Today was quite sunny and pleasant, so, even though the ground resembled black Plasticine, we got out our trowels and sallied forth to plant bulbs. This, while not particularly pleasant in itself, is something you never regret. I’ve been putting patches of white narcissus, scillas, tulipa tarda and grape hyacinths in the wilder bits of the garden — the nice thing about this is that I’ll forget I’ve done it, or at least, where I’ve done it, so there will be (I hope) lots of cheerful little surprises next spring. The Professor has planted many tulips along the side of the greenhouse, Texas Flame (red and yellow), Orange Favourite (orange and green), and Estella Rijnveld (red and white). That should be quite merry and bright, come the day. There is more still to go in but the weather is supposed to be holding over the weekend. About time too. We went to Banff yesterday, and the golf-course which occupies the territory between Duff House and the Deveron has become an ornamental lake, doubtless to the chagrin of its members. We were wondering why we had seen nothing of our gardener and rang him up to discover that the poor man was flooded out, and both the household’s cars washed away, which is rotten luck — insurance will cover but meanwhile he has to find cars for himself and his missus at a time when, doubtless, a lot of other people are looking, for the same reason. My ex-Gamekeeper turned up last night to say a formal farewell, since he’s off on a tour of duty for some months — though in case anyone is concerned, I can report that his professional activities are more likely to bring him into contact with penguins than poppy fields.