It's funny but I always thought my surname derived solely from Scotland.
It probably does seeing that my father's father hailed from over the border but over the years I have learnt than the name GRAY also has roots in Ireland and indeed also from the town of Grayes in Calvados, France.
I am First generation Welsh.
My grandparents hailed from West Calder in Scotland, and Lancashire and my great grandparents from the North West of England, Ireland, Scotland and all places Inbetween.
Therefore historically, I am a Northern Celt with touches, interestingly enough, of Jewish Gypsy from my fraternal grandmother's side who possibly originate from somewhere in Central Europe.
Like most people in the Uk, I am a product of industrial and economic migration.
Having a Irish and Scottish background of sorts, I may be forgiven for jumping upon the Celtic bandwagon of St Patrick's day, but alas, my days of drinking green Guinness with a strange green felt hat on my head went out with my student celebrations with best friend Nuala, who couldn't come from a more Irish/Liverpudlian family if she tried.
I find the cultural need of the 'New World' Irish decendents to celebrate "Paddy's Day" so vociferously fascinating .Its not just a good excuse for a piss up , it goes deeper somehow...and is something, perhaps I will never properly understand.
perhaps someone out there could explain it to me.
Thank you nana for the promise of sending me some West Calder photos
Thought you may appreciate this photo of one of your fellow Scots
In way of thanks!