Remember those racy first days of early adulthood when, in the rare moments when you stopped drinking shots and eyeing up inappropriate boys long enough to consider your future, the idea of turning 30 seemed like an utter age away?
Yet here we all are – and when I say we, I’m talking about my brilliant friends like Kim Willis and I – hitting our thirties left right and centre. [Note: I’m actually only 29-and-four-months.]
Anyway, I hear that turning 30 makes you go all retrospective, like: “*sigh* I was pretty sure I’d have travelled the entire world / learned how to tell my left from my right / become the editor of Marie Claire by now.”
But I’m pleased to report that this appears not to be the case for us Doyles. Nope, we don’t look back with regret, we look forward in the giddy and sometimes unfounded knowledge that we’ll tick off our bucket list, whatever the age.
Take my dad, for example. He’s had approximately 597 operations on his knee, which he ruined playing too much sport as a whipper snapper back in the 1800’s. But has that stopped him hurtling down mountains during ski season? No siree. Did it make him think twice about learning how to ride a motorbike in his 40s? No.
In fact, it seems my parent’s outlook on life is to be getting younger, not older. My mum enjoys saying ‘OMG’ and likes to pooh pooh my attempts at healthy living. I got this text from her recently: ‘Hi, hope you’ll be off the wagon when you visit for my birthday? Posh champagne already in fridge.’
All this youthful behaviour is having a knock-on effect on me, I’ve become more grown up to compensate. I draw my dad a map of how to safely navigate the treacherous five minute journey to the tube station when he comes to visit, complete with tiny drawings of local landmarks like The Pub, My House and A Tunnel. I KNOW he can get there by himself, but I like to be sure.
I’ve started barking instructions to taxi drivers whenever putting a parent in a cab, to ensure they aren’t overcharged. And I insist my mum texts me when she gets home after we meet for food, just so I know she’s safe.
So, the tides have turned. As I embark on being responsible and working up the career ladder, the elders get to chill out, act like youths and reap what they’ve already sowed.
But does that stop me accepting £10 off my dad ‘to treat myself to something nice’? Hell no! I’m only 29-and-four-months, after all.