Experiencing a day in the city that is best forgotten

The combination of senior moments, and the erratic behaviour of others, all made for a disturbing day last week.

It all started when I boarded an early-morning bus on which I presented my much-used bus pass, only for the driver to tell me it did not register on his machine, this despite it being valid until December, 2016.

His alternatives were stark, either catch the next bus or pay the full fare.

I unhappily opted for the latter on the basis that I had to get to an early appointment in the city.

In the intervening time in Aberdeen I reflected on the whys and wherefores of my pass not being valid. But undaunted got on another bus home later in the day, hopeful that there would be no such repeat of the outward journey.

This time the driver, not the same one, gave me the explanation that my bus pass had come up as “red spotted”.

He was very helpful, even if he relieved me of the said friend of many an Aberdeen trip, but gave me a temporary one for the period of seven days, advising to either contact my local authority or Stagecoach for an explanation and a replacement card.

All very embarrassing, especially as the bus was near full, giving other passengers a great view of a fellow traveller in distress.

I should say that while I was in Aberdeen things did not go any better, as not only had I forgotten my mobile phone, but could not recall my password for my sick iPad when I went for a quick repair.

To cap it all the colleague I was due to meet for coffee did not turn up at the appointed hour, but having no means of contacting him had no alternative but to head for home where at least I would get some sympathy after my stressful morning.

I, of course, should have known better as my good lady was of the strong opinion that all the disasters had been of my own making. You just can’t win.

In case you are wondering about the red spot outcome, I am afraid that will have to wait, as coward that I am the very idea of going to Aberdeenshire or Stagecoach to be further humiliated does not appeal.

I shall instead use my temporary pass until it expires in seven days.

Finally, and more happily, I am delighted to hear that the opening of the Ellon Castle Gardens has gone down so well with those who took advantage of the offer last week.

I have spoken to a number of people and without exception all have said what a wonderful experience it was, generally marvelling that such a wonderful hidden gem should be here in little old, unsung Ellon.

But while I am delighted and certainly not surprised at the responses, I am disappointed it has taken so long to get to the point of allowing the public access.