Friday 8 July 2011

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People are known to exaggerate.  Almost across the board everybody told me how great the Wizarding World of Harry Potter was, and I chalked it up to there being a whole lot of "Potter-philes" in the world.  Everybody told me that the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride was amazing, and I thought "Sure, if you haven't ridden much else."  Finally everybody told me that I had to try Butterbeer and that it was the best drink ever.  I thought they were all crazy.

They were all right.

It's easily the most impressed I've been with any land in a theme park, and the feature ride is truly awesome.  We got there right at park opening at 8am, went straight to the back of the park where Wizarding World is and got in line.  It still had a 45 minute wait.  Oh the complaining!  We toughed it out and did the child swap (They have a nice room where one parent can wait with a child while the other one rides. Then the other parent gets to ride.) and it was worth every minute.  Here's something to save you some time though.  The ride takes four people per cart, but you are very compartmentalized, so you can't see the people you are riding with at all.  This is a perfect ride to use the single rider line for, unless your kids are too young to ride on their own.  Then you're stuck with the wait, but whatever you do, don't miss it.
My littlest doesn't ride many rides.  She rode nothing in Harry Potter, and spent a lot of time just waiting around for her brother and sister to finish up whatever they were doing.  I still bet I could get her to go back though, if I promised to buy her another Butterbeer.   I was the only one who wanted to try Butterbeer, but I knew if I just bought myself one, I'd end up having to share it out five ways, so I bought three of them.  I still had to share.  We bought the frozen Butterbeers (you can buy them just "cold") and the best description I've heard of them was "vanilla slurpee."  There's also some kind of amazingly good cream on top.  Around $4.25 each for the 16oz plastic cup, $10 if you want the souvenir Hogwarts mug.

We also took in the Amazing Adventures of Spiderman.  There was a 45 minute wait for this ride, so the boy and I did the single rider line and we were both on the same ride vehicle within 5 minutes (he had row one, I had row two.)  We landed in a vehicle with 10 other people who all seemed to know each other, and all spoke in only Spanish.  At least we thought that.  For the few minutes before the ride started they were all chatting back and forth in Spanish (I know just enough Spanish to identify the language, not enough to know what they were saying.)  Apparently during the ride somewhere they had some divine revelation, as coming off the ride they were all praising the ride in perfectly clear English, using all of those wonderful English words that you have to use symbols to type on a family site.

We had to leave the park early, as we had to switch hotels today.  It's probably just as well we did as there was a massive thunderstorm that came through this afternoon.  It may have cancelled any plans we had to head back to the park this afternoon, and it almost certainly scrapped NASA's plans for the final Space Shuttle mission tomorrow, but it did present the boy and I with an opportunity to prove our Canadian heritage.  As soon as the lightning went through, we headed out to the pool and had a one on one water volleyball game in the pouring rain.  It was nice to have the pool to ourselves (Well, for a little while we had to share with four bikini girls from Great Britain, but that was ok too.) but you could see people shaking their heads as the walked around the pool watching us play.  Next time we'll bring touques and hockey sticks.  Then it will be self explanitory.