I don’t ever remember being afraid of oldness.There are things I miss about being younger - chiefly the ability to pull all-nighters and keep working and working well; and being smiled at by girls I didn’t know who thought I was cute; and I wish I had the eyesight I had even five years ago… but that stuff feels pretty trivial. I’m happier than I’ve been at any time in my life these days. I have a wonderful wife whom I adore, watched three amazing kids grow into two delightful adults and my favourite teenager, an astonishing number of grand life experiences, I’ve made art I’m proud of, I have real, true, glorious friends and I’ve been able to do real good for things I care about, like freedom of speech, like libraries.Sometimes I’ll do something like An Evening With Neil and Amanda, or the 8 in 8 project and completely surprise myself.I miss friends who have died, but then, I’m glad that time gave them to me, to befriend, even for a while and that I was alive to know them. I knew Douglas Adams and I knew Roger Zelazny and I knew John M Ford and I knew Diana Wynne Jones… do you know how lucky that makes me?Ah, I’m rabbiting on and I sound a bit more Pollyannaish than I’m intending to sound: I know the downside of age and the downside of time and I am sure that the view from age 51 is not the view from age 71.I wish the time hadn’t gone so fast, though. And sometimes I wish I’d enjoyed it more on the way and worried about it less.
Neil Gaiman