Gilbert Mc's About

What you lookin' at?

....well, following the "success" of his last holiday in Austria, Gilbert decided his next one wouldn't involve flying anywhere (what with all the frisking and the air sickness), so he and his chums Tea Leaf and Spike set their hearts on a short trip north to Scotland. When Gilbert announced his plans to Helen and Steve, it came as a bit of a surprise to them, as they had been planning a much longer journey to Alaska, and didn't see how they could fit in another holiday. Undaunted, Gilbert, Tea Leaf and Spike resolved to tackle this one alone !!

Steve and Helen discussed the issue at great length with Tea Leaf and Spike's humans, Alison and Gareth, and after much agonising, agreed that the three bears were probably sensible enough to take care of themselves for a short while (like 2 or 3 hours, ...sorry...days), and so with promises of getting early nights, lots of healthy exercise and absolutely no drinking, Gilbert, Tea Leaf and Spike set off.

The boys...

Helen and Alison had made sure the gang were properly kitted out, and so tartanned to the hilt in kilts, tam-o'-shanters and sporrans, they soon felt at home.

Steve and Gareth had also helped in the preparations, and each bear was equipped with a rucksack (for putting really useful things in, like chocolate for emergencies) and a caber (for tossing).

We're not really going to do this are we?

Gilbert soon decided that as Steve and Helen had been kind enough to let him go away on his own, he would stick to the promises he had made (not necessarily the drinking one or the one about getting early nights, but the healthy exercise one), and so he arranged a day's climbing for them all.
The giant rock attacked the little bear - to the horror of the other two.

After a bit of practice, Gilbert decided he was ready to tackle Ben Nevis...

"This rock's humming," said Gilbert

Gilbert was quite enthusiastic about the climbing, but the others soon put their paws down, and insisted that they do a little sight-seeing the next day. Gilbert secretly agreed that this sounded a bit more fun, and the three bears planned their itinerary.

The next day brought glorious weather, although a bit hot for fur coats, and they set off in search of wildlife and views. They soon came across a lovely spot that had been the home of Gavin Maxwell, author of "Ring of Bright Water", and greater than that, one of Mr. Maxwell's otters was waiting to greet them.

"I can see snars," said Tea Leaf

Anyone got any beer?

Gilbert was soon star-struck, and sat chatting to the otter for hours, but although he seemed very polite, the otter wasn't very talkative, in fact a bit standoffish perhaps ...... 

"So I said to him, 'have you got any beer'. He looked thoughtful for a moment and then ran off. Do you think it's something I said? I only asked for a beer. It's not too much to ask is it? I was only saying to Tup the other day... if it wasn't for bears like me..... say I'm not boring you am I?      ... Don't say much do you?..."

All too soon it was time for the little bears to come home, and although he'd had a great time, Gilbert had really missed Helen and Steve, not to mention his own bed, the sofa and all his other home comforts. The healthy living and exercise thing had been OK, but he couldn't wait to get back home to Steve's beer cupboard, Helen's proper home cooked meals, alcohol, the computer, wine, chocolate.....did he mention the beer ...?

Gilbert just hoped that his behaviour and apparently reformed drinking habits in Scotland had been enough to earn himself a place on the next trip with Steve and Helen to Alaska...

With grateful thanks to Jo and Howard.

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This page last updated: 11 Mar 2001