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Taking a proactive attitude to retirement

Judy Murphy

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Lifestyle – Judy Murphy hears of the wisdom of planning for retirement at a time when people are living years longer

Planning for retirement is something many people put on the long finger, but it’s something that shouldn’t be avoided, says Elizabeth Carvill of the not-for-profit Retirement Planning Council.

The national organisation is currently running a series of courses in Galway offering advice and information on everything from lifestyle to finance to people who are getting set to face this new phase in life.

People are living longer and these days it’s possible that somebody’s retirement can last for a longer period than their career did, she points out.

“Therefore it becomes more important to plan and take a positive approach to retirement,” explains Elizabeth.

“Most people are looking forward to aspects of being retired, but there can be underlying feelings of apprehension and uncertainty about the time ahead. It’s a new phase.”

The Council, which is based in Dublin, works with over 3,000 organisations in Ireland, giving impartial and multi-faceted advice and information to people who are approaching retirement. Its expert advisers will be in Galway’s Ardilaun House Hotel on March 20 and 21, having previously been here last month.

Impartiality is a vital aspect of its service, says Elizabeth, who is the Retirement Council’s Head of Marketing and Development. The Council is not influenced by any financial institution and has no agenda, except to ensure people are ready to retire.

As part of this, it runs two-day open courses in all the country’s major cities, as well as in its Dublin headquarters. The demand in Galway is so strong that there’s now one here every month.

In addition, the Retirement Planning Council also runs tailor-made, in-house courses for companies which might have several people retiring at the same time.

But the two-day course, which is open to all, is the most popular. It focuses on the lifestyle and financial issues people face when retiring.

“Often with retirement-planning events, the focus is totally financial, but we take a multi-faceted approach,” says Elizabeth.

That’s important, she says, because while financial issues are relevant, they are only one aspect of this major phase of life.

“Retirement can have a big impact on someone’s identity,” she explains. “That transition from maybe being a bank manager or a postman to being a retired person means a change in identity and that can be difficult for some people.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Country Living

It’s taken a while to purge the ghosts of our past life

Francis Farragher

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1960s Ireland: Far different times at school than today. Photo courtesy of Irish Times.

Country Living with Francis Farragher

A few years back, I was overwhelmed by a huge wave of enthusiasm to go on things like Twitter and Facebook. There was a novelty about it but one day the penny dropped that maybe there were other and better things to be doing with my life. An issue also arose when I thought I was sending a ‘message’ on my mobile only to discover a few minutes later that I has sent it to ‘half-the-country’ via Twitter.

Still technology and social media is the way of the world that we live in at present and it is extremely useful to stay in touch and find out at the click of a keyboard or the touch of a phone some key piece of information. ‘Ould hacks’ in the trade like myself, are trained to double check things from a couple of sources, and that’s a great help, in never believing the first piece of scary news that you see on social media.

Any journalist worth his salt will try and reliably establish if something stands up or not, and key question always to be asked about something or someone can be summed up in one very short sentence: “Is this true.” So, whether we’re journalists in local papers, local radios, RTE, the Irish Times or Independent News and Media, that basic tenet of our profession – to establish the truth – must always be the guiding principle. Something akin to doctors and the Hippocratic Oath.

There are various little free offers of news from reputable sources that can be accessed by a daily email such as WebMD which will tell you every way you can try and avoid the common cold as well as keeping your muscles limbered up, or the New York Times newspaper, who will email you a daily briefing of world news at 6am every morning, not that I’m at my desk at the unearthly time of the morning.

The daily snapshot of news from the New York Times would make you wonder about what kind of country America is, not that we should be too surprised after four years of one D. Trump and all his antics. And he’s not finished yet!

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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Participants in the Eucharistic Procession pass through Eyre Square on June 20, 1965.

1920

Unparalleled turmoil

Even the long and tear-stained history of Ireland can find no parallel for the terrible happenings of the present week. Nearly forty people have come to violent and sudden deaths.

Sunday’s tragedies in the Irish capital and the sequel at Croke Park might well drive men who hope for, and long for, peace to utter despair. But courage is the quality that is required to-day, not despair – moral courage to point the path to peace and just dealing between man and man.

We live in the twentieth century of civilisation – though the surge of horrors that surround us might make it difficult to realise that fact – and God is in heaven. His Commandments still hold, though some of his people may forget them for a time. It is the duty of all men in authority to recall them so that the terrible passions of our time may subside and that a Godly peace may once more be promoted in our midst.

The tragedy of Father Griffin’s death stuck us more nearly than anything that has happened even in these days of horror. He was God’s anointed, the servant of the Prince of Peace. By the tradition and practice that governs all Christian peoples, he should stand as a man apart from the vengeful passions of the multitude.

During the recent riots in Londonderry, the one fact that lit up a sordid picture with a flame of light was that the violent mobs on both sides held their fire whilst the priests crept out from the side of the streets to succour the wounded, to console the dying.

And Fr. Griffin dwelt amongst us for two years. The little children of our streets knew him, and in many respects he was like unto one of these. All life lay before him in the most sacred, if not most responsible calling, that man can enter.

This was the man of whom the ghastliest story since the days of Cromwell has to be told. All who have hearts have been touched, all who have tears have shed them by his bier.

The funeral

Amidst scenes of most profound public sympathy and inspiring devotional expressiveness the remains of the late Rev. Michael Griffin were solemnly laid to rest beneath the shadow of the eastern wing of the Cathedral in Loughrea on Wednesday.

That feeling most intense has been aroused all over the county by the shocking tragedy was painfully in evidence. Nothing that has ever happened in the county in modern times has wounded the public conscience in such a way.

Popular to a degree, the deceased young priest was a man of much promise, full of personal charm and affability. The events of Wednesday will live long in the history of his native diocese. The position of his last resting place is one which must always attract the notice of the visitor.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Giving new life to ancient stories

Judy Murphy

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Mark is passionate about folklore and history.

Lifestyle – Mark Joyce shares his passion for Irish myths and legends in a new book which he has written and illustrated. A companion piece to his previous work on Ireland’s mythical beasts, Ireland’s Mythical Wonders is a treasure trove of heroic figures, magic events, and occasional forays into madness. He tells JUDY MURPHY how it came about.

While most of us moan when rain falls, Mark Joyce embraces bad weather. It’s the one time you can stay indoors, happily immersed in books without feeling guilty about neglecting any work that needs doing outside, the Recess man says cheerfully, during a deluge of Biblical proportions.

Mark, an artist by training who owns the renowned Joyce’s Craft Shop in Recess, loves books of all sorts, but has a particular passion for Irish history and heritage.

In recent years, he has taken that ‘grá’ and created his own illustrated books, the latest of which, Mythical Irish Wonders, has been just published by Currach Press.  Mark describes the colourful hardback book as “a companion piece” to Mythical Irish Beasts which Currach published two years ago.

Mark, a graduate of the Dún Laoghaire College of Art and Design who also has a background in film, concentrated on fantastical creatures from Irish mythology for that first book, which he also illustrated. Some were familiar while others were less well-known – he brought them to life for a new generation.

While he was researching Mythical Irish Beasts, Mark stumbled across a range of smaller, fantastic pre-historic tales. “I’d never heard of some of them before and they were really cool,” he explains.

Individually, these ‘wonder stories’ were too small to merit individual books, “but too important to be forgotten”, he says.

These included information about how to become an Irish warrior, the location of the gates of hell (Roscommon), how a chieftain’s sword could also make rainbows, and Ireland’s magic trees. Mark decided to compile these miniature treasures into a new collection that would transport readers into another space and time.

The result is Mythical Irish Wonders, a hardback book with 49 stories, similar in design to Mythical Irish Beasts. It has adventurous deeds from heroes such as Cú Chulainn and Fionn Mac Cumhaill as well as information on Celtic and pre-Celtic Ireland, including the various tribes that inhabited the country in pagan times. There’s also an account of the 14 different names given to the country, as recorded by 17th century historian, Geoffrey Keating.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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