WE feared we may never see Withers again this week. The wonderful one headed off "oop north" to visit a Bhuddist retreat amid unqualified rumours that it was a kind of Waco Texas, a cult which brainwashed its inhabitants into living among them, advocating free love and such like.
God knows the wonderful one could do with some free love, or even some paid for love for that matter, but being the susceptible type he is there was a good chance that he would be indoctrinated by their beliefs, disowning family and friends (well, I suppose the second one wouldn't make much difference).
Alas, he came back.
On Wednesday night he turned up after a mammoth round trip to the wilds of north Wales, explaining that unfortunately there was no nude chanting in the woods or group sex of any kind. He did, though, have a very enjoyable free vegetarian lunch.
The story of his return was not without drama, however. Driving out of this rural retreat he turned left instead of right, heading up a mountain until it became virtually impossible to turn. As he negotiated this tricky, bendy road, he began to wonder how he would get down again until, finally, he reached a plateau.
The road, by this pointf, was very thin and on either side there was a danger of rolling the company car down a cliff.
So the wonderful one set about attempting a three-point turn.
Did I say three point? It ended up being a 25-point turn, in the manner of Austin Powers on his buggy in one of his early films.
The audience, lucky for the panicking Withers, consisted of mainly mountain goats and sheep.
We quit The Yard for the Hard Rock Cafe this week. A terribly difficult decision to make, but made much easier by the fact that a. There are far more smoking tables available outside and b. They were selling pints of Becks at £2 each in a happy hour that lasted until 7. I bought the first round for myself, the Prince of Darkness and Smashy.
Later Withers turned up. By this time it was Smashy's round and he offered the new arrival a drink.
"Are you sure," asked the Wonderful One, shocked at this generous offer.
"Yep. It will be your round next and by then the prices will have gone up," explained the calculating Smashy.