Furnished Early In Books
(It's summer 1958, in my grandmother's garden. More than fifty years ago. But the first commercial nuclear power station had begun operation in Britain two years before; it was a year after Francis Crick had laid out the 'central dogma' - the relationship between DNA, RNA, and proteins that underpins molecular biology - and the replication mechanism of DNA's double helix had just been confirmed by the Meselson-Stahl experiment; Christopher Cockerell had just unveiled the first hovercraft; there were more households owning TVs than radio-only households; IBM had just made its first computer; there were Russian and American satellites in orbit.
(In short, just as I was learning to enjoy and understand books, modernity was everywhere. It was only natural to grow up expecting aircars, unlimited electrical power, space stations, and moonbases to be just around the corner.)