In the dark recesses of many lofts are musical instruments, hockey sticks, tap-dance shoes.
When did they get put there?
Often, the answer is during the owner’s time at university.
School days are packed full of parent-pleasing, CV building activities that get slotted into the routine. Often Mum/Dad pays any fees, encourages practice, acts as chauffeur and proudly attends performances.
But one day, the youngster wakes up in their stoutly built undergraduate bed, nursing a hangover and says,
“You know what, I’ve quite enjoyed playing the euphonium, and I’ve gotten pretty good at it, but it was really Mum’s idea, not mine. In fact, I think she projected all her own euphonium-playing hopes and aspirations on to me. I’ve been living somebody else’s glittering dream.”
As they trudge to the kettle for their first cup of coffee, they realise that if they ditched the euphonium, they might have time for what they really want to do.
Smiling to themselves, they cram the musical instrument as far into the back of their wardrobe as it will go, pack their fire-eating torch and box of matches into a hold-all and head off for Circus Skills club.
So it was with great pleasure that last weekend, Nigel and I went to Bristol to watch Perran in a performance of the Nutcracker, and discovered how much, after all these years he still loves ballet.