By Nicholas Stanley
I remember screaming into Mrs. Greene’s lap. on my first day at Unicorn School.
I remember the terrifying tyre tower in the playground.
I remember Will and Callum saying I could be Misty in their Pokémon game, and not knowing that was a girl.
I remember Mrs Walcott telling us our hair would blow off if we didn’t dry it after swimming. I remember scoring my one and only goal against Harrodian.
I remember stuffy mornings filled with sound of rummaging through the Lego box.
I remember being the only kid in the class without Nike 90 trainers.
I remember palmfuls of VO5 wax and sticky foreheads.
I remember Molly Carr telling me she liked me in the Wendy House and not knowing why that was so exciting.
I remember balcony cricket and stubbed big toes.
I remember Adam being sick down the front of his lifejacket in Portsmouth Harbour.
I remember the fog of Lynx Africa hanging in the air in the boys changing room.
I remember kick of death in room 17.
I remember school blazers for goalposts and black Clark’s shoes that could curl a football round corners.
I remember missing lunch because it was last goal wins.
I remember stealing Pernod and Fruit Shoot Orange from the drinks cabinet and running down to Silver Beach.
I remember vowing to never drink again. Again and again.
I remember banging our cutlery on tea trays when someone dropped their plate in the lunch hall.
I remember every person in detention having been put there by Mrs Roberts. I remember stealing FHM from James’s brother.
I remember getting my KD on COD to 0.99 then quitting.
I remember the smell of Maoams on Sophie Williams’s breath.
I remember counting seven stars lying on the “comfy concrete”.
I remember Via Cesare Buono being the loneliest place in the world and Carrer del Carmé being a haven.
I remember the hot air that comes out of the top of a wetsuit.
I remember Quadrapop on a Sony Ericsson Walkman Phone.
I remember Come On Eileen at 11 o’clock every Thursday night.
I remember wearing my Bestival wristband for a whole year until it began to rot, and still not throwing it away.
I remember Samir Nasri scoring at Villa Park.
I remember spin the bottle and sand in my pocket.
I remember sending the Soulja Boy ringtone via infrared.
I remember the Guinea Pigs being stolen from their cage by a fox and not being able to tell Emma because she was too young.
I remember reading a eulogy.
I remember telling a room of strangers a story about myself that even my family had not heard.
I remember missing a phone call. And I remember returning the call later. I remember another first day of school.
I remember everything that has come since.