Binge Watching Harry Potter

A movie trailer came across my social media feed. Interested, I clicked and watched the preview of a Harry Potter cast reunion. It had movie clips from over the years and I couldn’t help but smile about how darn cute and scintillating they all were! And I couldn’t help but think back to our family obsession with HP. I have written about this before, and probably will again, but this little stroll down memory lane triggered some strong emotions.

The books. The girls and I waited each summer outside the door of the book store at Midnight on the BIG release day. My little family and about a hundred other excited kids. Then the movies. Always a Christmas tradition to see them as soon as they were released. Long lines and packed theaters. By the time the last ones came out, my girls waited for the midnight show as with friends, camp chairs and a little tent.

When they came home for college breaks – exhausted and often sick (why is that – always sick? Were they partying too much or studying too much?), or during high school winter breaks, we snuggled on the couch and rewatched the series together. The TV room was always small. There was always one or two fewer seats than there were people, one of us would have to sit on the floor with pillows, leaning against someone’s legs. The dogs would crowd in. It was cozy, comforting. It became both a family goal and a family tradition to watch the entire series in a week or so. To be honest, there were about three series we cycled through – The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars and Harry Potter. (I always dreaded the Star Wars years, I thought I was an incredibly good sport about that – LOL!) We binged on movies during breaks for YEARS.

Every other year Nancy would be there for the movie marathon. I don’t think she would have watched any of them if not for us, she hung in there… but like me, she only half watched, she was always getting up to work on dinner, do dishes or some other chore. Paint. Read. Finally, when she would settle down and snuggle into the couch between her granddaughters, all warm and comfy, her eyelids would droop and she would slowly and reluctantlys fall asleep.

When I saw the trailer for the reunion, I got excited. “Let’s watch all the Harry Potter movies this break” I said aloud. Then I remembered, the girls were all off with their prospective significant others – we – Scott and I were now on the “off – year rotation.” And the fact is, even if we were on a “on-year” with everyone here, it probably wouldn’t happen. The kids worked now, their visits were shorter. And blessedly, there are now grandkids. Grandkids who prefer Cocomelon and Loud House. Bedtimes are much earlier and our days are just too broken up with naps, and walks and cooking to devote much time to a binge watching a movie series. Heck. It took us THREE days to watch the entire “Family Man” movie last week. And lets be honest – Harry Potter would be too scary – those giant spiders still frighten me!

(This is the thing that got me today. It hit me hard. I realized I had let another milestone slip past me. Those damn milestones that nobody tells you about. Those lovely high school/college winter breaks were over. Over. And I tried to hold on a little too long. I shed a tear. I shed a tear and wrestled with how to let that one go peacefully. I am still not fully sure – it just dawned on me – I am just a little bit sad. )

Covid killed a few of the Christmas traditions. Gingerbread houses. Movie Marathons. Midnight Mass (I have not set foot back in a church and zoom church just doesn’t do it for me) But I guess we “aged out” of some as well. Here I am. In the baby stages of my retirement. Today is only the third day since I have been retired that I have had the house all to myself. Hallelujah! I have baked. Sewn. And now I am writing. I will probably pull out a puzzle. It is Winter Break, but I realize those dates are not so confining for me. In January when it is dark. Depressing. Raining. I can sew. Read. Write. Puzzle. Finish the newspaper. Drink all the coffee. Maybe even get out my watercolors. I will hike with friends on Thursdays. I can watch whatever I want. Maybe it will be “Garden Answer Laura” videos so I can start planning my summer garden. Or “Rick Steves Europe” so I can start planning the eventual post covid travel. Or maybe I can binge watch Harry Potter. No, I wont watch seven movies in seven days. And Yes, it might take me three nights to watch one movie, but that is OK. I am on my own time.

Tag words: Scintillate, reluctant, hallelujah, smooth

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