Eily’s Report – 24th August

Dia is Mhuire díobh go léir a chairde, and welcome to my weekly report.

We won’t talk about sport, but that doesn’t mean that we are losers all the way. Indeed we have great pleasure in congratulating Gillian and Raymond Gilburn on winning first prize of two tickets to Sundays Match for being the best dressed residence in the run-up to the match and he being from the Treaty town himself only went to double the joy for him. Their premises, representing both Cork and Limerick at the Killarney Road end of our town was a credit to them.  Once again they made us proud as they have done so many times in the past as they sweep the boards all over the country at Horse racing and other National events for being the Best Dressed people there.  Many congratulations to them and long may The Gilburn Family continue to be successful at what they do best. Credit also to all those who made the effort to brighten our town with flags and bunting not to mention Humphrey’s red car down at the dip of the town. Thanks  also to his artist supreme Brian O’Leary. Needless to say our commiserations go out to the Cork Team who didn’t make it on the day but will  sometime in the future.

The saddest thing for me personally is the passing of my dear second cousin, Canon Jackie Corkery. I can’t find the proper words to describe this Priest. Being religious almost sounds right away to be very staid and serious and unfunny but our Fr. Jackie was the complete opposite. He had that special gift of being hilariously comical, while at the same time delivering the Word of God. Sending it to places in your in your inner thinking where it remained as a storehouse which you could draw from when needed. His sermons were nearly always based on nature. I heard him one time using a flock of wild geese on which to base his lesson. How they form in a triangle in the sky. One goose always out in front but when she got tired she dropped back and another goose became the leader. Telling us I suppose that nobody can be upfront all the time but that the ones behind have to be there to step up to the line when their turn comes. One time he told about the two fish swimming along in the sea and one said to the other ’I’m drowning’ you wouldn’t said the other fellow if you might open your mouth. Again there was a lesson there for anyone who cared to put some thought into it. We had the honour of him saying Mass in our House a few times. He never served in Millstreet but that didn’t say that he never helped anybody here. Just to mention occasion when there was a very sick young person in the town, Fr. Jackie went to Tubrid Well to pray but he had no bottle to bring some of the blessed water to the sick person. Not to be outdone he got one of the cups from the Well-side and held it in his hand  until he arrived and the sickbed. His ways were simple but so effective. Some of his recorded words were played at the end of his Requiem Mass at Kanturk Church and I hope there are many more records of his work.  It would be such a loss if they were gone forever. May Canon Jackie’s loving soul rest in Peace.

A lady told me recently that she keeps a pan on fine dry sand in her garden within view of her kitchen window and she gets lots of happy moments looking at the little birds dusting themselves in it. In today’s busy world you’d hear very little about birds dusting themselves. While in our young days it was common place. In fact it was part of the life of every feathered creature to engage in the practice in order to keep themselves free of lice and other vermin.  Yards that time were far from being tidy dust free places.  There were no cemented surfaces every fire was worked by turf yielding oceans of ashes and the turf itself yielded loads of turf bruss (dust), so there was plenty of stuff for the birds to cleanse their bodies. As children how we loved to watch them as they chose their spot and sat and  kicked and shuffled their bodies until they were covered all over with gritty dust then one good shake which sent it  out in a cloud of dust leaving them with a mass of unruly feathers to be preened and teased into shape again, which they did with the greatest of ease.  Having done with all of that another little shake of the body and back to pecking for food .It was a different story with the hatching hens who were confined to their nesting boxes ,and not invited out maybe once a day or maybe once every two days. Very often  the Bean a’ Tighe  suffered a severe peck in the hand from a cranky bird who didn’t want to be disturbed. But careful management had to be maintained or the little hen couldn’t stay the course of three weeks or a month in the nest  if she didn’t get food and water and a dusting regularly. Of course once out of the nest she could see the reason for it all and  would join her sister hens at the trough  and dusting pan. It didn’t always go smack smooth. Hatching hens were very angry creatures and a bad fight could break out feathers would fly and loud screeching fill the air. The trouble then was to try a calm the situation in order to get the right bird into the right nest and if tempers hadn’t cooled an old canvas bag would have to be placed over the rowdy one until peace reigned once more.

Nothing was ever right in the farmyard. It was a case of using and reusing and swopping places and making do with what you had. There was a fowl house for the hens but no proper hatching house where brooding hens or turkeys could be properly looked after. The calving season usually came first ,and calves sold at about a month old. Following the sale of a calf meant that there was a space behind some door or in some corner where a hen could be put hatching  so that in some cases you could have hatching hens or indeed a turkey or a goose in many different places. Making work a lot  more difficult. But we managed.

Listen up all you long suffering card players. Rumour has it that our weekly 45Drive will resume at the Sheltered Housing in the next few weeks. No date has yet been fixed for the grand opening but keep an eye out and it will be announced as soon as possible. I know there are many people eagerly awaiting this development and our dear hope is that they won’t have to wait much longer.

Other events are coming on stream. This week The International Horse Trials will be held at the Green Glens from Thursday to Sunday. Comprising of Show Jumping and Dressage at the Green Glens on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Eventing and Cross Country at the World Class Eventing courses  Drishane Castle on Sunday. In accordance with Covid Regulations only 500 people are allowed to attend. Those who would like to come can apply on the Green Glens website.

Meanwhile there is  an Open air Concert at the pub in Carriganima on Sunday August 29th.  From 2 to 6 pm. Special guest the lovely Michelle Murphy and her Band all the way from Wexford plus the ever popular Peter Lane of Black Water Sound Fame. Go there for the best of entertainment, keep safe and give this lovely rural establishment  your best support.

Later on In Aubane they are holding a Drive in Concert on Sunday September 12 by Neily O’Connor.  Tickets €10 will include teas plus face painting for the children.  Please support it well, proceeds will go to the Meals On Wheels Service at the Canon O’Donovan Centre.

I have a notice from Cope to say that church gate collections in aid of Cope Foundation will be held at both Ballydaly and Cullen churches this weekend. Please give generously to this worthy cause.

And while on the subject of meals, I met a lady in the shop and I agreed with her that shops should give more thought to their elderly shoppers who live on their own by selling  foods in smaller quantities. Sausages by twos or fours, eggs loose or in boxes to two or so etc. Never the buy one and get one free system for older folk  Well I told the Lady I’d mention it and i have, so we’ll how it goes.

Here are the results of this weeks Lotto Draw which was held on Sunday night. Numbers drawn were 20, 27, 28, 31 and the Jackpot was not won. €100 went to Danny Sheehan, Tanyard Wood. The seller was The Bush Bar and they got €50 sellers prize, €50 went to Kit O’Sullivan c/o Patsy Corcoran, €20 each went to Pamela Brophy, c/o Sheila Lane, Kate Dennehy, Dromahoe, Cullen GAA, c/o Jerry Lehane, Timmy Teehan c/o Tom Carroll, Sheila Barrett, C/O The Bush Bar, Tadgh McSweeney, c/o Colemans. Myra Sheehan c/o Angela Kelleher, Rose and Brien c/o O’Learys. Jackpot for next week €15.000 the draw on Sunday night.

The garden never fails to bring a surprise. I have a few very unsightly large thistles down at the end of my garden. Mind you they almost earned their keep for a while as they sported some fine purple blossoms but since they ripened and took on those woolly heads many times I’ve promised myself that they will have to go. Then one day last week at a quiet moment I strolled along that way, when to my surprise a host of little birds ,surely this years hatch, rose up off those woolly heads where they had been feeding on the nutritious seeds beneath. All of a sudden the plants which were sentenced to death, took on a new meaning and a new lease of life. How could I destroy this wonderful source of their food. It must have been a good year for the birds and their breeding program, I’ve never seen so many swarms of little ones between me and the sky. Engaging as always in effortless swerving and swaying in unison and never bumping into one another. The sheer mystery and beauty of nature.

One of my favourite things about summer months is meeting people who are either visiting relatives or just passing through. At the Wallis Arms Hotel last week I had the pleasure of meeting PG Cronin and his lovely wife Phil. Formerly of Murphy’s Terrace and now for many years happily settled in beautiful Cobh. Among other things they told me about their allotment where they grow lots their own food, even eggs. They can keep hens at their allotment. Strange, it’s a system which was never introduced to Millstreet. Having said a reluctant goodbye to them, outside the door I met another couple having tea el-fresco. Very soon we were deep in conversation, as she mentioned people to whom she was related back in the 1880s and we succeeded in finding a link ,but as I got up to go I asked this lady home from Spain for a holiday  what her own maiden name was, Corkery says she. (My own family name) After that the links grew into chains.

To go back again to growing things, Marie Twomey as manager of our Adult Learning Centre has great plans for the fine  tunnel at the rear of the building where expert advice will be available for  those wishing to learn lots of new things as well as  growing your own.    Give her a ring at  0876863887  .

Sin a bhfuil, a chairde.  Keep safe Have a good week. Slán agus Beannacht libh go léir.

1 thought on “Eily’s Report – 24th August”

  1. Eily you never fail to take me back to my younger days. I can remember a lot of what you say in the good old times.
    Those were the days when we had nothing but we still never needed anything.

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