Every day, Astrid walked through Tegnérlunden to her job at Rabén & Sjögren. One day, she saw a little boy sitting there alone on a bench as dusk was coming on.

When she was asked in a radio interview how the story came to be, Astrid described it like this: “Mio, My Son – well that’s actually a short story I wrote and I don’t really know how I came up with it, but it did begin in Tegnérlunden. I was walking through Tegnérlunden when I noticed a little boy on a park bench and that got me thinking that … well, perhaps he lives in that house over there. And then I began to let my thoughts wander a bit about that, and about why he was sitting there. I imagined that the genie in the bottle came, and that he flew away then to Farawayland I never intended to write anything more than that, though, and the story was published in a magazine. Then, several years later I began to wonder how life was for him over there. Did he have anyone to be with, now that he no longer had Ben whom he used to play with back home on Tegnérgatan.”

© Ilon Wikland