Taking Milly to any outdoor social function is not only a nice outing and a bit of exerise for her, but a brilliant scheme for me too.
Firstly, I take Milly off her lead. The most damage she's going to do is lick someone's foot when they're not looking down; bark at another dog from a safe distance or decide to dump her back-end load right by the picnic table.
She's a natural ally for my social safety. If I'm ever stuck in a conversation with someone I can't seem to agree with or get away from it is Milly who saves me.
"Milly....! Milly....? Oh I'm sorry, I'll have to resume our conversation about the director's cut of Citizen Kane later, I can see her there just about to jump up and have a go at licking Janet's pavlova....."
(Milly can't jump beyond our front door step, but this Stale Slice of Bread posing as a scintillating storyteller doesn't know that).
"Please excuse me, but my dog's about to attack!"
(...Nothing, but I wish it was YOU for daring to say, "So how come I see black kids playing on the basketball court at our local high school on the weekends?"
Maybe it's because it's THEIR school, you fool!).
"Oh My God, is that the time? Milly will DIE if I don't give her the heart pills! I'll be right back!"
(....when I see that you're gone - and your halitosis and spitting in my face when you point your finger and say 'my taxes at work' in every sentence).
Big Sigh. "No, don't look behind you - I SAID DON'T LOOK! - the dog's just gone and vomited by Russell's esky. Don't look: you keep on eating your sausage-and-sauce and hold that thought on why our community centre needs a commemorative fountain instead of a tram shelter by the Centrelink office."
(......dash off, all noise and movement, handing him the bowl of chips to prevent him from looking over at the clean esky)
"Milly please. Licking your clacker and then trying to lick - sorry, what was your name again? - Barbara's - leg isn't very nice."
(......But no more than she deserves)