Me: Look at Dave hanging out with the roofers.
Nell: Yes. David is an excellent Roofing Liaison Officer.
Me: He is such a dear friendly boy.
Nell: I can’t believe the cheek of Walter Pigeon, though. Wretched bird. He keeps saying: ‘Work harder, Buddy’. Over and over.
Me: He’s local. Everyone is ‘Buddy’ in Devon.
Nell: That’s not the point. The roofers are just having an ice cream break and I’m enjoying the quiet. They don’t need scolding.
Me: Dave’s been busy.
Nell: David is on tidying up duties today. He is helping the roofers collect the debris.
Me: He’s certainly got his oomph back.
Nell: Yes. A young animal needs to be occupied. Fortunately Harriet is busy writing.
Nell: No. Observations. It’s something she’s doing for Sally. There have been some odd comings and goings at the Big House recently.
Me: Is she spying?
Nell: We try not to use that word.
Me: Is Walter Pigeon the suspect?
Nell: Walter Pigeon is a nuisance.
Me: Is it the visiting ferrets then?
Nell: Jill and Hob Henderson? They’re usually asleep to be honest. The Cat says they need 15 hours a day.
Nell: Mind you, when they’re awake you should see the dancing and dooking.
Me: Don’t you mean ducking and diving?
Nell: No. Dooking is the sound they make. You must have heard of the ferret war dance. It reminds me of Poppy when she’s had too many espressos.
Me: She can be very jittery.
Nell: I’ve told her to change to decaf but she won’t listen.
Me: I wish you would tell me what’s going on.
Nell: Take a biscuit out of Harriet’s bowl and just observe.
Me: You mean a leaf out of her book.
Nell: I most certainly do not. Leave her notebook alone. It’s for Sally’s eyes only.
Me: Yes. Sorry.