Polly Pocket is always up for an adventure. It’s like she’s born to have fun. Polly’s only ever unhappy when she isn’t having fun – and I can report then that she’s no fun at all. Delph and I took her to Oakwood Theme Park yesterday for her birthday.
Oakwood is only rollercoaster park in Wales. An hour and a half from our house. You get a whole slice of Wales there – from the sheep farmers to the South Walians with face tattoos. One guy had the whole alphabet tattooed to his neck. He was like a body art version of Sesame Street. His seemed to say, ‘Today’s episode is brought to you by the letter M, which is handily visible under my jugular.’
We found ourselves staring while coming out of the new Dizzy Disk ride. ‘Why has he got the numbers under his neck letters?’ Polly, aka Aaliyah asked.
I replied, ‘His whole picture puzzles me. I can’t tell if it’s supposed to be educational or HM prison code.’
‘Guys, shall we go on Megafobia again?’ Delph said. Up till then, she wasn’t really part of the conversation. She’s not as judgey as me and Polly together.
Our focuses shifted to the huge, wooden rollercoaster in front of us. It’s like the brown dragon of the park.
‘I’m not sure I can go on Megafobia again,’ Polly P said slowly.
I cajoled her, ‘Sure you can. Look, if I can go on the pirate ship which I haven’t been on for like a thousand years but you just persuaded me and now I think I’m going to feel sick for another thousand years, then you can go on Megafobia one more time again. It was awesome the last time we went!’
‘The pirate ship isn’t scary though. It just makes you feel sick.’
‘Which is scary, Aaliyah! Can you imagine it if I hurled everywhere? Now, Megafobia by comparison is just pure, wooden adrenaline rush.’
She looked up at the gridded scaffolding. ‘Yeah, with a huge drop at the beginning of it! That’s the bit I’m not keen on.’
I clocked the worried look of her face. ‘You can do it Polly P! Remember? You can do anything.’
Delph chimed in, ‘Yeah, we have to face our fears. The pirate ship for Ma, Megafobia for you and for me, the haunted house!’
With this, Aaliyah put her hands on her hips. ‘Delph, you haven’t even been in the haunted house yet!’
Delphine threw her head back. ‘Well, I will go in it! Last thing, remember? We had a deal, Aaliyah!’
Polly P sucked on her teeth. ‘I’ll believe it when I see it, thank you very much.’
I sighed. Those two bickering, a beautifully sunny July day, strange people around for us to stare at and occasionally judge, twisting, ancient oak trees mixed together with rollercoasters as only a Celtic nation could do – I could have died right there. Well, not literally because it would be a pain for them to get home – but you know.