I am sure that many of the people reading this will remember the contraption that they used to have in shops to send money to the office and get their change back? They had a container that they put the money in and then they inserted it into a tube and it made a whooshing noise as it was sucked up to the office and the change was sent back in the same way. Well on Wednesday I knew exactly how that container felt!
Being half term I was looking after my 11 year old grandson. We were joined by another of my grandsons who is 26 and I had booked all 3 of us onto the slide at the ArcelorMittal Orbit in The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford. Our slot was for 11.45 and we got their early, deposited our bags and scarves etc into the available lockers and then went up to the viewing platform to see the views from this incredible building. It is the tallest public artwork in the UK and has recently added the slide to it’s structure. I think the only one not nervous was my 11 year old grandson!
We were kitted out with very silly looking soft helmets and padded sleeves to wear. I volunteered to go first and climbed onto the top of the slide inside a blanket thing which covered my legs and body and I just had to hold onto the straps. Then I was off! Now that is where I began to feel like one of those money containers from the 60’s! It is a mere 40 second ride but believe me it feels much longer! There are light bits where you can see the sculpture around you and then dark bits and one corkscrew section that throws you gently from side to side. Then there is a final straight bit which slows you down and there are two smiling guys at the end to help you off the slide, (Smiling, I am sure because they have heard the screams, laughs and even I am ashamed to say swearing that accompanied me on the way down!)
I was left elated but shaky and as I watched my two grandsons descend they too had had a great trip.
So, although obviously not for everyone, it is a great and different thing to treat your children or grandchildren to. The cost was £10 for a child, £15 for an adult and £12 for seniors. I have one other grandson so may very well be doing it again with him!