Things I Won't Miss From The Closed Season

It's the first of April, the smell of fresh grass is in the air, daffodils are sprouting all over and my YouTube feed is full of '[INSERT MERLIN PARK HERE] Opening Weekend 2019' videos, which can only mean one thing - the long, dark, cold and miserable closed season is finally over and the 2019 season is well and truly here! Closed season always seems like one of those things that feel more daunting than they actually are, and if I'm honest this one absolutely whizzed by for me even without a ton of trips to keep me occupied. That said, it was still a slog and by the time March rolled around I was literally gagging to get back in a park, if only for some respite for some of the more irksome things about the closed season. Here's five things I definitely won't be missing!

Look, I love a bit of healthy speculation as much as the next person, but when there's very little evidence or information to go on and hungry enthusiasts end up resorting to pure guess work my eyes roll all the way back into my skull. Yes, I'm sure your girlfriend's cousin's next door neighbour did hear that Paulton's Park are getting an RMC for their new land, but that doesn't mean there's anything to it whatsoever! I can take a bit of healthy guesswork based off of facts and putting two and two together ie a council application has been submitted for a spinning coaster plus the name has been trademarked so maybe the park are in fact getting a spinning coaster for a land called "Tornado Springs" - that's easily something that can be ascertained through the cold hard facts. But resorting to pure guesswork to try and make something out of nothing stemming from the fact that the parks are closed and you're bored? Not here for it, it's annoying!

I'm by no means saying all I do is visit theme parks - I'm very capable of making plans and keeping myself busy with activities that don't involved sitting on a kiddie boat ride sailing past fibreglass children's characters (although I know which activity I prefer). However, there's definitely something satisfying about knowing that during the season, should you find yourself with a free weekend and not a lot else going on you're only a 'anybody up for a park visit this weekend?' tweet away from busting the boredom. I also love the spontaneity of trips like that - 9PM Friday night you were very close to spending the day in your pants binge-watching serial killer documentaries on Netflix, next thing you're half way round the M25 heading for your favourite park. And that's fab, and I really do miss having the ability to do that during the closed season. Yes, you can pop to Europe for some winter events but those last minute random trips are always great.

I really hope I'm not the only person who suffers from this, but if I am then welcome to a frightening insight into how my brain works. Something I adore about closed season is the ability to spend a lot of time planning out my season for the year ahead in excruciating, spreadsheet filled detail. I relish it. But there are only so many feasible trips one can plan, and as the days grow shorter and those long, dark nights creep in I find the mania builds and next thing I know I'm sat hunched over my laptop at 1am frantically scrolling through Coast2Coaster and wondering if a ten day scourge through Eastern Europe to pick up some rare creds is really such a good idea. I mean...it's doable but really? There are many shameful trip plans like that safely filed away in my trip plan folder on my desktop and honestly I'm a little scared to look at them. It's like when you hit back and look at those early photos of yourself on Facebook and wonder what the fuck you were doing with your life at the time.

Look, I'm as much of an enthusiast as the next person who's probably reading this, but there are only so many updates on the new grass at Thorpe Park I can really take. I mean seriously, do we really care that much that such updates were covered extensively in several closed season update vlogs? I mean obviously I WATCHED them and enjoyed every second but really? The closed season isn't without its huge juicy updates of course and we get a lot of big announcements about the upcoming season and what to expect during this time but it's the attention paid to ridiculous minutia like this that irks me. I think this year it's been particularly bad as well because in the 17/18 closed season we had two major coaster construction projects to closely follow, and this year it's felt a little empty so we're clinging desperately onto anything we can sink our teeth into!

I don't tend to be one for counting down - I find it's very much like a watched kettle and makes the time drag on forever. No, I much prefer to ignore whatever exciting thing I'm looking forward to is up to until it sneaks up on me with a pounce attack like a feral cat, upon which point I realise I'm completely unprepared and manically try to pack a bag and not forget anything (I always forget something.) Social media is terrible for this - in particular Twitter. I think I actually saw one tweet this year that was something like '67 days until Towers reopens!' THAT'S NOT EVEN A MILESTONE YOU CRETIN! Urgh, stop reminding me how long we have to wait and trek through before we can visit a park again. Terrible behaviour. 

*Shudder* well, at least we can now confidently put that unpleasantness behind us as we get properly stuck into the 2019 season! Most of the UK parks are now fully operational for what will undoubtedly be yet another awesome season of fun, memories and most importantly, riding all the shitty kiddie creds in the UK until my collection is complete once more.

Talk later xoxo,

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