Page archived courtesy of the Geocities Archive Project

I remember, as a very little boy, that my dad was a fabulous person to have around.  I remember playing ball with him in the park.  I remember that he could throw that ball impossibly high.

I remember the model steam locomotive he made me.  Made entirely out of wood, except for the shop bought metal wheels with rubber tyres and the rubber buffers made out of doorstops. I remember the large cotton reel, he used as to represent the steam funnel.  I remember the smaller cotton real he used to represent the whistle. 

I remember how proud I was of this wooden beast nearly four feet long.  I remember how ashamed I was about the time when I was about seven or eight years old and my friend Jimmy Simmonds and I would play at having "crash-ups" in the garden at 79 Southover.  Jimmy would step into my pedal car and I would climb on my train, or vice versa. Then we would ride full force towards each other, smashing our respective vehicles into one another, emulating the car crashes we had seen on TV, in one or other of our favourite cop shows.  If either of those vehicles fell apart with the impact it was not my engine, although it may have lost a bumper or two!

I remember sitting with my dad, looking through his encyclopedias, looking at the science pages, gazing at optical illusions, or at photographs of the leaves on gold leaf electroscopes parting as a charge was applied to a metal plate at the top of the instrument.

I remember the extreme difference of opinion we had, when my mother, his wife, left home.  I saw the event as an evil and emasculating influence being cut out of my life like a cancer.  He saw it as the woman he loved walking out of the door.  We had a few fights over that one, Dick and I.  He kept saying he wanted to ask her back.  I kept shouting: "No way!".

I remember standing on a bridge in Venice in 1979, seven years after his death.  I remember calling his spirit to me, nodding at the view and saying to him, in my mind's eye: "What do you think of that dad?"

I remember going to see the Rolling Stones, Bridges of Bablylon Tour, at Wembley Stadium in the company of a very beautiful woman named Erika. This was circa 1998.  I saw Mick Jagger running around on the stage and I remembered when I was about 10 years old and the Rolling Stones were appearing on Ready Steady Go at the start of their career.  I remember both my mum and dad saying: "What will they be doing when they're 30?"  Both my mum and my dad were dead in 1998, so I called out to them in the spirit world, pointing, in my mind's eye, to the Rolling Stones on stage and I said: "There they are at 55.  Still going strong!  What have you got to say to that?"