Me: Why is Harriet hiding on the stairs?

Nell: She’s been evacuated from her comfortable sofa downstairs.

Me: But you don’t have any bombs.

Nell: I know, but we are playing Evacuation. If you have to go through it then so do we.

Me: So where are the others?

Nell: David is in the kitchen with Gladys preparing breakfast. They are making pancakes quietly and they are not eating any of them.

Me: Oh dear. Where is Poppy?

Nell: In your handbag. It’s a tight fit.

Me: It would be. Gladys is much smaller.

Nell: Malcolm is up on the roof.

Me: I don’t think that’s very safe even though he is a flamingo.

Nell: Yes, and he is scared of heights.

Me: What about Mutley and The Cat?

Nell: They have gone surfing. The Cat has made them both sequinned bathing costumes.

Me: But The Cat hates water and Mutley is about 112 in human years.

Nell: They are actually quite excited.

Me: What about you?

Nell: I’m at the top of the back garden barking at the farm dogs.

Me: Don’t do that, Nell. You always tell the puppies off for barking.

Nell: I know but I’m not myself today, am I? Anyway, where are you?

Me: I’m about to leave for Andre’s parents’ house. There are police everywhere.

Nell: I suppose there would be.

Me: Thousands of people are being evacuated including the hospital and the area is being cordoned off.

Nell: Have you packed your case?

Me: No, they think the bombs should be disarmed by the afternoon.

Nell: I mean for tomorrow. You’re flying home.

Me: Yes, I’ll do it when I get back. I have to leave now, Nell. I’ll let you know when I am safe.

Nell: Make sure you do.

Me: Yes. I have to go now. Sorry.

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