Me: Nell, why did you take so long to answer your phone?
Nell: Kev and I are at the hotel and we are in the middle of afternoon tea. The sandwiches are delicious.
Me: But this is urgent.
Nell: Honestly, it was kind enough of Kev to come and whisk me away to civilisation for a few hours without you disturbing us. Can’t I be allowed to enjoy it in peace?
Me: No. Dave has gone missing.
Nell: What do you mean?
Me: Well, Dave decided to go hiking with Gladys and The Cat.
Nell: On their own? In this weather? What a dreadful idea. Why did you let him?
Me: He took a map and some of Poppy’s sandwiches. And a flask of tea I think. He said they wouldn’t be gone long.
Nell: I hope he is wearing his hat as the rain is really heavy.
Me: He is.
Nell: I’m surprised Gladys and The Cat agreed to go. They hate getting their hair wet.
Me: Don’t worry, Dave took Gladys in your handbag and The Cat has a sequinned raincoat.
Nell: Oh, well that’s alright then. How long have they been gone?
Me: A few hours. Jim and Harriet have set off to find them. Poppy is busy making soup for dinner.
Nell: Where is Mutley?
Me: He’s gone with James to get a new air bed. They are hoping some of the shops are open.
Nell: A few hours isn’t very long. I don’t know why you are worrying. We are in Devon It’s not like the time I went trekking in Nepal and was lost for days.
Me: I never knew you went trekking in Nepal.
Nell: I went with Marvellous Great Aunt Pam. We only made it to Base Camp in the end which was a little disappointing. The sherbets were ever so helpful.
Me: Don’t you mean Sherpas?
Nell: No. Marvellous Great Aunt Pam always carries a few sherbets with her. You know that.
Me: Yes, I forgot.
Nell: Anyway, my tea is getting cold and I would like to enjoy my scone while it’s still warm. David will turn up soon. Stop fussing.
Me: Yes, sorry.