Wednesday 14 November 2018

Irish Social Stere O'Types No 46: The B&B Owner

Cartoon by Eoin Coveney
Cartoon by Eoin Coveney
Darragh McManus

Darragh McManus

This week the spotlight is on the redoubtable Irish B&B owner.

Body shape: Stout and bosomy

Hair: Set stronger than reinforced concrete

Clothing: Floral, well-tailored, expensive

Manner: No-nonsense running to brusque, but friendly and chatty enough

Husband: Milquetoast

Appropriately enough: Is responsible for milk and toast at the breakfast buffet

Chats about: The daughter studying in Oxford; the son working in Abu Dhabi; the son working in America; the son's girlfriend she and hubby didn't take to when they were over last year; all the things that were wrong with this girl; the high cost of running a business in Ireland nowadays

Special talent: Can tell you everything you need to know about the B&B in under a minute

Including: Which channels don't work on the cable, the exhaustive choice of breakfasts, how far to the nearest church "in case you're going in the morning"

Always accompanied by: A trio of dogs, yapping at a frequency and pitch which probably contravene several laws on torture, and so tiny you're in constant danger of squashing one by standing on it

Doesn't like: Unmarried couples booking a room – couldn't they just pretend at least?

Interior design style: Lots of floral prints on wallpaper, bedding, curtains; deep-red thick carpets which feel so good under your bare feet, it's almost narcotic; twee porcelain miniatures of dogs and little illustrations of sailing ships dotted here and there

Likely quote: "We had that Hollywood actress here last year – didn't eat a thing"

Unlikely quote: "Sometimes even I want to flush those damn dogs down the toilet"

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