Burns Supper

Burns Night by Chris Hall lunasonline

People thronged around the marquee which had been erected on the tennis courts. Nobody knew why their little Lancashire village had been picked, but who’d question the Office of the US President?

The Women’s Institute had been tasked with preparing the celebratory supper. Mrs. Doubtworthy had suggested that they pop down to Asda for a brace of Hall’s haggises, but the other members of the WI were resolute. The haggis would be made from scratch.

Mr. Greenwood was ready with the requisite musical accompaniment. Everyone was familiar with his bagpiperly skills which he regularly practiced of a Saturday morning, when most civilized people were still abed.

At precisely 7pm, the motorcade swept into the village. Besuited security men shepherded their charge into the marquee, where the Mrs. Duckinworth, chair-lady of the Parish Council, bid him sit at the head of the table.

Mr. Greenwood’s pipes heralded the haggis which was laid before the President. Miss Lynch, the former language teacher, began the address.

The President prodded his haggis with a fork. ‘You Scottish people eat this stuff?’

Mrs. Duckinworth frowned. ‘Sir, we’re not Scottish. This is Lancashire.’

The President’s advisers muttered amongst themselves.

Mr Davies, the Geography teacher intervened. ‘Perhaps you’d intended to visit Lanarkshire?’

‘Whatever,’ growled the President. ‘I’m here now and I’m hungry.’ He stabbed a piece of haggis and thrust it into his mouth.

The room fell silent as he chewed.

‘Ugh! What is this?’ the President spluttered. ‘Forget my Scottish roots. Go get me a burger.’

Written in response to a prompt from Susan T. Braithwaite
Genre Scribes Friday Fiction Writing Challenge #30

The challenge this week was tennis.

Author’s note: I strayed far from the word prompt, not wanting to pass up the opportunity of writing about something so topical and so appropriate to Susan’s proud Scottish heritage. Burns Night, 25th January.

I give you the ‘Address to a Haggis’ by Robert Burns:

The recipe for Haggis the WI ladies used

Hall’s haggis from British Supermarket, Asdano relation, by the way!

Sadly for you US and Canadian folks, haggis has been illegal in your countries since 1971.
I shall be popping into our local Spar for mine tomorrow.

25 thoughts on “Burns Supper

  1. Fun tale, Chris, especially with such an easy mistake to make! I never knew haggis was illegal over the pond… whatever next? They’ll be changing the name of Marathons soon. 🙄😁

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You may have strayed a bit from the challenge, but the story is right on point. I have never heard of Haggis so I never missed the ban. I guess Amazon Fresh won’t be making a same day produce delivery it to me in the US.
    The story tells of a well-loved meal and its tradition but was not received so by the President. Enjoy a trip to the local Spar, and celebrate Burns Night accordingly. Cheers to you Chris.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What an excellent response. I too am not accustomed to eating or shopping for haggis so this was a learning experience. I love the way you worked tennis into it. I had a bit of a hard time stringing words this week, and tennis was not among the ones I successfully strung….

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh my word, I had a reading program for my English learners that had a unit about unusual foods throughout the world. Haggis was one of them! However, I had no clue they were illegal in the US ! I love the way you managed to get your topic out of the word “tennis” 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for taking part, Chris. What a fun read–and nicely timed for the celebrations 😀 I love how well you captured the characters. Great writing!
    P.S. Weirdly enough, we just got in our Hall’s Haggis, Neeps, and Tatties for dinner tonight…and we’re in Lanarkshire.

    Liked by 1 person

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