The Top – or Gasing, in Malay – was one of our favourite childhood toys. It had body of wood that had been turned in a lathe machine, and then later a piece of nail was hammered into the pointed end of the body.
To play, a thin-gauge rope was wound lovingly around the nail and then up onto the sloping part of the body. A smart throw-out of the wound-up toy onto the ground, with whipping action, would send it spinning like a gyroscope.
The free end of rope usually had a bottle cap attached, to provide good anchoring for the fingers.
Yep, the rope did make the wood go round ! BTW, it is said that the best wood was that from guava tree.
With some practice, the spinning top could be coaxed with the rope to jump onto one’s palm – albeit a bit ticklish.