Thursday 25 March 2010

Don’t Mix Your Drinks!

Of course Alexander Carmichael was not at all averse to picking up amusing little anecdotes as the following story testifies:

Calum Gobha was over
in Bearnary during the storm
of 3 Oct[ober] 1860. The peop[le] were in terror
thinking their last had come.
Ghaoil a Chaluim reach [th]usa suas
& cradh an t uisge coisrigte –
Gheo[bh] [th]u anns a chiste bhig e fhad
sa bhios sin[n]e ga’ail an urnig[h]
The peop[le] were all at their
prayers & Cal[um] went up & in sear[ch]
for the holy wat[er] he found a bot[tle] of whisky
He took a swig out of it & pu[t] to
be sprink[lin]g it over the horr[ified]
peop[le] & cattle This he rep[eated] & the
storm abate[d]. In the morn[in]g bean
Dho[mhn]uil[l] Iain (Macintire) went
to give a dram to Cal[um] her hus[band] & all
the peop[le] aft[er] their fright. The holy
water was there & the whisky was
not. Cal[um] had a sore head & unable
to rise.

One wonders if Calum followed the wisdom of the proverb latha air uisge-beatha, latha air uisge, a day on whisky then a day on water. He may have finished the whisky but there would have been plenty of holy water left in order that he could slake his thirst.

CW90, fos. 61v–61r

Images: Glass of Whisky

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Stone whorls WHM 1992 13 2.4

Stone whorls WHM 1992 13 2.4
Stone whorls collected by Alexander Carmichael, held by West Highland Museum (ref. WHM 1992 13 2.4). [©]