Chris Packham reveals the reality of living with Asperger’s – and his “romantic plan” to be reunited with his dogs after he dies
Since Itchy died, Packham has devised what he calls “my romantic plan”. Itchy’s body is in cold storage in a barn beside the cottage, and when Scratchy dies, the two will be cremated.
“After I die I’ll also be cremated, and we’ll all be mixed together and chucked out in the woods,” says Packham cheerfully. “Then the three of us can become something joyous in the place we’ve loved so greatly. You must see it.”
Wellingtons are found and we head out into the autumn air. In truth it is these woods that are the real key to Packham’s peace of mind. “There’s a tremendous amount I like about having Asperger’s,” he says. “I can remember things. You don’t want to play me at Trivial Pursuit. It’s just retentive memory, not intelligence, but if I’ve read it, I can regurgitate it.
“If there were a cure for Asperger’s, I don’t know if I’d want it. Humanity has prospered because of people with autistic traits. Without them, we wouldn’t have put man on the Moon or be running software programs. If we wiped out all the autistic people on the planet, I don’t know how much longer the human race would last.