You know you’re turning forty when light from your birthday cake candles significantly contributes to global warming.
I was staring out of the window thinking how I was going to reword Chapter 16 when Amy shouted the words butterfly brain. There was a degree of sharpness in the tone of her voice, so I snapped back.
‘Sorry? What did you say?’
‘There you see … I rest my case … butterfly brain … you … your mind is all over the place! I’m trying to discuss important things with you here and you’re off in Lizzie’s La La Land again. Have you any idea how irritating that is? You’re rarely on the same planet as everybody else these days … your mind is constantly vacillating.’
‘I have no idea what you are talking about!’
‘See what I mean? How can anybody have a proper conversation with you when you never bloody well listen? What have I been talking about for the last five minutes?
I engaged my brain and was relieved to find that some snippets of information were still there. Amy had suggested we should hold a joint birthday party to celebrate becoming quadragenarians.
It was true, her ideas had become jumbled up with my concerns about Chapter Sixteen. It was going to be impossible to get my protagonist from Australia to the UK in time to stop her mother marrying the scurrilous Darcy Davenport, even if Concorde had been in service between Sydney and London.
‘I think it is a very good idea …’ Slipped out of my mouth. It was a lie and my fingers were crossed. ‘But …’ I had to tell her the truth. She was my oldest friend and we had spent other significant birthdays together, but I just didn’t want to celebrate being a bloody quadragenarian. And, like my protagonist, I had been thinking about emigrating to Australia because, for me, there was nothing fabulous about turning forty.