Our friends Kerry and her son Oliy, have an open house every year during the first weekend of August. Old friends from her hometown and newer local friends all converge at her place, bringing food, drink, children, more friends and musical instruments. The number and mix of people is never the same from one hour to the next, and music sessions threaten to break out at any moment.
It is truly wonderful.
A superb musician, I first met Kerry around 3½ years ago at a fortnightly folk session I started going to. She mostly plays the fiddle at sessions, although whistles, recorder and squeezebox periodically make appearances too. She’s warm, friendly and there is nothing superior nor pretentious about her. She’s also level headed and down to earth. In short Kerry’s the kind of friend everyone should have.
This weekend past, Maggie was taking part in the Kirkcudbright Art & Crafts Trail. One of her friends, who was displaying and selling her own work, asked if Maggie wanted to share her venue on the trail – her living room.
So on both Saturday and Sunday, after dropping Maggie off in Kirkcudbright, Meg and I went round to Kerry’s for the day, until it was time to collect Maggie again.
Not wanting to turn up empty handed, and with only a little help from Maggie, Meg made some sultana and pumpkin-seed scones to take with us the first day, and some rocky-road chocolate thingies the following day. Both went down a treat.
Surprisingly, I didn’t get round to playing any music on Saturday. Once the hoards of children realised that not only could I take photos of them, but I could turn their skin green and give them pointy ears on the computer afterwards, much of my afternoon was spent on my laptop with Photoshop, trying to oblige the cries of “turn her lips black,” and “make her eyes glow red!”
Sunday, however, I did manage to get the bouzouki out and join in with fiddles, guitar, flute and bodhrán.
All of them are infinitely superior musicians to me, but none of them ever lets on.
Which is why I love these people.