I was day-dreaming as usual as I walked from the Airdrie ticket office to the media entrance after picking up my press pass.
The date was Saturday, January 9 and it was a big day for Dundee United as they took on the Diamonds in the William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round.
A voice called out my name from the car park and I looked up to see the familiar face of Derek Robertson smiling at me, his arm waving to beckon me over for a chat.
It was not only a familiar face but a friendly and upbeat one.
We spoke about how he thought United would win that afternoon despite their indifferent form – they recorded a 1-0 victory thanks to a terrific goal from Blair Spittal- and that he had a feeling they could even get to the final this season.
He mentioned that the players were aware of his prediction and that they promised they would do all they could to make it a reality.
I knew Derek had cancer and that the outlook wasn’t good but there he was full of optimism that his beloved United were in the midst of a cup run that might end in their lifting the cup at Hampden.
It was his final, great wish as a United supporter.
He himself had laid out the extent of his illness in a beautifully-written and extraordinary message sent to me and a couple of colleagues at new year.
His words included praise for the kindness and support he and his wife Sheila had received from the Tannadice club during his illness.
He wrote: “We tend to forget just how good United are at this sort of thing.”
Typically of Derek, though, he also made sure he mentioned the best wishes he had received from Dundee or, as he called them, “the team up the road.”
When you talk about Derek it is only right that you mention him as a United supporter first and foremost.
His work at Tannadice behind the scenes and in the boardroom as a director was exemplary and recognised throughout Scottish football.
His voice was one of calm assuredness and he was never short of sage advice.
Often, he was the link between the club and the supporters in times of difficulty.
I also recall fondly his mischievousness when in his company, always ready with a light-hearted comment or joke even if the conversation topic was a serious one.
He also gained and retained respect throughout the media, especially among the local journalists who dealt with the club on a regular basis.
He brought gravitas to the role and you trusted him.
However, above all of that he was a fan who loved United.
His death at the merciless hands of a terrible disease is untimely and best wishes and condolences go out to his family and friends.
He will be missed at Tannadice and beyond.