Fellow pups, have you ever been out for a walk and spotted a group who look like they might be more fun that your own human(s)?
It happened to me on Monday.
Making the most of the uncommonly fine winter weather, Gail took me for a hike up Morven, which as you know is our favourite Aberdeenshire hill.
We thought we had the place to ourselves, but as we were approaching the summit plateau, a bunch of young hill runners, accompanied by a sprightly Labrador, sped past, and I decided to join them.
Now Gail claims to be tolerably fit for her age, so I presumed she'd be able to keep up with my youthful new friends. OK, so yes I did hear her frantically calling "wait Bertie, WAIT!" but, well, I guess I'm not the first middle aged male to forget himself in the excitement of chasing after younger companionship...
Did I mention that a gale force westerly was blowing in our faces? ('Fine weather' is always a relative term in Scotland.) So anyway I pretended not to hear Gail and continued up the hill with my new pals.
I could of course have kept up with the runners all the way, but in the end I took pity on poor old Gail, puffing and panting with exertion as the gap between us widened, and I waited for her to catch up.
By the time we reached the summit, my new friends were disappearing over the far side of the hill while I, as usual, obliged with my best windswept poses. (You'll notice that for some reason my walking string is attached at this point...)
Can you believe I've been shut in kitchen virtually the whole week!
Gail tells me it's a 'Good Thing' that some long running issues with damp on the gable end wall of our 110 year old granite home in Aberdeen are being sorted out, and all will be back to normal in another week or so.
I am struggling to figure out in what way it is a 'Good Thing' to have a house full of strange men stomping around noisily and removing the lath and plaster interior finishing to a wall which extends all the way up two flights of stairs, resulting in a fine layer plaster dust covering the whole house and making my skin itch at night.
Oh. Gail is contradicting my assertion that I've been locked in all week, saying that the photos below tell another story.
Well that's as maybe, but it doesn't alter the fact that returning home each time to a building site is no fun at all...
There have been days, these last couple of months, when the skies have been so dull and gloomy that one's wondered whether the sun in fact forgot to rise at all.
But I'm pleased to report we've also had mornings here in Aberdeen when a fiery technicolour backdrop has lit up my early romp around Duthie Park - a welcome reminder of how even in the heart of this grey and austere northern city, midwinter can be a time of transforming beauty.
Hi, I'm Bertie, a wire-haired fox terrier pup. I live with Gail in Aberdeen, Scotland. An old Westie called Hamish used to live here but he died on 18th February 2010 (exactly the same day I was born). People tell me that he used to have a blog and that I have big pawprints to fill. That's a bit too much responsibility for a very young puppy - and anyway, I intend to make my own mark!
(Gail says that Hamish could certainly have taught me a thing or two about marking stuff....)