I have been spending my summers with Harry Potter for 12 years now. It was the summer of 1999 when I first heard about this Boy Wizard, Harry Potter. I picked up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone at the end of summer and could not put it down, I never wanted to leave this world of wizards and magic. I have read all 7 books at least 3 times each, I read each book before he movie was released and read Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix one more time because they were my favorite books of all 7. I will admit, I enjoy the books much more than the films, but the imagery in the films do capture the world in my imagination!
As I was driving home on Thursday, I could not stop thinking about the midnight showing of the last Harry Potter movie being shown at midnight everywhere... I made a last minute decision to go see the movie at midnight! Why wouldn't I? I was at Borders when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows book was released, why would I NOT see the movie at midnight? I am SO happy I was there at midnight for both, they are experiences that you can only have once. I actually saw the movie again a few days later and the theatre had no buzz of anticipation from everyone, and no one clapped and booed at the appropriate parts. The fans who have embraced Harry Potter by dressing in their robes, carrying their wands...that is what made my midnight experiences so special! I am finally, after making so many for others, making myself a Gryffindor scarf.
It is pretty amazing how these books and films have become such a huge part of our culture. I introduced my nieces and nephew to Harry Potter right after I read Book 1. They were 13, 12, 11, 9 and 7 when I gave them Book 1 to read. We had a Harry Potter themed Craft Day in 2000, making magical snow globes, drinking Butter Beer wearing lighting bolt scars on their foreheads. A couple of years later I was thrown a Harry Potter Birthday Party where all the guests wore glasses like Harry and I even got a wand! (Thank you Simone & Nicole!)
I am sad that there will be no new Harry Potter adventures, but like Harry is told at the end, everyone is always with him in his heart. For me they will always live in my heart and imagination to be shared and revisited forever.