Harry Potter studio tour and the Opening Ceremony!

I’m on the bus to Oxford right now and there’s free wifi! Yay!

So let’s see… On Friday I dedicated the whole day to going out to Leavesden studios to see where the Harry Potter films were made. The studio is in a little town called Watford, a short train ride from central London. Then a special shuttle bus takes you over to the studio. (There were pesky twin redheaded boys and their little sister on my bus and I was convinced they were the Weasleys.)

The tour was really cool and the first thing you walk into is the great hall set. Not quite as big, no enchanted ceiling, but still impressive. The whole place was more like a museum than a studio, with everything behind gates and fences and the sets moved to different positions. But it was still cool to see everything and know that the actors spent much of the past ten years there.

My favorite part, besides the butterbeer, was at the very end, when you got to look at all the concept art and models by the artists. And then you walk around the corner and there is this big room taken up entirely by a giant model of Hogwarts. It was really breathtaking. It was amazing to see all of the time spent on things you don’t even know about from watching the movies.

After that I returned to the lodge for dinner. We said grace to the tune of Call Me Maybe and had shrimp scampi and lemon tarts! My favorite! Then i walked around the big park nearby, Hampstead Heath. It was so pretty, and apparently you can see all of London from the top of the hill, but i didn’t get the chance because I had to get back for the opening ceremonies!

A bunch of us gathered in the conference room to watch the opening ceremonies on the big screen. Cardboard cut-outs of William and Kate joined us and someone made Olympic torch cakes (cake in an ice cream cone with yellow and orange frosting)! It was lots of fun because everyone was from different countries, so whenever someone’s team passed we cheered like crazy! I thought the ceremony was really great and highlighted the unity I’ve seen being promoted all around London. I loved how each of the countries played a part in the torch coming together since that is what the games are all about!

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