Even my chanting of '24 out the door' is ignored by the 'kidults'
Published 17/04/2015 | 02:30
On the odd occasion when I encounter my grown-up daughters in daylight I chant at them "24 out the door" - a sentiment they blithely ignore.
To be fair, my 22-year-old daughter has moved to Paris for a year, but she's coming back in the firm conviction that she will be moving back into "my room".
Her "my room" carries far more conviction than "my house". As far as they are concerned its "our house".
As someone who left home at 19 and wandered around the Irish Midlands for seven years living in a variety of grotty flats and houses, I feel it is important that the 'kidults' (as they are apparently now called) get out of home and find out what life is really like.
Sometimes it can be lonely, sometimes downright scary, but it is life and indeed it can be great fun. Especially when the 'Swinging Sixties' finally hit the Midlands sometime around 1975.
But why would they leave? Blame the Irish mammy: Why pay money to rent an apartment when you can live at home, get fed three meals a day, have a warm bed and control of the TV zapper.
And when 'Corrie' or the 'X-Factor' are in full swing, who gets up to make a cup of tea? The mammy, of course.
Having said all that, I have to admit that after my wanderings were over I did re-occupy my old room in the attic of the family home and wasn't dislodged for more years than I care to remember.
It wasn't so much the home comforts I required, but a place of sanctuary from a hectic social life and the chance to save a few bob to buy a place of my own.
Anyway, in the end, I did move out and, thanks to Michael Fingleton, bought a dump of my own. And occasionally, just occasionally, when everyone is out and I'm left to savour the silence, I begin to wonder - when will someone come home, it would be nice to have some company, even if it is a surly daughter who says: "Shssh - can't you see I'm watching Gogglebox." So I take the dogs for another walk.