Not old, just older

I bumped into an old acquaintance yesterday evening who had moved out of the area a number of years ago.

We got chatting about times gone past and how things haves changed as we have got older, different responsibilities, different hobbies, wanting to go to home to bed rather than having just one more beer. I am coming up to 36 and he is just shy of 40. We stopped short of saying we are old, but couldn’t get away from the fact that we are older.

It stirred my memory and reminded me of a question I wrote about a few years ago.

Is “old” always “just older”?

When I started school at 5, the children in the top year were old. They were only 11. I moved to secondary school at 11, again the children who were in the top year were old. They were only 16. The teachers even older. I started my first “proper” job at 18. My colleagues in their late 20’s were all old.

At 35 I do not think of myself as old. But ask younger colleagues and I suspect they would have a different opinion.

What do I consider “old” now?

I hesitate to answer, but it is a lot older than the answer my 18-year-old self would have given.

Does the bar for what is “old” continually move as we get older?

In 15 years time I fully suspect my answer again will be very different.

But we cannot stop ourselves getting older, at least not yet.

All day drinking sessions are replaced by BBQs or picnics, with children outnumbering adults at least two-to-one. The thought of a week in Ayia Napa is truly terrifying. Yes we have greater responsibilities but with that often comes greater choice and purpose. We become that little bit wiser instead of just thinking we are wise. We learn to appreciate the things we once took for granted.

I fully expect my 50 year old self to think he is wise, looking back at my 35 year old self who just thought he was.

Is there a point to my blog post?

Not as much as I would have liked. But if nothing else, it’s just to remember: like a fine wine, it just keeps getting better all the time.

Photo by Martin Reisch on Unsplash

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