I am delighted to report that this weekend I succeeded in dragging Gail away from her never ending IKEA project and across to our cottage in Torridon. Even better, we were joined for the duration by our friend Yvonne.
And lest you imagine it was all about basking in the unaccustomed warmth and sunshine, I must set you straight right away. I had a challenging and intensive mission to execute.
You see, in under a month's time, I shall be staying with Yvonne for ten days while Gail is on yet another cycling trip. You will therefore understand it was of the utmost importance that I ensure our friend is properly trained in the finer points of Bertie care.
I must say Yvonne passed the first test with flying colours, responding very promptly when I sounded the early morning call in front of the cottage. (Gail says I may also have woken up every other household within a five mile radius, although she is exaggerating as usual).
I knew already that Yvonne is pretty capable when it comes to taking me for walks. So I think I will forgive her for dropping my obviously well deserved treat on path rather than delivering it directly to my mouth..
Her photography skills are coming along nicely too (which will of course be important if I am to keep up to date with my blog in Gail's absence).
I think we still need to work a little on certain issues. For example, ignoring me in favour of messaging her offspring and her husband Neil is really not acceptable is it?
And I hope I am mistaken in thinking that Yvonne here is trying to exert some discipline...
Also, I am not yet quite convinced she properly understands that even a lively chap like me needs his 'quiet time' every now and then.
However, all in all, Yvonne's training went rather well, we have formed an affectionate bond and I am now very much looking forward to staying with her and Neil in May.
I even think it could be quite a laugh...