Updated: Mar 3, 2020
This photograph was taken 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle in Finland and illustrates the broad spectrum of transport which developed over the earlier half of the 20th century.
On the whole the prospect of a long life seems a happy one, especially if one is blessed with a great family, excellent marriage and good health. Having experienced these and now in my 90th year, there is another aspect that has come to light which requires some consideration, namely the changes that one has lived through.
Having spent much of my childhood through World War Two, I experienced what seemed like a Great Adventure and developed a sense of pride in my country which came out of it rather well. I started work for a small magazine, aged seventeen, lived through the birth of the National Health Service and the Cold War, and Britain still seemed to be doing all right. All the same, with a Swiss mother, I perhaps had more of a sense of also being European than I might otherwise have done. Early on I had decided in favour of writing and a career rather than marriage and children - probably selfish so it's no good regretting now that I have not left a young 'me' on the planet. People will just have to put up with my books.
So we entered the world of technology, of drugs ('all you need is love'), instant communication, a shrunken world and ventures into outer space. Society became more outward looking as well, paradoxically, self centred. How much more self centred can you be, for example, than preoccupation with 'selfies' and a constant need to let the world know of your every move?
Of course technology can be great. When it works. When.