yesterday. They were much too young to be doing the job they had to do.
I knew there was something wrong as soon as I saw the female officer there with her male partner. Did the Senior Cat live there?
Yes. That question didn't set my mind at rest at all but at least I sensed that it wasn't the immediate family they had come about or they would have known it was the right address.
They were trying to find a relative for the Senior Cat's first cousin. He was a childless widower who lived alone some way south of here on an island. The island is now connected to the mainland by a bridge but it is still some distance from the city.
His cousin liked the relative quiet there after a busy working life. He seemed hale and hearty, made regular trips up to the city and would often call in and chat to the Senior Cat. They went out together recently too - to a magic show. He had a "girlfriend" here too - one of those delightful relationships older people often find when two people have lost their partners and simply want to spend some comfortable, undemanding time with someone else. He was relatively wealthy and had donated very large sums of money to medical research. His estate will go to medical research too. He was a man who did great good in his lifetime and the good will continue.
Nothing appeared to be wrong. He was "only 83", eleven years younger than the Senior Cat. So, the news that his body had been found in his house came as a shock. The Senior Cat has been very quiet - a sure sign he is upset. I feel for him.
The policewoman was very kind but left me with the job of informing other people. The Senior Cat's cousin has a sister who lives in another state. She is older than the Senior Cat and lives alone because her husband is in a nursing home. Rather than phone her I contacted her nephew who lives in yet another state. I gave him the news. He took it calmly enough and thankfully agreed to contact her instead. I talked to his girlfriend and then the sister phoned me.
At the request of the police who came here I tried to contact the police in the town south of here. The station was closed so I phoned the non-emergency line and asked if I needed to do anything else tonight. The person I spoke to brought the incident number up and took some details from me. They will be in touch today he said. I won't leave it at that. I'll try and make contact with them when the station opens - simply because there are elderly people who are anxious to know what happened. I hope he knew nothing.
At some point in the next day or so I will have to identify him. It isn't something I want the Senior Cat to have to do and it should be a member of the extended family so that they can offer at least some sort of reassurance to his sister, the last surviving sibling - and the eldest.
What this experience tells me though is that there are no words that can replace a hug. I just wish I was there to give those I had to tell those hugs.