Tuesday, 14 July 2009

No.103 Of Old Muckers & The Blues

The long weekend featured an old friend I hadn't seen for 23 years. He arrived Friday night at the airport and we spent three days reminiscing & lamenting like two old men. We did all the standards that most tourists aspire to see. The Giant's Causeway, Free Derry Corner, Malin Head, Innishowen 100 & the view from the top of Slemish. Being the 12th I couldn't let him go home without watching a parade so yesterday we hoofed it over to Ballymena to watch a few Lodges go whistling by.

On Saturday morning we drove past the local bonfire decked in an Irish tricolor with the words "Keep Antrim Tidy" across the front. It was only afterwards that the significance of the first letters of each word dawned on me. We stopped to speak to an ex Legal-Island employee out walking his dog. "Will we be ok attending the bonfire tonight if we decide to go?" I said. "Ah sure everyone is welcome" he replied with a laugh....We never did go.

Saturday night was fun. We went to a Blues Festival and I got talking to one of the guest musicians a man we'll call Frankie. Frankie is in his 50s and it turns out has never done a day's work in his life. The Social are after him & Frankie is under pressure to do "The Bins" or risk losing his benefit entitlement. He was a tall man and of few words but could he play the Blues...?!

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