Part 1.9

“You old dog!” roars Joe with laughter.
He had popped in to see me and saw immediately that something was up.  I did not really want to tell him, but Joe is like a sniffer dog where gossip is concerned.  I endured a good few minutes of his merciless probing and teasing before it occurred to me to ask him why he was visiting.
“Can’t I visit?” he responds, mock hurt in his voice.
“Joe, much as I love you, you never visit unless you want something.”
He laughs, “Okay, I confess.  I have a reason for visiting.”  He turns serious, of a sudden.  “Liesel visited me.”
“Yes,” he grins. “You remember? Your eldest daughter?”
I do not smile, so he carries on.  “She didn’t ask after you.”
I am instantly flooded with a deluge of emotions and break down, weeping, while Joe stands next to me, his arm cradling my shoulders.  “How long is this nonsense going to go on for, old fella?” he asks.

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