Readers, before I go any further, I want you to reassure you I am aware, as a proper grown-up dog, that not all presents are meant for me. I do understand it is appropriate that Gail too should receive gifts from time to time.
But you will, I think, allow me to express an opinion about what is or is not a suitable gift for a human, and this is the subject of today's blog post.
I shall put forward my argument in the form of a case study. It concerns two presents Gail has been given by friends who have several times enjoyed the use of our Torridon cottage. To save embarrassment, I shall use only the initials of these friends.
The first present, from 'F' and 'A', was a hand-built sea kayak. This is an example of an unsuitablegift. Long time readers of this blog may remember me expressing my concerns about Gail's new kayak last October. Well. Now that the Scottish so-called 'summer' is upon us Gail has again been venturing out in this flimsiest of craft. Lest you think me selfish for disapproving of a toy that results in me being left alone onshore, let me point out it is merely Gail's welfare I have at heart. Do you know how windy it can be, even in June, how high the waves, even in a supposedly sheltered sea loch, how strong the tidal currents, and how cold the water, despite the purportedly warming effect of the Gulf Stream. And how low in the water a sea kayak is, and how vulnerable to being up-ended by a basking shark?
And how lonely I would be if Gail were 'lost at sea'.....
By contrast, the second present, a redwood garden bench from 'M' and 'J', is, I believe, an excellent example of an entirely suitablegift. It is substantial, aesthetically pleasing and most importantly designed to stay on solid ground - in this case in the front garden of the cottage - and be sat on. It encourages the humans to relax outside, safely enjoying the view of Loch Torridon without any danger of drowning. They may be tempted to consume their meals while sitting on the bench, and as we know, when humans dine outdoors, especially when they have already enjoyed a glass of wine or two prior to eating, they become a little more, shall we say casual, about their manners, with a subsequent increase in foraging opportunities for the alert canine.
A perfect gift indeed.
So readers, in particular those of you contemplating the purchase of a present for a human friend or relative, I hope you will stop a while and ponder the lessons from today's little case study, and make sure you chose wisely and well.
PS Watch out for the invitation to take part in my unique Blogville Olympics Bouncing Event, which I'll be posting this coming weekend!
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....)