Once a month, he took out his oule black Nelly, pumped up the tyres and stretched a plastic grocery bag around the cracked leather seat.
‘Twere a shy man Mattie, neighbours say, and sure that he was.
At least until the music played.
Then Mattie Connelly positively bloomed.
Connemara’s most eligible bachelor swiftly became every single ladies dream. Voice of an angel. Eyes? Well eyes that would tame the November gales lamenting this wee inlet.
None had yet tamed this westerner, though.
Now once a month Mattie Connelly took to his bike and the boreens.
His order had arrived. Without nary a phone call, he’d park that oule Nelly outside the market and sure enough, the truck driver would be returning to the truck.
“All set Mattie!” he’d grin, flicking the brim of his cap in greeting.
“Lovely stuff,” Mattie’d respond. “Grand altogether.”
He’d whistle a tune or two, then head indoors.
Month by month. Clockwork Mattie we named him, would cash his pension cheque and carry his liquid gold tenderly home.
Until the month he didn’t.
There was uproar. The poor oule truck driver felt sure he had the delivery date wrong. Perhaps Mattie’d found another source.
“A puncture most likely,” the Post Mistress surmised.
“Emptying the last bottle too close to refill,” the butcher ventured.
Well I just had to smile as I handed over my €50.
“Mrs. Margaret Connelly picking up Mattie’s monthly order,” I said.
The silence was pure gold. Kind of like the shiny ring on my finger.
Mattie and I had a grand laugh over that one.
The priest’s housekeeper and the village’s oldest bachelor had come to an agreement of sorts. You couldn’t blame it on the bottle.
Simply love discovered late in life. We made it official too with a signed contract.
Then we cracked open that honeycomb and toasted our good fortune. As all newly weds should.
FlashFlood is brought to you by National Flash-Fiction Day UK, happening this year on 27th June 2015.
In the build up to the day we have now launched our Micro-Fiction Competition (stories up to 100 words) and also our annual Anthology (stories up to 500 words). So if you have enjoyed FlashFlood, why not send us your stories?More information about these and the Day itself available at nationalflashfictionday.co.uk.