Over the Sea to Inishkea
An Historical Re-enactment
The title of my story this month whilst, perhaps, more suited as a name for a seafarer’s shanty, in fact, refers to an event which, at the time of my applying “keyboard to screen” was being planned for Sunday 20th July this year. Indeed, barring any mishaps this will have taken place by the time you open up this month’s Harp!
Not Just an Old Footbridge, But a Bridge to the World
InIrelandwe like to celebrate, commemorate and dedicate. We have a refreshing and natural propensity to do this. It is part of our unique psyche, our make-up. If the sun happens to be shining gloriously at the same time, all the better!
I would like to share with our readers an “event” of historic moment which took place in my locality recently, at the same time giving some insights into life in rural West of Ireland, many years ago. Some, who may be regular visitors to the area, may indeed be familiar with the subject of my story, that is, a humble footbridge.
On Saturday 5th August, on a glorious summer afternoon, Mass was celebrated at the new footbridge over the River Moy at Cloonlumney, near Swinford,CountyMayo. This was in memory of the many thousands of people who had used the old bridge at this spot during the last century.
Never Again Will I Go Underground
The passing of the Irish Coal Miner
“It’s a working man I am and I’ve been down underground
I swear to God if I ever see the sun
Oh for any length of time I can hold it in my mind
I never again will go down underground”
So goes the chorus of the popular song “The Working Man”, recorded by Canadian songstress Rita McNeill, indeed by a number of other singers since. It tells of a one-time miner, retired from a lifetime of working down the pit and now employed in showing visitors around the redundant mine, regaling them with evocative stories of the hard times and harsh working conditions endured by the mine workers.