For the past 14 weeks this column has had little or nothing to do with football as we know and love it.
My offering for March 14 had to be hastily rewritten after the game was shut down because of Covid-19, and from that point onwards, it has been a catalogue of in-fighting, treachery, politics, self-interest, mismanagement and downright anger as Scottish football has ripped itself apart.
It has been a torrid time; one that has cast a bleak and, on a number of occasions, embarrassing shadow over the game.
It is not over yet of course – the legal action being pursued by Hearts and Partick Thistle threatens yet more wrangling and furious debate, and that will play out in the courts, but for the next few weeks the clubs have to concentrate on getting ready for the return to action.
The Dons are very much in that phase; training has been stepped up, and there was confirmation this week of the very welcome news that Jonny Hayes is back in the fold.
The agreement the Irishman struck regarding his wage deferral says everything about his love for the club, and it was an incredible gesture.
I know that Derek McInnes has wanted him back ever since his departure and the pair have always been in regular contact; getting that deal over the line was a masterstroke.
Jonny will have benefited from his time at Celtic and says he feels he has improved. He offers pace and skill, will weigh in with a few goals, and most importantly, will create chances for others.
He is also a known quantity within the dressing room and was a hugely popular character during his previous spell. As signings go, it might have been the biggest no-brainer of all time.
Derek would like to add further to the squad, but that is not going to be easy, and there will have to be departures if he is to do so.
We have saleable assets, but despite the financial crisis caused by the pandemic, no one will be allowed to leave on the cheap, and unless there are realistic offers, the manager may well have to go with the pool of players he currently has.
That would not be too much of a hardship as he has some real talent at his disposal.
The enforced shutdown meant we have yet to see the best of Dylan McGeouch and Matty Kennedy in an Aberdeen shirt, and when the latter recovers from his ankle operation, I would expect both to make a real impact in 2020-21.
If Craig Bryson can finally get fully fit, he too has the potential to make a big contribution.
Add in stalwarts like Joe Lewis, Niall McGinn, the outstandingly consistent Andy Considine and – assuming they aren’t the subject of acceptable bids – the likes of Lewis Ferguson, Scott McKenna and Sam Cosgrove, and Derek still has the core of a very decent starting eleven.
It will potentially be a career-defining campaign for some of the fringe players, with Connor McLennan and Scott Wright among those who will be hoping to get opportunities to prove their worth.
The big kick-off is still just over a month away, and it won’t initially be the football we have experienced down the years, but at least we are inching closer to having it back, and that will be a major relief to all.