Me: Why are the puppies hiding under the kitchen table?
Nell: The Evil Mrs Snow is cooking breakfast and she is shouting at Wibbly Wobbly and Whimsical Woof.
Me: Oh dear. The poor things. What a way to start your day. The puppies seem awfully worried about it.
Nell: Snow Bite has to go undercover and the Handsome Lifeguard is protecting her, while staying alert for any accidental droppage.
Me: Let me get this clear. You do mean Poppy is shouting at Manuel and Malcolm, don’t you? And Dave is protecting Harriet.
Nell: Yes. I want everyone to stay in their characters for the whole of today.
Me: But I don’t want to be on my own all day, Nell.
Nell: What are you talking about?
Me: The Talking Bowl is heard but not seen.
Nell: Actually, the Talking Bowl is seen, it’s just you that isn’t.
Me: I am the Talking Bowl.
Nell: You are the Voice of the Talking Bowl. There’s a very important difference.
Me: Is that why I can’t go on stage?
Nell: Yes. Of course, it is. We mustn’t break the illusion.
Me: It all makes sense now. I thought you were just being mean and didn’t want me on stage with everyone else.
Nell: Don’t be silly. At the end of the pantomime you will join everyone for the final bows.
Me: Well, that’s a relief. Can I go on dressed as a Talking Bowl then?
Nell: Good grief. Have you been listening to a word I’ve been saying? No, you cannot. We need to preserve the illusion.
Me: What about today?
Nell: Why on earth would you want to spend today dressed as a Talking Bowl? Fridays are Dressing Up days. You know that. Just speak in your special voice.
Me: Yes. Sorry.