08 February 2014
Why it takes forever...
Any hardcore Harry Potter fan who visits Edinburgh surely knows about The Elephant House, where JK Rowling is known to have written a bit of her famous series. A large number of cafes and coffee shops like to boast that JK Rowling wrote some of the books in their shop... only a small number of these are actually legit, The Elephant House being one of them. But aside from some photos on the wall, showing her in the shop after the fact, you don't get a very Potteresque vibe about the place, really. You wouldn't even know it's anything very unique in that sense, aside from the fact that more tourists stand outside to take pictures of the front than any other place along that street. You do, however, have to go into the bathrooms. It's here the real power of the Harry Potter pilgrimaging fandom comes out. And it takes forever, if you actually have to use the toilet, because just about anyone in there has to take the time to write a message, or at the very least read them. Or take photos of them. ;)
I love that they are so varied. Many of them are just quotes from the books. Some of them are professions of love for Ron or Harry. Some of them are humorous, and some of them are heartfelt notes of thanks. Like one that read, 'The boy who lived gave me courage to go on living. Thanks JR!' or 'You are our childhood!' I love these messages. I admit to not being a ginormous HP fan (my sisters sure are) but I have read the books and I really enjoy the tale. The Elephant House is a study spot for me because their cafe is nice, the views out the windows wonderful, and the coffee tasty, but I'll never tire of these magnificent bathroom walls. So be sure, if ever you stop in for a tea or a scone (their bakery is quite good) then you should remember to leave your mark in the loo.