Saturday, July 21, 2007

Do you know where your children are?

My daughter was home this morning, a summer Saturday.

"Aren't you going to the Cape?" I asked. She and her boyfriend spend weekends with his parents at their Cape Cod cottage. Usually she leaves after work on Friday, but not always.

"I'm waiting for my Harry Potter book," she said.

I should have known. Joanna's been an avid reader of the series since its inauguration ten years ago when she was 13.

She'd preordered a copy of the new Harry Potter book from Today was delivery day.

She's a reader. The current book beside her bed is "Einstein" by Walter Isaacson. In between books like this, she's read the entire Potter series several times over.

Her brother David was eight at Harry's debut, a third grader far more interested in sports than any book he'd met so far. When he settled down with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, I thought a new era had begun; he'd discovered "reading for pleasure."

Not quite, but he found pleasure in Harry Potter. "I wish she'd hurry up," he once said of J. K. Rowling. "I'll be grown up by the time the next book is written."

At 18, he's sitting on the couch beside his girlfriend as I write. They're both reading their copies of Harry and the Deathly Hallows.

David and Jen went to Walmart last night after midnight. They waited in a crowd, wearing color-coded bracelets, to be granted the right to purchase two copies. Dave and Jen started reading in the wee morning hours.

Bruce and I sat in the back yard at sunset, and our neighbor wandered over for a chat. I told her Dave and Jen were in the house with Harry Potter.

"Sure!" she said with a wink. "Harry Potter? I was 18 once." Wink, wink.

"No, really," I said. "They are really reading!"

To the proverbial question, "It's 11 p.m. Do you know where your children are?" I can say, "Yes! One's reading Harry Potter in the living room with his girlfriend. My other is on the Cape with Harry."


Heather said...

haha - have you read them? because they really are quite good - delightful and yet academic too.

Janice Thomson said...

Enjoyed your closing lines Ruth :) Not so many these days know where their teenage children are. Reading is one of the many joys in my life too - nothing like a good book to set the creative juices on fire.

Ruth D~ said...

Heather, My son read us the first one in the car on our way to a ski vacation. I loved being read to, and found the story captivating. But on my own, I just can't read HP. Or maybe more truthfully, I don't really care to. Not sure why.

Janice, I can't think of any response that doesn't sound like I'm bragging about David and Joanna. They are good kids. Let's just say I love them. :>)