This year has no doubt been amazing for me in terms of Rupert Grint fandom. I’ve had the opportunity to travel to Berlin and Belfast to see Cherrybomb, to Chicago to see Harry Potter: The Exhibition, and to New York to attend the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince premiere. Through my travels, I’ve connected with fellow fans old and new; andof course, I got to see Rupert again. In addition, I became an ICM staffer, gaining an appreciation of what it takes to bring news to the fans (and I’m still learning.)I’ve seen Rupert expand his acting horizon, portraying Malachy in Cherrybomb, and fine tuning his approach to Ron in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

However, I would never have become such a fan without first being “exposed!” When I was in college and reading “serious text books,I could have cared less about the Harry Potter phenomenon that was brewing around me. I thought folks who were willing to get in line at midnight were crazy;  and when the first two films came out, I declared that they were “kiddie movies” and that the Lord of the Rings films were better.

Yet, I couldn’t avoid those movies, as every time I went to visit my mother, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone would be on. Why? Because my little cousin, who was two at the time, watched the movie so much that his mother told him that his VHS had “broken” so he would stop. Leave it to my mother to get her own copy (DVD), for when he found out, he would leave his house at night,  ring my mother’s bell (she lived next door) and get in her bed to watch it until he fell asleep. This was their little ritual.

I was sucked into Potterverse, when my Dearie became ill and went into the hospital. My mother tried to cheer me up by taking me to a local record and tape shop. I bought severalmovies; among them were the first two Harry Potter movies, used. Of course, my mother and her “baby” had already known the greatness of Chamber of Secrets, but I became a fan after watching the films.

Sometime later, I experienced my first hint of Harry Potter fandom excitement when my mother and I were sitting at the table and an advertisement for the Prisoner of Azkaban came on the television.  We screamed like little kids. We were excitedly remarking about how much older the trio had become, and we were going to see the movie the first day it opened. The day after the movie came out, my Dearie, my mother and I braved rain that I’m sure included cats, dogs and perhaps some teacup pigs, to see the film. We LOVED it! (Of course, I hadn’t been introduced to book!Ron, yet.)

When the DVD came out, it was our MISSION to get to the store to buy it the first day. Right after work, we bought our DVDs, and when I dropped her off at home, my box set of hardcover HP books 1-5 (that I had ordered) were delivered to her house. That was a kick behind day!!!

By the time Goblet of Fire came out, I was fully in the fandom, so I kept my mother updated on movie related news and showed her pictures as they were released. My mother was entertained by my actions, always rolling her eyes, because I was always uber excited about everything.

When the time came, my Dearie, my mother, my cousin “her baby”, and myself went to see the latest Potter flick. To be honest, she wasn’t as into GoF as she was into the others.I think it was because she was a fan of the “whimsy” of the first two movies, but she did like it.

Over the years, I’ve tried to get her to read the books (I recall having her help me to put an iron-on on a shirt for the Half-Blood Prince book release), but she never would. So, I was constantly telling her about how the books and the movies were different, and how Ron was the best thing since sliced bread.

By the time Order of the Phoenix came out, I had already started traveling to Rupert Grint and Harry Potter related events. Whenever I flew, (my companion gifted to me years ago by my mother), “travel bear,” would fly with me. It was like taking my mother along for protection, which was a nice feeling, because by this time, my mother wasn’t able to get to the theater to see the movie as she did with previous installments. When it finally came out on DVD, she saw it. I think she liked it, I don’t recall exactly.

Once again, when Half-Blood Prince was released in the theaters, she wasn’t to go, she couldn’t (not easily, anyway.) When the movie came out, I told her about it and as usual, I was looking forward to the DVD being released on December 8th. I bought a blu-ray player just because I was going to get the Ultimate Editions 1 and 2. I told my mother in September that I had asked my Dearie to make me a chicken potpie for the release date, because it was going to be a special day. I was going to buy my mother the DVDalso, so she could have her own copy, as well.

However, in the month before the movie was to come out on DVD, Harry Potter was the last thing on my mind. For something that I knew deep inside was coming for at least the last two years was finally approaching. On December 3rd, it finally did.

My mother, who put me on the road to Harry Potter left this earth, and me, her only child. I knew it was coming,  I was right in the middle of making a comment in the forum when I got the news.

For the next couple of days, plans had to be made and without thinking about it, I scheduled the service for Tuesday, December 8th, the day of the Harry Potter releases(the day I had been looking forward to for months.) I woke up that day, and I bought my blu-rays (I knew I would need them.) I went through the day and through the service; andwhen I came home, I crawled into bed and watch Half-Blood Prince (or rather, it watched me.) And guess what? The next day, I spent the entire day eating my chicken potpie, while watching my discs and the special features, …..with my mother, just as we planned.

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  1. francaise3/Marite says:

    Thanks for sharing the special story.

  2. jo says:

    Ahhh AJ I know that was hard but it was great that you shared this with us. I am sure she now making it her mission to have all of the angels up above sit down and watch Harry Potter!!!


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