Then chances are you will have, at some point, started much smaller. When I was a kid, you could get a cheap thrill for 10p almost anywhere, in the shape of a coin operated ride. Yes, I know they have them now, but they're not the same – they all cost at least a pound, a lot are covered in corporate sponsorship, and they won't let me on them anymore. That's a shame, because the LazyTown ride in Morrisons looks fab. Where was I?
So, for 10p you would climb on, strap yourself in, and whoosh off to giddying heights of up to TWO FEET off the ground. Alternatively you'd whizz around at stomach churning speeds of 0.5mph.
I loved them, and here are my top five 10p rides -
Postman Pat -
I'm cheating a bit here, because this was slightly after my ride riding heyday, but come on, this is one of the classics. Everyone's been on one, or knows someone who's been on one. There's one outside the sweet shop in my town centre; you can always hear its jaunty music, accompanied by the tempestuous wails of grumpy children that want another go, and the even grumpier children who are still queuing up for their first go.
You sit in Pat's van (right next to Pat, if you please), and the van...just...kind of wobbles about a bit. Great fun to be had trying to fit in the van as an adult.
Rocket ship -
This was ace because of all the lights and buttons inside the cockpit – you really felt as if you were on an Apollo mission (not Apollo 13, unless there was a power cut). You sat in the cockpit, held on (if you were a wimp), and the rocket would go up and down while twisting round a bit. This ride gets into the top 5 for its immersive theming (the buttons you could press that went WOOWOOWOOWOO).
Similar to the rocket ship, but this ride places higher for scare value. The rocket ship went up about a foot while staying firmly rooted to its base, but the helicopter soared to heights of up to 5 FEET! I know this to be true because I was often level with the top of my parents. Not that my parents were only 5 feet tall, but, you know, the base and stuff.
The helicopter extended on a metal bracket thing, and as such would wobble precariously, making the rider fear death. Very good value for money.
I was always terrified on this ride, but that didn't stop me going on it all the fucking time (sorry Mum and Dad). You sat on the horse (obviously), and it alternated between a gentle canter and an all out catch the bad guy 60mph gallop, during which you were lucky if you managed to stay on. I still ride horses now, but the one I currently ride just sniffs when I tell him to do something. Thanks to this ride, I know the answer is to insert another 10p.
Here we have it – the ultimate ride. Does what it says on the tin – you sit there and go round and round, accompanied by lovely music. I must add, though, that while I rode the pictured model a lot, it wasn't my favourite. I can't find a picture of my favourite Mini Wheel anywhere, but it was red, white and blue, and it played the beginning of “Stars And Stripes Forever”. I think my parents once got into a row with the other parents in the queue, because I flat refused to get off it. Again, sorry Mum and Dad.