Have you reached the age when you should be called “aunt”? No? Yes? Will you believe me if I tell you I was given such a title in my early twenties? Yeah, you heard it right. EARLY twenties. I was in a bookstore, and a mother was telling her kid to ask the stranger (me) to give way so they can pass between the bookshelves. I heard it clearly. She told her kid to call me “aunt.” Did it give me a heartbreak? Sure. But then, I have to admit, I deserved to be called this way, because I didn’t dress properly. When you are not putting every bit of effort to dress yourself the best way you can, you just can’t blame others. Period.
Now years and years after that afternoon in the bookshop, I’m truly sad that I have reached an age when people can call me “aunt” without any objection or protest from me. But interestingly, people rarely call me aunt now. The security guard in the building I live always calls me “Ah mei” (little gal), but I know he’s just being polite, because he also calls another gal ten years my junior with the same title!
Title VS Cold, Hard Truth
Sometimes when I’m riding in a lift, I would look back at my own reflection in the mirror, and then I can’t help but sneak some looks at the women next to me and do a mental comparison. How old do I actually look? Would somebody who doesn’t know me tell the age difference between me and them? I don’t know how many of you would do silly, childish things like this (glad that the device inside the lift is only a CCTV but not a mind-reader!). But just as I always think other gals are having better skin, I think other women are younger than me.
In Hong Kong, it’s a social taboo to ask a woman her age publicly or secretly (unless she is pretty pretty young, of course). I didn’t mind being asked of my age before I was 27. The then (naive) me still thought, “Why mind it? It’s not a big deal.” However, when I became more advanced, I became more and more tight-mouthed about my age. Unless you put a knife to my neck, or else I wouldn’t be willing to show my identity card to anybody, men or women!
I mind very much how I am addressed. Are you as nervous as me about your age or the way you are called? Share it in the comment!