Poetic licence


Having passed his test, teenage son received his new driving licence. He pointed out that it expires at a time in the future that is so distant it could be science fiction.

I looked at my licence.

It expires on a date which seems safely remote, but which, if I count backwards the same number of years and recall what I was doing, is also alarmingly close. Even more alarmingly, I have had my driving licence ten years longer than its remaining validity.

As a teenager I can remember taking my pristine new licence out of the envelope, sliding the folded green paper into the neat plastic wallet and observing that the expiry date was so far in the future that it might be science fiction. It seemed very unlikely that we would still be driving cars so many years into the twenty-first century.

I asked teenage son what he thought the world would be like when his licence expired.

“Like it is now mostly,” he decided.

He is probably right.

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