Saturday, 2 April 2016

It's been How Many Years!?

It's amazing how quickly the weeks fly by.  I didn't notice so much when we first arrived in France. There was so much to do.  So many 'firsts'.  The garden was a jungle and the house, our house,  a renovation project.  There was no time to wonder where the time went, in fact I don't think it even crossed my mind.  I spent whole days digging out a place for the decking, weeding flower beds and visiting garden centres to find out about plants.  Add to this the excitement I felt as a new author: I could lose hours sitting at my desk writing stories on my laptop.  I'd never been an author before!  Then there were the boys' sporting activities:  Football training and matches on Saturdays and Sundays - I loved every minute, standing on the sidelines cheering and enjoying the beautiful rural settings, and knowing that I was lucky.  So many new things to do.

Things began to slow after the first two or three years. Something else took over. There is an urgency that comes with age.  When years pass by and bring big changes; a kind of panic that makes every moment of 'now' more precious.  Because 'now' is very quickly going to become 'then'.  With my daughter about to buy a share in her first house and my eldest son in his first year at university, I'm already preparing for when my youngest will no longer arrive home on the school bus, starving and ready for his cake and milk.  It seems like yesterday when we hooked up our trailer and left home for a family adventure in France.

Half way there.  Tired but excited.

There are psychologists who explain why time goes faster as you get older.  I studied some of their texts at university.  I remember some of the theories put forward, but not the names of the authors.  I also remember wondering what all the fuss was about.  At the age of twenty-two I was having the time of my life: staying up all night talking, falling in love, planning a summer in France, playing netball and doing headstands in yoga.  Life was never dull.  Also, I had most of it ahead of me, with so many things I wanted to do.  The theory?  That life is more boring when you are older.  That there are no more 'firsts'.  And that's how we measure time: between memorable experiences.  Apparently.

I don't know whether it's more boring.  I can't say I feel bored.  But when I clean the shower room for the umpteenth time, or peel a pan of potatoes to roast, or fold the washing again and again, I am aware that time is used up by routine activities more when you are older than when you are young.

My husband and I have just had lunch at the restaurant next door.  He put on nice clothes and a jacket.  I put on a dress, some make up and a bit of jewellery.  We chatted and ate delicious food, drank delicious wine. He said we should take a short break with our son during his school holidays in February.  To Rome, perhaps.

This would be a first.  An important event.  The onus is on me to find the hotel and price the flights.  It would be easy not to go.  After all, there is the washing to do and the potatoes to peel.  The house to clean and the shopping to do.  Oh, and my writing.  I could add a hundred activities to the list of things I've done a hundred times and will do another hundred times before the end of the year.

But I've never been to Rome...

Last year, somewhere in France

Happy Days.

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