There was a time I believed I might fly. A long time between around age 14 to, at a guess, age 28. I would run along my road, Warrington Road in Bristol, as fast as I possibly could and do the longest long jump I could. I would stay airborne for as long as I could, tucking up my legs to avoid contact with the ground, until I really had to. Soon, I would master this and I’d be flying home.
The fact of gravity never fazed me. Just like I would never die, or get a serious illness, it was just a matter of time. Some days, if I concentrated hard enough, I’d actually defy the fact of gravity. If my leap had been measured, I’d have broken the world record. When I landed, it was not because I couldn’t fly. It was because my concentration wasn’t good enough.
Later, when I went to bed, I’d lie there wondering how to achieve that perfect jump. I would ride that invisible wave maybe halfway along the street. I never made it that far, yet there were times I almost believed I was so desperately close.
If Noel Gallagher could later write a load of gobbledegook about living forever, then my dreams of flight were far more believable. I knew there was probably no God, but I didn’t need a God to fly. I would soon be able to turn seconds in the air to minutes. It was only a matter of time.
These days, I can barely run at all, thanks to the ravages of time and the injuries of sport past. Still, though, in the back of my mind, I know I can fly.