There is only one roller coaster left on The Strip in Las Vegas. It stands atop the New York, New York hotel-casino. There used to be one at The Stratosphere, but it has been replaced by several contraptions designed to dangle one over the edge of the roof. We stayed at New York, New York in late November. We had never lodged there before, though my daughter and I had ridden the roller coaster together on a previous visit to Las Vegas. We decided to recreate the experience which we first had in the last millennium. I do enjoy writing that, a statement as factual as it is outrageous…
We queued to be strapped into a car and began our ascent. Suddenly I remembered more than the desire to rise and hurtle down through the bright air. Then the speed and the suspension, the drops and loops, were all that I knew until time resumed. I do not know why anybody screamed.
And now the facile metaphor suggests itself as Hanukkah nears, the Winter Solstice already some hours past. The candle lighting lifts spirits that plunge down as darkness gathers once again. We ride the roller coaster of our moods for more than eight nights. Then the days lengthen and the descent is over.
You may ask why the dinosaurs appear. I admit to having developed a fondness for my peripatetic reptiles. I should have missed them at the holiday. They are always ready for a celebration, as extinction is less than entertaining. It seems that I am ready, too: Happy Hanukkah, and enjoy the ride.
21 December 2016