is what we told my father. He is being whisked off to see his youngest grandson get the first of his degrees today. (This one is Economics. He has two years of Law to go.) Last year saw the other grandson here get the first of his degrees.
Of course my father has been through this before. We have a picture of him in cap and gown getting his degree. His parents are by his side and their pride is obvious.
I think there might be pictures of my brother and the older of my two sisters getting their degrees but I have no idea where they are.
There are no pictures of me getting any of my degrees. I went to my first graduation ceremony only because I was required to do so in order to get the qualification. There was a row going on in the institution at the time because not all members of staff had degrees and those who did not were not permitted to be part of the proceedings. When the students said they would not attend the ceremony they were ordered to do so or not receive their diplomas. As the vast majority of them were 'bonded' teacher training students who could not teach without their diplomas and still had to pay back their 'loans' they had little choice. In the end the staff stayed away and left the whole affair to the college principal and a couple of cronies. The whole affair was very uncomfortable.
I never went to another graduation ceremony. There was no point. No member of my family would have been present. I saw no reason to travel thousands of miles to get a piece of paper.
My nephews share my views but, being local students, they do it for their parents and their grandparents. Their father's parents had almost no schooling. Despite that their own sons have degrees. They are proud of them although they do not understand what they do at all - one is a forensic chemist and the other a computer engineer (the big stuff). Their grandchildren are doing things like law, medicine, accountancy and nanotechnology. My father has more idea but says that it is 'beyond (him) these days'.
Degree granting ceremonies bore him as much as they bore my nephews but he will still be proud as he goes off today. Thankfully there is limited seating. I am not included in the invitation. My nephew knows that I am proud of him. It would not matter if he was the guy who drives the rubbish truck because he is a decent, honest, polite, funny and hardworking person who cares about other people.
Anyway, they call the rubbish collectors "sanitary engineers" these days.