Diary of Lisa Taylor, reluctantly 42 (and a half)

Or.. 'f.ck me I'm forty.. two.. and a half', though can look 38 on a - not so deluded - good day. Or 'How to reconcile a well experienced mind trapped in a still - but for how long? – youthful body.' Don't have the 30somethings angst/problems, neither have the resigned (?) ageing baby-boomers in safe family territory outlook yet. Here's how I cope, one day all sexy women will get old... but never invisible. © Lisa Taylor 2005/6/7/8/9. Jeez.. so much for the 42 and-a-half delusion

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

11 January - Posh & Burbs

A trip to Connecticut, to one of those picture perfect towns where wealthy Wall St Bankers commute from whilst their kids live the small town ie. safe life and their wives get super bored. Manhattan may be less than an hour away on the train but in reality you don't keep getting into town to meet your girlfriends or have your hair done if you also want to be at home when kids return from school and so on.
We go for a tour, it's all a bit like living in Hampsted and to be honest the house of the relative we're visiting is so utterly perfect with all those new england touches, that I have to feel like an under-achiever not yet out of student digs by comparison. Even their two cars are the potent tractor and the sleek german towncar.

And their basement den and utility room are larger than my flat in London, but much as I envy the space, I don't envy the life. I don't think mine is necessarily better (not any more that age has made me drop out of any scene, and now that being 42 and a half (ahem!!) and knowing who Lady GaGa is before she's topped the charts is not going to impress anyone and even if it did, it's of no use on a practical or working level. Am not working as a style/trend or makerting or brand scout so you know, it's of no use and maybe it would be better to have the great house and the great kids and the cute dog in the posh burbs and the holiday in the themed resort in Barbados(the kids love those ones) but I just can't find myself wanting it at all. I'd run away after 48 hours (we had to spend 36, so perfect timing) and it cannot be mentioned by the couple in question that when he lived on the 30th floor of portered modern block by Grand Central with panoramic views of the Hudson (or is that the East River, I can never remember the two) and walked to work... maybe those were better times? But you have to move for ... the schools if nothing else. Well,now that all these families have had zillions of cash instantly wiped off their shares in the downturn, it's even more important to be away from the costly city thought they still have to wonder how they'll pay for Yale/Harvard when the time comes. The shares bloodbath having cleared out also the grandparents and uncles and aunties so you know ... nowhere to turn. I'm not sure I believe you have to have gone to the main uni's with some cachet, I know they open plenty of doors but I think they're overrated.

There you go, I'd have been a terrible mother, forcing my kid to inhale traffic fumes and live w/o any green spaces and going to a not so great school. I'd have never left Manhattan. I may be wistful about the odd thing but not the exile from the City one, not going there. Not till I go to the deserted beach to live just in order to read, that will be a different story.

Another family who I didn't have time to visit but met, also live out north of manhattan but on the other side. Sure, Al Pacino and Baryshnikov have houses nearby and Bjork and Matthew Barney but those am sure, spend only a portion of their time in those burbs and the rest they travel for exciting work. In Bjork's case they have their own boat to come into the city with every day perhaps as his studio is somewhere suitably matthew barney-way. For those like my friend who see their husband leave the house at 5am every day and stay behind and for those like him who leave the house at 5am every day and have to return every evening (or the wife would be upset that he stays in town having fun whilst she isn't) it's er... great. But it's the way they say it that is so not for real. They have to say it, they have to re-inforce it. In this case my friend's sister still lives in fashionable Brooklyn by the bridge and has a terrific job with L'Oreal but can't get a decent date (she's not 40 yet) and so it seems people, myself included no doubt, just chose to highlight the best of the path they've taken or had to take.

mmmhhh... Boy was I glad to hear the train announcement say we were back in Penn station.....

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