Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Dragon Tamers

We all had a good time at the Harry Potter Exhibition (in Chicago until Sept. 27, 2009, and then going to Boston) this weekend. My favorite thing was walking through the enormous carved doors into the great hall of Hogwarts and seeing lit candles floating overhead. Sitting in Hagrid's chair was my second favorite thing (when you're six feet tall, a chair that doesn't let your feet touch the floor is a novelty). Walker's favorite was throwing quaffles at Quidditch hoops. Eleanor liked seeing all the costumes (which a guide told us are occasionally changed out as they're needed for the last movie). We all marvelled at how small the actors and actresses are; my almost-nine-year-old niece looked at the Bellatrix costume and another for Cho Chang and observed that they're about her size. We were also surprised at how small the Ford Anglia is--it was parked in front of the ticket counters of the museum.

As you can see, I did get some souvenir magnets--a few with potions recipes (which I thought would be oddly appropriate for my refrigerator) and one with the Hogwarts crest and motto: Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus ("never tickle a sleeping dragon").

The motto has always made me think of the story The Dragon Tamers, by E. Nesbit, in which a connection between dragons and cats is gradually revealed, one that will strike every cat-owner as absolutely right and true (read The Dragon Tamers on gutenberg.net--if you've never read it before, you should read it right now because it is one of my favorite stories in all the world).


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great time - my family and I had plans to see the exhibit while I was in Chi in July, but we didn't make it. Your fridge looks like ours. Also, you're six feet tall?! (Jealous short person here)

Amanda said...

They apparently have another Ford Anglia at the HP museum at Warner Bros Studios. I guess it makes sense ot have more than one of them.

I loved the tour. We didn't have guides with us except during the sorting, but it was so fun anyway!

FreshHell said...

So jealous. I would have loved to have seen that. I had a HP dream last night in which Mad Eye Moody snuck in a window in a house I was staying in and zapped me with his wand. I realized I was playing HP and was supposed to fall on the floor, stiff as a board. I did, he left, and then I woke up.

Also, I will have to find Dragon Tamers.

Betty said...

We went on this tour at the beginning of July and had a blast! I loved looking at all the costumes and props!

Also, I'm not sure if this was the case when you were there, but at the time we visited we were told they had to hide Dobby behind Dumbledore's outfit because they had left his clothes in England! :-)

Harriet M. Welsch said...

The Ford Anglia wasn't there when we went, or if it was, we missed it. But it was a lot of fun. I'm glad you had a good time. And I'm excited to learn of some E. Nesbit I've never heard of. I was obsessed with The Phoenix and the Carpet and the Five Children books when I was a kid. I'll have to check that story out.

Jeanne said...

Lass, I've always told people I'm 5'12" but in the last few years what with getting new plastic spacers between the bones at my knee and general aging, I measure only 5'11" at the doctor's office.
Amanda, we didn't have guides either, but one of the sort-of docents there took a shine to us and walked through the exhibit with us, telling us about the things she liked best--and she was from England and had the accent!
FreshHell, the other souvenir I got myself besides the magnets is a keyring with a "MadEye Moody" eye on it that rolls around. I could not resist.
Betty, our English guide told us that they'd just found Dobby's pillowcase last week, and so he was clothed and farther forward!
Harriet, Nesbit's dragon stories are available in a paperback edition called The Book of Dragons.