Monday, 19 September 2011

Ever the reader

I mentioned my childhood love of libraries. From before I could even read, the visit of the mobile library (in Malpas in South Wales - where we briefly lived while my father worked on the construction of the Llanwern steelworks) was the highlight of my week as a three year-old.

As well as loving good stories, from an early age I had an interest in aircraft (especially military ones), vehicles, history and wars. Although the cars and planes might have suggested a mind keen on engineering, it was more to do with the aesthetics; colour plates of camouflaged aircraft appealed particularly.

My father was good at selecting story books that I would enjoy; they would typically include aircraft - one series I remember well were adventures about some Norwegian fighter pilots in the early '50s, flying F-84 Thunderjets... a bit of online research and I've found it - Blue Two Bale Out! it was called, by Lief Hamre... "Otter Three Two Calling"; the descriptions of Arctic flying were most resonant with me.

Regular visits to the library with my father (who took the photo above) were an important part of my childhood; they helped get me into the reading habit.

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