Like another of my BB compatriots, I am old enough to have seen Star Wars during the original release. I was 9 in 1977. I had a great childhood in Illinois, where my friends and I would play with our Barbies, enjoy a rousing adventure as Charlie's Angels (I was always Kelly) and play ghost in the graveyard until we absolutely had to go inside. You have to understand that I am the youngest of three girls. My two older sisters are 12 and 9 years older than me. So, as you can imagine, they didn't take me along during their social events, so when we did spend time together I always thought it was a big deal. My middle sister, Joan, was 16 in 1977 and in the complete throws of her hippie phase. My oldest sister was off at college so Joan was stuck with me to torture all by herself. When she and her friend told me that they were going to go to a new movie and take me with them, I was shocked and honored. I mean, usually, they liked to do other things like lock me out of the house and run around pretending to be zombies just to scare me, so this was a pretty huge event. We got to the theater that afternoon and I was amazed at how long the lines were to get in. Being 1977, there were still a fair amount of those huge screen movie theaters around and this movie was at the biggest in the area. Our tickets purchased, we sat down in our seats in the movie theater. I remember that the screen seemed huge to me and since, of course, I was only 9, it was pretty big comparatively . My sister and her friend chatted about high school, driving, boys, etc., etc. and I sat there feeling incredibly cool to be with these "older chicks." The lights dimmed and I honestly don't remember if there were previews or not, but the 20th Century Fox logo came up and then the scrolling text..."A long time ago, in a galaxy far away...". I watched the opening minutes and thought it was pretty cool. As the rebel troops took cover in the hallway and the bulkhead door started smoking, I started getting really excited. The minute Darth Vader stepped through that door, I was hooked. I don't remember how many times I went to see Star Wars that year - although I do know that the nerdy kid in my homeroom saw it, like, 50 times and I was really jealous. Oddly enough, I never collected the toys or anything like that, but I did get the album (yes, album) and listened to it over and over - imagining myself in the Star Wars world. Years later when Empire and Jedi came out, my sister took me to see them. The year Empire came out, my sister was home from college and not feeling too well. She took me to another large theater and was there when I put my hands over my eyes during the wampa attack scene (it was scary!). I remember that she liked the movies, but never really expressed any major interest in them. I, on the other hand, was totally enamored of all the films. I watch the trilogy a few times a year on my VHS and will always watch it when it's on tv - something that my husband just doesn't understand. When the special editions were released in 1997, my sister had been gone for 6 years. She'd been diagnosed with Hodgkins Disease shortly after we went to see Empire. She went into remission for ten years before the cancer came back with a vengence in 1991 - she was 32. I dragged my husband to the SW special edition and as I sat in the theater waiting for him to come back from the conscession stand, the lights dimmed and the 20th Century Fox logo came on. I surprised myself by crying the minute I heard the familiar song. I never realized before how much it meant to me to have my sister take me to the Star Wars films. It was a precious memory from a time when life seemed much more simple. So, for me, my first Star Wars experience is a memory that I can have to last and comfort me for the rest of my life.