Tell me some of things that are cheesing you off or preoccupying you at the moment... What is preoccupying me...


I've always been a bit special needs when it comes to anything to do money.

The financial pages of any newspaper have for my entire life been virgin territory for me, the financial round up comes on the telly with the latest on the Dai Jones Index and frankly it's white noise to me... instead of paying attention I drift off and wonder where the presenter might have bought his tie or ponder that the woman telling us about the footsie one hundred (whatever that is) looks like she might have the wrong shade of lipstick on. I don't know any bankers and therefore their bonuses are not on my radar, hedge funds are such a mystery to me I would not be surprised if they involved a pair of hedge trimmers and a ladder and what I know about the global economy could be written on a post it note. (One of the really small ones you use as bookmarks). My accountant occasionally talks to me and has to draw diagrams... and even then I pretend I understand when I so do not.. There is a teeny bit of me that thinks my Dad still ought to be sorting it out for me... But then all of a sudden the economy went into meltdown - our houses halved in value virtually overnight, banks went bust and countries owe other countries squillions in debt. Which is a bit odd because you think well where did it all the money go then? perhaps it's down the back of someone's sofa and we should all have a really good look for it. Surely- I find myself thinking - if banking is so critical to the entire world then let's not give the responsibility to young testosterone charged men in the City who look about twelve called Crispin or Tristran but lets give it to some sensible people with some life experience who can probably do mental arithmetic and know how to darn a sock... in other words give the task of running the global economy to people like us over 40. If we had been in charge of the money markets I have a feeling things would have not have gone so wrong.

Our (older) attitude to the world's bank account would be much healthier- hang on to your assets, only take risks when you really really have to, and enjoy the good things in life. Of course the truth is that as a generation we are probably in better shape pension-wise than any other generation that will follow us, even though our savings are bringing us virtually no income we are at the stage in life when what we do have is money we can spend. Our children have largely left home, if we want to splash out our savings on a sports car we can, the annual heating allowance for most of us is an added bonus to spend on a gorgeous new coat, and our free bus pass is heavenly-never underestimate the pleasure in sitting on the top deck of a double decker bus poking your nose into other people's front gardens and front rooms for absolute free. It's my new hobby. We can go on holiday when it's cheap, and get there to find the pool is empty of toddlers. Plus and this is the really good bit- enjoying yourself is simply so much cheaper as you get older... simple things bring a smile to our face like using a money off coupon, taking something back when you've actually worn it and lolling on your own sofa. We don't need to get drunk and poke our bottoms out of stretch limousines to have a good time... in fact the nearest we get to being out on the town is a cream-tea crawl. Marvellous.