I don’t remember how many times I’ve told this, but at age eleven I was looking out the window for months, waiting for an owl to bring me the letter from Hogwart (none has ever arrived though!). For kids that have grown up with Harry Potter like me (and we proudly call ourselves the Harry Potter generation), we wish we were there in that bizarre world from the very first time we read the book. Thanks to Hollywood, we pretty much feel visually satisfied with the Harry Potter blockbusters; yet none ever comes close to our imagination. We want to feel more. We want to be walking down those hallways, feeling the ghosts hopping through our bodies like creepy cold breezes, and hearing the original version of GIFs talking on the walls. We want to be a part of that epic heart-breaking story.
Sadly enough, I’ve grown up too much to believe that would happen. Anyway, it never hurts to rewind the whole story in mind and make believe it was a part of my real memory. In fact, I’ve come up with a list of nine best moments in Harry Potter that I wish so much to experience
No.9 – The Sorting Hat
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
On the first day at school, freshman kids are called in to sit on a chair, place the Sorting Hat onto their head; the Hat would then tell which House each kid belongs to, based on his/her personality (and sometimes personal preference). That way the kids at Hogwart are categorized from day one, so that they would grow up with friends that share relatively the same visions and willingness. While I respect diversity, I have become more aware of the importance of sense of belonging. We would never feel right being in the wrong crowd; it’s like a fish being raised with frogs and are wrongly taught that it is inferior, due to a fact that it can’t breathe out of water like frogs.
Harry Potter would have become the next Voldemort if he’d chosen Slytherin when the Hat asked him. But he chose Gryffindor. Sometimes we choose the pool ourselves and just swim into it, without a care of uncertainty or danger; because whether we feel belonged there is what really matters.
P/s: Go to Pottermore and check out which House you would go to. I am myself a Gryffindor. (No doubt about it!)
No.8 – The Weasley twins’ goodbye firework
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Red-headed, witty, funny, street-smart and rebellious – the Weasley twins Fred and George are arguably everyone’s favorite. They are just the kind of friends we all want to hang out with, the ones who would color up our monotone life. They would call us up to join them in some fun ride, then the night would go wild, and we would end up the next day in some place on Earth we utterly have no idea where and how. Just when we think they couldn’t be more amazing, Fred and George have the best job in the wizard world: they invent funniest toys and then run a shop on their own. Wow, but wait, did they even graduate from Hogwart yet?
No, they didn’t.
Now it seems dropping out of school to be cool and awesome is a fashion that even the wizard world is not immune to. One of the highlight of Harry Potter book 5 (The Phoenix Order) is the final exam near the end of the gloomy school year. That day Fred and George decided to leave Hogwart, and they could not do that without having a little fun with that dumb old bitchy monster Professor Umbridge. They did hell of a farewell performance, with clashes, a fire dragon, and firework. Leaving all that behind, they hopped onto their brooms and fly up the sky of freedom. Just bring on the show, in a very Guy Fawkes style.
Who wouldn’t want to be in that crowd cheering the two Hogwart’s heroes?
No.7 – Welcoming other schools to Hogwart
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
In the fourth year, for the first time, Harry Potter (and probably anyone of us) figured that there are other wizard schools other than Hogwart. We also learned that there is the World Cup (of Quitditch), the sporting stars (Victor Krum), and the hot girls (Cho Chang and Fleur Delaco). This year, Harry Potter was more like a teen movie than ever.
J.K.Rowling has an exceptional imaginative mind, and an even more outstanding skill to write out all her thoughts and ignite others’ imagination. In the scene which the teams from Beauxbatons and Dumstrang come to Hogwart, she charmed the readers with the spectacular arrivals. What strikes me more is the anticipation and excitement of Hogwart students upon their rare opportunity to connect to the world, and to have a little exotic romance in teenage hormone racing days. Well, I literally grew up with Harry Potter, and I read this book when I was 12. Felt pretty much the same!
P/s: I still hate Cho Chang. She stole my first kiss with Harry Potter!
No.6 – The Sophomore year terror
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
One big question for Harry Potter, especially by educationists, is that: Why the hell hasn’t the school been shut down? Seriously! On top of being understaffed or teaching inappropriate content to students, the school is an extremely dangerous place for kids. Monsters locked up somewhere in the castle, moving stairs that would cause accidents anytime, wild animals being taught in class (which could be a source for tragic accidents, too)! Not far from the castle, into the (not so) Forbidden Forest, there’s this giant spider empire, and then a living giant. OK, so apparently child endangerment is totally no big a deal in Hogwart.
The school stands still even when students are found frozen (which later turns out they were all just an inch away from death) in the hallways for no found reason. At this point, kids are taken to the the hospital. No further reaction from their parents. No parental council is mentioned. No action from the government. After several cases, the kids are accompanied by teachers to class, and Prof. McGonnagall fears for the first time the possibility of the school being closed. Oh come on, Professor! In the real world, you should have been unemployed at least a year ago, when a troll escaped from the dungeon, and three kids were nearly killed by it.
But doesn’t that make Harry Potter so appealing? I love to imagine the atmosphere of the school when it is under attack of that unknown snake: the fear of the reigning of the dark, the tension when facing danger, and the curiosity of a child that would do anything to know a little better than adults.
Since when did we stop thinking we can be heroes?