She’ll be off with a group of friends travelling round Europe for a month on an Interrail ticket. (I wonder how long that glorious youth opportunity will last post-Brexit.)
A few more weeks and she’ll be away to university somewhere. How far away will depend on how those A-levels have gone, which makes results day in August a momentous date in the family calendar.
Happily, her mother and I enjoy each other’s company, but this is still a summer of strangeness and change.
Well, it seems we all live in a time of upheaval. Politics, for example, has grown pretty strange and unpredictable.
Who’d have thought a few weeks ago that a small reactionary Northern Irish party would ever get to call the shots at Westminster? That the UK government and all its policies – including, perhaps, the direction and detail of Britain’s divorce from Europe – would be dangling at the whim of a political sect founded by that loud and unpleasant man Ian Paisley?
Who could have guessed that in the week Brexit talks began the most startling political moment would occur not in Brussels or Westminster – or even Belfast – but at the Glastonbury Festival?
Who, in their wildest dreams, might have imagined that a crowd who had gathered to see Ed Sheeran, Katy Perry, Stormzy and the Foo Fighters would spend the weekend repeatedly and spontaneously chanting the name of an elderly man with a white beard?
A man admittedly two years younger than Barry Gibb – and 13 years younger than Kris Kristofferson, who also got to work the crowd – but who, as far as I know, has never played a guitar or sung in public. The leader of the Labour Party, for heaven’s sake.
The man deemed unelectable even by many of his parliamentary colleagues. The man who was believed by so many to be leading his party to terminal ruin. Now having his name chanted, over and over again, to a tune conceived by the American rock duo The White Stripes and popularised by football fans idolising one player or another.
Now it may be that a Glastonbury crowd is not exactly representative of the British nation as a whole – or even one generation of it. And, no doubt, had Jeremy Corbyn actually won the general election he’d have been too busy to take the stage at Worthy Farm.
Nevertheless, this feels like a tipping point.
Another thing Lotte got to do this month was vote for the first time in an election. Even though we live in an ultra-safe seat, she and her friends were excited about taking part in the democratic process. More so, I think, than previous age groups have been.
There may be an unexpected spin-off here from last year’s Brexit referendum.
Serious consideration was given then to allowing 16 and 17-year-olds to vote. If they had done, the result might have been the same, but it would surely have been even closer.
And had the nation’s sixth-formers been given a vote this time we’d undoubtedly have a different government today.
I can’t recall a previous time when politics seemed as much a matter of generation gap as class divide.
Or a time when so much of our national press was so far the wrong side of that gap. When the vilification of one politician was so vile it may actually have contributed to his popularity. And so relentlessly ridiculous it may have done the papers spouting it more harm than it’s done him.
The growing irrelevance of the national press is not in itself news. But as a journalist, it naturally concerns me. Or perhaps, like the readership of those papers, I’m just getting older.