Every few months, I go on a Disneyland kick. Sometimes it’s the Haunted Mansion that I obsess about. Other times it’s the extinct rides. I remember going on a ride the first time I went to Disneyland. It was a science ride that shrunk us to the size of the atoms. In my memory, Stacey, my little sister, is with me, but she doesn’t remember this ride at all. In actuality, it was probably Travis, a cousin of sorts. He was actually young enough that year to make sense of this memory.
While we waited in line, Travis trembled. He was scared of being shrunk to the size of atoms. I explained to him that it wasn’t real and it was just a ride, but he didn’t believe me. Finally, I figured out a way to convince him. You could see the people getting smaller and smaller as they went into the huge microscope thing. The shrunken atom-mobiles had shrunken people in them, but they weren’t consistent. Every once and awhile, a mobile would go through without people, but the shrunken ones were always full. That was enough to convince Travis that it was just a ride. I remember feeling so smart that I was able to figure the secret out on my own and explain it to Travis. I felt like such a grown-up, calming him.
That’s all of my memory. If you would like a succinct description of the ride, see the Yesterland website. I don’t remember the snowflakes or the eye or any of the other things that people love to reminisce about this ride. It was called Adventure Thru Inner Space and Monsanto (the people who make Round-Up weed killer) sponsored it. Monsanto has sponsored a CGI recreation of the ride: Adventure Thru Inner Space Tribute Site.
You can buy a DVD that recreates the ride experience. There are a couple of online movies that give you an idea of what it was like. I can’t wait for mine to come in the mail because it has been 25 years since I saw it. This time, I won’t have to talk down a nervous four-year old.