‘Your love reminds me why I am alive.’ – When the Lights Go Out, The Whomping Willows,
It seems actually foolish to sit here and try to put into words what happened last week in Orlando, Florida, but I’m going to give it a go.
|Emma and the Mel containing their excitement like pros.|
For me, the weekends started out with a group of friends getting on a plane in Gatwick airport on a Monday morning. We were all excited, thrilled and a bit tired having all stayed in the same hotel the night before. When we found that we had a fancy-pants new plane with DEATHLY HALLOWS part 1 on demand, we knew we would be properly taken care of on our 9-hour flight.
|Me, Lucy-the-cat, Mary, Lizzie and Harry 🙂|
When we touched down in Orlando airport, the air-conditioning was marvelous. We shuffled aboard a cool tram and sped towards the main airport, where we would be greeted by the beautiful and massively over-sized face of our favourite wizard. We all felt fresh as daisies and knew it would be a good idea to go rock out at a Harry and the Potters concert so seven of us piled into a taxi to the Orlando Public Library.
This was such a fun show. Despite spending nine hours on a plane, we, the Europeans out-danced every single American there at the concert. At one point Kylie and I divided to dance around the room and make people dance with us and I discovered Erin Pine! It was such a nice and unexpected surprise! We got to chat for a while afterwards and I remembered just how lovely and great she is. We need more Erin over here. I’m going to have to make this happen….
When we had to get back to the hotel, it was LASHING RAIN like nothing I had ever seen before. So obviously Mel and I had to go out and get drenched. 🙂
|Joey’s Gryffindor Sax|
On Tuesday, Mary, Aileen, Kylie and I went to Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Kylie showed us all the best things like Philharmagic (in which I cried), the parade (in which I cried), and we stumbled upon a show outside the castle about dreams coming true (in which I cried.) This was the day that I discovered that rollercoasters are FUN! We went to Space Mountain twice, Splash Mountain, Thunder Mountain and they were soooo the best! In the end we went home because it started lashing rain and we wanted to go to Hard Rock. It was there that I got hideously drunk from a SIP of a mojito and had to divide the cocktail between Ellie, Emma, Mary and Aileen. The room spun and I had to lie down. I think I may have been rude to the waitress – I can’t remember.
This night became really fun after I had dinner and things stopped spinning! We all wandered around City Walk and found a DJ who may have been there for children and/or professional dancers. Needless to say we ignored any protocol and boogied down for quite a while before getting on the boat back to the hotel all sweaty, fed and happy.
Mary, Ellie and I decided that we were buzzing too much to go to sleep and bumped into Camie Heller and Jenni Russel in the lounge of the hotel. At about midnight, a rumor reached us that registration was opening so we went downstairs to find a huge group of Wizards lining up to get registered. It was so exciting! Unfortunately they didn’t have my registration then and I was told to come back in the morning.
|Mikey, Lizzie, Emma, Mel, Emilie, Kylie, Me, Bevin, Kelsey, Ellie|
This day I queued for more than six hours to get registered. BUT, my friends were lovely enough to queue with me, Emma and Emilie, who also had badge problems. Mary and Aileen were great and went to queue for park tickets and cinema tickets. It was fairly stressful but when it was over, we got to the ‘Opening Festivities’ which featured a guy proposing to his girlfriend and a video montage. We also met Laura, Cathrin and James there!
|Kirsten the Blibbering Humdinger!|
After getting soaked on some rides in Islands of Adventure and going on the Hulk Coaster, WE WENT TO HOGSMEADE! We had to run across the park and somehow, Mary and I got separated from everyone on the way but found everyone again in the Hog’s Head. Outside we had our butterbeer and bumped into a very merry Alex Carpenter before heading up to the castle. Kylie wanted to be there for my first go of Forbidden Journey and the gorgeous Kirsten Humdinger came too and pointed out all the cool details in the castle as we went along. As soon as we got off the ride, we got STRAIGHT BACK ON again, it was SO GOOD!!! I just loved it, I can’t believe how great it is! I want there to be a new one every year!
At the end of the surprisingly short night, I found a very sleepy Cathrin sitting alone on a bench and knew that it was definitely nearly bed time. After sampling some of the ‘Traditional Bristish fare” I headed home on the last boat with Mary, Ellie and the group from the plane. Alex was also on our boat with who I now know to be the Starkid Potter people. Ellie, Mary and I started a ‘Hey Jude’ sing-song and everyone joined in for the ‘na-na-na-nas’ á la last summer in my kitchen with Joey and Paulie. (The Beatles bring people together.)
|Vladimir Snape, Post Mortem|
Thursday was a really busy day! I woke up and went to the ballroom on my own to watch Finding Hogwarts. Ironically, I found many of the Brits in there (this includes Kelsey and Bevin…) and we wound up watching the film together. I ended up staying in there for the next two events with Ellie on our own until we had to go get lunch.
(I don’t really remember what happened between lunch and what happened next)
We went to go see the film for about 7pm. I didn’t quite process the film but I do remember thinking it was great and clinging onto Kylie’s hand for at least half of it.
That night, there was Wizard Rock on and, because I’d been to the latest showing of DH2, we only arrived in as Lauren Fairweather was on stage, meaning we missed two bands. I was still feeling a bit troubled by the film so I wandered outside and found a few witches I didn’t know as well as Mikey, Emilie and Mel, all sitting in a corner. I joined them for a while until MoM and The Remus Lupins came on. It was Alex’s last set. I think I was so emotionally drained from the film that after the dancing was over that I didn’t know what to do with the knowledge that this was his last set.
I’m going to have to continue in Part 2!