Tonight, after a successful and productive Flash Fiction meet, the following marched into Halligan’s: Don, Jeff, Cathy, Dean, John L., and myself — Tomek. Conversation started with myself gushing about my new home, which covered a lot of topics (including cats and pellet stoves), leading to memories of coal shuttles and cellars, anthracite, Korean Yeontan, and naturally black lung. We also managed to cover John McWhorter and Elizabethan English, the origins of the Scottish and Irish (with a diversion to hillbillies and potatoes), the English genetic heritage, Francis Cabot Lowell and the origins of Lowell, Massachusetts (leading to comparisons with Dracut, Lawrence, Methuen and Haverhill), the 2006 Mother’s Day Floods, the Canadian census for Quebec, quality apple ciders, the Lake Massabesic Watershed, FEMA, bridges across the Merrimack River, the Army Corps of Engineers, small engine maintenance, microwave dinners, how John L. met Dean, and the seemingly fleeting nature of writing groups, and black bears. And apparently Ferne danced through all this. A good time was had by all.