The Morning After

In the morning she showed the limericks to her grandmother, who read through them, smiling and laughing occasionally, until she got to the end. Then she frowned and said, “McGrath doesn’t rhyme with path; in Ireland, McGrath is pronounced as if it were McGraw.” So, Laetitia wrote one additional limerick.

Well, open my mouth, insert paw
The limerick, last read, has a flaw
While Yanks may all laugh
At Peg and “McGrath”
The Irish pronounce it “McGraw.”

Laetitia was now an addicted limericist and began inflicting limericks gratuitously on unsuspecting friends, relatives, and strangers. Amused and tolerant at first, some began to resent the flood of limericks and complained to Laetitia’s grandmother, who gave her sage advice: “Turn your addiction into a job.” Shortly thereafter an advertisement appeared on Craigslist for a tour guide and limericist to lead Mind’s Eye Limerick Tours. Laetitia answered the ad and was surprised when she was offered the position.

The agreement, which she received by email, spelled out the requirements of the position. Each morning at 7:00 a.m., she would arrive at a house on Raglan Road in the Shillelagh Heights neighborhood of City of Hibernia, for which she would receive a key and directions by regular mail. She was to let herself in, grind the coffee beans that would be in a packet on the kitchen counter, and brew a pot of coffee. When the coffee was finished, she would pour herself a cup and find her way to the library, where she would browse until her mind magically transported her to the place where she would meet her tour group and give the day’s tour.

During the tour she would compose at least one limerick, usually in some way linked to the place or the day’s events. The limerick would be presented to the group at the end of the tour. When finished, she would write a vignette of the tour. She would post the vignette and limerick to the Mind’s Eye Limerick Tours website. After that, the rest of the day was hers to do with as she pleased. The following day, her fee would be deposited in her bank account. She suspected her grandmother’s hand in this arrangement, but it was such a perfect job for her that she didn’t ask any questions.