On the Eleventh Day of Christmas my True Love gave to me…Eleven Pipers piping, ten lords leaping, nine ladies dancing, eight maids milking, seven swans swimming, six geese laying, five golden rings. Four calling birds, three french hens, two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree.
In honor of my dearly departed father, who was himself a pipe smoker for all the time that I knew him… I present this beautiful pipe that I’m sure Dad would have loved.
Going back to the song I began wondering, exactly what type of pipes would a piper be playing? Being that I am myself of Celtic ancestry and thus love anything Celtic, the first thing that came to mind were the bagpipes of Scotland and Ireland…particularly the Great Highland Bagpipe that most of us would envision. It’s hard to think of Scotland without thinking of a piper dressed in his kilt, bagpipes over his shoulder.
Then I found myself thinking about the Pied Piper, that character of Hamelin, who according to legend led the children out of the town never to return. While I would hate to think of these eleven pipers leading young ones to their demise, I do suspect that these are more the types of pipes one would think of…a simple long wood instrument with a couple of holes. Perhaps they would even look something like this adorable marionette puppet, dressed in a hooded cape and carrying his pipe across his back: