You know you’re getting old when you have to scroll down for ten minutes to find your year of birth on a questionnaire. You know you’re getting old when, after refusing to buy a group of teenagers a packet of fags, they scream ‘old bag’ at you as you walk away. You know you’re getting old when you’re the only person waiting for the green man to appear at the lights, even though the road is completely empty.
I’m not sure when you suddenly become ‘old’ – once you were that teenager, dancing away in the pub without a care in the world. Fast forward thirty years and you’ve suddenly become one of those married couples who sit together, staring into space with absolutely nothing to say. Of course there are some benefits of growing older, like how wonderfully practical and resourceful you become. People applaud Bear Grylls for his survival skills, but if Bear Grylls can survive a six hour car journey with two vomiting grandchildren and a six year old who insists on only listening to ‘Spongebob Squarepants’ Greatest Hits (19 hits, to be exact) then he’s a better man than I am.
You know you’re getting old when you go to rock concerts or any music concerts. Twenty years ago I used to get there about three hours too early so that I could get as near to the stage as possible. I wanted to be so close to the band that I could hear the band breathe and feel their sweat splash my face. These days as soon as I get to a concert I find my comfort zone- and that zone is right at the back! I’m usually so far back at a concert I could’ve stayed at home. But the thought of bouncing around with people the same age as my children is about as appealing as boiling my own eyeballs.
You know you are getting old when you turn into Cinderella and staying up past midnight loses all of its magic!! After a few hours standing up all you really want to do is sit back down again and find somewhere warm and comfortable to be, like home, you want to be back home. After midnight, everything loses its majestic appeal, riches turn to rags, and Cinderella really wishes she could trade places with sleeping beauty.
You know you’re getting old when you are more careful with money and you can’t leave the house without taking a packed lunch or drink with you. It’s just that everything is so expensive these days and I break out in a sweat, not a menopausal one, if I’m forced to purchase a ‘real’ meal somewhere without a discount voucher or on a special two for one menu. I always feel like consulting my bank if I ever buy cinema popcorn or pop, just in case they think there’s been an illegal transactions because it’s so pricey. And you can forget wasting money on souvenirs because I have a degree in how to get out of a gift shop without buying anything.
Maybe I am generalising and age is just a number, but we must remember there’s a fine line between young and old. One day you’re worrying about how white your teeth are, and the next day you don’t care what colour they are, you’re just worried about where you put them!