I have written before about times of deep contentment, of a happiness forged through adverse times, of family ties and meetings which bring warmth to these old bones.
But this Christmas family gathering was just a slight bit extra special for me. Not because of the arrival of my fourth grandson, welcome though his arrival was; not because of the presence of all the immediate family members, inclusive of three noisy grandsons as well as the sleepy infant mentioned before; but esppecially for the presence of the invader; a preposterous ball of fluff disguised as a Shih-Tzu puppy named Jo-Jo.
This small animal obviously believed he was either a large Rottweiler, an equally-large Bull Mastiff or a fully-grown American Pit Bull, and I can confirm that, whilst out walking, this intrepid puppy challenged a dog which was at least six times larger than he!
I was in serious danger of being licked to death by this small animal, and I was rather sorry to see him depart, but all good things come to an end, and my home is once more quiet.