Every now and then on a saturday Phelps would come into the common room and without checking to see whether I was in there or not, casually announce in a lethargic and most uninterested tone that "Downes, you've got visitors, anyone seen my pipe......"

Now apart from my mum, and her bloke Reg of course, super sop from the Old Kent Road, I couldn't possibly imagine that anybody would actually get up one morning, announce over breakfast that today we are going to visit Dizzy D at his school, bath, clean their teeth, comb their hair, change into their sunday best (a challenging undertaking at best that required much concentration and head scratching as any relation that I might have known would never have had a sunday best that looked any different to any other day of the week )board a vast number of different buses whether they were going in the right direction or not until one dropped them off somewhere within 5 miles of Kingham and a 6 mile slog to the Hill that would eventually lead them, and much to their dissappointment - to me.

Whenever I met these supposed relations, I asked then what any KH boy would have asked a vistor, relation, public enemy, whatever, whoever - "Hi, I'm Diz, who the hell are you and all sweets, comics and girlie mags gladly received" - then they would leave by the way they had come, or thought they had come, wondering who I was, how I got there, and who in the family could possibly be resposible for such a boy and in particular, his haircut, disputable legs even when viewed from front or back,and with a multitude of patches where his trousers ought to be.

However, on one occasion some bloke and a women imaginatively called Ted and Dot, came a calling, said they were my Uncle and Aunt from my dad's side who was dead and therefore not available to prove otherwise, spent the whole day and all of the next trying to convince me what a cute kid I was - which was perfectly true of course, but only when a large bag of gobstoppers were in the offering - and a future world leader in the making and, of course, once again perfectly true and no relation I knew ever got anything right even once during the day, let alone twice so it looked like a future cute looking world leader was a possibility after all.

So, it was never an easy undertaking for any visitors to the Hill as all the boys looked the same - grey and lifeless that only responded to comics, sweets and a swift fag or ten and one for later and there was this one occasion - and probably many more like it - where a visiting uncle and aunt were entertaining who they thought was their nephew plying him with sweets, massive slaps of chocolate, fags, cash, in fact anything that the boy wanted only to discover just before they left that they had been mollycoddling some one elses cute kid and guess who he was ?


Dizzy D

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