Let me be the… last, to wish you happy new year!

Sorry, my new year best wishes are very late. How was your new year celebration? Mine was not good at all.

First of all, I was heading back to Mother Russia, as I did last year. But… yes, there’s always that BUT! I hadn’t noticed that my Russian visa had expired and I had no time at all to renew it.

So, not wishing to let my wife down, I booked the best room I could get on Princes Street, Edinburgh (pure fluke that I got it) for the biggest New year Party of all, the Edinburgh Hogmanay. That should be good, I thought. Two hundred thousand people singing Auld Lang Syne at midnight, bagpipes, fireworks and my favourite sound: champagne corks popping!

The room I got had a spectacular view of the gorge and the castle.

If you want to know what’s going on in the spherical thing below, I’ll show you soon.

The fact that, when I arrived in Edinburgh, I realized (told by a 12 year old when I was at the traffic lights) I had flat rear tyre, and that I drove around the city for 90 minutes before finding a parking space in the Omni Centre, was not a good sign.

Having paid an extortionate extra fee for a room with a view over the gorge and of the castle, I realized exactly what I’d done wrong. Come 4.30 am with people still arriving into the hotel and Princes Street full of pissed people and Hot Dog stands getting in place… I’d have paid a fortune just to get a back-room in the place!

So, come new years eve, Princes Street, perhaps one of the busiest high streets in the UK is empty!

However, the sound stage is looking good. And I’m looking forward to former Geordie school chum of mine, Neil Tenant of the Pet Shop Boys belting it out in the evening (The Fratellis are also playing, so I’m now, very excited!).

And what was going on in the spherical thing?

Kids, bouncing up and down to the ceiling. That’s what!

I LOVE this place. Edinburgh is only a two hour drive from my home and it is beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!

New Years eve, my wife and I dressed in our finest and went to eat in Edinburgh’s finest. The last time my wife and I were at No 3 Royal Terrace, Edinburgh I was with my great friend Ralph Tegtmeir and his business partner, Dirk. And what a laid back, relaxing time we had.

This time, my wife picked an argument with me. A whole load of shit happened. And when we got to Princes Street from the restaurant, we were told that the celebrations were cancelled!

My wife and I went to the hotel bar where the argument over… whatever it was, I can’t remember now, only got worse and I threatened to throw my wife out of the window if she didn’t shut the fuck up.

I then had a sudden instant reminder that she is a Russian adversary that I’d rather not encounter too often, physically, verbally or otherwise.

Testicles are precious. You only get two to last you a lifetime.

By now, my limp is hardly noticeable.

All the best for 2007, dear friends.

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