Hanging onto my youth in an ugly brown car

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It's My Life: Tina Comeau

Yarmouth Vanguard editor Tina Comeau writes a weekly column on family life called It's My Life.

It seems I’m marking a lot of milestones lately. Oddly enough they make me feel both old and young.

Last Friday my youngest son attended his middle school orientation day at Maple Grove Education Centre. Yup, he’ll be in Grade 7 in the fall.

Over the weekend my oldest son started a driver’s education course. Yup, he’s 16 and is now old enough to drive a car.

This week on my birthday I turn 45. Yup, in five years I’ll be 50.

I can barely believe that. Me? Fifty?

This month marks my 24th anniversary of being hired at this newspaper.

Fifty in five years?

Sorry, I just can’t seem to get past that.

So where does feeling young come into play? Certainly not by the grey roots in my hair that a package of Nice and Easy Golden Brown took care of last week.

It’s because a lot of the milestones my children are reaching I remember reaching. I’d say it seems like just yesterday but my birthday this week – and the one five years from now – suggests otherwise. (On the plus side, with a lot of my friends turning 50 in 2019 it’ll make for a great party circuit.)

I vividly remember my years at Maple Grove. Walking though the halls during a parent meeting last week I remembered specific incidents from my junior high years.

I could remember plain as day my friends and I hanging out in the hallways, wearing our legwarmers over our jeans and our Kangaroo sneakers and Converse canvas high tops.

As we parents walked past classrooms I remembered which teacher taught in that classroom, along with the subject.

Whenever I’m in the school I always stop and look up my name on the three honour roll scrolls from the years I attended the school. I guess I do this since I’ve never been on an honour roll since.

On a roll, yes.

But on an honour roll? Not since 1984.

It was the spring of 1985 that I was old enough to start driving.

My poor parents.

Let’s just say I started out with my share of fender benders.

Over the years I’ve never had an accident with any of the five vehicles I’ve owned. But their vehicles on the other hand…

I guess in the late 1980s I had a grudge against four-door Sunfire sedans.

I can remember driving around in our grey four-door Sunfire wishing my parents had a sportier vehicle. There were sportier versions of this vehicle available, just not in our driveway. I was thrilled when they said they were getting a new car. I was less thrilled when it turned out to be a four-door Sunfire ugly brown sedan.

Was the pinstripe on either side supposed to give the illusion that it was sporty? Because we basically just went from a non-sporty car to an uglier colour version of the same non-sporty car.

My parents still drive a four-door sedan. It’s a really nice vehicle, though, even if this one is also brown. It’s a nice brown, although my oldest son doesn’t care for the colour.

Guess it’s a teenager thing.

He also thinks their car is an ‘old person’ car even though my mother keeps pointing out, “It has a sunroof.”

The vehicle we drive has two sunroofs…and a person behind the wheel who’s not getting any younger.

Fifty in five years?

Don’t get me wrong. While 50 for myself seems hard to believe, I don’t see people who are 50 or thereabouts as being old. Maybe I did when I was on the honour roll at Maple Grove, but not anymore.

As a person ages it changes your perspective.

Who knows, one day I may even own a brown four-door sedan.

But not an ugly brown one.



Geographic location: Maple Grove

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