I myself get a new status: and it's up to me whether I turn it into a meaningful role. I mean to try, although I must not of course trespass in the slightest on the far more important roles of parent and grandparent! I don't think that Great Aunts are actually expected to do very much. But whatever they might do, I'm up for it, although it's unlikely to include babysitting because M--- and C--- live about two hours away (it's not so much the distance, but the slow London traffic). Do Great Aunts get to hold and feed the baby? I hope so.
Funny how my nephew's 'OK Lucy! Go ahead and blog as much as you like about this uniquely amazing birth' message should closely follow an enquiry I made earlier today at Wroes department store in Bude, about another girl who had also been expecting a baby - although the baby would now be of nursery school age. It was two years ago. I was being served by a pleasant girl on the staff of Wroes called Gemma. I was looking for a fitted sheet for my bed at home, and she went that extra mile in rooting around behind the scenes to find exactly what I wanted. Gemma was however unmistakably pregnant. I asked when, of course. The birth was about three weeks away. So this was almost her last week at Wroes before taking maternity leave. She lived in Marhamchurch, a nearby village, but had originally come from the Midlands with her husband. Altogether we had quite a conversation. I never forgot her, and now, two years on almost to the day, I asked whether she was back at the store. Yes she was - how nice of me to enquire! She worked Mondays, Tuesdays and Saturdays. Today was a Wednesday, so I'd missed her. How very disappointing! I'll have to remember her working days, and come again to say hello, and of course ask after her child. But it could not be on this holiday: what a pity.
Funny also - to continue the baby theme - that on 16 September I was in Ilfracombe and saw yet another heavily pregnant girl, down by the harbour. She was completely naked, but that's for another post.