Friday 4th November 2016
What fresh hell is this place? Loud, blindingly bright, disturbingly flashing lights, plastic machinery and room after room filled with ringing bells, Magic Planet at Deira City Centre is a destination for self punishment (while the kids go nuts on rides and amusement park style games). All around me I see weary adults and hyperactive children. All I hear are the voices of despairing mums pleading with their babies to ‘please, lets go!‘ while those very kids simply yell NO and run away to the next game with a console. Everybody is exhausted and I bet each parent is nursing a raging headache from the NOISE.
A first for us, immediately it is clear upon entering that Magic Planet is a little boy’s supersonic dream, and a mother’s nightmare. The perpetual flashing lights seem to create visual problems in me soon after we arrive. Kingsley may or may not be affected by them though I cannot be sure as he turns into a games junkie racing from one ride to the next; climbing on anything that will take his weight: cars, motorbikes, mini ferries wheels, horses and carousels. He obnoxiously knocks other kids from their own games and simply melts down whenever I implore it’s time to go.
Julius and two other rides attendants either take pity on me/Kingsley or genuinely take a liking to him/us as they offer him/us extra rides once our free ride vouchers from Carrefour run out. I am eternally grateful for their benevolence as this cues an elated little boy; Kingsley chooses his free rides: dodgem cars, spaceship bug catcher and fire engine. By the time Kingsley has trialed/touched all games at Magic Planet including taking over a six year old’s shooting hoops time-challenge, he is beyond fatigued and actually allows me to carry him to his pram. By 1o:45pm we are both slumped about the pram and shuffling toward the Metro. It’s home time…