|Dylan and Caitlin|
In case you don't know it the 1940s radio play has become a classic of Welsh writing in English. It's at its best on the version voiced beautifully by Richard Burton and was also a film with Elizabeth Taylor and Burton.
Have a look at the trailer here. The topless girl in the pink pants is at Fishguard Old Town, Pembrokeshire, and I think she's the lovely Angharad Rees (who went on to star in the BBC's Poldark series).
Anyway, startles.The first is a line or two from 'Under Milk Wood' that I can really relate to. It comes in a section that describes the sleeping townspeople's dreams; this is it:
SECOND VOICE: Willy Nilly, postman, asleep up street, walks fourteen miles to deliver the post as he does every day of the night, and rat-a-tats hard and sharp on Mrs Willy Nilly.
MRS WILLY NILLY: Don't spank me, please, teacher,
SECOND VOICE: whimpers his wife at his side, but every night of her married life she has been late for school.
Every night... such commitment. Then when I was reading up about Laugharne I spotted this article. It's in section two about the corporation.
I'd heard about the tradition of beating the bounds before - it happens in lots of other British villages. But I particularly like the detail that the owner of the bottom that gets beaten at Laugharne is 'usually a young lady'.
There was a whole spanko world out there back then, but you're usually only aware of it through the odd nudge or wink.