So, my celebration of all things Middle Aged and mature only lasted until Wednesday of this week.
My enjoyment of the view from the brow of the hill lasted but a transient moment before I lost my footing and found myself hurtling down the other side towards degeneracy, using my perfectly formed buttocks as a makeshift toboggan.
As said Daryl Hannah put it in Bladerunner – “accelerated decrepitude”.
How did this come to pass?
The first, which due to the secrets act both official and unofficial I can’t reveal to you in any detail, has had me shifting, carrying, humping (not in a good way), erecting (ditto), deconstructing and painting pretty much constantly for the last 5 days. The first two days were a nice workout. After that it became a war of attrition which the recuperative powers of my body started to lose alarmingly. I found myself thinking, I’m 42, I’m not a spring chicken anymore. I know, I know. 42 is hardly one foot in the grave but really, when you compare yourself to twenty-something colleagues it is hard not to find oneself in a downer.
The second reason is linked to the first in the sense that the first has exacerbated the problem: painful feet. Agonizing feet. On one foot I seem to have a callus forming on the underside of my little toe. So much so I fear it is developing a hard-shell and will soon be harvested by Rick Stein for one of his Cornish seafood eateries. On the other foot I have a bugger of a corn on the side of my second-to-little toe. It is generating so much pain and heat when I walk on it that I am considering taking up fire-walking by way of achieving some kind of relief.
I am, of course, following a treatment of corn removal plasters purchased from the local chemist. Each day I pull the plaster off the corn sticks it’s head out a bit more – a bit a like a tortoise coming out of hibernation. It feels like a biggee. A deepee. So deep in fact that it reminds me of those hollow drill things that archaeologist / geo-physics people use to take core samples from the earth that go back to Iron Age ground levels. When this beauty comes out it is going to have my pre-natal stem cells perched right on the end of it and possibly a good dollop of bone marrow to boot.
In the meantime I am hobbling about so much like an old man that my wife has taken to wincing whenever she sees me – which may explain the dark sunglasses she wears whenever we are out together and the fact she usually walks on the other side of the road to me.
Well, she’ll be sorry when I draw out my pension next week – she can go and buy her own surgical stockings. And if she thinks she can borrow my false teeth again to eat toffee she can just forget it. I’m going to speak to the Matron right now and demand separate rooms!