For a’ that, an’ a’ that

I’m a canny lad for a’ that, I smoke Civil War Style Clay Bowl pipes. I have a few kinda spendy Savinelli “Duca Carlo” briars, which are excellent smokes, but still I most generally reach for my clay pipe bowls when I go out for a smoke.
(Were I to light a pipe here in the house, my eldest Daughter/Caregiver would speak to me most harshly.) I’ve read that during the “War of Northern Aggression,” (I’ve learned to refer to the way that way since moving here to Souf Carolina from Oregon.) anyway – during the Civil War era, these clay pipe bowls were sold by the sutlers (the PX of the time) for a penny apiece. The stems could be found in the nearest swamp for free. They are ugly and have all the aesthetics of a wet cow patty, but they do smoke quite well, and they are still very inexpensive, compared to even a cheap briar. The major reason for smoking a clay bowl is, they hold less than half the amount of tobacco as any of the Savinelli pipes I have, but I can enjoy a clay for about a half-hour of smoking time. At the price of baccky today – including the shipping charges, I try to make a pound of tobacco last until advanced “cellaring” sets in (did I mention I’m slightly Scottish?). So far, I’m averaging six to seven weeks on a pound of Carter Hall (My preferred every day smoke.) I also have three clays which are dedicated to Latakia blends. I treat myself to one in the morning (a new day a-borning) and one at night (and out’n the light.) One thing I have learned about smoking clay pipes – they must be kept CLEAN. After each smoke, as soon as the pipe bowl is cool enough to handle, I scrape the inside of the bowl with the blade on my “Brebbia 3 in One Tool,” then, when I come indoors, I run a cleaner through the stem and wipe out the bowl. Once a week or so I clean the stems with a bristle cleaner dipped in “Paisano” wine from the local super market, then swab the stem well with two or three “regular” pipe cleaners. This seems to keep the pipes smoking cool and sweet. I am “mobility challenged” and live in a power wheel chair (thus the “Daughter/Caregiver!”) so sitting on the patio, or under my favorite shade-tree smoking a pipe is a major pastime. I do not = I say again = I do NOT watch television. I’ve re-discovered the true enjoyment of a good pipe, a good book, and some good jazz on the stereo. Also; there are a half dozen exceptionally attractive Young Ladies who live in the complex who walk their dogs out in the yard before they go to work/school and in the evenings, and they always stop and chat with me. Waste a’ that to watch TELEVISON? I think NOT!
“Smoke in peace!”

One thought on “For a’ that, an’ a’ that

  1. pepesdad1

    Haven’t smoked a clay in a long time. But being up there in years, I can appreciate the quiet time spent smoking a pipe. Recently ditched Dish in favor of “watching the wind blow and life passing by”. That is truly a treat! Have to try that clay again…se what I am missing.

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