27 Mar 2013

Luck O’ The Irish on Nantucket

Nantucket Luck O'The Irish

I always assumed that the “Luck of the Irish” was a good thing – a reference to the many ways my Irish ancestors and friends have discovered their own personal pots of gold. My uncle recently enlightened me that the phrase is also used to characterize bad luck – who knew? Upon doing a little research, I found that for the most part the viewpoint on what the famed Irish expression denotes lies in the attitude of the beholder. If I step in a huge pile of dog poo with my new shoes on I’m either very unlucky (argh, they’re ruined!) or very lucky (thank heavens I had shoes on!) Perspective.

On this most recent St Patrick’s Day, there was no question our family experienced some GOOD Luck of the Irish. My husband Dan had fired up our gas grill for the first time this season to finish off the ribs that had been slow cooking in the oven all day. Typically he would light the grill, wait ten minutes or more for it to pre-heat and then deliver the meat outside to sear. As good luck would have it, he returned to the grill just a couple of minutes after lighting it – only to discover the entire underside of the grill engulfed in flames. He raced into the house, grabbed the only fire extinguisher we own (the twenty year old one that we have NEVER had to use!) and doused the flame before it had a chance to explode the propane tank or spread to our wood shingled house. Later, there were several raised glasses of Guiness at Kitty Murtagh’s (Nantucket’s only authentic Irish Pub) as we toasted to our unbelievable good fortune and cringed at the thought of how bad the scenario could have been. Side note – be sure you own at least one charged fire extinguisher, know exactly where it’s located and always examine the rubber hose leading from the propane tank to the grill each season. One tiny crack and you too could be in need of some Irish luck.

As I strolled through the streets of downtown Nantucket this week, I was reminded of a Jimmy Dean quote, “You gotta try your luck at least once a day, because you could be going around lucky all day and not even know it.” The mere fact that I get to live and work on this beautiful island means I am going around lucky all day…sometimes I just need to be reminded how fortunate I am.

It’s been said that if you’re lucky enough to be on Nantucket, well….you’re lucky enough. If you’ve never had the good fortune to visit this charmed island, begin making plans now to spend a weekend, a month or a lifetime uncovering all the hidden treasure the island holds. If you’ve already discovered the pot of gold that is Nantucket then it’s your lucky day.

Count your blessings.

Shellie Dunlap

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