Book · Fall

Who ate my slipper?

Me: Somebody ate the end of my slipper.

Nell: We are aware and the culprit has confessed.

Me: It’s the second pair. This time it’s the toe and last time it was the heel.

Nell: Yes. The culprit regrets what has happened and will endeavour not to do it again.

Me: It was taken while I was asleep.

Nell: There is no point in dwelling on it. We all need to move on.

Me: It wasn’t you, was it?

Nell: What kind of question is that?

Me: Are you going to tell me who it was?

Nell: There is no need.

Me: You wouldn’t be like this if I ate your slipper.

Nell: True. I would be extremely concerned about your state of mind.

Me: You know what I mean.

Nell: Let’s all move on and put this incident behind us. It was a moment of madness.

Me: I know it was one of the puppies.

Nell: Actually you don’t and they are adolescents.

Me: Mutley would never eat my shoe and neither would Poppy.

Nell: I agree.

Me: Sometimes I think you enjoy annoying me.

Nell: Don’t be ridiculous. The matter has been dealt with internally.

Me: I hate not knowing.

Nell: Just rise above it. We have menus to go through with Poppy and The Cat has created a mood board for the cafe.

Me: Just tell me.

Nell: We’ve decided to drop the raisin scones because of the dangers to dogs and I have to call Anton after his sad but justified departure from Strictly. I’m sorry but that woman simply couldn’t dance.

Me: But I need to know.

Nell: Labradors stick together. Pocket money will go towards new slippers. That’s all you need to know.

Me: Yes. Sorry.

Book · Fall

Sunday contemplation

Nell: Harriet and I have been enjoying a lovely chat with your sister. It is delightful that she was able to stay.

Me: Good.

Nell: The thing about Sundays is they encourage contemplation.

Me: Do they?

Nell: Yes. After a hearty breakfast it is time to rest by the fire with the Sunday papers and chat.

Me: I only had cereal upstairs.

Nell: You were too busy writing to join us. Poppy excelled herself. The eggs were a gift from Tony you know.

Me: How kind.

Nell: Yes. Fresh from his chickens.

Me: What were you talking about?

Nell: Life. Love. Lettuce.

Me: Lettuce?

Nell: We were discussing sandwiches. Poppy feels lettuce can make a sandwich go limp and I am inclined to agree.

Me: I like lettuce.

Nell: Yes, but finger sandwiches don’t have lettuce. They are more compact.

Me: Did you discuss anything else?

Nell: Yes. Raisins.

Me: Raisins?

Nell: In scones. We think not, but some people enjoy them. Poppy suggests we offer both.

Me: So the talk was mainly of food?

Nell: No. Harriet and your sister talked bookkeeping and accounting while David practised his dancing and Mutley played the piano. Poppy was in the kitchen and Kev and I just relaxed and listened.

Me: I seem to have missed out on quite a morning.

Nell: Someone has to write about it.

Me: Yes. Sorry.

Book · Fall

Jonathan Sky is Two Today

Jonathan Sky is two today.

Nell says: “Dance and shout ‘Hurrah’.”

Nell says: “Go and chew a shoe

Because Jonathan Sky has just turned two.”

Mutley and Poppy

Harriet and Dave

Are bouncing around

And giving a wave.

Charlie and Jim

Jago and John

Gladys and Rita

The Cat and big Ron.

Granny and Grandpa

Have stories to tell

So just keep on reading

Conversations with Nell.

Listen very carefully

And know this is true.

We love you Jonathan Sky

Happy Birthday to you.

Book · Fall

Mutley’s 15th Birthday

Nell: Would someone please get Gladys out of the hamper. She has her head in the Stilton.

Me: You wouldn’t let her sleep in your handbag.

Nell: Rita is already in there. Why has Ron Gilbert got a moustache?

Me: The Cat painted it on him while he was asleep.

Nell: Well, Mutley’s fifteenth birthday party is one we shall never forget.

Me: The highlight has to be Mutley singing “My Way” on top of the piano.

Nell: Yes. It’s amazing what a swing band and a bowl of jam roly poly can do.

Me: What about Poppy doing a sword dance?

Nell: Accompanied by John on the bagpipes. Their kilts were the genuine article you know.

Me: When those Frenchies started dancing flamenco I couldn’t believe my eyes.

Nell: Yes. I never knew bulldogs could be so light on their paws.

Me: Harriet and Jim sang beautifully. She has such a sweet voice.

Nell: I’m not sure we needed Rita and Gladys dancing around them with roses in their teeth.

Me: And Dave’s performance? Spectacular.

Nell: Words fail me. Where did he get those stilts from and the trapeze?

Me: And how did The Cat get in the cake?

Nell: I’ve no idea but when it jumped out at midnight I thought that elderly Airedale in the corner was going to have a heart attack.

Me: It was very impressive. Mutley loved it all.

Nell: And we love Mutley.

Me: Talking of love. Did I see you smoochy dancing with Charlie?

Nell: Smoochy dancing? Go and wish Mutley a Happy Birthday again from us all and leave my love life to me.

Me: Yes. Sorry.