Harold was in Orlando for work, and I went down to join him for a couple days. My trip was thrown together in my typical impulsive way, which is not usually how staid, organized Harold likes to do things. So I sent him last-minute flight confirmation, and he sent back, almost instantly, an email with two tickets to Harry Potter World, and an understated request to print the attached. (Guess who did not actually print and bring said tickets? Could anyone have seen that coming?)
“What? Really?” I wrote back, “Will you even like it? Isn’t my copy of Sorcerer’s Stone still unopened and now dust-covered in your room? Have you even seen any of the movies?”
“Of course I’ll enjoy it! You really love it, and I’d enjoy going with you.” Harold responded. “And I like that magic Henry Porter kid!”
(Harold is pretty awesome.)
I had an amazing day — Harry Potter World is actually a section of the Universal park. There’s also a Marvel superheroes section, and an Old Time Comic Strips That Used To Run In The Sunday Paper, Back When There Was a Sunday Paper section, and a Jurassic Park section. It was definitely the off-season at the park, with short lines for rides, marked with 10 Minutes advertised on a sign with space for wait times of several hours.
Hogsmeade is an amazingly detailed recreation. The titles on the spines in the bookshop are referenced in the stories, and it felt a bit like a Renn fair, with many visitors in wizarding robes or house colors. There was also a club of about forty high-schoolers, who went into the Three Broomstick and seated themselves according to house tables. (I sort of wanted to hug all of them.)
Later, we went into one of the shops in Hogsmeade.
Harold: What do you think of this shirt?
Meg: But that’s a Hufflepuff shirt! Didn’t I tell you what’s wrong with Hufflepuffs?
Harold: Yeah, I guess you did, but I don’t know about all that. They seem just fine to me.
Passing HP Fan: Can’t really argue with the Sorting Hat, miss.