Just Like Magic

As someone who grew up in the Harry Potter Generation, in my adult life I often find myself searching for that same magic I experienced while reading the books years ago. It’s not a constant quest of mine; I don’t set out every day looking for anything in particular. But I know it immediately when I do encounter it, for a certain smile finds its way to my lips and a certain feeling of magic finds its way into my soul.

Sometimes it’s the thought of the long hallway in my childhood home, an aptly-chosen reference and high five, a few lines of music overheard in a Target parking garage, or a long-lost memory brought to the surface through some happenstance of chance or fate. Sometimes it’s the sound of Jim Dale’s voice, the act of pressing play on the latest trailer, or a delightfully long movie marathon. Sometimes it’s the sight of seven hardcover books on a shelf.

This time, it was the Reading Room of a very special library in Manchester, England. It was the arched details, sparkling light fixtures, dusty red-brown hues, and ancient tomes. It was the way the librarian (who I took to calling Madam Pince in my head) gazed at her enchanting surroundings with a knowing flint in her eye. It was the way I could imagine a boy wizard and his two best friends in each and every reading nook.

It was just like magic.