Ah weel it's been a wee while since we hud our last wee blether. We'd just finished vintage and everyone was knackered. Anywise all the wines are safely in their tanks or barrels and me an' Bella have had time tae relax and enjoy the rewards o' a joab well done. Noo, we're well into prunin' wi' frostie starts and lang days. An' the bottlin' o' some o' the new wines is underway

Talkin' of well done (though we shouldnae) Bella's been joined (for a wee while, shoosh) by two wee porkers by the names o' 'Sausage' an''Sizzle'. Nice names right enough but Ah don't know why the oulds aye snigger when they tell folks. Anywise ah get along wi' them fine an' Bella pits up wi' them as long as they stay away frae her food. Ye can come an' visit them if ye like.

We had a great wee weekend around Bastille Day (quatorze juillet). Of course, ye know we (wee) Scots are great mates o' the French. Those of you who have drunk our 'Auld Alliance' (our Bordeaux blend) will know the first auld alliance dates back to the thirteenth century. While it was a military alliance, the great thing then was that the best French wines came to Leith (Embra) before they went onto Tilbury (Lundin). This is why the first ever breath test was to be able to say "The Leith Police dismisseth us" without slurring yer wurds. Ah slur ma wurds anyway, so ye can never tell wi' me.

The Scots luv fur Claret came frae thae days. Tha's whit Rabbie Burns drank – explains a lot. In those days they drank it by the pint. At that time claret hud about 9% alcohol no like today's 12 or 13 – but a pint?! Nae wonder Tam o' Shanter could see witches and ghoulies as he rode o'er the Brig o' Doon. Anyhow we had a wee decorous glass of our Auld Alliance as part of our special Bastille Day lunches. No me mind. I wus oan duty.

Apparently, les escargots were tres magnifique – they musta been because there were none left over efter 'cos ah hud a good look. 'Paris breasts' were the most popular desert. Ah don't know what James our chef was thinkin'. Ah'll no
' try to describe the dish but it was two mounds of brulee with strategically placed cherries on top. Tres jolie, righ' enough We had French music too and the tricolour was well in evidence. An' ah had a great audience for ma rock retrieval exhibition.

During the school hoalidays we had a' the weans here fur whit seemed like weeks but was only a few days. Actchully, it was rerr. They played on their bikes an' ah tried tae keep up – see ma wee legs gaun like the clappers. An' they threw stones for me which was great. An' they let me play in the dress ups wi' them ho' nane o' the cloathes quite fitted.

An' now we've got Spring (printemps) tae look forward to. Soon enough it'll be Daffodil Day an' ah'll have tae update ma stone pushin' routine. They say ye've got tae have a good nose to work at a winery – well ah've certainly got that.

Au revoir pour maintenant.