Me: Is Dave playing Cowardy Custard with Walter Pigeon again?
Nell: Yes. He’s been out there since breakfast.
Me: One of them is going to have to look away soon.
Nell: It won’t be David. He takes the game very seriously.
Me: Darling Big Brave Beautiful Boy.
Nell: Walter only does it to annoy. He’ll get bored soon and fly off.
Me: I wonder how they decide when the game begins.
Nell: It’s from the moment you lock eyes.
Me: But how do you know the other person is playing? If they’re not, they’re going to find you staring at them like that very odd.
Nell: They look away and you’ve won. That’s all that matters.
Me: You’re very good at it.
Nell: Yes, I am.
Me: You were doing it to Alice yesterday morning when she was eating her cereal.
Nell: I was not.
Me: You were giving her an unwavering stare. Were you begging?
Nell: I was being supportive.
Me: Is that why she shared it with you?
Nell: Alice likes to share. She’s a sweet girl.
Me: Well, she’s safely home with her little family now.
Nell: Which is exactly where she should be.
Me: Yes. Did Harriet have a lovely day with Jim the Farm Dog?
Nell: She did, which is particularly important after Bumper’s news.
Me: What news?
Nell: He’s decided to return to the US.
Me: Oh no.
Nell: Much as he loved being with us all, duty calls and he must return.
Me: But what about the stage manager job?
Nell: We’re going to have to advertise.
Me: And the stuffed tiger? It’s going to be devastated to see him go.
Nell: It’s not real, you know.
Me: It is to me.
Nell: I worry about you sometimes. I really do.