Tony Allen: And finally... Age concern ​

Oct 11 | 2023

Life is an age related condition! Who said that? No idea but it might have been me.

Tony AllenAll I can say is that this epithet occurred to me the other day when I was getting out of the bath and it took me so long to do so that I decided to give it up in future and resort to a ‘shower only’ existence. It’s fair to say that I’d finally pulled the plug on what had always been an enjoyable part of my life.

So anyway here I am, wallowing in what can accurately be called the Octogenarian stage of my progress – and whilst it doesn’t mean that I have developed an additional six legs, I can literally remember the time when the act of being subjected to such an advanced age was so far ahead that it simply would never happen. Now I seem to spend my whole life putting out the refuse bins and what’s more, I can never seem to remember whether it’s landfill or recycle. It’s just simply a load of rubbish. Thank goodness for the Internet.

At my late Dad’s 80th birthday party someone asked him what was the good thing about being 80. He swiftly replied: “Knowing that you’ve made it that far!”  These were wise words which I can now fully sympathise with.

But there is no doubt that time really does fly as you get older. I’m not sure why this is, something to do with familiarity and percentages I believe. All I know is that as soon as I’ve finished one of these articles it seems to be time for another and consequently I’ve got our revered editor breathing down my neck.

The main requirement in life as you progress through it, is to remain positive. This can be difficult; I think that I’m positive, but sometimes I’m not quite sure. It has been said that one of the certainties in life is that you won’t necessarily like the world that you are living in during the last 15% of it. I’m not going to comment on this as sometimes my grandchildren read these articles and I value their friendship.

I’m not sure if it is my age but everything seems to be so complicated nowadays. I drive a car that I thought would see me out. One advantage of advancing years is that we are not so concerned with impressing the world by having a new vehicle every couple of years, but now my beloved diesel automobile is being insouciantly subjected to the vehicular equivalent of being burnt at the stake.

“Dad, you really should be getting yourself an electric car,” said my son, “you’ll find things a lot easier.”

Quite frankly I don’t find my existing car difficult, can’t I wait until I’m 90? Anyway I don’t feel old and nor does my car. In fact most days I feel full of the joys of something or other, whatever it’s called.

I have no problem with the Internet but some do of course. I was talking to a friend of mine the other day and we were complaining about the banks closing in the High Street. ‘Disgusting’ we thought, until he admitted that he hadn’t been into his bank since the height of COVID days, and neither had I for that matter, so really you can’t blame them.

Which reminds me. I once came out of my bank when an oldish gentleman came up to me and asked how I was. I then replied that I was fine and asked how he was, and he said he was fine. Then we both tentatively asked how our respective families were; and so on until he finally asked how it was I new him. I then replied that I’d never seen him before in my life and why did he come up to me in the first place? He retorted that I’d smiled at him, and I in turn said that I smiled at everyone. We then shook hands and went our separate ways. I’ve never ever seen him again since. Funny old life!

I was going to tell you about my calamitous visit to the remaining pharmacy in town but I find that it’s not good for my blood pressure.

Anyway I don’t really mind being the age that I am and I try to maintain a routine in my life which I think is most essential. A daily walk is most important to keep the joints ‘oiled’ and I still go to the gym, or to put it another way, I still pay the membership fee.

Anyway, I must go as I’ve got to put the bins out. So just remember you young folk that when it comes to advancing years, getting there can be fun but actually arriving is the best bit.

Photo: Tony Allen.