Age and beauty

I had a sobering moment today, when on arrival at Cambridge train station I realised that it was pretty much eleven years to the day since I’d come up for my (ultimately unsuccessful) interview at the prestigious institution. For about 30 seconds I felt terribly old, especially as all about me were fresh-faced 17 year olds about to endure the same experience.

However, the feeling completely dissipated when my taxi driver’s reaction to my colleague’s request to take us to King’s College was: “Oh, it must be interview time again! Good luck.”

We were delighted. Neither of us look 17, or even a mature 19. I know he’d only had the slightest glimpse of my appearance, but I was very heartened!

As an aside, the interviewee spotting continued as we walked around the town, but what amused us most were the boys forced into smart suits and accompanied by their mothers. When, exactly, did it become commonplace for parents to accompany their offspring to interviews?

Reflecting upon this, it turned out that C’s mum had gone with him to his and my mother had gone with my sister to hers. I, on the other hand, went completely on my own. This leads me to two conclusions:
(i) My parents don’t love me. (This was C’s suggestion, he reckons they’ve been hinting at it for years!)
(ii) I’m a fiercely independent individual.

I don’t think it’s the first! In retrospect, it was probably just a combination of pre-Christmas busyness; a mother who at that point still had a ‘proper’ job and my own resourcefulness. Mother, if you’re reading this, don’t worry – I don’t hold it against you.

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