Today was our last day here in England. It has really flown by. We started off the morning with a final class meeting in the park in front of the Gandhi statue.

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Next we went over to Westminster for a tour of Westminster Abbey. We were all really looking forward to the tour for the obvious reason of it being the place of the Royal Wedding. However, it was difficult to really enjoy walking around the Abbey. There were so many people there walking around and taking tours that it was hard to really take in what we were seeing. Also, photography was not allowed. Aside from all of the connections to the Royal family and past Royals, there were a lot of memorials and graves. We saw the actual final resting place of Mary Queen of Scots as well as many other Royals. There was a spot for Oliver Cromwell of course. There was just so much to see, but Jennifer, Taylor, and I had to make sure we made it to the train in time to go to our tour.

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The Harry Potter Studio Tour was absolutely amazing!! I’m feel so blessed to have been able to go. I grew up reading and watching Harry Potter. Once we got off the train there was a double-decker bus to take us to the studio. I couldn’t even contain my excitement. As we waited in line to start the tour, we got to see Harry’s cupboard under the stairs. Before the tour we got to see a special video made just for the tour. The first room we went into was the Great Hall. It was so incredible to be on the actual set of the movies. We got to move through the sets and props at our own pace. There was so much to see. All of the detail that went into each of those sets was incredible. We got to “fly” on broomsticks through the green screen technology and see a lot about the special effects. The back lot had several outdoor sets and props. There was the Weasley’s car, the bridge, Tom Riddle Sr’s grave, Privet Drive, and the Potter’s home. We then went through the creature shop and Diagon Alley. We saw a lot of concept art as well as small paper models of different set and places within Hogwarts. There was also the model of Hogwarts which is what we see whenever there are overview scenes of Hogwarts. The gift shop was amazing. I walked around it several times trying to decide what to get. There were replicas and robes and t-shirts and wands and books and dvds and so much more. There was even candy inspired by the books such as chocolate frogs. There was so much there, and I took so many pictures.

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Today was just incredible. Actually, the trip all together has been amazing! I will miss being here, but I am ready to be back home with my family and my dog. we have to get up early to take the tube to Heathrow airport. It’s going to be another long day of flights but I’m excited to be back home. I feel so incredibly blessed to have had this opportunity and to have all the experiences I have had. I thought I would never be able to have an opportunity like this and am incredibly grateful that I did. Well tomorrow is going to come early and I need to finish packing. Goodbye England. It’s been fun.

-Alyssa

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