In honor of our one tenuous link to the Old Sod—a great, great grandfather who lived and is buried in Ireland—beautiful wife Sandy and I traveled the seven miles to J.R. McGonigle’s Pub for a St. Patrick’s Day dinner. The music was loud. The conversations were boisterous. Green abounded, including the color of the beer flowing from one of the taps.
The place was packed. There aren’t that many Irishmen in the state of Michigan. Had anyone called the roll, odds were good it would have revealed the presence of more Schmidts and Skoronskis than O’Rourkes and O’Bannions.
We, of course, ordered the corned beef special. It came with red potatoes and the obligatory chunk of cabbage. The quantity was overwhelming. The quality was another matter, but a mug of Guinness from the non-green tap helped compensate for that.
|Did they take our bread?|
When we left, I asked Sandy what she thought of the meal. It seemed as though something was missing. “There wasn’t any bread,” Sandy said. “That meal needs bread to be complete; a slice of rye would have been nice.”
Maybe someone heard me mention that great, great granddaddy was a Scot who migrated to Ireland several hundred years ago. There wasn’t a Catholic bone in his body, and he no doubt did not participate in celebrations of Patrick or any other saint. Did the “little people” punish us for the Scots-Irish part of my heritage by keeping the bread from our table?