Living at Pauls & johns
When I did the custodian job at 251 Mendips and 20 forthlin road it was very easy to do because it felt unreal to me.
I would meet the tour bus (four times a day) at the gate of Mendips and let them in introducing myself and the house that's run by the national trust. From the front garden I would point out the bus stop where poor Julia Lennon was heading for that fateful day she was knocked down and killed by an off duty policeman on July 15th 1958 whilst John was waiting for his mum at her house in No1 Blomfield road...he was there because he had an argument with his aunt Mimi and stormed out of Mendips.
The other direction of menlove avenue I would point out the stone steps down onto the pavement from the park where Paul and john had walked many times going to each other's houses.
I would walk the tourists down the side of the house pointing out the hedge at the bottom of the garden where young john Lennon would push himself through to get to strawberry fields, next i would show them into the kitchen where I told a story about john and his friends calling round to see him.
Once in the house I would tell stories about Mimi, George and of course john asking them for any questions whilst moving through the house.
On one of the tours one day was pete best cousin, when I showed her a very early photograph of the beatles framed on the wall in the back room with Pete best sat between john and Paul she couldn't get over it and told me that she would tell Pete when she saw him next.
After the last tour had left the house I would waved the tourists off and walk back into the empty house where I was living and sleeping for security reasons.
I would sit down with a cup of tea with thoughts of john running around the house as a child. Later on I would be staring out of his window at the steps that Paul would walk from the living onto menlove avenue, sitting there became so surreal I started looking back at myself like an out of body experience was happening.
The same feelings where experienced at forthlin road when I stood in for the custodian job, living and sleeping at Pauls. It was as if Paul was still there possibly because in every room of the house there are pictures of Paul practising and writing songs with john, there are photographs of him on his own or with his mother, father or brother, even one of him climbing up the drainpipe in the back garden and one of him sat in a deck chair in the garden as well.
All these photographs were taken by mike his brother, which makes the whole house come alive, even though it does go back in time.
The world had no idea that the lad that lived here would become a member of the biggest band in the world, and the most successful music writer ever.
When Paul McCartney used to wake up every morning and look out the window of his small bedroom at 20 forthlin road. He started to get tired of seeing girls that had camped out all night in his front garden or seeing them sat on the bonnet of his car pulling at the wing mirrors or the ariel, trying to get something that Paul McCartney owned.
In the end he managed to rent a garage in the next street, so that when he got back after a gig he could drive round to his secret garage and living up, out of sight squeeze down the side of the garage and the adjoining privets climb over the fence, walk over the field at the back of the police training school then climb over his own fence at forthlin road onto the back of his garden unseen by any fans....