Day 86: Pool Fool

Today’s Mind’s Eye Limerick Tour destination is Kilrush, a heritage town with a rich maritime and market tradition in County Clare. As an alternative to the usual pubs and small restaurants where Laetitia generally took her tour groups for lunch, they went to a larger hotel that had a swimming pool and dined poolside.

While they were enjoying their food, a man staggered out of the bar and fell in the pool. The sight of a fully clothed man dog-paddling in the pool drew a crowd. When the hotel staff parted the crowd and pulled the man from the pool, he was pleading for something that Laetitia couldn’t quite make out. After the hotel staff had found dry clothes for the man and sent him home in a taxi, one of the staff told Laetitia what he was saying, and the story became the day’s limerick.

An old lush from the town of Kilrush
Vainly searched for the loo in a rush
And blind drunk, like a fool,
Staggered into the pool
Where he plaintively cried, “Please don’t flush.”

Day 85: A Rock and a Hard Place

Laetitia took her group to The Burren National Park. The name is derived from the Gaelic word bhoireann, which means “stony place.” The park features bare and fissured expanses of carboniferous limestone, hiding caves underneath. It is an area of Bronze Age and Iron Age fortresses, ancient monuments, tombs, and burial grounds. It was a great place to hide out.

During the English Civil War, Sir Henry Ludlow, a member of Cromwell’s army, described the Burren as “a country where there is not enough water to drown a man, wood to hang one, nor earth to bury him.” The group spent the day in the area and got back to their lodgings too late to have a drink in the bar, so Laetitia simply made up a limerick to be presented at dinner.

An Ulsterman who came from Curran
Enticed a young lass to the Burren
But the rock was too hard
And he wasn’t a bard
So she caught a plane back to Van Buren.

Day 84: Crannog

Craggaunowen is an outdoor museum telling the story of how the early Celts lived when they arrived in Ireland. It features replicas of a crannog, a ring fort, and an Iron Age style roadway. Laetitia took her group there and to nearby Craggaunowen Castle. They found the reconstructed crannog particularly interesting. These were lake dwellings constructed on platforms. The surrounding water provided a measure of protection from invaders. A story from one of the staff provided the limerick of the day.

Young Peg and her boyfriend, young Rowan
Did nightly tryst in Craggaunowen
‘Til a timber did break
And they fell in the lake
And wished they’d a boat for to row in.

Day 83: Hair Glare

Laetitia took her group to Bunratty. They first toured the Folk Park, a recreated village representing Ireland’s past. The park is a living museum with farm animals, baking bread, churning milk, whitewashed walls, a working blacksmith, and other occupations from the past that were part of village life. Later, they toured Bunratty Castle itself. A conversation overheard among some ladies in the Folk Park provided the limerick of the day.

Said a lady who lives in Bunratty,
“I think my new wig is quite natty
And when all my friends say
‘It looks like moldy hay’
I think they are just being catty.”