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Column: I'm not old, I'm just a recycled teenager

But being a senior comes with many more privileges
Erna de Burger-Fex says she's really just a recycled teenager, but can have so much more fun than ordinary teenagers. (File)

Recycled teenagers — that’s who we are! 

Not old, but recycled teenagers! 

The big difference is that we’ve had so many more experiences than we did when we were teenagers the first time around. We know and have first-hand knowledge of so many things that will allow us to enjoy this second teenage phase so much more.

We don’t have those hated curfews, unless we dance past 9 p.m., then I want to get to bed. Yes, it’s true, my bed actually beckons me at 9 p.m., so I must answer that. I’m tired by that time.

I can drink all the wine I want as a recycled teenager – two glasses even! Of course, I don’t drive after consuming the wine, because I don’t drive after dark any more. No one had to tell me that. I figured it out by myself. Really! 

What to wear? Why, whatever I want! No fashion dictates any longer. No peer pressure.

I don’t need to ask for the car because it’s mine, even if it’s all beat up. As long as it gets me to my destination, that’s all it needs to do. If I absolutely must go out on a nasty day, there is always the bus or a taxi. 

Shopping malls still entice me, but finding my vehicle when I am ready to leave is often problematic. If I just remembered to look for the name of a store or some other identifying object, but I usually don’t think of it. 

I love dancing in the shopping centre as there is often good music playing. Who dictates that I must go there to buy stuff I will never need? Instead, I find ways to have so much fun. 

I usually meet some contemporaries who get as tired as I do, so we have a coffee and chat as long as we want about the good old days and comment on the young people’s choice of clothing. Ripped jeans – come on now. And they pay lots of money to buy them that way. Imagine.

Erna de Burger-Fex is a writer and retired teacher who writes about aging and the funny side of getting older. Got a question for Erna? Email