This post has been under embargo for a while but I'm finally free to share our news with the world.
I'm sure you're familiar with what this is and no, don't worry, Marion hasn't been to Italy to see one of those fertility experts. Our lovely daughter Sarah and her partner Duncan are expecting their first child and on July 13th (hope that's not a Friday), if all runs smoothly, our long standing wish to be grandparents will come true. I only knew my nana and grandad on my mum's side but when I was a kid I adored them, particularly my grandad, and I hope that we can give our grandchildren the same fond memories of those daft old people who took us on days out and spoilt us rotten. Our grandchild (currently christened Pip by Sarah and Duncan) will be half Scottish so that means that we can look forward to some interesting cultural developments and perhaps some sporting arguments in years to come.
I know that it may perhaps seem not that big a deal as it happens to most parents in the long run but couples are leaving it longer and longer before they start families and I had visions of being too old to make much contribution to my grandchildrens' lives. But now, freshly retired and with the new hip on the mend, I hope that, together with Marion, I can give Pip the grandparental support that can make an impact on his or her life. Don't worry Sarah and Duncan, we live too far away to be overbearing and interfering but we're sure that you're aware of how much this means to us.
So the best Christmas present ever. We are truly overjoyed. Does this mean that all those books and toys in the attic can be sent up to Scotland?
In America they've even got Grandparent's day and a cloyingly sweet song to go with it.
Which is all very nice. But I hope that we end up more like this nana and grandad.