I wrote my first essay, in Primary School first class, at the tender age of 6.
It is the first known public display of my uber-vivid only child imagination; the first showcasing of the fantasia, in which I lived, for so much of my childhood and teenage years.
The essay?………”when I grow up”.
Presumably, most of the class followed the to be expected pattern of, “when I grow up…”, I’ll be a nurse, ballerina, hairdresser, mummy etc. Or, “when I grow up..” I’ll go to America, travel on a plane, and so on.
Not little Miss Fairytale.
“When I grow up….”, “ I am going to marry David Cassidy…..and we’ll be very happy……and we’ll sing together”.
Seemingly, I described our life together, jetting around America in graphic detail (as graphic as a child with limited air-miles can get!) and how happy we were going to be when we got married!
The teacher (Mrs Ryan, RIP) was so taken aback by this that I was auto-awarded the inaugural essay writing prize of 5p. She later told my mother I had the most vivid imagination she had ever come across.
If Mrs Ryan thought she was taken aback, she was nothing near my Grandmother (Nana) who was informed of this future vision and prize winning related missive on the way home from school that afternoon. I remember twigging the railings on the school wall………crangcrangcrangzingzangzing…as you do…as I recounted the tale of the essay, my eternal love for Mr Cassidy and our impending nuptials. My Nana told me not to be having such nonsense in my head, but did good naturedly congratulate me on my prize whilst warning me to spend it wisely.
When my mother and herself were alone later that evening, it was with great glee and animation that she retold the tale of trans-Atlantic love and happy ever after, before the two of them collapsed in fits.
My mum refers to this episode once in a while…she looks at me and says, “Where’s David these days then? You were in love with him you know, you were going to marry him. You know your Nana killed herself laughing after you got home. She went into the bedroom so you couldn’t hear. She thought you were priceless”.
Where is David indeed? Who knows. I lost interest when Abba came along, and reinvented myself as Agnetha, and sang into a hairbrush, like a million other kids back in the 70s. I obviously replaced amour with singing and being blonde and famous in shiny clothes and silver boots.
If I see a photo of David Cassidy now I cringe……but he gave me my first creative release, my first burst of imaginative licence, so thanks for that then Dave! And, wasn’t it worth it, just for a few moments, to give such joy, to someone I did truly care about, whom I did really love.
And as for that imagination, it’s still well and truly alive and kiciking.
Now if you’ll excuse me……………imaginary places to be!