The Boarding House
The Boarding House
Mr. & Mrs. Mooney had a normal marriage. Mrs. Mooney, who was a butcher’s daughter, opened a butcher’s shop near Spring Gardens. When Mr. Mooney’s father died, that changed him which become the cause of ruining their business and marriage. Mrs. Mooney went to the Priest and got a separation with care of their children. She could not give him neither money nor food nor house-room. And that he was obliged to enlist himself as a Sheriff’s man. And all day long he sat in the Bailiff’s room, waiting to be put on a job. While Mrs.
Mooney, who had taken what remained of her money out of their butcher business and set up a boarding house with it in Hardwicke Street. Her customers are tourists from Liverpool and the Isle of Man, occasionally artistes from the music halls. The clerks from the city rented rooms. She managed her business well. The young men spoke of her as the Madam. Mrs. Mooney’s young men paid15 shellings a week for board and lodgings (beer or stout at dinner excluded). They shared in common tastes and occupations and for this reason they were chummy and they discussed with one another.
The chances of favourites and outsiders. Jack, the Madam’s son , who was a clerk to a commission agent, had the reputation of being a hard case, he was fond of using soldiers’ obscenities, usually he came home in the small hours, always had a good one to tell his friends sure to be on to a good-thing that is to say, a likely horse or a likely artiste. He was also handy with the mits and sang comic songs. On Sunday nights there would often be a reunion in Mrs. Mooney’s front drawing-room. The music hall artiste would oblige, with waltzes and
Code: 31638699 The Boarding House Page 2 Type of order: Essay Deadline: January 29, 2007 1047 Polkas. Polly, the daughter, would also sing: I’m a naughty girl. You needn’t sham, You know I am. Polly was a slim girl of 19, she had light soft hair and a small full mouth. Her eyes, which were grey with a shade of green through them, had a habit of glancing upstairs when she spoke with anyone, which made her look like a little perverse Madonna. Her mother sent her to be a typist in a Com-Factors office.
But as a disputable sheriff’s man used to come every other day to the office, asking to be allowed to say a word to Polly. Madam sent her home again and set her to do house work. As Polly was very lively, the intention was to give her the run of the young men. And Polly flirted with them. But the mother knew that the young men were only passing the time away. None of them meant business. Until something was going on between Polly and the young men. She watched the pair and kept her own counsel. Polly knew that, her mother is watching her closely.
There had been no open complicity between mother and daughter. And people in the house began to talk of the affair. Still Madam didn’t intervene. And at last, when she judged it to be the right moment, madam intervened. She dealt with moral problems as a clever deals with meat: and in this case she had made up her mind. She had allowed him to live beneath her roof, assuming that he was a man of honour and he had simply abused her hospitality. He was 34or 35 years of age, so that youth could Code: 31638699 The Boarding House Page 3
Not be pleaded as his excuse, nor ignorance be his excuse since he was man who had seen something of the world: he had simply taken advantage of Polly’s youth and inexperience, that was evident. The question was: What reparation would he make? Some mothers would be content to patch up such an affair for a sum of money, but she would not do so. For her only reparation could make up the loss of her daughter’s honour: “Marriage” She counter all her cards before sending Mary ( a servant) to Doran’s room to say that she wanted to speak with him.
She felt sure she would win. He was a serious young man, not rakish or loud voiced like the others. She did not think he would face publicity. All the lodgers in the house knew something of the affair, details had been invented by some. Beside he had been employed for 13 years in a Catholic Wine-Merchant’s office and publicity would mean for him, perhaps the loss of his job. Mister Doran has known Polly already. First of all there was her disreputable father and then her mother’s boarding house was beginning to get a certain fame.
He had a notion that, he was being had. She was a little vulgar sometimes she said “I seen” and “If I had known” but what would grammar matter if he “really loved her”? Moral Paralysis, is there any. My conclusion is, yes! But not about this particular story only. It is just everywhere in the world. An irresponsible father and a ruined family, the children comes out misguided. Mrs. Polly, was a strong woman. But she got a weak husband. Though, she at least made a good life for her children, but it does not matter for her what is decent or not.
But at the end she sought the best for her daughter, and marriage was the right thing to do. It seemed not only for the honour of Polly but for her Code: 31638699 The Boarding House Page 4 family as well. In this materialistic society we have, what matters is Money and nothing else. Be it coming from a bad or good source it does not matter at all. Because when you consider to be “truly happy and satisfied in life” then it is the time to forget all about money, but we are in a materialistic society which makes it “impossible”.