Thursday, July 6, 2017

6/26/2017 marqued the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. I am a little late to this, but I really wanted to write an article about the book series, as it is a huge part of my life. Lately, I have seen a lot of Youtubers and bloggers talk about their Harry Potter experience, and I loved hearing about them. So this is my Harry Potter story.

To be completely honest, I have no idea how my love for Harry Potter started. I just know I fell in love with the books. As a child, I had always loved reading. I loved it so much that I actually learned how to read on my own, at age 5. I was already a huge nerd, spending my time going to the library with my mom and my sister and reading at night with my Gameboy's light, hiding under my bedcovers... Old school flash lamp haha. 

But my first Harry Potter memory is actually going to the cinema, for my 7th birthday, to see Harry Potter and the Chamber Of Secrets. For some reason, my mom agreed that I could invite two of my best friends, and my little sister, who was 5. We still laugh about this, because at the end of the movie, my mom had four scared children sitting on her lap, shitting their pants because of the Basilisk. After this, I think I was too scared to continue watching the movies, so I just stuck to the books. 

I remember camping in Italy. The time that wasn't spent in the swimming pool or exploring Tuscany, was spent in the tent, reading the same Harry Potter book over and over. I specifically remember thinking Harry was on holiday with me. He was my imaginary friend. Like a lot of little girls of my age, I had a (not so) secret diary where I had made a list of boys that I was in love with and number one was, you guessed it, Harry. I also remember camping (again) in France, near Annecy, where it rained a lot. To escape the rain boredom, my mom and dad had taken us shopping and I bought myself the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Gameboy game. I have played that game over and over...

I never got to experience midnight book releases, or movie premieres, simply because I used to borrow the books from my best friend, and wait for the DVD releases to see the movies. As you might have understood, I don't love the movies near as much as I like the books. I think I've seen the two Deathly Hallows movies just once... Simply because I loved the images that I had imagined in my head from the books so much, that I didn't want them to fade by seing the movies. 

I truly think Harry Potter partly made who I am today. I grew up with the books, I had these badass imaginary friends, and more importantly, a big sister that I didn't have in real life. Hermione was the one that made me fall in love with the books. I related to her so much; this nerdy girl, who was all about reading and knowledge, a miss know it all who is (slightly) annoying. Imagine how proud I was when my little sister compared me, twice, to Emma Watson. Let's be honest, growing up,  I had young-movie-Hermione's hair. That is where the first comparison came from. The second time she showed me a picture of Emma working out, being photographed by paparazzi and putting on her grumpy face, and yes, I have the same grumpy face... So proud. And that's where the comparisons stop. 

And after all these years, when Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was released, my little heart exploded with joy. I got to enjoy the Fantastic Beasts movie with one of my best friends, fangirling  over the fact that we were back in the Wizarding World. It would be too cliché to end this with the famous Snape quote so all I would like to say, is thank you Jo. Thank you for teaching me so many lessons, and for allowing me to believe in my dreams. Thank you for making the Muggle world a little bit more bearable. Hogwarts will always be home.

"All was well."