My mate Paddy will never forget that St Patrick’s day, back in 1975. He was just aged 26 and I suppose if you asked me as a friend to describe his character, I would have to say; he is smart, reasonably good looking, a bit fond of the drink, but very good humoured; the sort of a guy any girl could bring home to meet the mother.
His then girlfriend Mary and himself had been dating at this time for well over a year, and indeed it was while on one of his famous drinking sessions that she had somehow cajoled him into a marriage proposal.
To be fair, it was while slightly intoxicated that Paddy had agreed in principal to this suggestion, however, on later more sober reflection he had admitted to me, privately that she might not be exactly his woman of final choice.
Now Paddy’s prospective little sister-in-law Ann was a totally different matter and he had often traded in the idea that she might be more suited to his, shall we say, active attentions.
Ann was only twenty-two, and always wore very tight seductive mini-skirts, same more suggestive of a broad belt, normally worn around the waist. Her choice of tight low-cut blouses, too, always reminded him of a trip he had taken that previous summer, to view that most scenic of areas in Tipperary, The Glen of Aherlow. Ann, so he claimed, would regularly appear and often bend down when he was near her. Images of that aforementioned picturesque valley nestling between Slievenamuck on one side and the Galtee Mountains on the other, with those sixteen miles of unspoilt countryside affording some of the most breathtaking scenery imaginable, would immediately flash upon his inner eye. Sure as Paddy stated often, with obvious regret after that forth pint on a Saturday night; “She never carried on like that when she was hanging around anyone else, only me.”
On that particular fateful St Patrick’s afternoon back in 1975, just after a feed of his mothers bacon and cabbage, Paddy got a call. Out of the blue the lovely Ann phoned him, asking would he come over to check out the new wedding invitations that Mary had purchased. Ann was alone when he arrived and he was barely in the front door when she cuddled up close to him on the sofa. Then she began whispering to him that she had been entertaining, for some time, certain feelings and uncontrolled desires, if you understand, latter which she could no longer restrain. She told him that she wanted him just once, before he got married and became more fully committed to her older sister Mary.
Well, Paddy as you could imagine was in total shock and completely tongue tied. In the now hanging, deafening silence that followed, Ann began trailing her long pointed finger nails under Paddy’s close shaven chin. She began whispering in a quiet, yet breezy voice, words to the effect; “I’m going upstairs to my bedroom to slip into something more comfortable Paddy. Now if you want one last, mad, wild and final fling, well just come up in five minutes and give me a call.”
A stunned and shocked Paddy remained frozen to the spot, as he watched her slowly and teasingly ascend the wooden staircase. He was held there for a moment, her perfume still in his nostrils. Then summing up strength he never knew he possessed, he turned and bolted, making a beeline straight for the front door. On opening the door, he headed straight towards his old Volkswagen car.
As he fumbled with his car keys, there from the corner of his eye he suddenly caught a glimpse of movements emerging from behind some evergreen Golden Privet. When he fully focused, to his surprise there stood his entire future family; the Mother and Father-in-law and his soon to be wife Mary, all standing outside, all smiling and clapping their hands.
Paddy tried to control his heavy breathing and his rosy complexion of previous seconds now began to drain to a whiter more paler colour.
With tears in his eyes, Paddy’s soon to be father-in-law came forward and hugged him stated; “We are very happy that you have passed our test of honour. Mary’s mother and I couldn’t ask for a more faithful man for our daughter. Welcome, welcome to our family Paddy.”
As Paddy said to me, over a pint in Skehan’s Pub last night, the moral of that story is: “Always store your condoms in your car.”
A very happy St Patrick’s weekend to all our readers.