“Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.” – Albus Dumbledore
For those who need a preview, please click here. The rest of you must know what you’re getting yourselves into, don’t you?
At this point in the afternoon on June 27th, 2014, I had gone to the gym, snapped photos at Wimbledon, and eaten to my heart’s content in Camden. I was basically all over the
Running down the steps to London Underground, Q and I quickly reiterate how to get to the studio lot. My anxiety was only slightly starting to pick up. This was going to be a long way, with no guaranteed wifi, on a very, very serious time crunch. (On my ticket confirmation, and hearing stories from friends, if you’re late, you’re out.)
Getting on the Northern line at 1530 when my tour time is 1630 was a very risky move, but nothing we could do but continue on, right?
Northern line towards Euston…
Transfer at Euston to the National Rail towards Watford Junction…
Or is it to Watford Junction? Towards? To?
Let’s just say my decision on towards Watford was quite incorrect. Misunderstanding my own directional notes, I hop off the train at Helmsford (or whatever that Godforsaken stop is) and the teller, bus drivers, and people on the platform were either rude, unhelpful, or not an English-speaking local. Time: 1605.
Tears, mild perspiration, the whole nine yards.
It wasn’t until a very kind and softspoken gentleman gave me directions and sweet encouragement that all was going to be okay that I figured it was worth a shot to try and get into a later tour. 1615.
When I made it to WJ, I climbed on a bus – because this journey could not be more of a necessary hassle – where my bodily temperature skyrocketed, blabbering incessantly via text to Brina and Jenna to try and not cause a scene (despite how justified I felt). 1650.
I nearly fling myself off the bus and
run like a speed demon make my way to the ticket booth where I’m half screaming to the girl attempting to explain my tardiness. 1658.
You redheaded angel, whoever you are, thank you. Thank you so, so much. I get in line for the next tour.
You start off in the Great Hall, and continue through three main sections. The first section “J” houses props, sets, and costumes – the bling, if you will. If any of you have been to the traveling set tour, you’ll recognize most of the displays in here, BUT you also get so much more!
Outside is also fairly similar to J section, just for outdoor scenes 🙂
However, K section might be my favorite – it goes even further behind the scenes to display all the delicate details that go into the final results we see on screen. It is a wonderfully put together part of the tour; a real tribute to those whose artistic efforts we do not always think about or give gratitude to. To the thousands of you who spent countless years drawing, sawing, painting, hammering, building, and the like, congratulations! Your work is truly, truly magnificent.
I’m not sure what to say at this point. This series was what pushed me to start discovering my own self; it was the first thing to give me any sort of identity. The movies don’t compare to the books, but it made the magic inside my head almost tangible. Hearing Hedwig’s theme gives me goose bumps and I can practically quote the Sorcerer’s Stone by heart. Besides my dad and brother, Harry is the one man I know will never fail me.
I even had some Butterbeer! I HAD BUTTERBEER AT LEAVESDEN STUDIOS.
Getting the chance to see, touch, and just be in the mere presence of this almost touchable piece of magic was indescribable. For a few hours, I was 10 years old all over again.
A special thank you to my friends & family who saw to it that I make it here. I am forever indebted to you.