Los Angeles

October 18, 2017

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Wednesday was relatively cool (mid-80s) and no rain in the forecast, which made it a perfect day for visiting Universal Studios Hollywood (because I planned to wear a costume to Harry Potter Wizarding World). I'd been to Universal Studios Orlando in the past, but not since they added the Wizarding World attraction, so this was my first time visiting Hogsmeade and Hogwarts.

Harry Potter Wizarding World




Monster Book
of Monsters


Hogwarts choir
Durmstrang exhibition (video)

Hagrid's hut
entering Hogwarts

I had lunch at the Three Broomsticks (shepherd's pie and a butterbeer) while I tried to decide if I should buy a wand at Ollivanders. They are rather expensive, but I finally decided I would probably regret it if I didn't. Then I had to find the *right* wand - not an easy task. In the end, the willow wand became mine, as it represents multiple fandoms that I enjoy, not just HP.

After fully exploring Wizarding World, I put my costume (and new wand) away in the locker I'd rented for the day and hit up the rides and attractions in the rest of the park (which is quite small for someone used to the Orlando version of things... which is also why I didn't bother visiting Disneyland, since I've been to DisneyWORLD so many times already).

raptor video on Youtube

The Universal Studios back lot tram tour... I seem to remember some of the stuff from visiting Universal Studios Orlando years ago (like, over 20 years ago, seriously). In particular, there is a Mexican village set that experiences a flash flood that seemed awfully familiar, plus the Jaws 'pond', and possibly Wisteria Lane, too?? I think the flash flood and Jaws might have been on the 'disaster' tour, but it was so long ago I really don't remember much except that I felt like I'd seen them before. On the other hand, the outdoor set for 'The Good Place' and the giant crashed Boeing 747 from 'War of the Worlds' were definitely new to me, and of all the things on the tour, I actually *watch* 'The Good Place', so I enjoyed getting to see that.

Filming for "Great News" on the New York set, and dinosaurs attack the tram

Videos on Youtube: dino attack, 'The Good Place' outdoor set

(left side)
(right side)
(left side)


train station
a final look at The Good Place, then along Wisteria Lane

And then a rather impressive massive airplane crash from 'War of the Worlds' (2005) (Youtube video)

In the evening, I met up with my cousins at a nearby restaurant, Catcher in the Rye. After dinner we shared this dessert, "Please, sir, can I have s'more?" Toasted marshmallows and marshmallow ice cream, so yummy!
A photo of my new wand, taken back at my hotel room that night.

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