I know I have a lot of days I'm skipping to tell the story of yesterday, but I liked it so much I had to share it right away.
It was another day off today, and I had been planning to finally make a visit to Universal Studios. The Florida resident price for an annual pass is actually a little less than 2 1day passes, so I got one! Woohoo, go me.
After I parked, I walked just about a mile thought what I guess is Universal City Walk to the ticket window outside of Isle of Adventure. I took the letter I got from housing that said I was a temporary resident of Florida to a nice lady and she sold me a annual pass no problem. I got the mid-level pass with no black out dates and free parking.
I consulted the map and plotted out my route. First stop, Suess Landing.
My mom read to me a lot when I was a baby girl, and one of our favorites was Dr Seuss. So this place filled me with all the nostalgia and warm feelings. And it made me miss and love my momma, who I am going to call and thank tonight.
I started to get in line for a ride over here, but then remembered my plan was to mostly explore on this first day and save the rides and photo safaris for another day since I had a pass and would certainly be back.
Mr Brown and Mr Black! For real the nostalgia. Hop on Pop was probably my favorite.
And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street. That was a very close second (tied with the Sneetches).
Ok, next? Land of the lost. Not really, it has some different name. But lost worlds! Giant monoliths! Broken down statues! I love it.
I thought about checking out Poseidon's whatever, but I needed to get to Hogsmede.
Siriusly? I was going to send this to Hannah, but then I remember she doesn't want to hear that I'm having fun while she's stuck in Kansas going to school and work and dealing with everything I left behind.
Now I didn't take my Nikon to the park with me this day because I really wanted to focus on experiencing the experience. Turns out I still took a lot of pictures as you can see, but when I in the Harry Potter parts, I really didn't pull out the phone much. Or the CoolPix. I just soaked it in. And there was a lot to soak in. This place was so very beyond amazing I can't even say.
After I looked around Hogsmeade, I boarded the train for London.
It did look like London, and the weather was exactly what it was like when I've visited there.
But then seeing Simpsons Land across the Thames kind of threw it off.
So I turned away and saved The Simpsons for later.
Very British lamp post.
Oh look, it's Grammauld Place!
I had passed the entrance to Diagon Alley, so I headed across the bridge to Springfield.
I had no idea what the Krustyland ride was but I got in line anyway. The line was kinda fun because they were showing clips from the show on screens all through and you know how I feel about The Simpsons. The ride? Eh. It was like the Star Wars ride - you sit in a car that moves a little and watch a movie on a big screen. It made me a little pukey, but I'm definitely glad I did it.
I was headed to the Kwik-E-Mart and look who came out! Strangely I had no desire to meet them, but I did take a couple pictures.
I wanted to spend about a million dollars at this store, but I controlled myself. Mostly. I just bought 1 tshirt and a Krusty apron.
Next up was a bunch of restaurants based on the show. I was walking around like a dazed fan (since I am) taking it all in.
Inside of Moe's was a whole food court of different places and several eating areas.
I decided to get some chicken tacos from the Bumbleebee Man's Taco truck.
It started to rain a bit (nd it was pretty cold already) while I was eating so I went inside and watched more scenes from the show while I ate.
"A noble spirit embiggens us all."
On the way back to Diagon Alley, I noticed Milhouse on a bench outside of the Kwik E Mart and took my picture with him.
So, back through London and into Diagon Alley. I walked in and wow. Just wow.
Once when I was in London, I took a City Walk tour of Harry Potter movie spots. One of the places we saw was the street where they filmed the Diagon Alley scenes and I have to say that's exactly what it reminded me of. Except full of people and things and so much more fun.
Ok this place is just intoxicating. Truly. I spent a long time here and I didn't even get to ride the ride (it was down). I just kept walking around and around drinking it all in - and I wasn't even taking pictures!
Also, a warning to Potter fans - Bring Money. I bought myself a Ravenclaw scarf becasue it was cold and I had planned to, but I could have easily spent so much more (and might). I wanted a Ravenclaw "Head Girl" badge but they were out. I really wanted a $90 wool cardigan sweater and can't say I won't buy that in the future. And then there are the plush Hedwigs and Dobbys and iPad covers and oh my goodness all the things!
It was getting chillier and later and I decided to head back to the real world. I took the Hogwards Express back to Hogsmeade and then wandered around there some more before I drug myself away.
Still not in the real world though. This land of the lost or whatever it's called didn't seem quite as magic after Harry Potter, but it was still pretty cool. I almost went through the Poseidon thing, but decided to save it.
This foot, however, was obviously someone's inspiration for Lost.
The line was way too long and up way too high. Luckily they were looking for a single rider and I didn't have to wait through it all. This is kind of like a rollercoaster, but there are no hills. It's up high though and goes out over some water and I was not really loving that. And it was cold. But it was very Suess and so still fun.
There it is again. The intersection of Mulberry and Bliss.
And Truffula trees.
I wasn't hungry, but I did want to sit somewhere and write a few things, so I headed in here
and since it was a low crowd day, I got to sit inside this nice little booth
I wrote some, looked at my pictures and then headed out for real.
I had walked over 7 miles before 4pm! No wonder I was tired and my feet hurt. But it was so worth it. It was fantastic. I can't wait to go again!