I CAN remember word for word conversations I had with people decades ago. I remember what I wore for my first job interview 29 years ago. I remember the names of random kids I was at school with and haven’t seen since. And I can remember pretty much every holiday I’ve had, even where I stayed and meals I had.

But sometimes I can’t remember what I did, or was going to do, two minutes ago.

Without a daily to-do list, I have no chance of making it to lunchtime without falling into a fog of confusion. “I’ve lost my thread...What was I doing?” I regularly mutter at my desk, after a phone call or email (one of the 100 or so I get each day) has shredded my original train of thought. I write lists at home too; reminding myself of domestic jobs and things to buy.

Not being able to rely on my memory is frustrating and a bit scary. I clearly remember books I read as a child - even the look, feel and smell of them. I’ve loved reading all my life but now, as soon as I’ve read a book, I’ve often forgotten the names of characters, even the plot. I love the cinema but it doesn’t take long to forget a film I’ve just seen.

Through my job, I’ve interviewed quite a lot of famous people over the years, and I used to know instantly whenever someone I’d interviewed came on TV. Now I can’t remember half of them.

“You have the memory of an elephant,” a friend said recently when I recalled a trivial detail from a city break we took years ago. But my short-term memory is shocking. I occasionally forget the names of celebrities and even people I know. There’s a blank space in my mind where their name should be. And I get household items mixed up. “The pitchfork’s in the fridge?” I said the other day. I meant to say butter. Where did pitchfork come from? I don’t even own one. Who does?

Why does my brain feel like it’s made of wool some days? Or like it’s so full there’s no room to hold any more information?

My memory has deteriorated over recent years, which is probably down to age, (and the vast quantities of wine I’ve consumed in my adult life), but sometimes I wonder if it’s something more sinister.

Like Coleen Nolan, who revealed her memory loss concerns on ITV’s Loose Women this week, I fear it might be dementia.

It’s not as dramatic as it sounds. Like Coleen, I lost my mother to dementia. She was only five years older than I am now when she was finally diagnosed, after showing signs for some time. Knowing what she went through, the horror of dementia and the way it robs not just your memories but your independence, your personality and everything you have known, it’s the thing I fear the most.

Talking about new research claiming that women who have stressful experiences in middle age are more prone to memory loss, Coleen Nolan admitted to panicking every time she forgets something. She said she often comes off set after her TV show and forgets who the guests were. Other Loose Women panelists reassured her that such memory loss is normal for someone with a busy life, juggling work and home pressures. And my friends say they too forget things like people’s names and what they’ve gone into a room for, and that they can’t function without lists.

Things slow down as you get older, I guess the brain is no exception. I can no longer do backflips in the garden like I could when I was 14, so why should my brain be as sharp?

Maybe my poor short-term memory is just age.

I put most things down to menopause these days. Or maybe it’s something I don’t want to think about. And if it is, I really don’t want to know.

* IN just a few weeks Love Island's Maura Higgins has gone from being a grid girl to landing a presenting job on TV's This Morning. The Irish reality star (pictured with partner Curtis Pritchard), will host her own phone-in on the show, and a strand called Maura Than Meets The Eye (see what they did there?), taking on various challenges around the country.

What a great message this sends out to our young people. Don't bother with exams, kids, and forget journalism training, or working your way up. If you want a lucrative TV presenting career, get into a bikini and onto a reality show.

* PEOPLE will watch anything online, and that includes housework. The rise of ‘cleanfluencers’ (yep, there's such a thing) means that more of us are cleaning - but does it match the old-fashioned vim and vigour of our grannies?

A survey by cleaning and laundry brand Dr Beckmann found that Brits are three times more likely to get cleaning advice from the likes of Mrs Hinch on the internet than from their grandparents. In response, Dr Beckmann has launched @InstagransUK, sharing cleaning tips from the older generation.

My grandmothers took very different approaches to housework. One kept a house so spotless she insisted on shoes off before she'd open the front door. The other used a pair of old knickers as a dishcloth. Grans don't always know best.