Archives for category: random

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The next few months are well marked by the theme of “family reunion”. In two weeks time, I am going to meet my uncle, the brother of the mother, for the very first time. Him and his wife and three kids (kids that are young adults). They are visiting Alton Towers and he asked if they could meet up with us the day after. Initially, they wanted to come to my house but I took the tummy twisting notion as a sign, that I am not quite ready for that. I just can’t see them sitting on my sofa and hey, you gotta listen to that gut feeling. I know a lot is first time meeting nerves plus obviously a huge part of me wants to be liked by this unknown family and fear about not being liked is building up by the day. The little sensible voice in my head, who speaks so quietly at times that I can hardly hear her says: “It doesn’t matter if they don’t like you, because you know you may not like them.” And I know this is true, but at the same time I want to be able to dislike them, but for god’s sake I want them to like me. That’s the least they can do, you know.

And of course, I know he will be reporting back to my mother and this makes things even more complicated.

And then in September there is this trip to Germany that I keep postponing because I am paralyzed with dread when I think about it. When you haven’t seen people in such a long time it becomes a total big deal when you do. My aunt, whose 70th birthday it is, plus some random family members of our once huge family, my uncle (the one I know from little, the one who is my father’s brother, yet so unlike my father that it is hardly believable they are related) and his wife will be there. As much as I am looking forward to seeing them in equal measures I am dreading it. Dreading it because there will be judgement, there always is with families and mine is Catholic so judgement is almost religiously prescribed. There will be stories about my father, what he is up to (no good) and I can hear my uncle’s wife already: “You should be taking care of it.” And I can hear myself defending my actions or rather non-actions and I can feel my husband tensing up and being very quiet because I am not willing to share the truth about the whys with them and he thinks I should. And there is a huge part of me that wants to tell the truth but I fear what my uncle would do to his brother if he knew. Sometimes, not speaking the truth is protecting those we love. What good would it do to my aunt, my uncle, cousins if they knew?

So this morning as I am still trying to catch up with work, I am almost paralyzed with dread. I wish I could fast-forward.

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Yesterday, I drove from Birmingham to Nottingham to watch the last Harry Potter with my friend Milena. Some may wonder, why I drive an hour to watch a film with someone, but the reasons are simple. For one, I really like Milena and wanted to catch up in person anyway. And even more importantly, I wanted to watch the film with someone who wanted to see the film as badly as I did.

I am totally unashamedly a huge fan of the Harry Potter series. I love kid’s fiction a lot and often feel that writers of so-called grown up fiction can learn a lot from writer’s writing for a youth audience. Like many adults who found themselves lost in the books, for me the attraction has always also been the fact that I identified with Harry. The reality of his day to day life was gruesome and then suddenly a magical letter came and all was good. When I was little, I dreamt of a rescue too.

It felt sad watching the last film, knowing it was all over but at the same time, it also felt really good on the way home when I realised that I cried during the film for the ending of Harry Potter and that I was no longer crying about the past. And that was a rather good feeling.

I will miss the wizard and I am sure I will read those books many times again, listening to the audiobooks while doing the washing up, folding laundry or cleaning the bathroom and watching the films when I am alone and hopefully, in years to come I hope to share the experience with my daughter.

As Alan Rickman said in an interview: “When I’m 80 years old and sitting in my rocking chair, I’ll be reading Harry Potter. And my family will say to me, “After all this time?” And I will say, “Always.”

Me too.