Last week’s impromptu visit by (Fulbright student) Amanda Bernhard and her husband Jonathan Kennedy was a most welcome excuse to visit the Cobblestone!
My friends arrived late in the evening Thursday after a day of Irish classes followed by a cross-country drive.
They took me out for dinner at L. Mulligan. Grocer then we popped back to my apartment to fetch their instruments and retraced our steps one block to Tom Mulligan’s Cobblestone pub.
The last two times Jonathan and Amanda went to the Cobblestone I wasn’t with them (they were staying at my apartment while I was away). They went on weekends and the musicians’ corner was already full. They didn’t play then, although they did introduce themselves to Tom.
Last Thursday, however, they found space to play alongside the Irish musicians. We had a great time and enjoyed meeting new people, seeing Tom, and catching up on recent events.
After talking with Tom, I finally understand how Fergus Whelan came to have close friends on both sides of the “Troubles.” He is/was both Protestant and Republican (though today he’s a peacemaker as per my earlier blog). Protestants are typically associated with the other side — usually sticking with the Queen, so to speak — while Fergus apparently supported the unification of Ireland and Irish rule for the entire island. See how much like the American Civil War it all was? As a Virginian, I too had family on both sides of a bitter conflict. And some tensions run high on that conflict even today….
[…] Tháinig muid go Tír Chonaill ó Bhaile Átha Cliath an uair seo, mar bhí orm bheith páirteach i dtionscadal físeain ag Fulbright. Bhí mé thar a bheith neirbhíseach leis an fhísean agus, i ndáiríre, níl mé cinnte dearfa cad é a dúirt mé os comhair an cheamara, ach tá súil agam go raibh sé ceart go leor agus go léirigh mé na buntáistí Fulbright mar is cuí. Taobh amuigh den fhísean, chaith muid cúpla lá iontach sa chathair mhór agus bhí sé an-deas roinnt ceoil a sheinm ag an Cobblestone, an Iarsmalann Seandálaíochta a fheiceáil, agus am a chaitheamh le cúpla cara Fulbright eile (tchí ar an bhlag Shannon fá choinne cur síos deas: https://shannonchance.net/2013/02/02/fulbright-joy-at-hughes-pub/ agus https://shannonchance.net/2013/02/04/uncovering-history-at-the-cobblestone-pub/). […]