But I must remember one particular moment that seemed to 'mark' my life as a very clearly defined 'before' and 'after'.
It happened the moment my eyeglasses steamed up, literaly, becoming so fogged up that I could not see a thing. And then and there I realized that even though I looked relatively young, with my blond casual hair and my all-black "chic" New York uniform - I was suffering my first “hot flash”.
And from that moment on, nothing could stop the inevitable!
And as my body betrayed me -probably ageing a year a minute from this moment on -I felt a wave of heat take over my personna- I felt weak and as being invaded by a horrible enemy: old age.
Well, I must be honest and tell you that I had started feeling uncomfortable a couple of years before, when -out of the blue- young women and men had started addressing me in Spanish using the more formal and non familiar “usted” -instead of the younger and more informal sounding “tú”.
And every time somebody called me “Señora” (Maam) I wanted to punch them in the nose. It was the dreaded seal of approval: I was already seen as an “older woman”. A respected “señora” or “Mrs.” –rather than as a much more adventurous and nicer “Miss”.
English speaking women, who do not have this very clear division of ‘formal’ and ‘informal’ in their language ---dont know how lucky they are!