The Bagpiper’s story – be prepared to cry (laughing)

Updated February 2nd, 2020. A bit of Canadian folklore as shared by my cousin Alyson, who had the genetic misfortune to inherit the same sense of humour as mine… And of course, in honour of the recent Burns’ Night – that great Scottish festival also celebrated across the many communities of Scottish descent all over Canada, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere in the New World…(Original author unknown.)

The bagpiper's story - be prepared to cry (laughing)The Bagpiper’s Story

Time is like a river. You cannot touch the water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again. Enjoy every moment of life.

As a bagpiper, I play many gigs.

Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper’s cemetery in the Nova Scotia back country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn’t stop to ask for directions.

I finally arrived an hour late. The funeral party had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight. There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating their lunch. I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late.

I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn’t know what else to do, so I started to play.

The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. I played like I’ve never played before for this poor, homeless victim of society’s cruelty.

And as I played “Amazing Grace”, the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept, we all wept together. When I finished, I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head was hung low, my heart was full.

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by SUZAN ST MAUR

As I opened the door of my car, I heard one of the workers say, “I never seen anything like that before, and I’ve been putting in septic tanks for twenty years.”

Apparently, I’m still lost….it’s a man thing.

photo credit: NCBrian via photopin cc

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