Our oldest friends

(originally posted on Facebook, 11th April 2023)

On 8th April we got a visit from Marion and Edgar Causon. I had phoned them up after our arrival as we had mutual Dutch friends. It was the beginning of a lifelong friendship. Both were very much interested in my research. From then on I was always welcome at their home in Paola. We laughed a lot together. I always felt at home there.

Some day I started talking about some remarkable experience as soon as I entered their door (In many Maltese homes the door is always open). When I arrived in the kitchen I realized, however, I had entered the wrong home. The neighbours were much surprised. Later we laughed our heads off.

As a researcher often you cannot show the back of your tongue. With the Causons I could relax and should not always be on guard. I am still grateful to them.

Edgar was Manager of the Lybian Trade Co in those days and I quite often visited him in his office in Floriana, where I was always treated to a cup of tea by his cheerful secretary Doris. Edgar soon introduced me to his cousin Emmanuel Attard Bezzina, the Speaker of the House of Representatives. Marion and her sisters were very keen Catholics and liked to discuss the many priests and feasts on the islands. For me very valuable information.

Later Edgar would read later read several of my research reports and I thoroughly appreciated his comments. I was rather sceptical about his countrymen. I remember him saying: ‘Independent intellectuals over here are either shouted down or ignored’.