California Tripping: Los Angeles

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That unmistakable sign on a hill

Before we know it, the sun is gone. My eyes try to adjust but I can’t figure out where we are. Then just as unexpected as the sudden darkness, I see them. Trees. My vision is a bit fuzzy, but the wide slabs of wood are unmistakable. I’m in a forest. And we’re not alone. I hear roars. The ground shakes. I hold on tight to the railings of the train car we’re on. And that’s where I first I lay my eyes on them.

A group of T-rexes surround us, their eyes locked on us, charging straight towards us. We’re toast.

I hear screaming from the other car. I just sit there, slack-jawed, my eyes trained towards a couple of the prehistoric beasts on the left side. A couple more on the right side. One of them prepares to jump at our tram, ready to devour its passengers. It leaps… a moment goes by… another moment goes by… nothing. The other T-rexes have their attention on something else now. They’re looking at someone – something – on the branches above the tram.

The T-rex that was supposed to attack us suddenly falls to the ground – dead. 

Its jaw is pulled wide open apparently by a massive pair of fists. The other rexes now look scared but they try hard not to show it. They roar and begin a coordinated attack towards the unseen creature, leaping on the roof of our car towards their adversary but they’re clearly no match. Another one goes down barely alive, but is still trying to stand up. The unseen creature then jumps from the trees and I instantly recognize him.

King Kong!

The giant ape slams his fist on the fallen T-rex’s body and the lizard is immediately lifeless. King Kong turns his attention towards a pair of T-rexes on the tram’s other side. One of the dinosaurs take a couple of steps back before leaping towards the ape. With precise timing, King Kong smashes his fist on the T-rex’s jaw, hurtling it back to the ground. Without wasting any moment, he then picks up the other T-rex and heaves it to a large tree trunk. The force breaks the T-rex’s back and instantly, it dies. A melee soon starts between our savior and a few more T-rexes.

The other T-rex, groggy but otherwise fine, tries to pick itself up. Big mistake. It doesn’t realize that it’s standing on the edge of a cliff. It loses its balance and slips, but before it falls down, it manages to grab the rearmost car with its powerful jaw. It tries to pull itself up but it’s too heavy and soon the whole train is slowly dragged towards the edge of the cliff as well. In a matter of seconds we’re about to plunge to our death.

Just as then, King Kong emerges from the brawl victorious and runs towards us. But he’s late – we start to fall off the cliff. He jumps off and straightens his body to accelerate his downward speed. The other T-rex is caught in a large vine. It breaks its fall, but the lizard is so heavy it soon breaks. The T-rex falls to the ground but is still alive. King Kong catches up with us, places his two hands on either side of the tram and positions his body so that his body cushions our fall. We survive. He gently places us on the ground.

Another roar. Behind King Kong, the remaining T-rex is charging at him at full speed. Without so much looking at his rear, King Kong raises his fist, right smack at the jaw of the T-rex. The force proves too much a barrier for the lizard’s velocity that a single blow kills it. King Kong pounds his chest and roars.

You’re safe now, my friends, he seems to say. And then he rushes off away from the tram, deep into the forest, disappearing into the trees.

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An actor poses as Spider-Man

“Wow,” I exclaim, trying hard to keep a tear from rolling down my cheek. I raise the glasses from my eyes and place it on the top of my head. “That was one heck of a 3D ride.”

I check on Joseph, who has been sitting me beside the whole time. He’s still awestruck. The rest of the train passengers breaks into an applause. The tram finally moves out of the large

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