Poppy hasn’t made an appearance here for a while. Now 17 years old – a remarkable age for a Burmese cat – she felt that the time had come to follow Nelson Mandela’s example and make a gentle withdrawal from public life.

So here she is in Blogstead Na Mara, Donegal – exhausted by the effort of updating her Facebook page and carefully placed within toasting distance of the wood-burning stove. She still has her insulin injections night and morning and has a close and personal relationship with Harvey, her personal physician back in Perth. He thinks that she is now deaf – and because she can’t hear herself she has become noisy. It’s a sort of feline Beethoven thing.