I wish more than almost anything that Hogwart's School of Witchcraft and Wizardry was real! At least for a day it was! Islands of Adventure at Universal Studios in Orlando, FL, oh thank you for at least letting me pretend. For all you fans of Harry Potter, make sure to schedule a visit here - and bring your film cameras!
I have been counting down the days for over a year when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter would finally open in Orlando, FL. I am lucky enough to only live an hour away – I even considered auditioning to play a part in this most wondrous of operations, but well, I can’t do an English accent very well. My family and I planned this trip for months. We wanted to wait until the frenzied rush died down, it was a school and work day so hopefully most people would have obligations and it wouldn’t be too packed.
Well, have you heard of Harry Potter, by chance? Apparently, months after this attraction opened, and even during a time when most RESPONSIBLE people should be at school or work, Harry Potter still managed to lure in the masses. Those longing for the magic missing in there lives and wanting to join in the fight against Lord Vol…(he who must not be named), and there was hardly any room to walk and navigate in this dream world of our most fancied imaginations.
Except when I was fortunate enough to visit this magnificent replica of the Hogwart’s Castle, Hogsmeade, eat at the Three Broomsticks, wait in line (for over an hour) to buy a wand from Olivander’s, travel the streets of Diagon Alley and marvel at the snow capped roof tops of Hogsmeade at its cinematic finest, I couldn’t walk at all. No, I was in a wheel chair. So…shoot at the hip! Or at least hip level…good grief.
Planning months in advance made for a nasty accident working in a haunted house and slicing my foot open, requiring many stitches, and worst of all, being in a WHEEL CHAIR AT THE WIZARDING WORLD OF HARRY POTTER. My situation at that time certainly had its downside. While I love the “shoot from the hip” rule and concept, I must admit that I did have to crane my neck a lot when I needed to frame the perfect shot. On this day, I had to shoot randomly while someone pushed me along. I never said, wait! Stop there! I have to get a shot of that! These are all “grabbed shots” that I was able to manage as I was pushed through the hoards of muggles, trying to catch the direction signs – Hogwart’s, Hogsmeade, Hagrid’s Hut, Buckbeak, Honeydukes, the Owlery, the Hogwart’s Express! Ahhh! What I could have done if only I could walk! But magic lies in the imagination. And so does the lomographic photo essay of the wondrous, splendid, Wizarding World of Harry Potter. After all, Harry Potter is the very personification of imperfection capable of saving the world. An inspiration to us all. A story like no other. My documentation may not be as perfect as I would like but that is why YOU have to see it for yourself, dear fellow muggle.