Happily Ever After

Life in The Rural Retreat with a beautiful wife, three cats, garden wildlife, a camera, a computer – and increasing amounts about running

Earlier posts can be found on Adventures of a Lone Bass Player, where this blog began life. Recent entries can be found here.


A Highland Welcome

by admin - 23:08 on 07 April 2013

Soo (my sister) and Tony arrived on the Black Isle yesterday, all set for a relaxing seven days' preparation for the following week when they'll take up residence in The Rural Retreat to perform cat-sitting duties while Marathon Matchgirl and I are away. The move to the Retreat won't come a moment too soon.

Being Yorkshire folk, both have a keen eye for a bargain and thought the self-catering premises in Fortrose they'd discovered on the internet promised just that. Unfortunately, the cut-price tariff comes with a regime which would impress a 1950s seaside landlady.

After being given a book of rules as thick as a phone directory they were told they'd be expected to clean the house and strip the beds at the end of their stay, during which they'd only get electricity (in an all-electric house with solar panels) by feeding the meter. Payment was in advance, accompanied by a £50 deposit which will be returned (possibly) up to two weeks after departure, presumably when the management has checked that the bath's been properly cleaned and none of the teaspoons are missing. Highland hospitality at its finest.

If only they'd asked us to recommend a few places. They'll know better next time.

During a brief visit to the Retreat they met The Fearless Ones for the first time. Initial mistrust soon gave way to cautious acceptance. Maia stayed out of the way, upstairs. Soo was delighted to make their acquaintance at last after following feline exploits through the blog, although she's a little apprehensive about dealing with Pandora's homicidal mayhem.

She should be. This afternoon I had to dispose of half a vole and the regurgitated other half after The Tabby Terror discovered that she didn't have room left following a more conventional lunch of Felix meaty chunks and fishy biscuits. It looks as though our guests might have some cleaning to do here too.

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