Me: What are the puppies doing?
Nell: Waiting for you, of course.
Me: I haven’t even left Berlin yet, Nell.
Nell: I know but they insisted. They have no concept of time and they love the excitement. So how was the evacuation?
Me: Extremely long. There was a problem with the second bomb so we didn’t get the all clear until after 7pm.
Nell: Well, we had a few problems here too, starting with David and Gladys.
Me: Oh dear.
Nell: They were not quiet. They ate most of the pancakes and used up all of Chris’s maple syrup. Not all of it on the pancakes I might add.
Me: I expect it was by mistake.
Nell: Nonsense. Then Poppy got stuck in my handbag and lost some fur getting out of it.
Nell: And Malcolm had to be airlifted from the roof.
Me: By helicopter?
Nell: No, by Count Bingo.
Me: Poor Malcolm. What happened?
Nell: He simply couldn’t move. Count Bingo was awfully kind and gave him a few prawns on the way down.
Me: What about Mutley and The Cat?
Nell: Surfing is not for them. They took one look at the waves and decided a massage at the hotel spa was a much better idea.
Me: I’m on their side. And did you do any barking?
Nell: I tried a couple of barks but my heart wasn’t in it so I had a cup of tea and a scone with Charlie instead.
Me: I quite understand.
Nell: Now you will be feeling low at having to say goodbye to Alice and the children but they will be visiting us in a few months.
Me: Yes. Are you coming to the station with Kev?
Nell: Of course I am. Especially when you’ve had some difficult goodbyes. You and me. Always. Remember?
Me: Yes. Sorry.