God help me, I'm turning into my mother as I get older

IT WOULD appear I am in imminent and very real danger of becoming the world's most boring person.

This sobering thought occurred to me while I was escaping a bitter winter's day in a warm, comfortable cinema at my local multiplex watching the sumptuous Madame Bovary.

I haven't read the Flaubert novel on which the film is based, so wasn't distracted by the plot inaccuracies that have been much discussed by film critics.

Instead, all I could think of as the doomed Emma emerged like a butterfly from its cocoon, draped in the most gorgeous frocks made of brocades and silks, was "How on earth did they ever get the mud off their hems back then?"

Really? The first time I've been to the cinema in a month and all I can think of is the problems facing laundresses in mid-19th century rural France. How utterly, utterly tedious.

In the same way, I now look out the window at a glorious, breezy, sunny morning and my first thought is to put on a load of my own dirty washing as it's such a perfect day for drying.

In years gone by, I would have been rigging my windsurfer by the lake for a spot of high-speed, adrenaline-filled sailing, and the laundry would have waited for another day. It always does. Still with the laundry obsession, I prefer the smell of freshly folded line-dried sheets to any expensive perfume; if someone could put that scent in a bottle, I'd wear it every day.

When did this transition into my mother take place?

It's been an insidious process. Once I used to always have an emergency pack of condoms in the glove box of my car (a girl never knows when Mr It's Possible He May Be The One might happen by).

Now I have emergency glasses, and not the glamorous designer ones you see in the posters at the optometrist. No, these are the nasty cheapies fitted with magnifying lenses one buys from the pharmacy.

I am very fortunate to not need glasses at all to correct my vision, but I have a feeling that one of these days - sooner, rather than later - that's going to change. Further proof of how boring I've become.

Cocktails, fine wines and very rarely used illicit substances have fallen by the wayside. I now get quite the same sort of rush just standing up from the sofa.

It's inevitable, of course, this ageing process (and the alternative is less than savoury). Every time older friends update me as to some recent manifestation of their own advancing years, it's been decidedly unpleasant - not once have I thought, "Oh wow, that sounds terrific".

Except for the Seniors' Card, of course. Can't wait for that.

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