When I heard the BBC was hosting its annual Sports Personality of the Year in Aberdeen, I was delighted.
As an advocate of representing all of Britain on screen – not just London and Glasgow, it’s right but also commendable that the whole kit and caboodle involved in such a huge event was being given this northern platform.
Then, when relatively last minute I received an invitation, I was cock-a-hoop – and mum, when I asked her to join me, wondered (only half jokingly) if she’d have time to get a facelift before such a glittery do.
Well, what a hoot.
Stottering up the red carpet in our heels, sucking our tummies in, we’d turn to see sporting legends like Denise Lewis and Colin Jackson – one of the most humble of stars, who told me he’d been in hysterics as he met Denise in his hotel lobby only to realise they were in matching emerald green outfits.
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But more than the laughs, what I’ll never forget is the emotion of the evening.
Scottish rugby hero Doddie Weir received a standing ovation as he was given a special award in memory of journalist Helen Rollason.
Now suffering Motor Neuron Disease, he has raised £5 million for the cause and untold awareness.
His three sons and wife joined him, beaming with pride – along with his Scottish rugby comrades including Dundee’s own Andy Nicol – as he addressed the 10,000-strong audience in his trademark tartan suit.
There were tears in the eyes of almost every person I saw, as this giant of a man with a heart to match was recognised, as his own voice cracked with emotion as he thanked his family and told how his wife increasingly had to look after him.
He wasn’t the only inspirational sports person there – from the Paralympic champs with hearts like lions, to those who selflessly helped their communities through sport.
As a mum of three young ones living in the Perthshire hills (don’t worry, still with a Dundee postcode), the promise of such a night was so exciting.
The glitz and glamour – and having something other than damp houses to post on social media.
But what I left with was a sense I had witnessed something far greater than the kind of celebrity shindig.
There was an ethos in that auditorium that lifted the whole night – a spirit of goodness and kindness and numerous tales that anyone can achieve anything if they try hard enough.
Maybe you were there too, or watched it from the comfort of your sofa – in which case, your head was probably fairing better than mine come Monday morning.