Some of you may remember my references to Bob, an older man who, from his electric wheelchair, walks in my neighbourhood with his Wirehaired Terrier named Scout .
Scout has a visceral dislike of my Penne. Bob knows and understand this, so we cooperate to make sure that our paths do not cross.
I have also told you about Bob's voice. I have sometimes said that it is like a Corncrake. See
In truth Bob's voice is louder and harsher than that of the Corncrake. Bob can be heard from a thousand feet as yells to Scout: "No, No. No", or "Bad Dog, Bad Dog".
Some 20 days ago Bob and his wife were driving by as I walked Penne. Their car screeched to a halt. Bob "corncraked out" "MICHAEL I WANT TO HAVE LUNCH WITH YOU".
I could hardly refuse in the presence of Bob's wife, so I lied through my teeth, saying that it would be a pleasure, and setting a date for lunch.
That date arrived yesterday. I moaned to myself all morning, asking: "Why did I agree to have lunch with that old coot, old fart, old codger?"
I drove Bob to our local wonderful eatery called "Alma's Kouzine", less than a mile away from our homes
I have always liked Alma's, but this was Bob's first visit there. He found it to be delightful.
AND GUESS WHAT
I had an entirely agreeable time!
I learned that Bob is 91 years old and is a WWII U.S. Navy veteran. He and his wife have been married for 67 years. They have four children and two handfuls of grandchildren.
Bob was born on Dorchester MA where his father was a Boston Cop.
After WWII and marriage Bob was at first in the retail fur business. He was wise enough to forsake this and to move into Insurance. He had a fine career which began in New Hampshire, and took him to Boston, New York City and Chicago. He and his wife retired early and moved to SRQ where he began another (and successful) career in Real Estate.
HE IS A PRETTY COOL GUY EH?
Despite my small-minded reservations I had a fine time with Bob.
I AM ALREADY A BIT OF AN OLD COOT AND OLD FART (Applause from the balcony please).
IF I EVER GET TO BE NINETY-ONE I HOPE THAT SOME WHIPPER-SNAPPER AGED SIXTY-NINE WILL BE PLEASED TO HAVE LUNCH WITH ME.