'Teenager' leaps into her 80s

Jean Young says she is still young in spirit. Photo: Peter McIntosh
Jean Young says she is still young in spirit. Photo: Peter McIntosh
Jean Young is turning 20 today and she already has six grandchildren. 

Her "age" is a quirk of being born on leap day – February 29 – which means she only gets to celebrate her actual birthday every four years. 

The Dunedin woman said it was a fun birthday to have - two years ago she turned 18 the same week as one of her granddaughters.  

Being born in a leap year had never bothered her because she did not like having parties. 

However, if she made it to 21, she would have "a ripper 21st" at her bowls club. 

Ms Young said she had been alive for 80 years but was still young in spirit. 

"I don’t act 80 and I’m very fit and I walk a lot. 

"I’ve never thought I’m only 18 or whatever but I’ve always eaten well although this week I may have been drinking a bit too much." 

Ms Young was born in Southland but moved to Dunedin to go to boarding school at Columba College when she was 11 years old. 

She attended nursing college in Balclutha after school but got married straight after and never worked as a nurse. 

Being married to a stock agent, Ms Young said she was on the move and shifted all over the lower South Island including Clydevale, Heriot, Kurow and Oamaru. 

"I feel lucky with my life to have lived in lots of different places," she said. 

Ms Young would celebrate her birthday in Arrowtown tonight at a restaurant with her family. 

She said she was not a fan of presents but people always gave them to her and most of the time they were bottles of wine.