Harry Potter: Kissing a decade-long tradition good-bye

In utter suspenseful anticipation of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2 movie this coming July 15, I decided to finally write about my obsession of Harry Potter.

I first got a hold of the book way back in summer of 2001 when a college friend of mine insisted that I should give reading the series a try. She promised that it is one of the best books she has ever read. And that was coming from someone who has read and reads a lot. I mean a lot. So after weeks of ‘selling’ me the book, I finally gave in. I bought (a paperback edition of) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. My condition was if I didn’t get hooked after the first chapter, I’m setting the book aside for good.

But boy was I hooked real bad. In fact, I loved it so much that I got on to finishing the book in 3 days. I think this is quite fast considering before I was even introduced to Harry Potter, I never had once read a book that was not a requirement.

It was an instant obsession. The day after I finished Sorcerer’s Stone, I bought the next three books all at once (back then, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was not released yet). I finished all of them in less than 2 weeks, which is impressive in my standards.

I also got my sister (the older of my 2 sisters) to reading the series and she loves it just as much as I do. Our tradition starting from the Order until the Hallows was we reserved the book weeks before the release, and lined up as early as 6 am at the bookstore during the worldwide release and finished reading it in less than 24 hours. Both of us have a copy of all the books in both paperback and hardbound. Obsessed much? Damn right.

Getting our hands on those books was truly a magical moment for us. It was like finding a treasure in your backyard or something. But as in everything, all good things must come to an end.

You see, when I was a child, I loved fantasizing about magical worlds, supernatural powers, spells and enchantments, that sort of thing. I loved playing roles of someone who can cast spells, with matching sound effects like ‘whooooosh’, ‘pzzzzzzzz’ and stuff. I was a very playful kid who ran around mad and totally restless and talked incessantly. I am also more of a visual person. I like watching it rather than reading about it. So that’s why I never got into reading books.

Harry Potter however captured that very core of my childhood. It awakened my sense of imagination, creating a world as I understand it and not as I see it.

And then there were the movies.  I have seen each Harry Potter movie at least twice. I have so far bought both the DVDs and VCDs (Yes, VCDs. Get over it.) of the first four Harry Potter movies. And I plan to but the entire series after the DVD of Deathly Hallows Pt. 2 is released. I love them so much even though I know they didn’t live up to the standards of the books. But then again, it’s a rarity that a movie translation is better than the book itself so we can forgive this one, right?

It has become a tradition among my two younger sisters and myself that we see each Harry Potter movie during its premiere. We have been doing this since the release of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone movie in 2001. And I’m just saddened by the fact that this treasured tradition is ending soon. Really soon.

A decade-long tradition will be finished once the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2 is released. I was a teenager when I was first introduced to the world of Harry Potter and now at the age of 27, it is finally coming to an end. That’s ten long years. No more buying advance tickets. No more lining up at the mall before it even opens. No more Harry Potter on the big screen. No. More. Harry. Potter.

But for Potterheads the world over, we will always keep our beloved Harry Potter in our hearts and minds for a lifetime. In the meantime, enjoy watching the first trailer of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2. I can’t wait for more trailers and teasers!

See you in theatres this July 15 for the epic finale!


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