It all starts with a single brick.
At 8 I had a big box of LEGO bricks. I mean, a big, BIG box.
It was so big that I could easily fit inside the box.I had all kinds of pieces, bricks and LEGO stuff in there. I even had a smaller red box to sort Lego bricks, by color and by shape.
I think it was a box of some sort of appliance my parents bought. I used it to keep my Lego safe from the World (meaning, my dog and other kids).
And it was always the same ritual: I would bend the box slightly so all the pieces could lie on the floor but so that ALL the pieces could be in sight. DO NOT lose any piece was the absolute mantra. Even if I didn’t need it for a build, I would never lose one single brick. Never.
Then, creativity took over and castles, cars, buildings and even ice creams would see the light of the day. In the end, I would put all the pieces back in the big box and close it with that childish feeling that my treasure was safe. Those were the days!!
Many amazing structures were built and destroyed minutes afterwards, but one always stuck with me. The Yellow Tower!
One day, I decided to build the biggest tower one could ever see, meaning a tower that could reach the ceiling of my room — aka the sky.
But not just any tower, it would be a single line with one brick on top of the other straight to the sky. Will it stand? Do I have enough pieces? How many days will I need?
Construction began just after school, making sure no one would enter my room. With the coast clear, the next task was critical: choose the brick. Don´t know why I had so many yellow pieces (maybe it’s one of the most common colors) but this was the one that I had most pieces of. So be it.
Effortlessly with the wind blowing in my hair and looking at my bedroom’s ceiling (AKA the sky), I started to put bricks one on top of the other.
First try: 30 seconds later it fell, didn’t even reach the height of my forehead.
Second try: looking good and steady until someone opened the door and I looked away slightly touching it. Nooooooooo….
Third try: My hands are shaking.
Maybe I need help.
– “Why don’t you do it in sections and then put them together?”
– “What are sections? “ — I was 8…
– “You do one part with 20 bricks and put it on the floor. Then do another one exactly the same, and another, and another. Once you have 6 or 7 sections, let me know and I´ll help you.”
And then again I went. Section by section I was learning that a journey is made of small steps. One after the other just like LEGO bricks, one after the other.
Once I had my sections ready to shine, we started to build it. And we only finished it when it touched the ceiling (almost). And there it was — a single line of yellow bricks from the ground to the ceiling, from down below to the clouds above.
I was 8…
I must have of photo of it somewhere. I still have the box. I still open it sometimes and remember that big tower.
It was tall. It was yellow. It was LEGO.
Diogo Lobo, Lisbon — Portugal