Joe is in London and visiting Pip. He tells Pip that Mrs Gargery (Pip’s sister) is no worse off (remember, she was attacked by a home intruder), Biddy is “right and ready” (for what, marriage?!) and Mr Wopsle has “had a drop.” By this Joe means that Wopsle has left the Church to become an actor! Joe attended his play the night before, which involved a ghost. It’s hard to tell if Joe liked the play or not. I’m thinking he just didn’t know what to make of it.
Joe finally hangs his bird-nest hat on a corner of the chimney, where it keeps falling off, causing Joe to do some unusual acrobatics to retrieve it every time. Joe tells how he and Mr Wopsle saw a bit of the city the day before, starting off with the Blacking Warehouse. They were not impressed. It was a bit “too architectooralooral” says Joe, drawing out the word. Turns out Dickens was sent to work at the Warren’s Shoeblacking factory when he was young. It was a miserable time in his childhood.
Pip, Joe and Herbert sit down for breakfast. It’s awkward for both Joe and Pip. Joe not knowing how to act and Pip becoming frustrated with him. Joe tells Pip that he ran into Pumblechook at the Three Jolly Bargemen. (Pumblechook rubs Joe the wrong way, acting as if HE has raised Pip.) Apparently Joe is in London with some news for Pip!