Date Published: 30-Jun-2011
I was on a bus recently in the city and sitting in front of me were two kids of no more than 10 years of age. What struck me was the amount of what I would call ‘hardware’ they were carrying . . . and the probable cost of it.
One had an iPhone which had applications which I could not even begin to comprehend, and the other had a hand-held computer game that surely cost a few more hundred.
The last time I saw such an iPhone it was in the hands of a man who had just received a present of the darn thing and was trying to explain its applications to me . . . or maybe it would be more accurate to say that he was trying to figure out precisely how it worked and thought he might as well do some experimental demonstrations on me!
Those kids on the bus brought me back to the days when life was simpler . . . and expectations were a hell of a lot less on the part of youngsters. Our highlights of the year were what was termed ‘the botty wash excursion’ and the Mass servers’ outing to Knock. The expectations were no more but we enjoyed ourselves hugely, even if we did get into the odd scrape.
Because we lived 20 miles from the sea, in an era when cars were very scarce indeed, there was almost no chance we would get to the seaside. Except, that in our case there was a generous neighbour who had a lorry and once a year he used it to bring more than a dozen of us to Silver Strand in what was a most extraordinary excursion.
The Commer lorry would be decked out with the ‘cribs’ usually used for transporting loads of turf. They meant that there was little chance of any of us falling out . . . so we loaded up into the back of the lorry, a few adults got into the cab of the vehicle, and we headed off the 20-plus miles to Silver Strand.
What a day out it proved to be for landlubbers. Sometimes, you had to wait your turn for the togs – no there wasn’t a pair for everyone in the audience and what use would we have had for togs most of the time. There could also be some slight embarrassment when the togs were a little on the small side but, after all, this was ‘the botty wash’.
On a day such as this, the highpoints included my father, who had come along as one of the minders, lashing out his last 10 shillings on ice cream for the multitude of kids, but my favourite moment was when they broke out the sandwiches and the ravenous mob tucked in with a gusto that was frightening.
Don’t ask me how they made enough of those delicious bread-butter-and-banana sandwiches to go around, and how they brought so many of those giant flasks of tea . . . but, by the time we had finished, we were full to the ears, ready for some more tricking about in the sand, and then the journey home.
The only part of the return trip I remember is the twisty ‘country road’ leading from Silver Strand to Galway . . . for I slept so soundly lying on the steel floor of the lorry that we were home in Tuam before I knew it.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
Judge adjourns Connemara assault case
Date Published: 08-May-2013
A date will be set next October for the trial of a 52-year old Connemara man, who is charged with assaulting traditional Irish musician Noel Hill five years ago.
Michael Folan from Teach Mór, Lettermullen, is charged with intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to Noel Hill at Tí Padraig Mairtín Beag in Leitir Mór, on St Stephen’s Day, 2008.
The matter had been listed for trial on several occasions before Galway Circuit Criminal Court in the intervening period.
It was referred to the High Court in Dublin last year for judicial review after Michael Folan said he wanted his trial heard ‘as Gaeilge’and that a bi-lingual jury be made available to hear the case.
At Galway Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Rory McCabe adjourned the case for mention to October when it’s expected a date will be set for trial.
Bank of Ireland Galway Shopping Centre branch to close
Date Published: 10-May-2013
Bank of Ireland’s branch at Galway Shopping Centre on the Headford Road is to close in July.
The branch is to merge into the BOI outlet at Galway Industrial Estate in Mervue.
Galway Bay fm news reports the 14 staff impacted are to be offered redeployment and there will be no job losses.
Galway RNLI rescues three people stranded on Hare Island
Date Published: 13-May-2013
Galway RNLI Lifeboat has come to the rescue of three students who got stranded on Hare Island after getting caught in the tide off Ballyloughan Beach.
The two girls and boy, in their late teens had gone for a walk and were spotted waving from the island by a local resident who contacted the emergency Services and Galway Lifeboat.
Conditions at the time (4pm) were very changeable with heavy showers.
Three members of the Lifeboat shore crew were working in the vicinity of the station at the time and launched the boat in six minutes.
The three students were picked up safely and brought back to the Lifeboat Station at Galway Docks where they were warmed up and given tea and did not require medical attention.