Welcome to my blog

Hello there. My name is Humphrey and I’m the new therapy assistant at the Inchmarlo Retirement Community.

This blog will describe my life as I train for my new job. All of the experiences I have and the new friends that I make will be posted here, and you can drop in at any time to see how I’m getting on.
You can see the most recent updates if you scroll down the text on this front page. Alternatively, you can view the archive on the side of this page to see some of my older posts. 

However, if you want to start from the very beginning and get the whole story, you can view my first-ever blog post here.

Feel free to leave a comment and say hi.


January at Inchmarlo

Well, this is the second week in January!  Daddy and I went out to Inchmarlo on an absolutely clear day with no wind and the temperature was very, very pleasant. I had a good time, as usual, going around the residents in the Red Drawing room and in the Reception. Then we went for a walk around some of the neighbourhoods and I enjoyed myself very much. Daddy had a meeting before lunch and then he had lunch with Julie.  I heard him say to the kitchen staff that the main course was absolutely wonderful.  The choices today were Chicken in a creamy bacon sauce or Beef stew with mustard dumplings, two recipes from Lady Claire Macdonald, who had attended a Food Tasting Dinner at Inchmarlo some years ago. The snack that Daddy took home for me was the chicken which I had later and it was yummy! I’m absolutely sure the residents in the home in Inchmarlo house also enjoyed it.

Later, when we returned to the House to collect invoices to take back to Aberdeen one of the receptionists called in with her two little children. Daddy chatted to them both – charming children – and asked them if they would like to come out to say hello to me as I was already in the back of the car. So they came out and we had a nice little chat. Altogether a lovely day!


Well, I was a bit miffed yesterday because a series of meetings were held for all the Home Owners from the 9 neighborhoods to come and hear the company’s latest plans and also for the management to answer any queries that they may have. I believe I’m an integral part of the running of Inchmarlo and I SHOULD HAVE BEEN INVITED. However, I wasn’t, and, in a way, I suppose it’s fair enough because I would have to be let out every so often thus interrupting the flow of the meetings.

I listened to the comments Daddy made later to Mummy that all the meetings had gone very well. Daddy showed the plans for the proposed Community Facility which we are hoping to build to provide better facilities for the Home Owners. Plans include a Bar, a Restaurant, lounges and meeting rooms suitable for a wide range of uses.

I heard Daddy say that he got a bit of a shock that when, after one of the meetings, a Home Owner came up to him and said,

“Mr. Skene I made a mistake when I came to Inchmarlo”. Daddy replied, “oh I’m sorry to hear that, what’s wrong?” The Home Owner replied, “I should have come here years earlier”!

Daddy thanked him very much for his comment and asked if he would be so kind as to put it in writing, which he did. Two other Home Owners also came to Daddy and said that, before they came to Inchmarlo, they had looked at a whole range of retirement developments and Inchmarlo was by far the best they could find.

The reason for all the nice comments coming from the Home Owners was because Daddy exhibited an extract from the Sunday Times Newspaper dated October 28th which reviewed a range of Retirement Communities in the UK, said that –

“If it’s good enough for the Queen, it should certainly be good enough for the rest of us. And while Her Maj is showing no signs of retirement, the fact that she chooses to spend so much of her downtime in this glorious, wind-washed corner of Scotland speaks volumes. Apart from the scenery – rushing rivers, lofty pine trees and views of the mighty Cairngorms – the chief advantages are a welcoming climate with low rainfall and the freshest of air.  Balmoral is taken, so you will need to find your own base.   Aboyne and Banchory both have hospitals, busy community centres and regular buses to Aberdeen, and there’s a fair choice of cafes and shops (many with royal warrants). Banchory, though, has the Inchmarlo Retirement Village, one of the first and still one of the best in the U.K. Buyers from all over the country have been moving here since 1986, confident that they will be able to stay as long as they need. It’s in a beautiful setting, surrounded by 100 acres of parkland close to the River Dee. It has alarms, 24-hour security, nurses and a care home on site. There are also plenty of activities; next up, a fiery November 5 bonfire party. Two-bedroom flats start at 135,000; two-bedroom houses about 200,000.

Pastimes come in true Scottish style: fishing, golf, whisky tasting, and woodland walks, many on the flat along an old railway line.”ime in this glorious, wind-washed corner of Scotland speaks volumes. Apart from the scenery – rushing rivers, lofty pine trees and views of the mighty Cairngorms – the chief advantages are a welcoming climate with low rainfall and the freshest of air. Balmoral is taken,

Wasn’t that nice!

Wonderful Feedback

Well, Daddy and I have just come back from Inchmarlo: it was Thursday afternoon and there was no sun but there wasn’t a touch of breeze and none of the trees standing there in their gorgeous autumnal colours moved an inch.

We walked down the little walk and went into the sales office.  I heard Dawn telling Daddy about a potential Home Owner who drove into the carpark today and spoke to one of our existing residents. The potential customer asked the Home Owner if he had any regrets in buying a house at Inchmarlo?  And he apparently replied:  

“The only regret I have is that I didn’t come here sooner”

Wasn’t that a lovely thing to say. This is a frequently expressed comment by Home Owners, some of whom have been with us for years and years and years.



Colorful Autumn at Inchmarlo

Daddy and I went out to Inchmarlo today because the weather was absolutely gorgeous and we were sure that the trees and the plants would be very photogenic, and they were! We started off at the main house and then went all around the village taking photographs of the spectacular foliage on the trees and the plants. Daddy and I met a couple of Home Owners who were sitting on benches enjoying the sunshine. Here is what Inchmarlo looks like on an autumnal day and isn’t it just beautiful for everyone including Home Owners and Residents in the village and who visit.  Inchmarlo has some of the tallest trees of their type in Britain. Some are over 40m tall.

As you understand, I like trees very much for an entirely different reason.  I’m not interested in the color and foliage of the trees but I do like trees!  In fact, I’m spoiled for choice at Inchmarlo!

I went and admired all the knitting that the residents in Inchmarlo House had done to enhance and liven up the Sensory Garden. 




Church Service

Well, last Sunday was different from the majority of Sundays, not just because I’m not usually out at Inchmarlo but because we hosted a church service for members of Rubislaw and Queen’s Cross Churches.  This was the second church event we held over the last few years and David, our Head Security man, and his staff erected the marquee in the main garden just south of the Rainbow Garden.  It was just as well since, unfortunately, it rained all day!

Despite the rain, Daddy and I walked around and inspected the marquee, and everything was set up for the worshippers with one exception.  After Daddy and I walked back down to the main house he put me back in the car and I stayed there until the service was over.  What I didn’t know, neither did Daddy, that it wasn’t just worshippers that took part in the service and sung the hymns, there was a dog in there accompanying his owners!  If I had known that, I would have insisted that I should attend also. After all, Inchmarlo is in my “bailiwick”.  The service went very well, both ministers from Rubislaw and Queens Cross spoke.  There was singing albeit without an organ or piano, but it was a very pleasant event – even with the rain hitting the marquee.  Afterwards, almost everyone went to the Cowshed on the Raemoir Road for supper.  Daddy told me later that the fish and chips were excellent.  Now I love fish, albeit not in a batter and certainly not with chips.  So, I missed out on two things, the Church Service, and a fish supper!