Monday, May 08, 2017

Dateline London

Marville Road, SW6
I am struck once again by the opulence of the modern Dijon railway station, so much better in almost every way than the one I can remember from thirty years ago. The only thing missing is an escalator to lift the ageing population up to platform level. Since most of us now fall into that  category and since platform level is where we want to be, this is an important point on the debit side., but still... To continue for a moment in a carping vein, I think the Eurostar is about due for an upgrade. It's increasingly only fit for sardines.

Back on "home" territory once more, I cannot fail to be impressed by the sheer wealth of central London. Pedestrians are wearing the very latest in Italian fashion, and waiters, shopkeepers, etc. are genuinely pleased to see me as long as I'm buying something.

But enough of this flippery.The truth is I feel lost as never before. I am just too slow to keep up with the pace of modern life and conversation. Given a choice, for example, between the comfort of the modern railway station, automobile, hotel and so on  and the same thing of thirty years ago, I'm  sure that none of us of my age in the prosperous West  would hesitate for even a second. I can conceive of someone in his 'fifties, weighed down by the cares of life, looking forward to the limited horizons of old age, but I  would so much rather go back to a time when I was mentally more alert. It would be nice  to be nimbler too and there is no doubt that I  would feel  better in myself if I  were not so chronically stiff and deaf. I'm not complaining and I'm not whining; it happens to everyone. It's just that what I can only describe as old age has crept up on me  suddenly and caught me unawares.Just before I close this vexed question, and as a glimpse into the mind of the person writing this blog, I  have to report that I have forgotten my pin code TWICE in the course of two weeks. B. Capel-Dunn, 72 not out, retired hurt!


  1. Papa, you are perfect. Just be you and let us spoil you a bit. We all love you xxx

  2. Anonymous12:34 pm

    I don't know if it is particularly our family genes but certainly I was surprised to find how much "older" I seemd to become as soon as I entered my seventies. In my mind, though, I am still quite nimble and I even remember words, so perhaps that will have to be enough. You won't have noticed but over here we have a daft Tory MP who is suggesting OAPs should harvest fruit crops in place of immigrant labour, and as a sweetener to the farmers he suggests they should be paid less than the minimum wage. Go on, count your blessings!

  3. Age 72 Barnaby! I was 68 this week so our paths did perhaps cross at Beaumont after all.

    A wonderful comment like the one above, surely means that you have no need to be concerned about age?

    My own daughter is training for a biathlon (cycling and running miles around Richmond Park) competition. Coincidentally I have been taking my ancient bicycle around Richmond Park, returning over more rugged Wimbledon Common, to avoid road traffic. The first effort was painful but that has since transformed to being absorbing almost fun.
    Cycling is more popular in France however so apologies if I am preaching to the converted.

  4. Thank you for your very kind comment, Jerry. It's nice to think of you negotiating Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common on your bike. I have a very vague memory of playing a little golf with my stepfather when I was a boy at Beaumont, but have scarcely played since I moved over here. I think the Tour de France is coming quite near us this year. Of course, they're all on drugs you know! All the best to you and your family.


Can You Hear me Mother?

I'm just going to post this entry without further ado and to do and see what, if anything, comes out in the wash!