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On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do I love the magical world of Harry Potter? 9 ¾. As a proud Ravenclaw, I felt a strong desire to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
I was introduced to Harry and his shenanigans in high school. Coming from an active family of 4 kids, we had a lot of car time. A way to entertain the masses was to listen to audiobooks.
Harry Potter was entertainment for the itty bitty to the big and sassy (aka me!). I have fond memories sitting in the communal minivan listening to another exploit of Harry, Ron, and my favorite, Hermonie.
Decades later, as I watch the Sorcerer’s Stone, yet again, it teleports me to the warm, fuzzy memories of family time.
THE POWER OF THE CHOSEN ONE
Though Harry’s exploits take place in the magical realm, his resilience and joy in the face of darkness are great lessons which trickled down to the muggle (nonmagical) world.
Harry’s ability to morph challenging circumstances into shining beacons of hope is well known throughout his journey. He received ample practice when his Aunt and Uncle began treating him as an enslaved house elf. Unfortunately, it ended in tragedy with Harry losing many close friends. Including his godfather, Sirius Black.
Harry’s ability to continue fighting, even after suffering frequent personal loss, is a testament to resilience in the face of constant hardship.
Harry is the posterchild of misfortune, from being orphaned at age zero to various plots for his demise all while in grade school. Yet, his ability to find joy becomes legendary.
One classic example is when Harry’s conjures a full-bodied Patronus to defeat soul-sucking Dementors.
Nothing says, Magical Teenage Baller like thinking happy thoughts when your soul is being sucked out.
WIZARDING WORLD OF HARRY POTTER
After enjoying Harry’s exploits for years, I finally planned to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Ironically, when I finally had the opportunity to explore the magical world, I was joined by the same family members that filled my Potter memories.
I visited during the winter which is a a perfect time of year for Florida, since the crowds are small and the weather is cool.
My family and I arrived at Universal early, then zoomed past most of the other attractions, and went straight for the Potter goods.
It was a magical land that ensnared my senses and peaked my curiosity.
Butterbeer tickled my taste buds at the Leaky Cauldron. I was accosted by a cranky, yet wise, goblin at Gringotts. My stomach, and wallet, were challenged by the tasty treats at Honeydukes.
However, the most magical moment was when my brother was randomly selected to be the main character during wand selection at Ollivanders. My brother managed to “break” various items until he discovered the correct wand. I am sure my brother’s wand selecting exploits were not eased by my incessant laughter.
These magical memories continue to bring laughter and joy to this day.
MAKING MAGIC WITH A DASH OF MAHEM
As a 35-year-old, who is admittedly spellbound, I can see where all this may come off as – odd.
Yet, to have this magical world removed from my memories seems beyond dull, more like something cast by the dark arts.
This Life List expedition was a lesson in happiness and the power of memories. As long as I continue crafting memories with my muggle crew (preferably at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter), I’ll continue to have a cauldron full of warm memories for darker days.
Just like Harry Potter.