Friday, 26 March 2010

Bertie's 'posh' name

There is a theory occasionally put forward by lovers of the Scottish Highlands (that includes me), that the terrible weather and the midges are our best friends.

Incredible but true.

Europe is a crowded part of the world. The landscapes are diverse, often beautiful. But in many areas that natural splendour has been ruined because too many people want a piece of it. We are so lucky that, here in Scotland, the magnificent, dramatic mountain scenery has largely escaped the over-development which scars so many of the continent's most attractive regions.

[Don't worry dog lovers, we are going to come on to Bertie in a moment...]

If NW Scotland had a climate like the Mediterranean, and someone ever found a means to magic away the swarms of little biting insects who time their activity so perfectly to coincide with the summer holiday season, then who knows how many hotels, holiday apartments, shopping malls, car parks etc. etc. would blemish the near pristine environment.

Yes, we owe those midgies and the plentiful rain a huge debt of gratitude....


If you read my last post, you'll already have seen pictures of Bertie, the darling wire-haired fox terrier puppy who will, from next month onwards, be sharing my life.

'Bertie' will be his everyday name, but he will have a 'posh' Kennel Club name too. The first bit of his official identity will be, as is customary, that of his home kennels (Granddach - Gaelic for the family name Grant). I get to choose two more names. How to decide?

When dear old Hamish was in his pomp he just loved roaming around the vast empty spaces of Northern Scotland and scampering up our rugged hills.

His special favourite was the Munro* situated at the back of my cottage on Loch Torridon. It's called Beinn Alligin, thought to mean the Jewelled Mountain or Mountain of Beauty.

People were always amazed that a short-legged wee chappie like Hamish would make it all the way to the top, but here's the proof:

Bertie will, I hope, be enjoying many trips with me over to Torridon in the coming years. I am so looking forward, when he is fully grown and his legs are strong enough, to wandering around in the hills and glens with him, the two of us together exploring our stunning landscape. One day, for sure, we shall follow in the footsteps of my much missed Westie, and 'Granddach Beinn Alligin' (a.k.a. Bertie) will also have a chance to admire the awesome view from the summit of his eponymous Munro.

Weather permitting of course..........

*All Scottish peaks over 3000 ft high are called Munros - there are 284 in total.


TwoSpecialWires said...

Gail, it is for the very reasons that you described that we long to visit Scotland. Your landscapes are beautiful, even magical. Bertie is going to find himself in a heaven on earth ... being a part of your family and a true Scottish lad ... enjoying his homeland as a dog should ... romping and sniffing and exploring with his Gail. He (and you) are lucky to have each other ... and your lovely homeland. We can hardly wait to begin enjoying it with the two of you, as you introduce it all to him. Bit by bit. With memories of Hamish making it even more special.

We're counting the days down, even as you are,
Jake and Fergi and Family

Martha and Bailey said...

Well Gail you will know that we totally agree with you.
In fact we are off to Kishorn soonish!
The sense of timelessness found in the highlands cannot, in our opinion, ever be beaten and the climate and midges ensure we have the peace that we so associate with NW Scotland.
We know dogs with little legs can climb!
Hamish was a great wee climber and looked just grand at the top of his favourite Munro.
Bertie will be one lucky dog to follow in the footsteps of wee Hamish.
Martha, Bailey & V. xxx

Benny and Lily said...

We bet Hamish is saying..what do you mean you can't believe I made it all the way to the top...
Benny & Lily

The Rocky Creek Scotties said...

Gail - what a wonderful name for Bertie - I can hardly wait to see him come home with you the start of his very own blog.

Have a great weekend,

DSS said...

What a lovely and appropriate name! My apologies on calling Bertie a "her" in my last comment. Silly American :(

Anxiously awaiting a formal introduction to Bertie!

T & Louis

scotsmad said...

Bertie is one lucky dog! Look forward to his (and your) adventures.

XXXOOO Daisy, Kendra & Bella

Jake of Florida said...


For the second time in as many days, I wrote a comment on a blog -- today it was yours -- and then in my excitement, clicked away before it ws posted.

I'll come back and repeat what I had written later -- but all I want to say now is that I think Bertie's august name is perfect -- and we truly appreciate your gratitude to the midges who have saved your part of the world!!

Wirey love,

Jake and Just Harry

Jazzi said...

Oh no, I can hear Hamish saying: I cant believe that Gail made it to the top!! BOL remember he had to stop and keep waiting on you!! Ha!
What a wonderful name for a wonderful dog, He will have some big shoes to fill!!


Katie, Julep and Derby's Mom said...

Gail - this is so exciting to have a new little friend entering your life. I think Hamish is looking down at you and thinking ... Mom Gail, you made an excellent choice in a new friend that will love you like I did.

On a personal note - we hope to make our trip to Scotland next year. We will be in Glasgow then up to The Lake Of Menteith Hotel with a VIP tour of Glenhoyne Whisky Distillery. We bid on and won this trip in a charity auction which was donated by FlemingHomestead and Ian Fleming. So ... I look forward to your photo's of landscapes in anticipation of our trip to Scotland. Katie

houndstooth said...

We hope that Bertie will soon make it to the summit, too! Is he going to have a coat with his name on it like Hamish?

Anonymous said...

Bertie has so many wonderful adventures waiting for him! My momma one day wants to visit your Scotland place. And I can sure see why. Most BEAUTIFUL!

Wiggles & Wags,

Scruffy, Lacie and Stanley's Place said...

We think you have the most bootiful country in the world...rugged beauty, hills and heather!

Bertie is going to be a much beloved well exercised foxy!!

We're in awe of your scenery!!!



Mango said...

My momma spent two weeks in Scotland because of work. She said it was the most beautiful place ever and that she could totally live there.


Miss Jean said...

Oh, I am so delighted that you are getting another wee one. I can't wait to see pictures of Bertie as he grows up. I'm sure Hamish would approve. He doesn't want his mommy to be lonly.

I've always wanted to visit Scotland - I do have a Scottish Terrier after all. The midges certainly wouldn't put me off!

Baby Rocket Dog and Hootie said...

Oh Miss Gail we are Soooooo happy that you have a new wee one coming into your life!! We can hardly wait to meet Bertie.

We also always love your tours of Scotland that you give to us. It is one of the places our mama would like to visit before she croaks.
love ya, BabyRD & Hootie

Eric said...

Aw love the photo of Hamish.Little legs are mighty powereful. You've chosen a perfect name for Bertie. A whole new level above the pedigree name given to me by the breeder (Hair Trix) How Hamish would laugh at that. But I know the name you chose for Bertie would have him wagging. Me too.

Wiry love Eric xxxx

Kira The BeaWootiful said...

Woooos! I am glad to see that the beauty of Scotland will furever remain left untouched due to the weather and bugs! Mum looks forward to her time there, someday..... she has wanted to go since she was a wee one herself. Until then we will live vicariously through you and Bertie!
~husky kisses~
-Kira The BeaWootiful

ScrapsofMe said...

Ahhh....a puppy! How stinkin CUTE!!!! And it's a WFT I guess all the terriers in Scotland have short leggies...then there is the lovely Deerhound if you want LEGS....I mean, they just keep going! Heck, they could carry yer back packie! But you'd have to re-do yer doggie door!

I can't wait to hear all the new Bertie tales. You can start puppy proofing the house now...any book close to the floor will be chewed, ditto extention cords and cables, take up any fine rugs till teething is over (Puff chewed the corner off HER really good was going to cost more to re-pair it than it cost originally), put yer bestest leather shoes up on a shelf. Buy lotsa chew toys...kong balls are good. The kind you can stuff with nummies. Those baby gates are good for doors. Containment is good. Maybe you can find a puppy play pen. People tend to get rid of em after a bit and you can sometime find them in boot sales.

Bertie....what a cute name. And what a big ole mouthfull of a posh name. I have a poshish name...NOT proper though...they didn't use the kennel name, but our clan name. Bonnie MacKinnon, clan, sept!

I soooo glad you are getting a new bestest fur friend.

Kisses all about,
Bonnie - the wee short legged Scottie