Me: The puppies seem awfully serious.
Nell: If you’d been at Morning Thoughts you’d know why.
Me: It’s my writing time.
Nell: There were some huge differences of opinion.
Me: Was it about slippers? They really aren’t for everyone and a little bit of mud on the floor isn’t the end of the world.
Nell: It wasn’t about slippers.
Me: What was it about?
Nell: Afternoon tea with Stephen Seagull.
Me: I see.
Nell: The problems began with the guest list.
Me: Is he bringing someone?
Nell: No, but everyone seems to think they should be there.
Me: We all enjoy an afternoon tea.
Nell: You’re definitely not invited, so don’t start.
Me: I can be very well behaved.
Nell: You write everything down.
Me: It’s what I do best. Who’s invited?
Nell: Susan will be attending with Malcolm as her husband.
Me: And Miss Penny Lane?
Nell: Of course. I shall be overseeing proceedings with Harriet as my deputy.
Me: What about Dave?
Nell: David will be serving.
Me: Not a good idea.
Nell: He wants to prove himself.
Me: He’s my darling Big Brave Beautiful Boy but food rarely reaches the table untouched.
Nell: I don’t think Stephen Seagull cares about half eaten scones. He’s a Beefy.
Me: Who else will be there?
Nell: Henry and Horst, Rupert and the Stuffed Tiger.
Me: Why is it invited?
Nell: It’s always there. It sits by the yellow chair. You sound like Beauregard. He says if tigers are invited he should be too.
Me: He has a point.
Nell: And I haven’t even got to the food.
Me: What do you mean?
Nell: Do we offer Stephen a lovely afternoon tea, or soggy leftovers?
Me: Soggy leftovers every time.
Nell: But Beefies like their leftovers soggy.
Me: You’re right. Sorry.