Me: Why are you looking so grumpy? Are your teeth still hurting?
Nell: They are a lot better today, thank you.
Me: So why the grumpy face?
Nell: What was that fluffy Golden Retriever doing in our front garden?
Me: That was Coco. Isn’t she gorgeous? So friendly and smiley. She lives with my brother and his family in Buckinghamshire. They popped in on their way to Cornwall.
Nell: And why were we all shut inside?
Me: We were worried you might bounce them.
Nell: Excuse me? I’m a senior Labrador recovering from an unpleasant procedure. I’m not bouncing anyone.
Me: No, but Dave and Harriet can be rather boisterous and little Mia was with them. We thought it might be too much.
Nell: It’s a sad day when one cannot even greet one’s guests.
Me: They were only staying for a cup of tea, Nell.
Nell: Were there scones?
Nell: That’s something, I suppose.
Me: It was really lovely to see them after all this time.
Nell: I expect it was. I wouldn’t know.
Me: You all came out to say goodbye and have some cuddles.
Nell: Coco drank out of David’s bowl.
Me: She was thirsty and hot.
Nell: Long fluffy hair will do that to an animal. Ask Gladys.
Me: Yes. I think Poppy is happier with shorter hair.
Nell: David wasn’t asked about his bowl.
Me: I’m sure he would have been fine about it.
Nell: Sharing one’s bowl is not something a Labrador does easily.
Me: Rubbish. You’re always licking each other’s bowls clean.
Nell: If you are referring to Tidy Bowls then that is something quite different.
Me: Tidy Bowls?
Nell: Yes, as I have said before, ‘A tidy bowl is a tidy mind.’
Me: Oh, I see. That explains everything. Sorry.