In Scotland today to meet up with an old friend and colleague, Andy Kerr, who until the Scottish Parliament elections in May was the Health Minister and looked set to take over the baton from former First Minister Jack McConnell at some point during the current parliament if Labour had been successful.
The press is currently rife with speculation about Jack standing down as Leader of the Labour Party in Scotland and Shadow First Minister with Andy tipped to fight out the succession with Wendy Alexander. Over lunch Andy's phone rings regularly with the press all wanting him to confirm he is standing, he holds the well tested line that politicians do in this situation, until the incumbent announces he is standing down then he doesn't want to speculate.
We have a good chat about how public opinion has changed and what the future may hold for Andy and he is full of energy and ideas having emerged from a period of reflection after May.
We part on good terms and pledge to keep in touch whatever happens in the next few weeks.