I wooed my blond-haired blue-eyed Liverpudlian sweetheart in the prescribed manner, and once it became clear this was serious, I was taken to a village in North Wales to be introduced to the family. Clan would be a better word: seven aunts, all married, all with progeny. And, sitting on an elevated armchair, the matriarch of the clan, Grandma Holmes. The elevation gave it the air of a throne, and it was rumoured that she kept a crate of Guinness under it. Anyway, she was formidable. She stared at me silently for quite a while and then asked me to come closer. I approached. Without warning, she leant forward and squeezed my thigh, high and hard and long.
“Well, he’s got good legs anyway,” she said. And that was all the approval I needed, it seems, to be allowed to carry off her favourite granddaughter and take her to wife.