This is not a poem, nor a story, its just a simple memory that emerged as I watched and listened to the crackle of a fire. It was the memory of another fireplace, this one in a Pub of some renown.
It was on a cold, early December night many years ago and I sat in the seat I always hoped would be free, a seat next to, but not facing the fire. Sitting in front of the burning logs on a low stool was my darling wife, her hands reaching out to the flames, her face glowing. I remember not what drink she had but I would have been sipping one of their real ales. The pub was quiet, not more than a dozen customers, and I recall thinking how busy it would be a few weeks hence as Christmas approached. Suddenly the Landlord appeared and in silence handed my wife a loaf of bread and a toasting fork, on the nearby table he placed some butter and a knife, he said just one word---Enjoy! Well my lady started toasting, the other customers drew closer, and we did enjoy, never has toast tasted so good as it did on that long ago December evening.
I mentioned earlier it was a pub of some renown and it was, it was once voted the third best pub in Britain and it could number amongst its customers, poets, actors, pop stars and politicians. It could even boast that the "President of The United States of America," had visited more than once. To prove it there was a photo on the pub wall of the Landlord proudly standing side by side with President Jimmy Carter. That was the Landlord who with a simple act of kindness made our evening special. He had no thought of profit, it was just a nice thing to do.