A few weeks ago Juliana invited me to go to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter with her while her husband was at a conference. Yes please!! The three of us had SO much fun together. It was exactly perfect without a single hitch. It was the lowest crowd of the season and we went on ride after ride at Universal studios without any lines! I nearly died with pure happiness. I cried after the Hogwarts ride, I was so touched. It really felt like I was in hogsmeade, sending owl post, drinking pumpkin juice, and flying on a dragon! Next year they’re putting in a whole new section with a Gringotts ride and Diagon Alley, and the Hogwarts express with platform 9 and 3/4. If you’re a fan you HAVE to go! It was worth every penny. (Although I will say you should absolutely go during the week and in the off season if you can. I hear it’s packed to the brim with 2 hr waits for rides otherwise) As it was we were giddy as Gryffindor school girls. The only thing amiss was the ache in my heart knowing how much Finn would have loved it. So when I came back it was with lots of goodies from honeydukes and Zonks, and we went on the Great Wheel and to the aquarium. After two hours all three boys were spent (quelling any guilt i had for not taking them to Orlando) and we came home to watch the sorcerers stone. I watched Finn’s face at all the good parts…he had that whimsical, heart burst look when Hagrid gave Harry the picture of his parents waving at the end. He looked at me and sighed, “I wish this were real.”
Me too, Finn. Me too! this is my favorite picture of Jules and I. We went on the Jurassic park ride without realizing it had the biggest waterfall drop in the world, with a splash spanning about 30 feet. To make matters more hilarious when we got in the boat (in the very front, mind you) the Florida rain predicted decided to plummet down on us. At first I thought it was part of the ride! We turned around and saw that everyone had ponchos cinched tightly around them. We laughed nervously the whole ride as we were completely soaked through. I mean…as if we had taken a shower soaked. And THEN we went down the drop. The whole boat was laughing with us by the end. It was Juliana’s favorite part of the entire day!aaaah, the sun. A few hours at Cocoa beach made me forget all about the 25 degree weather I’d left back home. I definitely got the Florida experience: fried alligator and live swamp music and pink neon! It was so fun!
I wore radish earrings like Luna Lovegood…I got them on Etsy. Every character I came in contact with did a double take and asked me where I got them. And to pass a test in the Goblet of Fire Dragon ride it was apparent I was the only person for a while to know the names of all the Hogwarts houses. I felt like I was the only true wizard in a sea of muggles :)
Sigh. I am so thankful for a heart that suspends disbelief into something very very real. What a beautiful life it is when ones scope for imagination and fantasy is boundless!
Happy Thanksgiving week!!