They are not brave, the days when we are twenty-one. They are full of little cowardices, little fears without foundation, and one is so easily bruised, so swiftly wounded, one falls to the first barbed word. To-day, wrapped in the complacent armour of approaching middle age, the infinitesimal pricks of day by day brush one but lightly and are soon forgotten...I'm not sure how often these days that the age is twenty-one; the book was first published in 1938. These days we're, like, allowed outside without a chaperone and stuff and so we mature faster.
I especially appreciate the notion of a young person as a delicate fruit or flower "easily bruised," with words which are "barbed," like a medieval weapon hurled by an enemy. Spot on, that's what Daphne is.