Last week, while the Godson was here, the Silver Beast decided to break down.
She's been very good this last year or two, living quietly in her kennel-yard and going everywhere we've asked, with no complaint. But no longer. She went from moody to recalcitrant to point-blank refusal in just 4 days.
The started-motor had died.
Happily, the Godson drove us hither, thither and yon, bless his heart, but alas, even he finally had to go home, and still the garage hadn't been able to get to her.
It was my friend DodoWoman who stepped into the breach, as ever.
'I need to ask you a huge favour.' I said - hesitantly.
'What?' She sounded slightly anxious, but when I asked if we could borrow her small car, her response was immediate and generous to a fault, as always. 'Of course,' she said with verve and vigour. It was only afterwards I wondered what she'd been expecting me to say.
I have fallen in love with her Hyundai. It goes like a dream, is incredibly comfortable, and when asked if it wants a drink responds with an astonishing, 'No, I'm good thanks.'
It was - as with all the lends of her cars over the years - a godsend for which I am forever grateful.
The Silver Beast, having had her moment of cosseting and one-to-one attention, is now safely back in the yard, happy and full of well-being, so yesterday evening we set out to return DodoWoman's car to its own cosy nest.
Unlike the rest of the British Isles and Ireland, we have not been basking in unalloyed sunshine all week, despite all promises and expectations. We have skulked under grey skies and dismal-ness.
I think there were a few brief hours of fitful sunlight on Wednesday afternoon, but that was it.
However, yesterday, although the clouds sat heavy on our shoulders the entire day, it was blissfully warm and even more blissfully still.
'Let's take the dogs and go to the beach on the way,' the In-Charge suggested, just when the sun would have been dipping over the yardarm. ''It will be low tide.'
So we drove both cars over to DodoWoman's house, left her Hyyndai to await her return from forrin-parts and moseyed down green, summery lanes to our second favourite beach. We passed lazy amblers, dogs and companionable horse-riders on the way.
It must have been about 7.45pm when we got to the beach. The tide was at its lowest ebb.
There were sandbars showing all across the bay, the sea pooling around them like silk, the sky pearling softly into the water, and everything the shade of sophisticated dresses, neither silver nor grey nor quite lavender.
And on the spit of land behind the beach, harebells, wild scabious and white heather spread in drifts through the grass.
We walked along the beach in our shirtsleeves, not a breath of wind, the air balmy and gentle, the only sound a heron hurrying home to Culleenamore.
It's not often that we are walking the beach on such a pet evening. It's not often that we are on the beach as the day melts into night.
But the combination of the two sent me tumbling through a mindfall of years, walking a beach on the far side of the world, saying goodbye to my childhood, the night before I left that tropical island forever.
It is strange, what ghosts walk in the gloaming.