25 April 2018

Admission

Senior blogger, Mr J.Gray of Flintshire in the principality of Wales, recently confessed to embarrassing high jinx when he was a younger man. It seems that when in drink, he developed the habit of purloining various items. He would wake up the next day and bleary-eyed focus in on his latest acquisitions which included a tea caddy, a set of silver spoons, a terracotta planter and dozens of daffodils.

This post reminded me of a time in western Ireland long ago. I was over visiting my late brother Paul. We had been out in the local villages for a "few" drinks and I had consumed far more than I was in the habit of drinking. 

It was an endless night and in the early hours of the morning we finished up in a hotel in Lisdoonvarna. Paul knew the owners but in any case he seemed to know everybody in County Clare and beyond. There was music, dancing and yet more drinking.

Around 3am, Paul decided to leave - going home to Josephine who would later become his wife. I was going to get a lift back to Kilfenora with Josephine's brother Donal.

Perhaps I fell asleep in the hotel lounge - I am not sure but when I came round I noticed a framed tourism poster on the wall - advertising the delights of western Ireland. Donal was eager to leave and for some inexplicable reason, I decided that I would have that framed poster as a souvenir. 

I took it down from the wall and made for the entrance but was followed into the street by the landlady and her ox of a husband. They apprehended me and angrily ushered me back into the hotel's breakfast room. 

I was then subjected to a tirade of abuse from the landlady - most of it focusing on the fact that I was English. My pathetic apologies probably wound her up all the more.

There was a big table in the room which I soon found myself dancing around. The landlady had whipped herself up into a murderous frenzy and had grabbed a carving knife. I wanted to fight back - perhaps to wrestle the knife from her hands but the gorilla she had married was standing there presiding over the confrontation and I knew that with one wrong move he would be joining in with the assault.

I remember shouting, "Please don't kill me! I'll pay for the poster! I am sorry! I'm really sorry!"

The man mountain decided to intervene. He held the harridan back and took the knife from her. Then they demanded my wallet which contained my driving licence, a credit card, a blank cheque and perhaps thirty Irish punts. I was led out into the street where Donal was waiting.

"What the **** happened?" he said.

We drove back to Kilfenora and mid-morning when it was light I explained to Paul what had occurred. He headed straight back to Lisdoonvarna and retrieved the wallet after giving the landlady a piece of his mind. Apparently, it was not the first time she had unleashed her crazy temper upon transgressing customers.

That night could have turned out so much worse. The idea of dancing round a breakfast table while being pursued by a wild Irish woman may seem funny but that was a sharp knife and she meant business. Thank heavens the husband was there to arbitrate and to rein her in. The moral of this story is never try to steal an Irish tourism poster from a bar in the early hours of the morning. It could go horribly wrong.

23 comments:

  1. That certainly proved you were no poster boy! ;)

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    1. Ha-ha! Nice one...and I recall that you have Irish blood in your veins Lee!

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    2. That I do, Yorkie...second generation Irish on my paternal side...my father's mother and father came to Australia from Armagh, County Armagh, Northern Ireland...and settled in Rockhampton, Central Queensland, the city where my late brother, Graham and I were born.

      Coincidentally...something I've not long discovered...the distance between the two cities of Armagh and Newry in Northern Ireland is only 19 miles. I lived on and ran the little resort on Newry Island, which lies off the coast north of Seaforth, a little township that is about 41kms north of Mackay, Qld.

      Just a bit of useless trivia... :)

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    3. Those two Irish towns were at the heart of The Troubles that are now thankfully in abeyance. Peace is possible.

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  2. I'll try to remember that advice, I don't fancy my chances against a mad Irishwoman with a carving knife!

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    1. You could apply your gentle counselling skills.

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    2. or my mad Irish temper

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  3. What is it with you British boys and getting the urge to steal when drunk?!

    An Irish woman with a carving knife was probably one of the best deterrents possible from future hijinks!

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    1. She should star in an anti-crime advertising campaign. The upward graph would plummet immediately.

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  4. Loved it...I am glad I am not the only badly behaved arsehole around

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    1. I am not a badly behaved arsehole any more. I am so respectable it hurts!

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  5. Holy cow. I perpetrated some mischief in my time but nothing that reached that crescendo of excitement! (Thank God.)

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    1. Alcohol is best in moderation.

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  6. Young men seem to have problems when it comes to alcohol. I'm sure many men could tell a similar story if they were only to admit it.

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    1. It's amazing that so many of us get through youth relatively unscathed.

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  7. I myself have genuinely never been drunk, merry yes but not drunk. I have also never stolen anything. My Grandson on the other hand has. He presented me with a lovely bouguet of flowers from the park once after getting drunk.

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    1. Never been drunk? You are definitely not missing anything Briony. I am glad I have lived a pretty sober and honest life since those days of yore.

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  8. Are you SURE that's the only moral that can be squeezed from that story, YP? :)

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    1. Another moral might be - Don't share entertaining stories of shameful things you did when you were young as this could attract moral repudiation.

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    2. Moral repudiation wasn't my goal -- I was just teasing you. Sorry that didn't come across better.

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  9. Haha this is funny, not back then for you I presume but now it's funny. I drink wine during a dinner but I have never got drunk in my life. When I was young I once saw an agressive drunk man start a fight at a party; I am very scared of drunk people now.
    Greetings Maria x

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    1. If only our older selves could teach our younger selves to avoid wrong choices and bad habits. I would teach myself to only ever drink in moderation. Drunkenness can be a very ugly and dangerous state.

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  10. I'm afraid that I am unutterably boring (and thus safe from mad, knife-wielding Irish women) in that once when I was nearly 18 I had enough to drink not to remember the journey between two pubs. It scared the pants off me and I've never been that much under the affluence of incohol since.

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Mr Pudding welcomes all genuine comments - even those with which he disagrees. However, puerile or abusive comments from anonymous contributors will continue to be given the short shrift they deserve. Any spam comments that get through Google/Blogger defences will also be quickly deleted.