Lincoln players celebrate after beating Ipswich 1-0 in the FA Cup
It was an extraordinary run of matches that still put a tingle down my spine when I think of them.
I was 11 years old and I can still recall that feeling on the Friday afternoon of school, counting down the minutes until our match that night in the third round against the big guns of First Division Norwich.
We drew 1-1 before sensationally winning the replay 1-0. We then knocked out Blackburn in the fourth round before two more top-flight teams after replays – Chelsea and Middlesbrough. It was just pure magic.
Such highs and equally such lows…when Orient lost 3-0 in the semi-final to Arsenal at Stamford Bridge. But what emotion, what a time it was.
It is why when the FA Cup weekends come around, I still love the competition.
Plymouth Argyle took 8,600 fans to Liverpool in the FA Cup third round
I don't pine for the past – times have to move on – but I still embrace every moment of it because football cannot be only about money.
There has to be some romance, otherwise what do supporters of clubs such as Orient have left?
We only have to look at the last round for proof of that.
When League Two Plymouth travelled the 292 miles from home to Anfield, they took 8,600 fans with them, while on the same weekend as non-League Lincoln went to Championship Ipswich, their support was 4,838, a record away crowd for Portman Road since it became an all-seater ground.
Both earned famous draws, with Plymouth losing the replay 1-0 to Liverpool, while Lincoln dramatically beat Ipswich 1-0 in the last minute and now face Championship leaders Brighton tomorrow.
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Try telling those supporters that the FA Cup does not mean anything any more.
Of course money plays such a big part and Jason Cundy is absolutely right in that the game has evolved and I understand his side of the argument, as will so many fans.
But equally I wonder how many 11-year-old Plymouth and Lincoln fans have just had their best footballing moments like I did in 1978?
You could not put a price on that.
When clubs outside, say, the top two divisions start the season, the prospect of who they might draw in the FA Cup is one of the most exciting prospects of what lies ahead.
It is why the first and second rounds hold such importance for those teams. They are among the key, big matches of the season because ahead is that third-round draw and the dream of a trip to one of the glamour boys.
And should the lower division team win that, the possibility of what comes next just intensifies the excitement.
For the record, Leyton Orient were smashed 6-0 at Sheffield United in the first round in November but that has not stopped me dreaming of what next season might bring.
A dream that grew into a reality 39 years ago and little in watching football since then has matched that.
Thanks to the FA Cup.