Before discovering Radio Luxembourg, I was more than capable, as an only child, of entertaining myself at bedtime in my Balham flat.
As soon as it was lights out in HMP Mick, the wall of my bedroom would become a giant control panel, which would transport me to wherever I wanted to go – I rarely thought past Morden, though.
I’d pretend, where there was actually Flopsy Bunny wallpaper (neither parent were regular decorators), there were buttons to push, enabling me, in my ten-year-old brain, to travel, out of SW17, into a parallel universe (Morden).
During the day this same wall had been a goal into which I would head one of my dad’s nicked squash balls. By night I was Neil Armstrong, by day I’d be Gerd Müller.
To re-enact some of Müller’s many goals, I’d throw myself across my bed, oblivious to the fact there was invariably either a violin bow or pair of glasses lying there.
I gave the violin up as soon as I could; but, as I got older and found the spaceship wall less and less appealing, so my need for stronger and stronger glasses became increasingly necessary and visits to the opticians seemed almost weekly. I couldn’t work out the correlation. Seems my Nan had been right all along 😊
To infinity and beyond (well, the southern end of the Northern Line).