#16 – How I became an Adult Fan of LEGO (AFOL), by Petter L – Norway

I spent my childhood as many other kids –  building with Lego a lot. I think it was my favorite toy.

Since I had a few health problems early on, I was not that active as other kids at my age. So my favourite past-time was Lego.

I got older and maybe in my father’s eyes I should have had other interests beside Lego. So my dad told me to pack it away – and the plan became to give it away to the child hospital ward where I had been a few times. After this happened, I felt for a long time that my dad didn’t want me to play with LEGO.

You may think that my LEGO Dark Ages came – the time where I had to quit playing with Lego and find other interests. But no, my Lego building passion went into Technic sets. It was more a young adult type of Lego. I only bought large sets that I liked and built – and then would hide them away in the basement.

Around 2012, I found myself at a LEGO crossroads. Should I keep building the new Technic sets or quit building LEGO altogether? I think the one thing preventing me from quitting were the Modular House sets. I bought the Pet store and I was hooked. Oh how I missed that little brick – my love for LEGO was back. 

And the LEGO that was supposed to be given away, was still in my basement.

So in late 2012, I found my way to the local Lego User Group (LUG). They had an event coming up soon in Trondheim, a city in another part of my country. Having never been to any Lego events, I decided to attend. I didn’t have the courage to tell my father I was going to a Lego event. I had a feeling that it would not end well, so I just told him ‘I’m going to Trondheim’. But when I posted the LEGO event on Facebook, my dad saw it – and the cat was out of the bag. But, to my surprise, he took it well and told me that I was more than old enough to decide my own hobbies. E even offered to give me a lift to LEGO events!

And then I took an extra step. Some colleagues at work knew about my LEGO hobby.

One day in 2014, I got an idea to turn some of my work into a LEGO model. I was servicing the rent bike racks. So, I made a model based on that in Lego –  a rack, and the two service cars.

Photo by author

I later showed a picture of this to my manager – a few moments later it was posted to everyone in the company. I was not that happy about that but OK – at least I could finally tell everyone about my hobby.

This is my trip from packing my LEGO away in a basement… to becoming a proud Adult Fan of Lego. Today I have fun with Lego, building my own creations and collecting sets. I no longer have worries about my father. My mother loved LEGO from the start and my father learned to accept it.

LEGO helped me in so many ways. And that’s why, still today, it is my favorite toy in the whole wide world.

Petter L, Norway