The Man in the Yellow Rocket

*The beginnings of an autobiographical blog, certain places and names of people may be altered or left deliberately vague, in the interest of maintaining identity protection*

test-rocket

Looking back to earliest memories of this life I’ve lived, brings an abstracted handful of recollections, as I suspect it does for everyone who tries. I know this for certain however, the first thing I recall must have been a dream. For a little context, I’d spent the first year of my life living under the roof of my maternal grandparents and I sadly remember none of it. In my second year, my parents had found a humble house in a small Norfolk village which seemed isolated from anything resembling the pulse of human life. It was here that my consciousness began its gradual ascent into the continuity of days and nights.

I know the first scenario my mind encountered and engaged as a memory, was lying on my back in a cot with the view of a perimeter of vertical bars all around me. Beyond them, I could see a room with an open sash window somewhere bottom right corner of my vision. Through that window, I could see the green leaves of a tree and hear the chirping of birdsong. I was transfixed by the view of the window until something small bobbed through it into the room, it all happened very quickly, it at first appeared to look like a little bird yet once in the room, the small object made a direct diagonal line of flight from the window to the wall above my cot and embedded itself there just a couple of feet above me. It was a small yellow rocket like object, complete with tiny circular portal windows and tail fins. Its nose was slightly bent by its impact into the plaster of the wall adjacent to my cot.

I’m certain I would have felt utter surprise, but the scene was now developing further. Near the tail end of the rocket, I could see a tiny little circular hatch lifting open, the sound of an incredibly agitated little man accompanying its opening. The man would have been no more than two centimetres in height but his annoyance seemed as large as the room. He was clearly very, very angry about his journey in the tiny rocket concluding in the wall next to my cot, perhaps that he also had a witness did nothing for his mood as his solitary ranting seemed to now be directed at me lying somewhere below him. He jumped down from the micro vehicle into the cot with me, and it was at about that moment my shock turned to fear and confusion, I began to cry and the scene became a blur through my tears.

Even now, it seems an incredibly curious first recollection, I’m certainly glad for having it, as it sets the tone for the memories and experiences of the life that has followed; a natural gravitation to the strange, to dreams and imagery borne of the imagination.

Other subsequent memories from that period of life are more of a bog-standard variety:

Toddling and falling into a nettle patch at the end of the garden and the immediate lesson learnt about why one should avoid contact with nettles…

My father and I kicking a small plastic ball to each other, he kicked it a little too hard so it sailed up into the air and belted me in the middle of my face with a proper ‘thwap’. A lifelong disliking of football seemed to find its origins from this point onwards…

I think my father had a motorbike during this period, a white crash helmet, and a job that he had to attend in London…

Being pushed along in a pushchair by someone who may have been called ‘Sophie’…

pushchair

This is all I can remember until we moved to our next house, which was the true beginnings of my childhood memories.