These memories have at their centre my family life, at the heart of which are fifty years of happy and fulfilling marriage to Jean and days spent with my dear daughters, Jenny and Carol. They now have children of their own who are rapidly growing up and taking their places in the adult world of the 2010’s and beyond.
I reflect that I have now lived in each of ten decades across two centuries. Many people who played important roles in my development were born, what is now, two centuries back, in the 1800’s. My father was one of fifteen children in a family characterised by each member’s independence and spirit of adventure and by their attaining their majorities in the twilight of the great Victorian age. While I knew most of my uncles and aunts on my father’s side, I often imagine what life must have been like for my mother’s father who was a shepherd boy in the Border country.