My son Ben had barely heard of his cousins Marcia and Juli before we moved to their hometown.Since wed become neighbors.I thought he should get to know them.So，I invited the cousins over for a meet-and-greet one afternoon.
When the bell rng.Ben rushed to open the door.In came Marcia，a chatty，retired schooteacher in her 70s.Dragging behind her，relying heavily on his walking stick.was her over.eighty-ycear old husband Juli，who used to be a sports lover.Not having seen him since'd become a mom，I wondered whether he was kid-riendly.With one glance，I quickly decided that he probably wasn't After the introductions，we sat down to have a chat.Ben，who was 4 at the time，stared curiously at the cousins.Suddenly，he eyed Julis walking stick，which stood right beside his chair."Why do you have a stick？”
be asked abruply.
Juli paused for a while as he hadn't expected my son to speak to him.Then he scemed pleased that Ben had noticed something about him.He brietly explained，and invited Ben to try oult the walking stick.Excited，Ben stepped up.too it in hand and walked with it around the room.The serious look on Julis face softened as he watched That afternoon，Ben popped in and out of the room several times to have fun with his new friend.
Toward the end of the visit，Ben sneaked over to Juli，wodlessly climbed onto his lap and gave him a hug.
After a lttle surprise，Julis lips curved into a subtle smile.
During the ollowing two years，Juli often came to babysit Ben.The two would call each other buddy and laughed loudly together.even though one was much older.
One summer evening.unexpectedly，I received a painful call saying that Juli had just passed away，which came as a shock to me.I gently told Ben about the trrible loss，explaining that Juli was 85."That was so young！”Ben shouted between tears.