Who's the Daddy: Farewell to the new normal
On Monday night I went to the gym for the first time since December, on Tuesday morning I gave blood for the first time since smashing my left arm to bits in a cycling accident two years ago and on Tuesday night I gave my halo a good old polish.
Daughter #1 went to a pub with her boyfriend for the first time on Monday evening (stuck it out until 8.45pm, absolutely freezing) and daughter #2 met up with a housemate in Liverpool where she’ll be sharing a flat when she flies the nest for uni in September.
It feels like we’re coming out of jail, doesn’t it? Currently on day release, but given time off for good behaviour. Like in the old Not The Nine O’Clock News sketch, as long-term prisoners we’re being given the opportunity to buy our own cell.
After 13 months of being stuck at home, it’s almost as if we’ve forgotten what to do. Remember the days when you could book a cheap flight and spend a lost weekend in Amsterdam? I don’t, but the pictures on my phone tell me that’s what we did in late February 2020 - a month before the world shut down.
That was just 14 months ago but it feels like 14 years. The first 20 minutes of a horror film where everything appears normal until you spot one, then two, then dozens of passengers at Schiphol Airport wearing face masks. Looks normal now, felt totally alien then. If and when we get back to normal and someone asks, what did you do with your time during lockdown? It’s perfectly acceptable to say, I got through it – more or less in one piece.
One thing I’ve been trying to teach our daughters during all this is the wonders of saving, investing, passive income and the eighth wonder of the world – compound interest. But, like Bill Hicks said, they act like a dog that’s just been shown a card trick.
Don’t you think that you should be allowed to keep a bit of what you earn instead of blowing it on pointless crap every month? You work hard enough for it.
Apparently not, according to our kids who, sadly for them, employ the same fiscal strategy as their out-five-nights-a-week dad at their age. Like they say, history doesn’t repeat itself but it does rhyme.