Granny Scotland announcement: Theo enters the world

Yesterday Friday July 15th at 15.43 pm my son Tom and his partner Beatrice had  a baby who they have called Theo Daniel Christie Platt. Everyone is Jubilant. Bea had a tricky pregnancy as she had  a massive blood clot blocking the  main vein of one of her legs and so had to give herself blood thinning injections twice daily for more or less the whole pregnancy.

As befits a girl whose parents have been  involved in the film world in one way or another since I first met them in London in 1973 at the Chile Cultural Committee in which we were all activists,  Bea’s waters broke in the cinema on Thursday evening while watching the new Terrence Mallick film. With a lot of yoga training under her belt she managed her whole labour with gas and air as due to her blood condition she was not allowed any pain relief.  Mother and babe are doing well!

Theo is a lovely name – i think its meaning  is Te adoro – I adore you – and may be  part of  the etymology of Theology  ie. belief in divine being.  His second name Daniel was   the name of Tom’s cousin Daniel, son of his father’s brother Tony and his first wife Hazel. Daniel fought the good fight for a good life for many years  having had a brain tumour in his early teens which slowly grew again over the years. He died five years ago in the US on July 13th, happily married with two children. He was a remarkable person and among many things made wonderful art. He is sorely missed and it is lovely that his name lives on with Theo.

That makes me Granny Scotland for the  second time as my daughter Rachel and her partner  Dono  have  a lovely son called Kabe who was born February 19th 2010.  Dying (not literally yet folks!) to meet Theo. Doctors said i may go to London next Friday after my pills stop when i have the  recuperating week of this cycle, and because, in Dr Dawson’s words, “There’s always the Royal Marsden [cancer hospital] if anything goes wrong. Even i  worked there for a few months!”

Granny Scotland ahoy! I love being called Granny,  and even enjoy having let my hair go grey, although that was all  because i did not want to use chemicals anymore raher than wanting to look the ‘granny part’ . My mother did not mind being called Granny: actually i think my children called  her Grandma Edith  and my Dad Grandpa Jim.  Mum did not want to be called Nana which is what we called my father’s mother.  For some reason my maternal Grandma (Mary Amy) was called Nin. She lived in Liverpool and we used to go and visit her at least weekly if not more often, regularly taking the Mersey Ferry from Birkenhead Woodside to Pier Head and then the trams later buses to Asser Road.  I can almost literally smell the salt of the Mersey and the tar on the ropes that men in navy Guernsey sweaters used to roll round the stands  as we docked or left the piers. The sea, journeys  and being  a Granny are all rolled into one in my memory. It’s going to be a matter of trains, tubes, taxis and the diverse smells and pollution of London’s urban  streets with Theo (as it is with Kabe).


About Jan Fairley

I am an experienced and passionate ethnomusicologist working as an arts and music journalist and broadcaster, writer and editor as well as researcher, lecturer, radio presenter and producer. I have a breadth of organising experience at home and abroad. I am a fluent Spanish speaker. I love travelling and have worked abroad (notably Chile 1971-3 and again in 1994) and researched in Cuba, Spain, Brazil, Argentina, Finland.
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