There was a new man at the bible study - at least I haven't seen him before or if he's been it's been on and off. We'll call him Keith. He was amiable, unsteady and helpful.
He joined in the discussion a bit and then, towards the end, he began to tell us a little of his story. An alcoholic and addict he'd been trying to get clean when his wife died and the downward spiral began again. He said, 'But the Lord has got his hand on me and is looking after me.'
When he'd finished, he apologised but Sean thanked him for his honesty and openness. He'd made himself very vulnerable. The discussion of the bible story gradually carried on but Gerry, our regular alcoholic, stumbled over to Keith and put his arm around his shoulders. He bent down and muttered some words, and offered him a roll-up - a big gesture giving away tobacco.
One man consoling, understanding, empathising with another. One man who could do it because he knows what it's like.
At the end of the evening Gerry asked me when we were having lasagne again. He said, 'You can buy them in Iceland but it's not like yours. I'm going to have it on my gravestone: Lasagne on toast.'
How could I refuse? So instead of cake tonight I'm making lasagne.