When I was a child, even quite a small child I would often entertain myself with playing patience, the card game. I wasn’t a lonely child, I was close to my sister and we played together, but I was also good at entertaining myself and doing things on my own. I had books to read and to write in, and drawing books and pencils and paints and crayons, I had a second-hand Meccano set, but I liked to play cards, so I played patience. I played sevens – where you lay one card up and six more face down, then the row would be of six cards, then five etc. I also played clock patience, and if I got bored with that then I would play a game as if with someone else and deal the imaginary person a hand… I didn’t play snap, that was too impossible, but I played the one which started with the seven of diamonds… I can’t remember what happened next.
The imaginary person would also play Scrabble with me, and I would be really careful not to cheat, trying my hardest to take no notice of what tiles I knew the ‘other’ player had. I would also play Monopoly with myself, but I wasn’t as keen on other board games such as Ludo or Snakes and Ladders.
These days it’s so easy to download games or play on-line, there is no need to have an imaginary Scrabble playing friend because you can find someone or a virtual someone easily. Is something lost by this, or is it the same as what I did as a child? I was in a room on my own with a set of cards, or a board game, is that different from being on my own with a computer?