Nell: I endure. A boiled egg for breakfast helped.
Me: What are the puppies doing?
Nell: They are Guarding. It’s the next stage in the Waiting Skills. You not only wait. You are also prepared.
Me: Prepared for what?
Nell: For anything. People underestimate us, labradors. They see us as gentle, easy going animals when in fact we are fighting machines.
Me: Goodness! It sounds more terrier like to me.
Nell: Never underestimate a labrador. Under our calm exterior we are actually completely focussed and ready to leap into action.
Me: Harriet looks more bored than prepared.
Nell: It’s not one of her strengths. David is actually quite alert.
Me: He’s waiting for Tony.
Nell: That’s as maybe but I am pleased with his progress. Nice tea, by the way.
Me: I’m glad.
Nell: Don’t bother with cucumber sandwiches next time. Just stick with egg and maybe smoked salmon.
Me: Is there going to be a next time?
Nell: Of course there is. I am having a tea in May for the Royal Wedding.
Me: Are you inviting the neighbours?
Nell: I am toying with the idea of asking the elderly labrador from The Coach House but those farm dogs are not setting foot in here.
Me: What about the cat from the big house?
Nell: I am going to pretend you didn’t ask such a ridiculous question.
Me: Yes, sorry.