Well, there were a lot of elephants under the rug which was making navigation a little difficult; and if you were carrying hot liquids around the place it was positively dangerous. Besides the danger, they had a tendency to pop out unexpectedly which sometimes caused a little awkwardness, but more often just a knowing silence, gently smile and change of focus. It wasn't that big an issue, well not really, but we could do with rehousing them; it wasn't fair on them for a start, what with all the fuzz bunnies running around under there too.


A sensible place seemed to be a rather nice bothy somewhere and what better time than HogmannayInshriach. Well, we might as well relocate these guys right at the start of the year, right? No point hangning around when everyone thinks it needs to be done. Don't they? Now it was, by definition, the end/start of the year so the weather in the Northern latitudes can be a little cool. Perhaps, dare I say it, Warm Insidethe weather can be a little unpredictable at times. The ideal place therefore was Inshriach. After all it doesn't do to have insulation in the walls or a fire of any description at that time or year. That would clearly be an extravagance, and if we are to be true to our national Calvinist roots, we simply can't be having extravagance. Despite all that, it did actually become reasonably warm inside, well either that or the wine and whisky was having an effect.

Whatever the reason, it was a nice place to be. Ruth and Pim were well and dinner, although late due to our delayed arrival, was rather fine for the situation. Our cohabitees were quite a self contained bunch really. In fact they had been becoming increasingly so all evening. Charming chaps and chapesses nonetheless. One was even wearing a tuxedo, would you believe? Well, in a manner of speaking anyway.


The radio had, thankfully, been tuned to an English speaking station; we'd given up on "Norweigan or bust in 90 minutes" though without a fire we couldn't derive any heat from the tome. Some brave soul, a refugee from Princes Street or George Square no doubt [and the question is, who cancelled first?] was dutifully standing outside in "the weather" and counting down to the bells.

Cuddles all round. Oh no, not champagne. Well, if I must then just a little one.

What's that, your camera has run out and you need another one from the Beast? Perfect. I'll chum you out. Not a bad night really. Bit dreich, but none of the screaming hoolies that had afflicted our capitals. That it dear, got your camera and everything? Hang on, don't lock up quite yet, I need to get an elephant out of my rucksack. Jolly good dear, you do that, it's not a bad evening is it? No indeed.

Right then. Give me all that. We'll just put it here for a mo, now it's just the two of us, couple of tics eh? Squelch, click, deep breath, "DeborahAnnWarrenwillyoumarryme?" "Ooh, werwrwdy gnurdy foolifolupipop course!" Gnaaaaaaa. Well it wasn't a no. "It was a 'yes'" "OF COURSE" Gulp. Better stand up again then. I've been proferring one of these you know, d'you want it then? I know, I know, let's be 'aving it then!


Right. The others. "Hello again." "Ermm. Yes, can I introduce my Fiancee. Oh, and this rather chilled bottle of champagne. I know, bored of it already, but we really should on an occasion like this." It was Glowingobviously the right thing to do. The elephants are certainly a lot happier and, well, I'm pretty sure dp is! And in case you really can't tell from that, then I think this should be a bit of a clincher. Just for the record those are actually my cheeks, although quite what has happened to them I'm not really sure. Someone might know out there, is it a common side affect of 'yes' that you get cheeks like that? It seems to have worn off now at least, well most of the time anyway, but I am afflicted quite often at the moment.


Just time to write in the bothy book, head south and have dinner with the Best Man and his wife. For once I'm going to be early. As promised the Missus will see the place in daylight on the way down and it's even broken out some of the good weather for the occasion. Problem is, the Beast had other ideas. Seems it had heard of Layby 119 and really wanted to spend it's own little holiday there; teenagers they're all attention seekers, take it from me.