Oh, the memory! Or maybe I should say, Woe, the memory!!! When I was 5 or 6, I used to tinker a little with my paternal grandparents' upright. When I turned 7 I was hit with a brief illness that caused a high fever. My mother said that I must have been delirious because I kept repeating that if I had a piano I could play it. Well, the next day my mother called her mother who insisted that my parents fetch a piano for me straight away.
One day it arrived. It was a 19th century Chickering square grand.
I hated it!
The touch was extremely light and the tone was forte-piano-ish. The tuner was quite elderly, and when a repair was needed on this piano, in fixing one part, another would inevitably break. He would visibly start to shake. He very soon retired, as I believe this Chickering gave him a nervous condition. Without the tuner I tuned the Chickering myself using a combination of a roller-skate key and a screwdriver for leverage to turn the key on the pins. (In those days one had to be resourceful.) As it turned out, the piano was actually on loan with the understanding that if the owner wanted it back, we'd have to relinquish it. Well, she recalled the piano and I thought "Halleluja!!!" What came next into the living room was a 1923 Ivers & Pond baby grand which I had tried out first. It didn't have an exciting tone, but at least it was affordable and serviceable and got me through years of lessons until I left for university. In my 30s I bought an old 1924 Steinway M and in 1984 traded the Steinway against a new Baldwin L which I still play.
P.S. The old Ivers & Pond baby grand still exists in Massachusetts. It's in my parents last home, now vacant except for the piano and bench. No doubt it's lonely, but it needs a LOT of work. If anyone would like to have it, just send a PM to me.