Ever since they were wee lads, brothers
Dougal and Tavish MacWoods, didnít get along. They fought like cats and
dogs. Dougal was a year older than Tavish and he liked to boss him
around. Tavish didnít like that at all. As the years passed, they
continued to fight. They were always getting into trouble at school.
Their teacher would say to them, "Imagine, brothers like the two of you,
fighting all the time. Itís a shame!" That didnít stop them though. They
kept bickering. When they grew up to be men, the two of them still
fought all the time, until one day, that is.
It was a beautiful
Scottish morning. The sun danced on the heather, the blue bells seemed
to be ringing joyful music as they swayed back and forth in the gentle
breeze, and the burns and streams flowed merrily through the moor. The
birds chirped, the sheep were content as they nibbled on the grasses,
and the cows seemed to moo in rhythm with the flapping of the eagleís
wings. It was a glorious morning. Dougal and Tavish were invited to play
golf that morning with their neighbor, Duff.
They left the house
together; grumbling because each felt the other had gotten a bigger
portion of porridge that morning. They snarled and growled and didnít
even look at each other. "Porridge hog!" mumbled Dougal as he marched
out of the house. He picked up his bag of golf clubs that heíd put
outside earlier that morning and headed for the golf course.
"Iím no the porridge hog.
That would be you, oink oink!" snorted Tavish. He threw his napkin on
the table and stomped out of the door, grabbing his bag of golf clubs on
the way out. He followed Dougal in silence, except for an occasional
Ďoinkí that he threw in just to make him angry.
By the time they got to
the golf course, dark gray clouds had moved in front of the sun. It
began to sprinkle. Duff stood waiting for them. He could tell they had
been fighting. Both looked very unpleasant. "Do you want to golf? Itís
going to rain," he pointed out to the brothers.
"Yes," snarled Dougal.
"Of course," scowled
"Letís play then. A
little rain never hurt anyone," Duff added.
The three began their
game of golf. The rain stayed just a drizzle for the first few holes and
then it began to pour. Tavish hit his ball and it rolled onto the green,
just a few feet away from the hole. Dougal hit his ball and it ball
rolled off the green into a bush. "You did that!" he screamed at Tavish.
"You knocked my ball into the bushes."
"I did not. I canít help
it if you donít know how to play golf," Tavish angrily answered.
Duff stood back and
watched as a fight began between the two brothers. He was very tired of
them and their fighting. He picked up his golf bag and walked home.
The rain was pelting down
as Dougal and Tavish fought. Just then a bolt of lightning flashed and
hit the ground not far from the two men. The thunder roared and they
both collapsed. When they woke up, they were home, in their beds. Dougal
had a broken arm, and a golf club wrapped around his forehead. Tavish
had a broken leg and a golf club firmly in place over his head.
Their mum, a pleasant
woman, came into the room carrying some cock-a-leekie soup. She looked
at her two sons. They still had angry looks on their faces and did not
like being in the same room, never mind in beds right next to each
other. "Now lads, this fighting has to stop. Look at you both. Broken
bones, golf clubs bent on your heads; enough is enough! Eat your cock-a-leekie
soup and Iíll check on you later," she said, leaving the room.
All day long they snarled
at each other. Every time one of them looked at the other, they growled
and mumbled. The hours passed and neither could move. They were both
getting bored. Tavish looked over at Dougal and saw the way the golf
club was wrapped around the front of his face. He started to laugh. It
did look rather silly. "What are you laughing at?" Dougal grumpily
Tavish was laughing so
hard he could hardly speak. "You look like a fool with that golf club on
Dougal looked at Tavish
and started laughing at him. "You look like a fool with that golf club
on your head too," he laughed.
Both of them laughed and
laughed, so loud, in fact, that their mum came through. "Now thatís more
like it," she smiled, bringing them some trifle with lots of cream. "Eat
The laughter seemed to
have broken the ice. Tavish looked at Dougal. "Iím sorry, brother," he
smiled. "Since weíre going to be cooped up like this, I suppose we ought
to try to get along, for Mumís sake."
Dougal smiled back, "I
suppose youíre right." He reached his good hand over and Tavish shook
From that day on, Dougal
and Tavish started acting like brothers. They fought now and then, but
most of the time they got along. They took the two golf clubs that had
been stuck on their heads and very difficult to get off, and put them up
on the wall, to remind them of their foolish behavior.
Good things started to
happen. Duff enjoyed playing golf with them, they were invited to
parties and to go hunting and fishing. They both realized that people
enjoyed them much better when they were nice and not so grumpy.