When I start buying clothes with generous hems; when I can tell at a glance the defects of a (potential? no) apartment; when I stop eating something I like when I think I’ve eaten all I should; when I don’t fall in love with someone because I don’t think they’re quite good enough; when I start going to bed at an hour when I can do my best work the next day; when I start saying the anti-liberals have a bit of a side too; when I can think of you without desire, without hope and without longing—then I shall know I am getting old. That I am old.

Patricia Highsmith, notebook, 12 February 1941, in Patricia Highsmith: Her Diaries and Notebooks: 1941–1995, edited by Anna von Planta