Imagine lying on a bed opposite Maggie Smith, having a long conversation with Joanna Lumley about the same holiday we'd had, pushing a trolley around a supermarket with Jane Horrocks, saying 'hi' to Jennifer Saunders, being ignored by Dawn French, getting a hug and kiss from Dustin Hoffman, with Chris O'Dowd while he photographed me riding up and down on a stairlift in a church in London…
It was late in 2008 when I decided that I rather fancied becoming a film extra. When I told one of my daughters my plans she instantly scoffed and said “they'll never take someone like you on!” I said “Why not?” and she replied ''because you're too tall, your hair is white and you're not background”. And so I did it to prove her wrong.
It might not be the career you’d think of for someone coming up for 80 (if indeed there is a career you’d think of for someone coming up to 80) but confidence is the name of the game. I got myself an agent, went through the ordeal of having measurements and photographs taken…and found myself being paid £100 for holding a protest placard on top of a hill, sitting on the set of Holby City quite unable to knock a glass of water over on cue, posing on a scooter and being asked to play poker just in my bra. I could go on...
Patience is a must because you wait to get any work and when you do, it's another waiting game. There's lots of sitting around both in green rooms and on sets - takes are repeated and repeated. Alternatively, I've chatted all day, sunbathed and not been used - I'm paid whether I'm actually filmed or not.
Many demands can be made on a fairly non-existent acting talent but I've learnt when to listen and understand what the director wants. There is no point in either having a thin skin or fearing rejection. There'll be plenty of that!
There's plenty of "sorry, you haven't been chosen this time," but it doesn't matter. I've been to an audition and been the only extra chosen to work with actors and I've been thanked for coming by a very famous film director who didn't know who I was.
That's why I work, when I can, because it is fascinating and show people are (mostly - there's always a caveat!) the nicest people. So yes – a pretty good career, all in all, for someone coming up for 80 and I have no plans to stop any time soon.
Read more from Jane Pearce on twitter @janepearce6 - and you can add your comments on this post here.