About ten years ago, I bought a pennywhistle for ten bucks at some Irish gift store in Niagara on the Lake, Ontario. When I took it home and tried to play it, my beloved cat Spot jumped up onto my desk and tried desperately to rescue me from it by swatting it out of my hands. This happened every time I played the thing, so eventually I gave up and went on to other pursuits.
But I never forgot how much I loved the way the instrument sounded, and through a confluence of personal realizations I won't bore you with here, I decided I needed another, better pennywhistle. So I bought a custom-made instrument from a flute-maker in Florida.
It still smells of wood smoke (and clove, strangely) and has a sweet, clear throat. I have decided to call it Spot, after my dear friend, now gone to be with Bast. I hope to play it well enough someday that he wouldn't think it a danger to my health if he were still here.
And I have learned my first song from a lovely set of YouTube pennywhistle lessons. I tried to find the sheet music for the piece online, but what I found wasn't what Father Duns played, so I transcribed his rendition. You'll find the downloadable PDF file below.