When I turned 30, I wrote a two-page essay on – what
else? – turning 30.

Here’s an

I’m sure I’ll need
it, especially this week, the last before I turn, irrevocably, thirty. Soon I
shall be (if I am not already) a sucker for facial products whose ads show
snuffed-out birthday candles, erasers, fortyish models whose faces, careers and
face creams are truly age-defying. The world that once seemed overwhelmingly
full of choice narrows to a dim corridor in a comfortable house, whose walls are
familiar to my fingertips, every light switch felt inches before it is actually
touched. The corridor has windows that move whenever I try to look out of them,
windows that tantalize with slices of other lives lived from other choices
– in one there is a husband and a dog and a Volkswagen Combi. In another
there is a hand, withered and shaking. In yet another there is a tall building
with no rails on the roof, just enough space to stand and sway on.