…but who am I really?

We are looking forward to the visit of a couple from the Netherlands. We met on holiday and since they had never been in Scotland, we invited them as guests, so that we could show them round our beautiful country. They have been kept up-to -date with our provisional plans, which include a rather important large birthday party.

They should have no problems handling the English/Scots conversations as they have an excellent knowledge of our language, but I think they were concerned about starting and maintaining a conversation with people about whom little was known. So they asked for some photos and a little background about some of the main participants, including both me and the Lady of the House, so that they did not put their foot into it by saying something wrong (would they understand the phrase ‘putting one’s foot in’, I wonder?).

So what to say? I’ts actually quite difficult in just a few words to sum-up someone you know well, into a matter of a few sentences. Facts on age, jobs, interests, familial relationship etc are useful enough for a passport application, but tells you little about the actual person. So to cut a long story short, it took a while to provide half a dozen brief  synopses of the main participants, without giving-away sensitive information, but still allowing an entry into a discussion at the party.

Worst of all is trying to give a brief, unbiased set of facts about oneself…a sort of miniature autobiography, without appearing to be boastful, and ‘padding’ of one’s intersts. For better or worse, the requested information has been sent.

And to get my own back, I have asked them to do the same for us!

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I’m still young, honest!

I can’t really believe that our younger child is almost 40. In my mind it seems relatively recently that a fair-haired young lad would join his older sister to affect our lives so much. Both grew up in different ways to be excellent adults of whom any parent would be proud so no problems there.

However, there is a parallel, in that wife and I had a joint 40th when we reached that age, in our house, and we can still remember it well! There are also many photos from that time to remind us how we have changed.

And yet, and yet, I still feel young, even with increasing  bodily decrepitude, at least until I look in the mirror! The other strange thing is that I used to look upon older people as founts of wisdom. I now realise that we may have more information stored than  we had 20  or 30 years ago but we do not always have more wisdom.

We obviously wish him well for the future , and hope that he and his contemporaries have as great a life as  my wife and I have had. The party will hopefully be as good as the one we had. But I think I will resist the temptation to compare the photos with those taken when his Mum and I were his age.!

Life begins at……

40-year-candle

It’s a bit weird!…..some of our favourite bloggers are approaching, or have reached, a certain unmentionable age…..in fact one used the fact as the title of her site….and no-one really wants to admit it! 

I actually imagine that it isn’t so long since I, and the Lady of the House were at that stage and we had a large house-party……sideburns and smoking pipes were very-much in evidence! But now that our Daughter has hit that age…..that puts rather a different aspect on this number! She doesn’t look it, I must admit, but neither did her Mum at that age. Maybe there is no such thing as ‘looking one’s age’, or feeling one’s age!

The fact is that we only get one chance at each age….it is a one way street, and it is probably best just to enjoy it as best you can…you can’t turn the clock or calendar back, or halt their progress. You just have to accept that the positive thing called ‘maturity’, brings along with it the baggage called ‘age’.

Some writer once said that he knew that we were all born, lived and would eventually die, but he hoped that the Almighty would have made an exception in his case!……… ‘fraid not.

Life is for living and with all its problems and limitations, this world is a wonderful place; and with all their problems and limitations, other human beings are all we have.

So, Daughter, take on the world as you always have, value your friends highly, hate no-one, don’t be too hard on yourself or others for none of us is perfect, always try to look to the positive side of every event, let yesterday go  gently into history, enjoy today, look eagerly to tomorrow and continue to do good in the world.

Do this and we will continue to be proud of you.

Mum and Dad

Forty etc…..

“Forty Days and forty nights……….”

“Forty years long was I grieved with this generation…”

“Life begins at forty….”

“When forty winters shall beseige thy brow…..”

“Forty years on, when afar and asunder, parted are those who are singing today” (From the Harrow School Song)…….

Writers seem to feel that something special attaches to the number forty. Any dictionary of quotations will give many references if you care to look them up.

This weekend, the Lady of the House, and I celebrated forty years of marriage, and it doesn’t seem as long as that. Actually I have no real idea what 40 years is like! The passage of such a large amount of time can only be assessed in retrospect, but as the time goes on, you do not have any great sensation of such a time approaching.

Only when such an event comes does it actually hit you that this is a milestone which you will not pass again. You may have acquired more acquaintences but you basic friends stay the same. It has been great fun and as long as health is preserved then we hope to see 50 years…..so here’s to the next ten !!