Disclaimer disclaimer! I’m going to reveal my kid’s names in this post. Well, not reveal per se, it’s not that exciting and I’m sure I’ve mentioned them by accident before. ANYWAY, this one is all about a spooky Wizard Weekend we’ve just been to…
Back in August, me and the famalam were very kindly invited to A Day Out With Thomas on the Watercress Line in Alton, Hampshire. It was great – the children didn’t inflict harm on each other, us, or any unsuspecting public. I got a temporary tattoo. We ate candy floss. Oh, and we also chug chugged our way up and down the railway line on Actual Thomas, which was very cool.
So when they told me about their Wizard Weekend, as part of Halloween season, I had a little one-woman geek session to myself. What does “wizard” mean to you? No, god no, not that bloody song. And anyway, that’s spelled Wizzard. Of course I mean HARRY POTTER!! I’m resisting the urge to do all the explanation marks here.
I love Harry Potter. I love the world of witches and wizards. I went on a work trip recently to Cambridge, which involved a meander through Kings Cross. I spent so long fangirling around the special Harry Potter shop that I MISSED MY CONNECTING TRAIN and I actually didn’t mind.
I love Harry Potter so much that we were going to call our first daughter Hermione. Then, out she came, and him indoors decided that she looked more like an Evelyn. Fair point, she did. Then, 2 years 9 months later, out popped daughter #2 and she was DEFINITELY a Hermione. I got final say on that, and no mistake. So any Harry Potter shizz makes me think of her, and I’m totally down with being a muggle geek mum.
Once I’d stopped trying to tell everyone in a mile radius that my child is called Hermione, we settled into the day’s activities. We watched a demonstration on making witches brooms, and saw some pretty feisty birds of prey doing their thing over a treat and a falconry glove. We looked for secret hidden witches (with a vocal 4.5 year old, that could have been awks), and watched some children having their faces painted (sadly the queue was a bit long).
What I really like is that each of the stations on the line has things to see and do, so it’s not merely a case of riding up and down the track. It elongates the day nicely, and while there was a lovely atmosphere, it didn’t feel overcrowded or hectic.
I’ve said it before: if you’re local to Hampshire, then the Watercress Line is a brilliant day out, even if they’re not running a special event weekend. Both times that we’ve been, the girls have been beside themselves with excitement over the steam trains, and it’s nice being able to hop on and off at the different stations.
(I did not take this photo. I do not take blurry photos. Note to self: always take all of the photos.)
Also, I really can’t think about Christmas yet, but they’re running a Santa Special throughout various dates in December which (bah humbug) sounds halfway to being awesome. I hate Christmas…one for another time, perhaps!
-SJW November 2017