Once, I dreamt I lived on an expansive estate with it's own river and waterfall area. I walked the grounds, exploring the landscaped area only to discover to my astonishment that it bordered right on Big Thunder Mountain! You'd think I'd know my own place, but I was thrilled!
NOTE: I'm changing the rules and opening this baby up!! Any park, not just Disney/Universal!!
But since the poster specified Disney/Universal, I'll sit this one out.
I had one that involved Voyage or El Toro running out of track and ending up in nothing but dirt. I also remember one where Nitro was nothing but a monorail-type ride, with no drops at all. Boo. Hiss. Don't like to think about that with Opening Day two weeks from today. Nitro and Toro and bizarro, oh my!!! That's all I got. Maybe I should rev up that dream journal again.
My all-time favorite dream is one I remember from my teen years..it's never left me. I was walking through a walk-through (well, THAT's appropriate!) fun house on the Seaside boards on the Jersey Shore (no Snooki, though..she wasn't even BORN yet!) They were pretty ubiquitous back then..the kind with slides, barrels, tilted rooms, moving stairs..the kind you never see any more :(
So I open this door which led to an area which was not part of the attraction. I discovered two armies of miniature, troll-type creatures waging war on each other..good vs. evil..deep within the bowels of the funhouse. I ended up helping the "good" army (In a dream, you have no choice, I guess.) I do believe this dream is rooted in an incident when I was around 8 years old..true story. I went in one of those simple, dark, no special effects walk throughs that are basically just a tractor-trailer semi with partitions to create a maze you have to grope your way through. I was in there less than a minute, and could not find my way any further or back. I was crying and screaming bloody blue murder, and the attendant had to come in and get me.
Boy, that was cathartic to write. Maybe now I won't be scared of the big rides anymore :)
Seriously, I held a fear of dark walk-through haunts for a big chunk of my life, but now I love them. And you haven't lived until you've gone through the Cornstalkers maze at Dorney with an autistic girl (once in a wheelchair, once not) being chased by an actor with a chainsaw.
That's interesting about Serling...one of my favorite episodes of TZ is about an actress in a hospital for exhaustion having a recurring nightmare where she ends up following a nurse down to the hospital basement. Won't spoil it, but a great dream-related episode.
So Serling and I have/had something in common....
In the séance room, the ride jerks to a stop. I hear the spiel about staying in the vehicles and settle back in for a bit of a wait. More than likely they are trying to load a disabled person and had to cut the ride for a moment to get them on.
No big deal.
The audio however continues……and gets a little annoying.
More waiting……and the audio is starting to get more than a little annoying…..
Suddenly the audio winds down like a record player having the plug pulled where it gets slower and slower, deeper and deeper, then finally stops. With a loud pop, the lights all go out.
But they don’t all go out.
Madame Leota’s head is still lit up and floating. Somehow giving the illusion of movement even though the entire ride has been shut down and silenced like there was a power outage…..which there probably was. Creepy, yes. But not really scary, after all this is Disney. It is probably luminescent paint and the movement is probably related to my eyes not having a reference point.
I whip out my smart phone to play some Angry Birds while I wait for the ride to come back on. In the distance I hear a child crying quietly and a female, probably the mom, trying to calm them.
As the happy music of Angry Birds starts up, my phone suddenly gives a sizzle and the screen goes black. Once again not a big deal, my phone does freeze up from time to time. But everything together is starting to make my skin crawl a bit. I try to hit some buttons on the screen to revive my phone, but nothing seems to be working. As a start working on pulling the back off my phone in order to pull off the battery, I look up and jump.
About six inches away from my face is Madame Leota’s head floating in its ball. Staring at me…..
“Jeff,” she says, somewhat muffled and scratchy. This does not sound like the polished audio of the ride, but as if the sound was coming from inside of the ball. I just barely choke back a cry of fright.
“You have insulted the spirits of the mansion.”
“Ummm,” I say trying to rally some coherent thoughts. “I thought it was just a ride.”
“It used to be just a ride,” scratched Madame Leota. “But after people started leaving behind ashes of the dead in this mansion, real spirits have actually come to live here. It is these spirits that you have insulted.”
Behind Madame Leota shadows start to materialize, looking too good to be theme park trickery.
“Until you can learn to mend your ways, you will live in the spirit world, chased and tormented by those whom you torment and insult.”
With a bang and a concussion that throws me back in the Doombuggy, Madame Leota and her floating crystal ball have disappeared. What has not disappeared is the shadows that were forming behind her, now taking the form of the rotted dead, reaching out toward me.
Trying not to panic, but thinking that theme park rules at this point were for sissies, I wiggle as hard as I can to try and get out from under the safety bar holding me into the vehicle. A ghostly hand reaching in through the side of the vehicle is all the further prompting I need and with a super burst of strength, I find myself standing next to my Doombuggy. The Doombuggy suddenly lurches and quickly moves off down the track at a much faster rate than the ride normally has.
I step back just in time before the next Doombuggy nearly takes me out. The speed of the ride vehicles has sped up to a blur and oddly with no people in them. I glance around and find what Madame Leota had called “real” sprits closing in on me. Unable to run up the track, I duck and scramble through the scenery and find myself in the middle of the ballroom.
The room is eerily quiet. I can see the animatronics that show up as ghosts in the mirror trick and while they are not moving, the room is still full of real spirits that are dancing and moving about. One of the spirits notices me and a hush falls on the rest of the room. The faces that a moment ago resembled the ones on the animatronics are slowly turning in to what can be best described as grave rot and anger.
“Interloper,” I hear one of them say in a very unpleasant gravelly voice.
I thought that I had held up extremely well up until that point, but everyone has a breaking point. I scream and madly dash past the evil and dangerous looking spirits. I dodge around the table and start to break into a run when a searing pain screams across my right calf. As I lose my balance, I look down and see a ghost hand gripping my leg. I tumble to the ground, tuck carefully and roll, pulling away from the ghost hand which takes a chunk of calf meat with it, and tumbling into a wall.
But wait, the wall didn’t stop me. It must have been weak and I just rolled through it. I collect myself and stand up before I look back and find that there is no hole in the wall. I look down at my leg where searing pain is still the music of the day and find a large gash has been removed, exposing the raw red meat of my leg. But it is not bleeding. The pain is real though.
Taking an inventory of the situation, I count walking through walls as a benefit and the ability to be maimed as a definite drawback. I look around and find myself on the inside of the loop at the load platform, the vehicles still whipping past so fast that they are a blur. Well, if I can walk through walls, I think to myself, I should be able to cross the track with no problem, regardless of the vehicles. I reach out tentatively toward the blur of the vehicles.
The impact of vehicle is so intense it rips the first two fingers of my right hand off.
I swear as the pain blasts up my arm, chasing away any other thoughts I may have had.
It takes a couple of moments for the tide of pain to go out far enough that I can try for rational thought again, and I say rational thought, but what I really need is some good irrational thoughts to deal with this irrational situation. There is no blood, but that is little comfort to the two ragged stumps that were once my fingers.
I walk back and forth slowly on the wrong side of the exit trying to figure a way to cross the vehicle lines. At one point there is a mushy spot on the floor, before I know what has happened, my leg has disappeared up to the knee right directly into the floor. I lose my balance, rotate helplessly, trying to reach out to something that is solid and fall through the floor.
I fall. I turn once in midair and then land painfully in a stark concrete tunnel. Nearby is a door with a sign that says “Haunted Mansion”. I gain my feet and head away from the door. As I move away, I notice a few spirits down in the tunnels that were moving around as if working that have now stopped and are looking at me. I quicken my pace, but that seems to have been the thing they were waiting for. I break into a sprint as the spirits give chase. I take random turns in the tunnel labyrinth trying to shake my pursuers, but they seem single minded in purpose. Signs and doors for other attractions flash past me as I run. I see a sign for “Costumes” and duck inside looking for a place to hide.
Here comes a challenge……..I am out of time right now, but that is no reason why the dream/nightmare needs to stop here. Pick up the story where it left off and post a continuation of your own……..later on, when I have some time I will pick it back up and take it from wherever everyone else has left it. Some things to keep in mind…..some rules have already been established in this world, keep them and add more to it, don’t change any previously established rules unless you just can’t function at all with them…..and be generous, don’t write yourself into a corner and expect someone else to get you out of it….always try to end in such a way that someone else can pick it up easily and put their own stamp on it. And have fun with it……
Established rules: Can walk through walls, but spirits and moving vehicles cause un-repairable damage, but no blood. The spirits appear to be going through the motions of running the park. Large gash out of the leg of the main character and two fingers missing.
Maybe that comes from last week's hysterical Family Guy episode that featured roller coaster gags at the beginning and end, sandwiched around a story that took place in Amish country.
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Disney's Animal Kingdom
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney California Adventure
Universal Studios Florida
Universal's Islands of Adventure
Universal Studios Hollywood