EDITOR’S NOTE: Lone Peak basketball player Nick Curtis has been documenting the Knights’ trip to Dubai to play in an international tournament for The Tribune. Here is his final installment.
Today was our last day in Dubai, and we wanted to make the most of it.
We had been looking forward to visiting Wild Wadi, one of the largest waterparks in Dubai. We had been seeing commercials about it all week.
We walked through a canyon-looking pathway for a minute or two to get inside the waterpark. After a minute or two, when we reached the end of the “canyon,” our eyes were enlightened. There were slides of every kind. We were already picking out which ones we were going to try first.
The team went on the first slight, The Tantrum, together. It was a four-person-tube slide. That meant we were going to be going pretty fast with that much weight per tube.
Before entering the ride, there was a meter tick that told riders how intense the ride was going to be. This ride was in the red section, meaning that the intensity level was beyond words. After about a five-minute wait, it was finally our turn. We all mounted our tubes and were off. The ride was absolutely incredible. One minute, we were going up big half pipes and the next we were going off a huge drop. Because we were so filled with excitement, we decided to the same ride again.
The next ride we tried was my personal favorite. I can’t remember its name, but our team referred to it as the “coffin tube ride” or the “tube of death.”
After climbing what seemed like an endless flight of stairs, we reached the tallest point of the waterpark. It seemed as if we were about 10 steps away from our death. These coffin-looking tubes would open up and you would step inside of them and wait. Then, all of a sudden, you would hear a voice counting down. Three. Two. One. And boom. The floor from underneath you collapsed and you were basically free-falling.
After a few seconds, you begin to feel the slide again and then you are off to the races. You are going so fast that you can’t even open your eyes. After about a minute, the ride is over, but your heart is still racing.
Every player’s face that got off that ride was in shock, both scared and overjoyed. I can’t really explain it. From there, we walked as fast as we could to every ride, trying to do everything before it was time to leave.
After being at the waterpark for four hours, it was sadly time to leave. We gathered our stuff and got back onto the bus, which quickly took us to our hotel. There, we gathered our luggage and before we knew it, we were back on the bus. It was about four hours before we had to arrive at the airport, so we had some time to kill.
We told the bus driver to take us to the Dubai Mall one last time. We literally shopped until our feet dropped. The next thing you knew, there was a whole basketball team out cold on the cold stone benches.
When it was time to leave, like zombies, we gathered our stuff and ventured over to meet the parents of the team. Together from there, we went to the airport ready to leave for Dubai.
We are so grateful for this trip and the experiences we were so blessed to receive. We definitely learned a lot about life and, of course, basketball, because at the end of the day, that’s what we came to do.