Nell: I knew that visiting spaniel was the sickly type. Letting us down just before we went on stage.
Me: Yes, but didn’t Harriet read well? Jumping in at the last minute.
Nell: She was the perfect Cecily.
Me: And the cat was excellent.
Nell: It surprised us all. Wonderful clear delivery and the spectacles were inspired.
Me: You two certainly seemed to get on.
Nell: Yes. The cat has agreed to join my reading group. We are taking tea together later.
Me: I thought Dave was adorable. Where did he find that ear trumpet for Mutley?
Nell: Goodness knows, but it was a huge help and stopped us having to repeat our lines to him constantly. I’m not sure it was quite the right look for a romantic lead, however.
Me: People understood.
Nell: David is a natural performer, although Algernon didn’t sing in the original version.
Me: He must have been boiling in that tweed jacket.
Nell: He borrowed it from the Prince. They have been in regular contact since the wedding.
Me: Nice of James to bring it down.
Nell: Yes, with fresh vegetables from Highgrove and some of Camilla’s marmalade.
Me: The farm dogs gave you a standing ovation.
Nell: Very flattering, if rather loud. I don’t know who invited them.
Me: I might have mentioned it. Over the fence, in passing.
Nell: If I’ve told you once I’ve told you a thousand times. Do not gossip with the farm dogs. They are in league with the Daily Growl.
Me: They are huge fans, Nell. One of them was wearing a t shirt with your face on the front.
Nell: Good grief. Now, Harriet has her check up this afternoon. We are all expecting good news but she is understandably nervous.
Me: So am I.
Nell: Poppy has packed a light picnic. A few fairy cakes, some chicken sandwiches, crusts off, and a flask of tea. Decaf, of course.
Me: That’s kind.
Nell: I suggest you stop off at the Quay on your way back. A little stroll and some fresh air will do her the power of good.
Me: Good idea. Are you coming?
Nell: I can’t. The cat is coming to tea and we are hoping Mutley and Poppy will join us for a game of bridge.
Me: What about Dave?
Nell: David is going surfing with the lifeguards. Why do you think he is wearing his wetsuit?
Me: Yes. Sorry.