Chi-keung: How long are you going to be away?
Aisha: Two weeks. Well … to be exact, seventeen days.
Chi-keung: Is your mum coming over to look after Patch like she did back in January?
Aisha: No. She can’t. She fell down a short flight of steps when she was out walking with Dad in the park, and broke her ankle a couple of months ago. She had the cast taken off last week, but has to go to physiotherapy twice a week.
Chi-keung: Oh, I’m sorry to hear about that.
Aisha: Thankfully, she’s okay now, but it was a shock when it happened. Anyway, I’m sending Patch to a pet hotel next to my office building instead. A couple of colleagues highly recommend it.
Chi-keung: How much is it a night at the pet hotel?
Aisha: Three hundred dollars.
Chi-keung: What! That’s a rip off. I don’t think Patch will like being stuck in a pet hotel anyway. I’ve got a much better idea, and it won’t cost you anything.
Aisha: Which is?
Chi-keung: Why don’t you have Patch stay with me whilst you’re away.
Aisha: Thanks for the offer, but I’ll pass.
Chi-keung: Or I can move into your place. I’m sure we’ll get on fine. Plus look how much money you’d save!
Aisha: Well … the last time you stayed over, you let get on the bed even though I told you specifically not to do so.
Chi-keung: I promise it won’t happen again.
Aisha: And you gave Patch bits of food off your plate. It took me months to train him not to expect treats when I’m eating. He’s on a strict diet because of health issues, and can’t have sugary food.
Chi-keung: I promise I won’t do that either. You can give me a “dos and don’ts” list. Look, I’d really like to take care of Patch when you are away. I promise you I’ll do exactly as you tell me.
Chi-keung: You know you can count on me. I promise I will take him for a walk before I go to work every morning, and as soon as I get home at night. I’ll even pop back during my lunch break to make sure he’s okay.
Aisha: Thank you. Well … I must admit Patch’s really fond of you.
Chi-keung: You know how much I love golden retrievers and my landlord doesn’t allow me to keep any pets. Besides, think of the money you’ll save if I look after him!
Aisha: Let me think about it.
Chi-keung: I promise you everything will go well. I promise I will be a very responsible dog carer and not leave Patch tied to a lamppost outside the supermarket like I did the other time.
Aisha: Huh? What do you mean?
Chi-keung: Er … I’d just popped into the shop for a few things and forgot I had Patch with me. I realised it on my way home and raced back to the supermarket to get him. He was sitting patiently on the pavement anyway, no harm done.
Aisha: You did what?! Well, I’d better think twice after that little piece of information!