I never really had an"Elmer". That said, radio was always around at home. My brother was in Electronics in the RAAF, & later became a ship's Radio Officer.(He was mainly at sea or over East, during my first fumblings with radio). What I did have, early on, was the Perth Technical College, where newbies could learn Elementary Electrical Theory, Radio 1, & Radio 2, before branching off to more specialised subjects. My first job was in the Radio Dept of Atkins (WA) as an "assistant storeman", which was good, in that you got to recognise all the common, & some not so common, components, but was "boring as bat faeces" in other ways. The Boss was a prominent local Ham, & many people were building HiFi amplifiers, Electronic Organs, etc. All this activity did create an enthusiasm for Electronics, although as I said earlier, this waned somewhat when I started technical work in that field.