My best friend (of 43 years - we met at infant school) and I get together regularly and chat, ok, gossip. We take an evening class together on Monday evenings (strangely enough) and usually talk and text through the week.
K's the only person exactly my age I'm still this close to, a bit like being a twin, separated by only 6 weeks. So, it's a bit like holding up a mirror to myself. I see my fashion choices, grey hairs, wrinkles and opinions refected back at me. Usually.
Recently, however, K has taken to complaining. About her partner, Revenue and Customs, service in restaurants, anything and everything.
This week alone, her partner wore a sweatshirt when he took her out to dinner at a pub - it was 'inappropriate'; the waiter had Doc Marten boots on with red laces and bad tattoos; the waiter leaned across her to pick up empty plates; in the building society, service has gone to hell - 'The teller was wearing Ugg boots with her uniform!", another teller had a 'hermaphrodite' haircut. Gentle questioning reveals this to be an assymetric bob, cropped at one side and long on the other.
I murmer, sympathetically, whilst trying to remain the voice of reason. 'It was a pub, not the Ivy.' 'I wear Ugg boots, they keep my feet warm.' Nothing placates her.
Do I do this? I hope not. When did we become our grandmothers?