Last Thursday, my daughter and a group of her friends went, in costume, to the midnight movie premier, Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2.
As my daughter Amanda and her pal Hannah spent the afternoon digging through old Halloween boxes from the attic and sewing paper Hogwarts crests to their costumes, it was poignant for me to witness both the final chapter of the Harry Potter books/movies and that of my daughter’s childhood. You see Amanda just graduated from high school last month and this September she’s off to explore her future in university.
Ok I know am getting sentimental here. But no wait, not about my daughter’s growing up; I mean Harry Potter. I LOVE those books. The first time I got wind of Harry Potter, was from a little seven year old girl I used to do after-school care for. Her name was Krista and, boy, was she a precocious reader. Most kids were just starting to figure their way through Junie B. Jones at that age. Anyway, Krista always had her nose in that book. After school, when my daughters wanted to play with her, she just blocked them out and kept reading (think Julian Smith’s I’m Reading a Book!). Because of this snub, my older daughter Amanda decided she hated Harry Potter. This of course all changed a couple years later. Since then our family has all been mad for Potter. This is evidenced in the family photos of all of us dressed in witch costumes for numerous Halloweens to come.
I, myself, read the first three books in rapid succession, and then got through many a gruelling Christmas craft fair season by listening to the voice talents of Jim Dale on the audio books while beading away. I even coerced my book group into reading Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone. Bewilderingly, not everyone in book group appreciated it. “Come on,” I said trying to play the vocabulary card, “Are you not at least thrilled to have learned new words like gobsmacked and snog?” It’s hard to be a middle-aged Harry Potter fan.
So ok, my kids can own the claim that they grew up with Harry Potter, but I too have been under its spell all these years. An athiest recently asked me why I fancy myself an agnostic. The answer has to do with faith; “I want believe that there’s magic somewhere in the universe…and I want to believe there could really be a place out there like Hogwarts.”
(PS) Krista is a talented artist now. Check out her illustrations/art/crafts in the Get Thee to a Nunnery link
(PPS) Check out Julian Smith’s I’m reading a Book! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuRuwR2JSXI