Sir Michael Palin revels in the joys of getting older, rejecting the label of “oldie” with gusto 

Nov 30, 2023
Far from slowing down, Palin exuded an infectious enthusiasm for life, relishing the freedom that comes later in life. Source: Getty Images.

In a delightful revelation, Monty Python legend Sir Michael Palin has shared his candid thoughts on getting older and the liberating feeling it brings.

During a literary lunch hosted by The Oldie magazine, Palin, 80, shared insights into the unique pleasures that come with reaching this milestone. Far from slowing down, Palin exuded an infectious enthusiasm for life, relishing the freedom that comes later in life.

“How is life at 80? I don’t know yet. I am still learning. Amazingly, I still feel physically and mentally interested in life,” Palin expressed.

While many might expect an octogenarian to reflect on the past, Palin instead emphasised the present, expressing a keen interest in the ongoing journey.

“You get the feeling most of life is behind you now, rather than ahead of you, but that gives a slight feeling of irresponsibility. You don’t have to worry about the competition any more,” he quipped.

The seasoned comedian and explorer celebrated for his global escapades and comedic brilliance, seemed to thoroughly enjoy the freedom that accompanies reaching the age of 80, a milestone he reached earlier this year.

The burdens of competition, which may have shadowed his remarkable career, appeared to have lifted, granting him the blissful liberty of embracing authenticity without the constant scrutiny of others.

With his trademark Python-esque humor, Palin amusingly shrugged off the label “oldie,” challenging age-related stereotypes and showcasing that vitality is not confined by a mere number.

In addition to his recent reflections on getting older and a life well lived, Palin recently reflected on the profound impact his late wife, Helen, had on his life during a heartfelt conversation on Rob Brydon’s Wondery podcast, Brydon &. 

Describing her as “the bedrock of my life,” Palin reminisced about their enduring bond, spanning over five decades.

“We were together for a very long time. We were married for 57 years and I met her before that – so more than two thirds of my life was spent with her. And, so you form a kind of unit,” Palin said.

“You don’t realise that until someone’s gone and then it’s slightly lopsided, like something tips over, and your rudder goes.

“You end up thinking it was just me, but I need my partner there to sort of keep me on the straight and narrow.

“It’s not the great things that you’ve said, very often a lot of things that are unsaid because if you know somebody really, really well, you don’t have to sort of analyse everything or say everything, you just know the way they will feel. So I had to get adjusted to that.”




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