Archive for May, 2007

It rained and it rained

Wednesday, May 30th, 2007

For the last couple of weeks, we have been increasingly worried about the lake, which has been sinking alarmingly. Very little water coming in, leading us to suspect that someone was slyly abstracting water for a potato field somewhere upstream. No longer. For the last two days, it has been raining in bucketfuls; water is […]

Other Worlds

Sunday, May 27th, 2007

We have just experienced a country house weekend. No aunts or cow-creamers were harmed during the duration of our stay, though otherwise, there were overtones of P.G. Wodehouse. The scale of things may be indicated by the fact that it was possible to overlook an eight-foot-high Van Dyck in the hall due to the 23 […]

Small misunderstandings

Thursday, May 24th, 2007

I have, as you will all have gathered, devoted a good deal of thought and more than no money to the borders of the lake: unaesthetic swathes of mud which seem to be inescapable have been variously ornamented with lysimachia, rodgersia, gunnera and all that. Unfortunately, we came back from Cromarty to find that Bill […]

L’Isle Noir

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007

Our three days on the Black Isle were wonderful. No castles or gorillas, neither of which actually feature so as you’d notice, whatever HergĂ© may have thought. We were staying in a boring little hut, but it contained everything one might sensibly need, and looked over the moonstone gulf of the Moray Firth. Behind […]

Breaking the Mould

Friday, May 18th, 2007

This afternoon, I went to the pictures. To be precise, the Northern Gentleman had organized a screening of his future-punk Jacobite extravaganza in rhyming couplets, Henry X, which I have been much looking forward to seeing. Think of a cross between Henry V and If, only louder, with elements of Apocalypse Now. All […]

Happy Birthday

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

We had a perfectly lovely time on the Professor’s birthday. It was a beautiful sunny day, so we went up to Speyside, had lunch at Archiestown, and took the wonderful road which plunges out the main, indeed, only, square of that hamlet, down a mountainside, over the Spey on a narrow white bridge, and joins […]

Normal Service

Sunday, May 13th, 2007

Whatever Old Slyboots has been eating for the last week, it has evidently come to an end. She is back to scoffing “Senior Dog”, with an ill grace. The Gamekeeper came in today and informed me that he had shot twenty-six crows, but she can’t have found them, or there would be regurgitated beaks all […]


Thursday, May 10th, 2007

My mother has sent me a box of primrose roots — these have colonised her garden in West London abundantly, starting from a single root which we larcenously and wrongly took from a cliff in the environs of Berwick on Tweed about twenty years ago, because we had a sentimental attachment to those particular primroses. […]

I don’t think I want to know

Tuesday, May 8th, 2007

For the last few days, Miss Best Friend has more or less stopped eating her nutritionally balanced Dog Griblets for the Older Canine (i.e., low-cal). I blame, to some extent, Ben the Trailhound — furtive scoffing of griblets designed for a quadrupedal marathonist under cover of night revealed to her that dog food can be […]


Saturday, May 5th, 2007

The Real World Consultant’s largesse continued with a second, and larger, water lily. Since I had made a real mess of planting the first one, I gave the second serious thought. The basket, an old wicker one, was weighted with three large rocks. Then there was pea gravel, a bit of soil, the water […]

Call me Reg

Friday, May 4th, 2007

The Lady Novelist wishes to announce to those who are interested in such things that as of today, she has acquired a new & alarming title, viz., Regius Professor of Humanity, and devoutly hopes that this will make absolutely no practical difference to anything whatsoever.


Thursday, May 3rd, 2007

Among the minor pleasures of the last few days has been spiffing up the lake. I bought some skunk cabbage on Ebay, having seen them looking wonderful in a garden in Moffat: since they are evil-smelling and a bit weird they struck me as perfectly suited to Twisby Island. I picked up some bargain painted […]

Hopes & Fears

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007

We are now condemned to getting pills down Miss Kit for about the next week. She seems to be a bit better, though she still has a troubling cough. Thus far, I have sustained light flesh wounds on almost all occasions other than those involving my brother’s girlfriend, who is a wizard with cats […]