About twenty years ago I used to be young. I was in my late teens and living life to the max. Out Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights most weekends. Work was fine because I was young and I could get in at three in the morning and up a couple of hours later for work.
Spin forward twenty years and my Saturday night has consisted of a snooze after my dinner, a play with Marly (dog), a shower and pyjamas. Then sitting down to watch Casualty and then a documentary about The Carpenters.
Twenty years ago I couldn’t wait to get home from work at the weekend so I could get ready and go out a few hours later.
These days I can’t wait to get home from work any day so that I can have a cuppa and put my feet up, weekends included.
So what has happened? Well, I’ve got old. Maybe not old in age but in socialising terms, I’m ancient.
When you’re in your late teens or early twenties you have an energy, nothing can stop you. You can go to work, you can have a night out and three hours sleep and then go to work again. When you’re in your late thirties you can go out at the weekend fine but you need about five days to fully recover from it. You can be out for about five hours drinking and dancing and then you need to spend the next day in your bed just managing to live and then four days getting your system back up and running. You also vow never to do that again…
There’s a process though. In my late twenties clubbing ceased for me. Not entirely but I wound it down. What causes that? Well, you start to realise that people in the clubs see you as the oldies. The young ‘uns coming in are the business. They’re the ones that can do it. They can club their arses off and go to work or lectures the next day. They know all the new music. They’re snogging the faces off each other. The oldies know the music but only because they keep up the clubbing, outwith the club their radios have gravitated towards Radio 2 and their iPods are of older music, from their youth.
So, for me, clubbing became pubbing. Nice meal in the pub on a Saturday evening and a few drinks and then home. All very civilised. Rolling eyes at hen parties coming into the pub and creating a noise because you’re trying to discuss important things like where Liverpool are in the league and how many can Easter Road seat.
Alright, there were a few wild nights in the pub, I wouldn’t deny that, but all in all it was a step down from clubbing. Home before most clubs filled up.
From constant clubbing to occasional pubbing. There would be the odd after work boozes along with food. A couple of times a week but just a couple of hours for an after work chill down. Quite often followed by a full out flake out on getting home.
Now the late thirties have hit and I am quite happy to be in the house on a Saturday night. When other people talk of going out pubbing and clubbing I’m just nodding at them and saying to have a great time. Especially if they are younger, they should make the most of every moment because the moment will come when they just can’t do it any more. Any night out has to be organised weeks in advance and days off requested at work for before and after so appropriate rest can be taken before and recovery time after. I’m quite happy not to go to the pub after work. I’m tired enough without adding in booze and food.
Priorities change. I’m not married. I don’t have children. I just outgrew it all and that’s fine. I now enjoy a Saturday night as much as I did ten or twenty years ago. I like coming home and chilling. I like being in my PJ’s and ready to watch Casualty. It happens to all of us.
So I say to you young ‘uns, enjoy it and do it while you can. Just don’t laugh at who you’ll be twenty years from now. Enjoy your age and concentrate on it. Enjoy the freedom you have and have the time of your life. I look back on my younger life and I have no regrets. No one should. I enjoyed it.