Friday, July 20, 2007

This Muggle Is Just Happy To Be Here!

You must know by now how insanely fanatical I am about Harry Potter. I'm still at this stage of giddy disbelief that, in a few hours, I will finally have in my hands the final book of the series. And I am excited and happy and all, but I am strangely, incredibly sad. Sad that the waiting is finally over, sad that the series is finally over.

I was 19, still in college, when I came across a book entitled "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone". Back then I was into legal thrillers like the Perry Mason series and John Grisham's books, so what was I doing with a children's novel? But I was curious, so I read and immediately fell for it. I finished reading it in one night (on a Prelims week, no less) - and my love affair with HP was born.

Maybe it's because, even if I am boringly logical most of the time, I love the idea of magic. Maybe it's because I love mysteries and intrigue, and Harry, his scar, his connection with Voldemort and his destiny are the biggest intrigue in the HP universe. Maybe it's because I love underdog stories and the books have provided plenty of that. Maybe it's because I love sarcasm and dry humor and witty lines and, again, the books have provided plenty of that. Or maybe it's because I love slightly bad, sort of damaged, highly intriguing men and Sirius Black, Remus Lupin and Severus Snape certainly fit the bill. I cannot pinpoint a single reason for this mad love, but the obssession is here to stay.

For the last 7 or so years of my life, HP has been a constant source of enjoyment, knowledge and comfort. I got Chamber of Secrets as a Christmas present. My first paycheck I bought Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire. I've made bets about Order Of The Phoenix (and received a painful shock when it was Sirius who died). I met new friends because of the series. I've had hundreds of discussions and arguments over theories and opinions, and I'm desperate for more. I've memorized some of their lines, muttered some of the spells under my breath. I've influenced a few people to get into Pottermania. I've never felt a more desperate desire to go to London than when I've read the books. I discovered other cool children's books because HP paved the way for me to check out the bookstore's children's section. I discovered Mugglenet and fanfiction. It wasn't just a fictional magical world that I discovered because of a boy with glasses and lightning bolt-shaped scar, I was thrown into the world of HP fandom, a new, real, interesting world, quite different from the world I live in.

I am going to miss the feeling of happily anticipating the next installments. I am going to miss the speculations and theories on what will happen next. But this isn't me saying goodbye, not just yet. For sure, I'll still be reading and rereading the books over and over. There's still the final two movies to look forward to and - who knows? - an encyclopedia that J.K. Rowling had hinted at. Plus more people to persuade and encourage to read the books.

It's like what they say - it's not the destination, but the journey. The ride was just fantastic, and I'm grateful that I get to experience it. (and whether she gets to read this or not, thank you so much, J.K. Rowling. Thank you for Harry Potter.)

This isn't the end of Harry Potter. Not for me, anyway. And certainly not for the millions of Potter fans out there.

Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!

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