terror, there is really no ride that puts butterflies in my stomach. Disneyland is good, clean fun, but Knotts is HOTSEXYDIRTY "I'm gonna die!" fun. The first photo is my NEW favorite ride, the Silver Bullet - it's a suspended coaster, which means take your rubber slippers off and let your legs dangle. It climbs to a height of 146 feet and soars back down an initial drop of 109 feet. You spiral, corkscrew, fly into a cobra roll, and experience overbanked curves. The cool part is that at the end, my head was still not quite focused. The corkscrews do something funky to your equilibrium, but when the ride came to a halting stop, my head went back into focus. COOL!
Next on the must ride list is the Xcelerator The cars you ride in look like '57 Chevy's, but from blast off, you reach a speed of 83 mph in 2.3 screaming seconds straight up a 205 foot ascent and down 90 degrees. There's always a super long line to be in the front cars, but I tell you what, even if you're in the back, when you're coming down that first drop, you have a perfect glimpse of death, and nobody is blocking your view, plus you got on the ride much faster than the guys waiting for the front seat.
My first love, though is the wooden roller coaster, Ghost Rider. Wooden roller coasters are dinosaurs. You need to give up the smoothness of a metal coaster and jump on the bone-jarring, glasses and hat losing wooden coaster. Wooden coasters throw you around, bruise your ribs, and leave no doubt that you are ALIVE! This is 4,533 feet of wood, and the ride takes about 2 minutes. That's damn long for a coaster! Most of these modern wonders go so fast that you're done in half a minute. 2 minutes is long to be shaken and stirred which is why it is FABULOUS - about when you're hoping it's over, PSYCH, it's not.
If you're really daring, go on Supreme Scream It's just a tower, no flips, turns, corkscrews, just you and a seat with a little yellow harness traveling 254 feet straight up, and then whoomp, it stops at the top and then your heart starts pumping because you know this baby can only go in one direction, and fast, then AAAGHHH - as Ken describes it, for a half a second, you forget you're harnessed in, and you think you're going to die - 50mph straight down, almost to the bottom, then a little back and forth in the middle to resettle your faculties, and it's over - 45 seconds of your life flashing before you. Pono finally got up the courage to ride (the other boys ride these things like nothing, but Pono is the scaredy cat) and he says, "I was a bit terrified as Dad could tell by the way I screamed." Not his favorite, but he can at least say he went.
Ok, I digress. Dinner on the road on Sunday still needs to be a family affair. No J in the Box or Arches. Find a family-style place where people can try different dishes. A good example would be any Chinese restaurant, Bucco de Beppo or while at Knott's we went to Mrs. Knott's Chicken Dinner. Everyone gets their wonderful little rolls with butter and the assortment of Knott's jellies. Chicken dinner comes with mash and gravy, plus either soup or rhubarb, plus salad, plus corn or cabbage and ham, plus dessert (boysenberry pie, or apple pie). I like the sour taste of rhubarb, so I love that. The fried chicken is most likely fried in lard. They probably buy the lard by the drums, because the skin on these babies are so crispy and the inside meat is juicy, not dry. That kind of texture and flavor can't be good for us. Yummo!