As luck would have it.
|The Luck Of Colin O’Dowd
If you asked Colin O’Dowd how he feels about luck, you’ll be surprised at what you hear. You see, Mr. O’Dowd, although Irish through and through, is Orange on one side and Green on the other. He maintains this gives him a unique perspective.
He’s of two minds. Believing, as most do, that there is both good and bad fortune, Colin goes even further with a theory. To him, luck is cyclical.
Good luck never lasts long, so Colin takes full advantage when it comes. You can tell when he is having good luck. When you see him, he’s brushed and polished to the nth degree.
He’s relentlessly jolly, friendly and above all, generous. At these times, he attracts hangers-on, new and old, like flies to honey. These lucky times last varying lengths, but inevitably Colin’s luck begins to turn bad.
When that starts to happen, he is unshaven, unkempt and uncouth all at once. All those fair weather friends melt like morning mist and he’s left alone and penniless. He slips into a depression that doesn’t break until his luck turns good again.
It was during a recent downturn in his luck, that he met Mary Catherine Kirkpatrick. Being a bonny, kind lass of the Auld Sod, she offered to bring him some supper. Colin was stunned as he waited on the bench in the park where she had found him.
In no time, she was back with a basket and some bottles of beer. She sat and ate with him, chattering away and smiling shyly. That was the beginning of the end for O’Dowd, or at least that was what he always said. His good luck was back from that first meeting!
It was during their courtship that Mary Kate heard all about his theory concerning the cycle of luck. In fact, he told her several times about it, elaborating more each time.
She would laugh at such notions and soothe his ruffled feathers when he reacted to her laughter. But what Colin called a good luck cycle went on longer than any other one had. He began to doubt it would ever end and he believed it was because of Mary Kate.
It wasn’t long before the two were wed. Mary Kate’s father offered Colin a great job with more money than he’d ever made before. Colin was sure he was in for good luck for the rest of his life.
When his Mary Kate whispered a secret in his ear a few months later, Colin was overjoyed. They were having a baby! It seemed like O’Dowd’s concept about luck coming in cycles was finally disproved.
The young O’Dowd family was growing, happy, healthy and as prosperous as they needed to be. Six children later, Mary Kate and Colin reveled in the confusion, chaos and love. As the children grew, married or moved on, soon there was just Colin and Mary Kate again.
But their happiness remained constant. There were grandchildren and visits from the ones far away, so Colin seldom remembered his luck theory. Then Mary Kate got very ill.
Colin was frantic as she grew worse. It was the flu, so the doctors told him. He did everything they suggested and tried some remedies of his mam’s as well.
But it was no use. His Mary Catherine, the light of his life, died. Colin mourned her for months, then years. During that time, Colin became listless, dirty, unkempt and depressed.
He no longer talked of luck of any kind, in fact he talked very little at all. His friends stopped calling and inviting him to the pub, as it was like he was somewhere else all the time.
One morning, he cleaned himself up, brushed his clothes and polished his boots. He walked to the train station and sat waiting for a train. It had no sooner stopped, then a laughing young lady flew off into his arms.
As he held close his youngest granddaughter, who was named after and looked just like Mary Kate, he felt happy again. When she said she had come to stay and look after him, he knew it had nothing to do with luck!