A Giant's Tale
Long ago in Ancient Ireland there lived many Celtic Warrior Giants.
Among these was a kind and Gentle Giant known as Ailin Mac An Iascaire (Alan, son of the Fisher). Alan was a young giant approx. 2 meters tall, he was quite small for his age and because of this his friends would often leave him out as they went off in search of great adventure. Instead, he would focus his time on cooking grand stews for the legendary Fianna who would often pass by his home, next to the great forest, on their way to and from hunting. For the “Fianna”, were the bravest and most famous of all Celtic Warrior Giants, led by the wise and powerful Finn McCool. Alan loved this very much and looked forward to every visit, because as the Fianna ate, they would share stories of great battles and adventures. He would hang off every word, imagining he too was with them on their travels.
One evening, as they returned after a full day of hunting, the leader of the Fianna, Finn McCool seemed really happy and excited. As everyone ate, Alan could hear Finn explain to his men how the magical traps they laid out that day would surely catch that cheeky Leprechaun. You see a leprechaun is an Irish Fairy, slightly smaller than a child who often spend their days getting up to mischief and playing jokes on people. For several weeks now, one leprechaun called “Ena” thought it would be very funny to enter into Finn McCools dreams every night and play his bodhran (Celtic Drum) so that he couldn't sleep.
That evening after Finn and the Fianna had gone, Alan decided to take a walk through the forest to see all these magical traps. While passing a nearby river, he heard a quiet voice calling out to him from behind a bush.
“Son of the Fisher is it?, I hear you make a great stew!”
“Who is it?” Alan shouted.
“Over here, quick come!!”. Alan looked over and seen a small leprechaun caught in a trap.
“Wow, a real leprechaun!” he thought to himself.
“Not just any leprechaun. I’m Ena, the Lord of Laughter, Master of Mischief and Frequenter of Finn McCool’s Dreams”.
“You can hear my thoughts?” Alan asked.
“Of course I can young Giant” Ena replied with a cheeky grin. “I can do many things. Many things indeed. In fact, if you help me out of this magical cage, I can even grant you 3 wishes. How does that sound?”
Alan thought for a moment. With 3 wishes he could finally do all the things he’d dreamed off. He could go on great adventures, have gold & jewels and find a beautiful lady to marry. On the other hand, he wondered what would happen if Finn McCool found out that he let Ena free.
“I could only imagine the trouble I’ll be in.” He thought to himself.
Just as that thought come into his mind, Ena offered a convenient solution for them both.
“Alan, I understand, I understand. Finn McCool is the great and wise leader of the Fianna. If you let me free he will surely know and you’ll get in so much trouble. But, I have the answer. Finn is only all powerful and wise here in Ireland. If you were to travel to a distant land I can grant you all your wishes and you don’t need to fear Finn McCool.”
“Can you really do that?” Alan inquired enthusiastically.
“Yes!” Ena said. “Take this ring and when you put it on you’ll travel to a distant land on the other side of the world. Here, in this land called Japan, you’ll be safe from Finn to enjoy your adventure, gold & jewels and you’ll find a beautiful wife. The people are very friendly there and they’ll love your great food”.
Alan’s heart lifted with excitement and he quickly opened the trap.
As Ena walked out he turned to Alan and thanked him. “I’m very grateful to you young giant. But be warned, you will only be in Japan for as long as you wear this ring. If you ever take it off, you’ll automatically travel back to Ireland where Finn will be waiting for you.”
With that Alan took the ring and placed it on his finger. In a flash he was transported to this distant place called ‘Japan’.
As soon as he arrived he realized that this land was very different to Ireland and everyone was speaking a different language…He began to worry, what if Ena had tricked him only to get out of the trap.
Just then, a beautiful young girl came forward and spoke “Hello Alan, my name is Ai, I’m a local Goldsmith & Jeweler, last night in my dream I was visited by a fairy called Ena. He told me you would be here today, and this morning when I woke up I was able to speak in this different language.”
Straight away, Alan knew that he would be OK for he had fallen in love with Ai upon first sight. Later that year they married in Nikko, Tochigi and decided to open their own Stew House hidden from the vigilant gaze of Finn McCool.
Their hope is to build a long and happy life in Japan, introducing to everyone the delicious food from Alan’s homeland on the other side of the world, and also Irish Music & Culture in remembrance of Ena, the cheeky leprechaun. However, those final instructions must always remain forefront in Alan’s mind, for if the ring is removed he’ll instantly be carried back to Ireland to face the fury of Finn and the Fianna…