In one of those cataclysmic events that happen in every age; events that bring misery untold to countless generations; Pat had booked some musicians to provide entertainment in her tavern. They were the first folk band in recorded history. The bosun, a great hairy armed brute of a man called Bananas had inveigled his way into the band. With his unopposed thumbs none was better on the concertina. The ensemble was murdering “Brennan on the moor” as the captain slipped in the door.
Hennessy took in the layout as he made his way through the gloom towards the bar. As swashbuckling custom demanded, the inn was lit by rings of dripping candles set on dangerously heavy cart wheels. These had been hoisted into the rafters on ropes secured Flemish style with cleats on the wall. His shrewd eyes settled on a half dozen rough sailor types playing pinochle under just such a perilous hazard. He allowed his cruel lips to part in an enigmatic smile revealing his perfect teeth.
Setting the standard for the next 210 years, ‘The Claymores’ were taking great care not to smile or move any part of their bodies as they played. Being folk purists they understood the difference between music and pleasure, so before each song the earnest bandleader would also try and explain its significance. He was keen for the drinkers to know what had inspired every composition that they might appreciate it more, but setting their own standard for the next 210 years, the audience ignored him and continued to talk and laugh among themselves.
‘No, no, Mr Burns, I’m not that sort of girl’ squealed Ayres in the corner.
‘Call me Rabbie!’ cried the poet, making a grab for Ayres’ cabbages.
‘Naughty!’ replied the botanist, hitting the poet square in the face with her tankard.
‘I love spirit in a lassie’ was the inevitable reply as The Bard redoubled his efforts.