Back to Hogwarts

Today was INCREDIBLE! I posted all of the photos on Facebook and I will post a few here, but Tiffany and I spent five hours at the Warner Brothers’ Harry Potter Studio Tour and it was glorious. We saw a giant lot with construction and green screens on our way in and at the very beginning of the tour, a tour guide told us that they are filming Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them there!!! We had butterbeer ice cream with our lunch and it was so creamy and delicious. The vanilla base tasted like someone had frozen thick homemade whipped cream. It had butterbeer syrup swirled throughout and it wasn’t too sweet like the liquid butterbeer usually is. 

I thought my phone died at the end of the studio tour, so I put it in my purse and didn’t get it out again until we got back to the flat. I should specify that I’m not sure if this actually qualifies as a flat. It is like an American townhouse with a small backyard. I’m not sure what that makes it here. A semi-detached house maybe?

We were rebellious twice today with excellent results each time. At Leavesden, we ended up tagging  along behind a “premium” tour that had a tour guide. MUCH more expensive, but we got the experience for free! Then, on the way back into London from Watford, we slipped into a first class carriage on the train. It was silent the whole ride, it was peaceful, and there was lots of extra legroom!

Anyway, after the studio tour, we rode the train back into London then caught the tube to Harrod’s, where we spent quite a bit of time. We went into the part of the store that exclusively contains “Super Brands” like Prada, Alexander McQueen, Valentino, and many many others. I touched a dress that costs £3500. 

We wandered through the bookshop and into the Harrod’s Gift Shop, where we each picked up a few things. We then wandered around and found a Godiva Cafe and each bought a few chocolates. We didn’t see very much of Harrod’s (it takes up a whole city block and is at least 6 stories of shops) but I was very glad we went in the evening on a weekday as it wasn’t too terribly crowded or overwhelming. We walked outside and stood and listened to a girl play classical songs on the violin for a while before stopping at a grocery store and a Pret A Manger.

We returned home and tried to solve a mini-crisis. I didn’t realize I was supposed to print out the tickets for the bus to Cardiff tomorrow and for The Doctor Who Experience. We asked one of our host, Bryan, if there was any chance they had a printer here. They don’t, but he told us that his husband, Gian Paolo, could print our tickets for us at his work. That didn’t work out because we have to leave in the morning before Gian Paolo gets home, but we were so grateful that he offered.  They are seriously such amazing AirBNB hosts. Bryan gave us directions to an Internet cafe where we walked and printed everything out.  Crisis averted! On our way back, we stumbled upon a Turkish (I think) bakery. Tiffany got some baklava and I got a little sweet pastry that turned out to be just like a sweet I loved when I was living in South Africa, Koeksisters!

We started a load of laundry before we left for the Internet cafe. Here in England, they have machines that double as washers and dryers! Apparently, most people only use the dryers in the winter. We hung our clothes to dry on a rack by the radiator.

We are leaving very early tomorrow to catch the bus to Cardiff for the Doctor Who Experience. We will be taking the train back tomorrow night. I am so excited to go to Wales for the first time!
Every time I write a post that has pictures in it, my phone lags behind a lot and I can’t actually see what I have typed until about thirty seconds later, so I apologize for any typos!

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