I started writing this in those distant days before the dreaded virus hit us! Now that the first feelings of shell-shock and fear have dissipated somewhat and the human spirit is beginning to triumph in lots of small ways I thought that I would attempt to finish this and then moving forward try to find some humour in social distancing! So here goes with the blog I started all those weeks ago.
I love my grandchildren, they are full of enthusiasm and energy and sometimes some of it rubs off. At whatever age you are the urge to jump in a puddle should never go away. And children’s jokes don’t change – bums and farts are always funny. And seeing things through children’s eyes can bring back memories of a distant childhood. But then…there are the things that make you feel hundred years old. The fact that happened ‘the other day’ in my mind turns out to be something that they are learning in history. However, even to me it seems extraordinary that I was actually an adult when homosexuality was still punishable by a prison sentence. As for language – the ‘N’ word was in common usage – you could go into any haberdashers and ask for a skein of wool in ‘N’ brown. How weird is that? I get that a lot of things that happened in my lifetime are not being taught as history in school. So how did it happen? How did I get this old? I still feel just the same and am quite surprised that people don’t ask for my ID when I am buying a bottle of wine! I know that I look like a very old lady to my grandchildren but apparently I look like a very old lady to everyone. Grandchildren do keep you young in a sense, but when I text – using one finger and imagine that I am pretty modern – they snigger as they text using both their dexterous little thumbs. And if I need to do anything with my phone – the smart one that is far smarter than I am – then the grandchildren can do in a nano second what takes me hours of Googling and searching You Tube to work out. Same applies to my PC, my car and even household gadgets. I have a vacuum cleaner that has an IQ higher than mine. I like to think that I can still ski – I was never very proficient, but I do enjoy it and the mountains and it is wonderful to go to the mountains with all the family including the children who are very kind, but incredibly patronising, when they say ‘Well done Granny, you did really well there’, when I have negotiated a green run without falling over.
And to round off there are two things I read recently that reminded my how much time has passed since I was young. The first was from Jeremy Paxman who said ‘I explained that once upon a time we used to write with ink and then pressed absorbent paper on to it to stop it smudging. It was as if I was explaining Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle to my dog Derek’. He was trying to buy blotting paper!
The second was that apparently nearly two thirds of Millennials can’t work out how an iron works! So I suppose it is, as always, horses for courses. And in these uncertain times we need to pool our skills and help each other. Let us all try to stay safe and well and get the next generation to help us FaceTime, WhatsApp, Zoom – anything else we can do to say in touch and stop us being lonely.