I was once again reminded of my age (31) whilst on holiday, celebrating my brother’s eighteenth birthday. His eighteenth birthday.
Now 31 might sound old to some of you or actually quite young to others – it depends what side of the hill you’re sitting on. But I’m quite a young 31 (for young read immature). I’m not married and I don’t have children or a mortgage. My boyfriend of eight years only moved in last year and the idea of kids still seems faintly ridiculous though I do really like them (same wavelength). I still call adults ‘adults’ even though, technically, I am one (I say it in the same way a teenager bunking off school might). I frequently drive around with my friends listening to Limp Bizkit or Oxide and Neutrino. I innocently asked once whether this would be lame once we reached our 40s. I was bluntly told “it’s lame now”. And I know I wouldn’t buy condoms unless there was self-service (supermarket self-service, I don’t mean some grotty, dented machine that you know won’t work anyway).
My point is in my head I still feel…maybe 24 or 25? Independent but not responsible. So anyway me (31), my boyfriend (29 – bastard), my sister and her boyfriend (both around the 23 mark) and my tiny, weeny little brother (18) went to Amsterdam for the weekend and because it’s a popular place for holidays and the whole coffee shop thing and people going away and causing trouble etc., tourists get ID’ed a lot. Except me apparently because every place we visited the conversation basically went like this –
(surly doorman) “ID please.”
(all of us) *go to get our ID*
(surly doorman to me) “Just them, not you.”
(me) *looks round at everyone laughing on the outside but crying on the inside*
It reminded me of the first time I ever felt ‘old’ and a real age defining moment of my life. I still remember it so clearly and how dismayed I felt (and still do now in a way). I was standing outside Nandos in Chelmsford (standard procedure) waiting for some friends to have dinner when a group of young teens came up the high street, fast on skateboards and bikes. I heard –
“be careful there’s a lady standing there”
And I quickly realised they meant me. No longer was I girl, nope – I was a lady. Sounds ridiculous (I know I’m being ridiculous) but it felt like a pinnacle moment as it dawned me how the youngsters saw me now – as an adult.
Very polite lads though I must say (am I showing my age by saying that?).