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Greetings & Blessings to all,
We're back! It seems like a very long time since last we wrote to you, but then again, we packed a lot into our trip. First up was meeting Russ' sister Renée at Mom's place in Barefoot Bay, Florida. After being heavily damaged by hurricanes in 2004 and 2005, it was decided to demolish the structure and sell the lot. After formalizing that decision with a real estate agent, the next step was salvaging anything of value, sentimental and/or otherwise.
As things were gently washed and set aside, Bridget was reminded of that old Irish tradition when the women prepared a deceased loved one for their final resting place and the men carried him or her to the church and then the cemetery. As you might imagine, there were some very emotional moments as we sifted through what was left of the final chapter in the folks' lives and remembered all ofthe good times the family had shared in that little house.
Fortunately, much of their really valuable belongings had been removed last year after Mom passed away; so it wasn't the momentous task it might have been. Big items such as appliances, beds, bureaus and other furniture were given to the local Catholic Church thrift shop; liquor, unopened groceries and cleaning supplies went to the couple next door who had watched over mom and dad like guardian angels. Books, small treasures and anything else we could fit in the car went home with us or Renée.
It all went much smoother and faster than expected and we had time to visit mom and dad's memorial at Fountainhead cemetery, take the neighbors out to dinner and then walk on Wabasso beach before departing for a leisurely three day trip home.
On the way back, we visited the Mighty 8th Airforce Museum in Pooler Georgia, just outside Savannah. Russ' Dad was a photographer with the 96th Bomb Group and recently, the family donated most of his photos from World War II and later. We hoped we'd see some on display and were a bit disappointed that we didn't; however, Bridget picked up a couple of the magazines the Mighty 8th publishes for its members and there in the June issue was one of dad's shots with a caption that read "From the Charles Haggerty collection" ! Naturally, we were bursting with pride and scooped up several copies to share with family! Even without seeing dad's photos, we highly recommend that if you're in the area, you stop by and explore what turned out to be a gem of a museum. We spent 3 wonderful hours there and could have stayed longer. Bridget especially enjoyed the wit and humor of Emmett, a volunteer vet of Irish descent who had a seemingly endless repertoire of jokes.
We stayed over and the next day, we bid farewell to Renee. While she drove north to Maryland, we went to Tybee island for one last walk on the beach before heading inland and our next destination - Ashevllle, North Carolina. This was where we had made plans to meet Bill and Becky Smith, loyal subscribers to our newsletter and avid lovers of Irish music and Gaeilge at their favorite pub, Jack of the Wood.
On Sunday nights, the pub has a traditional session and on the evening we were there, it was particularly well attended with at least a dozen musicians sitting in. We had no problems recognizing Bill (in kilt) and Becky (wide winning smile). We all got on famously. The food was great as was the conversation and the music. God willing, we'll do it again soon.
We arrived home and all was well with kin & cats; but not the computer. To clarify, it was actually our email service that had suffered some kind of meltdown almost from the day we left; we've lost a good many messages and it doesn't appear likely we'll recover them; so if we haven't responded to mail from you, that's the reason why. Our apologies - and please re-send.
It's good to be home - but enough of the blitherin' - on with the update...
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IN THIS ISSUE:
From the mailbag
Quips, quotes, proverbs & toasts
A bit of the wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know
Know Your Writers
The week that is/was
Leave 'em Laughing
Newlyweds Michael Flatley and Niamh O'Brien's honeymoon destination remains top secret. But it looks like they'll enjoy just a brief break before returning to rehearsals as another tour of Celtic Tiger kicks off next month.
FROM AROUND THE COUNTIES
Clare: Unique maps online at library
Clare County Library has placed on its website two rare historical maps which predate the first Ordinance Survey Maps of 1842. The Grand Jury Map, completed by Henry Pelham in 1787, features roads, rivers, townlands and lakes as well as some of the large houses in the county. The Petty's Down Survey Maps date from the mid-17th century and provide information on the baronies of Corcomroe, Moyarta and Bunratty. The map was commissioned to assist in the apportioning of land to soldiers and financiers following Oliver Cromwell's conquest of the country. Both maps can be accessed at http://www.clarelibrary.ie
Donegal: Grandfather inspires book on World War I
Patrick J. Doherty fought in the First World War and inspired Yvonne McEwan to write "It's a Long Way to Tipperary - British and Irish Nurses in the Great War". The author has a nursing background and focuses her attention on the eighteen Irish nurses who lost their lives during the hostilities.
Dublin: Millionaire hopes dashed for Meakstown cottage owners
The residents of eighteen cottages in Finglas had hoped to come together to sell their homes as one lot, and in the process make approximately four times the money to be made on individual sales. The Meakstown cottages, which all have large back gardens, have been valued at around 500,000 each but if sold together, with another cottage close by, could realise some 2m each. However the owners have been told that the scheme is not nviable as the area is zoned for rural clusters rather than residential development.
Fermanagh: Double event in Derrylin
In the old school in Derrylin, the Aughakillymaude and District Historical Society welcomed Sligo historian Joe McGowan, who spoke on a number of topics including matchmaking in the north west Sligo area. A second event also took place, the launch of a book on the area by Susan Gunn, entitled "Memories of Garrison and Lough Melvin".
ED. NOTE: Joe is an excellent writer and has contributed several articles to our web site.
Galway: Sale of pub to benefit St. Vincent De Paul Society
O'Connell's Bar on Eyre Square in Galway is to be auctioned next month. When Maureen O'Connell died eight years ago she named the charity as the chief beneficiary in her will and the premises are expected to yield some 15m.
Kerry Woods opened to Public
An undisturbed wood in Co Kerry was officially opened as a major amenity. The 80 acres of broadleaf woodland at Ballyseedy, on the edge of Tralee was part of the original forest of Co Kerry it and was destined for felling in the early 1990s when advertised for sale by Coillte. Now owned by Kerry County Council, 4.5 kms of paths have been developed through the groves of oak, yew, hazel and hornbeam. With large tracts of alder and ash and grey willow, the site on the flood plain of the river Lee is one of the largest examples of wet woodland in the southwest and one of the few remaining woodlands in north Kerry. It also hosts kingfishers, otters and is a nesting placefor the long-eared owl.
Kerry: Last chance for Black Valley phone coverage
Kerry County Council is holding a special meeting regarding the granting of planning permission for the installation of a phone mast at Looscaunagh which will give mobile phone coverage to the Black Valley. The residents of the valley want the council to grant a special contravention of the County Development Plan, which decrees that no mast can be sited within one kilometre of homes, schools or business premises. However An Taisce has lodged an objection, given that Looscaunagh hill and lake, between Killarney and Moll's Gap, is a scenic area and a mast would intrude in the landscape.
Kilkenny: Broadcaster launches new Graigenamanagh book
Olivia O'Leary recently launched a new book on Graiguenamanagh which includes hundreds of photos and concentrates on life in the town during the 1930s. Written by Owen Doyle and Colm Walsh, "Graiguenamanagh Families - A Trip Down Memory Lane" is published by the Graiguenamanagh Historical Society. The authors interviewed older residents and the families of people who lived in streets such as The Dock, The Quay and The Barrow Lane.
Leitrim: President's father launches book
Paddy Lengahan, the father of President Mary McAleese, returned to his roots last week to formally launch the book published to celebrate the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of St Michael's Church in Drumlion. Mr Leneghan grew up in Carroward and attended school in Woodbrook, while St Michael's was the church in which he attended Mass. The book has been compiled and edited by John Keenehan from contributions of articles and photographs from a number of local people.
Longford: Elizabeth holds the winning hand
Elizabeth Kavanagh, who lived most of her life in Ballincagh, Ballinalee and has always been a keen card player, last week celebrated her one hundredth birthday at Our Lady's Manor in Edgeworthstown. She was joined by friends and relatives from Britain and the US as well as relatives closer to home including her nephew Tony Eivers from Edgeworthstown.
Louth: Team leaves the Louth flag on Kilimanjaro
A group from Dundalk who set out to climb Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain, reached the twenty thousand foot summit and planted a Louth flag in celebration. All the climbers agreed that it had been the toughest ten days of their lives.
Offaly: New school opened in Tullamore
Last week the Church of Ireland Bishop of Meath and Kildare, Dr Richard Clarke, performed the official opening of the new Charleville National School in Tullamore. For the past one hundred and ninety years the school has stood in Henry Street; it has now moved to a new location on Church Avenue.
Roscommon: "Good land" produces giant mushroom
A Strokestown landowner has put down to the good quality of his land the presence of a giant mushroom, discovered last week. John Carlos was out walking with his terrier Boxtie when the dog alerted him to something out of the ordinary with prolonged barking. When John followed Boxtie to the field at Annaghmore he found what he at first thought was a football but what subsequently proved to be a giant mushroom, weighing a total of four and a half pounds!
Sligo: Much done but more to do in Riverstown
Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann has launched a new fundraising drive towards the completion of the James Morrison Teach Ceoil which commemorates the great musician and dancing teacher who styled himself "The Professor." It is proposed that all who subscribe to the fund a sum of 100 or more will have their names inscribed on a plaque to be placed on the wall of the cottage.
Tipperary: What happened to Mary and her family?
A letter written by a Clonmel labourer more than one hundred and sixty years ago has prompted research into the fate of himself, his wife and his family. James Walsh wrote the letter in 1842 to his wife Mary, who had been transported to Van Diemen's Land for stealing. In the letter he told her that their son Maurice had been sent to live with an aunt in Co. Cork and their other son Johnny was in service with a family by the name of Prendergast; Mary had taken with her to Tasmania her baby daughter, Mary. The letter has now been acquired by the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, and a curator is travelling to Ireland this month to try to track down the family.
Westmeath: Centenary of Finea church
The chief celebrant at a Mass last week to celebrate the centenary of St Mary's Church in Finea was the Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Lazzarotto, who was assisted by Bishop of Meath Dr Michael Smith and a number of other priests. The parish choir provided the music for the Mass, with the Mulligan sisters, and many members of the congregation also participated in the ceremony. Following the Mass Archbishop Lazzarotto unveiled a centennial memorial which he then blessed, and the congregation was later treated to refreshments in a marquee, entertained by music from the Mullingar town band.
Wicklow: Celebrating Wicklow 400
Among the many events being organised to mark the Wicklow 400 celebrations is a banquet to be hosted by the Roundwood Historical Society. The event is to take place in the Roundwood Inn and guests, dressed in period costume, will be delivered to the inn in horse-drawn carriages. The menu will reflect the tastes of four hundred years ago, while music will be provided by Mary Kelly, Marie O'Meara and Patrick Farrell on harp, flute and bagpipes.
FROM THE MAILBAG
Teresa writes: I'm looking for a child's story that my dad read to me over fifty years ago. He read it from a big book, so I am guessing that it was a fairytale book. I remember it as "A Week of Sundays". I suppose I would call it a fable because it had a moral. The story was about a child who wished for a week of Sundays and the result of being granted that wish. Have you ever heard of it? I'd love to have that story again.
Joan Kearney asks: Could you please tell me where the saying "you took the soup" originated from?
ED. NOTE: We've heard of you take the cake, but not you took the soup. Our guess is that it's from famine days when Catholics turned Protestant in order to get a bowl of soup. Can any one corroborate?
A request from Frank: Over 45 years ago I read a book that was based on a story of an Irish immigrant that deserted the US Army to fight with the Mexicans. I don't recall the name of the book or the author. Would you have any information that might help me locate that book?
He was one of the performers we met at Jack of the Wood and we thoroughly enjoyed his contribution to the session that evening. As soon as we got home, we looked him up on the net. Besides being a gifted musician, on Burns Day 1999 Billy was announced as the winner of the popular "Song for Scotland" competition, which was organized to find an anthem for the new era in Scotland. The son of parents from Donegal, he's a lovely man and his site is well worth a visit!
Trick or Treat Game for Kids
We tried this and it may be designed for the young ones, but us old folks found it challenging AND addictive! A fun time waster:
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Do you know of a woman who can't afford a mammogram? Here's how you can help. Go to the Breast Cancer site and click on their free mammogram link; if they get enough clicks , they'll be able to donate at least one free mammogram a day to underprivileged women. It takes just a minute and there's no cost involved:
Last but certainly not least - our ongoing gift to AG in California and all friends to animals, please click this link today and everyday. It only takes a second to feed an animal. Thanks!
It only takes a second to feed hungry people, too:
QUIPS, QUOTES , PROVERBS, TOASTS & SAYINGS
This week, thanks to Marj Smith, we're featuring a couple of sayings from her Irish grandmother, Alice Cody:
"If you're born to be shot, you won't be hung."
Another that she used when an ornery couple was well suited to each other: "Why spoil two houses with them?"
A BIT IF THE WIT
This one is in honour of the great man's birthday which is today, October 16th:
"I always like to know everything about my new friends, and nothing about my old ones." Oscar Wilde.
ED. NOTE: If you'd like to read our article (and more quotes). here's the URL:
JOKE OF THE WEEK
This one was sent in by our good friend, Hartson; we think it's most appropriate for this time of year:
One dark night two men were walking home after a party and decided to take a shortcut through the cemetery just for laughs. Right in the middle of the cemetery they were startled by a tap-tap-tapping noise coming from the misty shadows. Trembling
with fear, they found an old man with a hammer and chisel, chipping away at one of the headstones. "Jesus, Mary and Joseph," one of them exclaimed after catching his breath, "You scared us half to death, we thought you were a ghost! What are you doing working here so late at night?"
"Those eejits!" the old man grumbled. "They misspelled my name!"
Help us keep this newsletter free by visiting our good good friends at The Irish Lottery:
There was NO winner in Saturday's drawing which means Wednesday's jackpot will be 3 million Euro. Wouldn't that be nice to have on handy for the holidays? But you have to be in it to win it. Drawings are held every Wednesday and Saturday, so enter now. You don't have to live in Ireland to play, winnings are tax-free and checks are mailed within 48 hours. Do you have the luck of the Irish? Play the Irish lottery and find out! Please click here for full details including a compilation of stats based on previous draws which could improve your chances of winning!
DO YOU KNOW YOUR IRISH WRITERS?
First off, the answers to our last quiz:
1. Ryder 2006 by Ian Stafford
2. Where Golf is Great: The Finest Courses of Scotland and Ireland by James Finegan
3. The Golfing Union of Ireland, 1891-1991 by William A. Menton
A round of pints and applause to our latest list of literary sleuths:
Cathleen Toft - Southsea
My site nomination is Killanny, Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan. This is were where I went for summer months when I was young. Was back there recently and it's still a lovely place.
Déirdre McKiernan Hetzler
May 24 - June 7, 2007 watch for this year's itinerary: http://www.tours2ireland.com
A wonderful site I'd like you to share with all the folk: Irish Fest, held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, each August is the largest Irish music festival in the country if not the world.Truly is a taste of Ireland featuring music, dance, song, sports, genealogy, poetry, and culture http://www.irishfest.com
ED. NOTE: Hartson always entertains us with his answers which usually include book covers, descriptions and a lot more besides! We wish we had room to share it all with you!
Thanks all, who have been voting for my website: I invite you to drop in for a visit. Click on the Literary and choose your favorite category. Lots of good reading. Helen
Janet (Michigan USA)
I don't have an irish site but a site where a few of the volunteer djs (including me) do play some irish music (pop, traditional, rock, etc) during their online shows from time to time... :)
If I have them all correct, I would HAVE to mention
I am the Layout person for the newsletter we produce quarterly to support this local festival. I'm also a regular contributor and we manage to have some very interesting articles in there if I do say so myself! For a staff of volunteers, not a bad effort!
Josephine Battye - Ireland:
This time I nominate:
In all the turmoil of the last few weeks, we hope we didn't miss any one!
And now for our next quiz. Who wrote:
1. Irish Haunted Houses
2. A Haunted Land: Ireland's Ghosts
3. The Lively Ghosts of Ireland
Send in your answers and if you get two out of three correct, we'll list your name and web site (or your favorite Irish web site) in our next newsletter.
Help us keep the newsletter and the website free - please visit our good friends at the Celtic Attic - and tell them, Bridget said hello! We'll get a small commission for anything you buy God bless 'em:
We've added tons of new items just in time for Christmas. Visit our New Items page link below for all our new goodies:
And don't forget to enter our monthly giveaways: For October, we will be giving away a Winter Day Basket. The basket will have teas, coffee cup, plenty of candy and some other goodies. Value of this Gift is $30.00. http://www.celticattic.com/contact_us/back_to_school_giveaway.htm
We're also offering a jewelry giveaway here:
And if that isn't enough to persuade you to visit us, how about FREE SHIPPING on orders over $75.00! Visit our sales pages here:
To begin with: the answer to our last cranium cruncher:
Q: What is the easiest way to throw a ball, and have it stop, and completely reverse direction after traveling a short distance?
A. Throw it up in the air.
As always, we had an avalance of correct solutions from our faithful army of Riddle People, but first in was Jim Turley of South Bend Indiana, Well done Jim and go Notre Dame!
And now for our new noggin noodler:
Two thieves rob the local bank. They hop in their car and scurry off to their hideout 20 miles away. When they get there they realize that one of their tires had been completely flat the whole time.How did they get to their hideout without noticing?
THE WEEK THAT IS/WAS:
1. Article: Something Wicked This Way Comes
2. Article: Ghosts
Creepy Irish Creatures
4. Article: Creep Irish Castles & Houses
5. Article: The Dullahan
6. Article: Protect Yourself & Your Property - Make a Parshell!
7. Article: An Irish Hallowe'en, Part 1
8. The irish Kitchen: Barmbrack
9. Basic Irish: Words and phrases related to Hallowe'en
10. Kids' Ireland: The Fairies by Wm Allingham
11. A new Letter of the month for September - scroll to the bottom of the home page:
12. Trivia Contest: The new quiz for october has been posted - finally. Please note you have just two weeks for this one:
We have a winner for September: Chris Wilbik. Well done!
And many thanks to the nearly 100 subscribers who entered. Please try again!
13. Circle of Prayer. Our 6th Novena in this cycle began on October 10th and ends on October 18th. While we have not received any new requests for spiritual support, your prayers and meditations are still needed for many of us who have family and friends facing troubled times; we also ask you to remember all of our men and women serving in the military all over the world.
14. We're not superstitious - not much! We can't end on 13, so please check out the scary books in the supernatural category of our library:
THE WEEK THAT WILL BE
Definitely, given the season that's in it, we'll be doing more Hallowe'en articles. And, as always, we'll update the site every day with the news and history of the date. And, we'll continue to add whatever we think will be of interest. All we ask is that you keep coming back. Even we can never predictwhen there might be something new on offer!
So that's the long and the short of it until we write again. Many thanks to all of you who subscribed while we were away. We hope you like your first newsletter and if so, please feel free to share with your family and friends. Also, if any of our readers are celebrating a special event this coming week, we hope it's a joyous occasion. We also hope and pray that the Good Shepherd of us all will enfold you and your loved ones in the mantle of His gentle care and... as they say in Ireland, mind yourself!
Slan agus beannacht,
Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet!
WHEN MANY GIVE A LITTLE, A LITTLE BECOMES A LOT
We are thankful for whatever you can send; whether it's a penny, a dime or a dollar, every penny does make a difference. Our snail mail address is
Bridget & Russ haggerty
5670 Meryton Place, Cincinnati OH 45224. Of, you can send a donation via PayPal. The URL is
and our email address is this one:
Many thanks in advance for your kindness.
YOU CAN ALSO SUPPORT OUR EFFORTS IN OTHER WAYS:
We make a small commission on all products purchased through the advertisers on our site and in this newsletter. Many thanks to all of you who have taken the time and trouble to click through the links and buy something!
We also make a few pennies when you click through Ads by Google. You'll see them in the right-hand margin of just about every page. Click through whatever interests you and at the same time, you'll be helping us keep the site and this newsletter free. Last, but certainly not least, if you know a business owner who would like to advertise with us, either in the newsletter or on the web site, we are always eager to promote any and all Irish-related products and services. Details can be found here: http://www.irishcultureandcustoms.com/Advertise.html
Again, many thanks in advance for your help!
ANNOUNCEMENTS & EVENTS
Please check with the Wild Geese - they have a huge listing of events and we don't want to duplicate their efforts:
If we receive a unique event not mentioned there we will be happy to list it here.
Los Angeles - October 6 through November 12
An Claidheamh Soluis/The Celtic Arts Center resents Brian Friel's Molly Sweeney at the Celtic Arts Center, 4843 Laurel Canyon Blvd., Studio City. For c complete details, please click
Alora, Spain - Now through November 16
The Gallery in Casa Correos will be featuring the works of our very dear Dublin friend and world-renowned artist Roger Commiskey! For more details, please visit:
Houston, Texas - October 21
Clear Lake Celtic Music Festival Landolt Pavilion at Clear Lake Park
Noon to 9PM. For more information contact
Or call Jeannie at 713-365-9648
Hollywood, Florida - October 21
The Irish-American Ceili Club presents Dinner & Dancing to Mary McAndrew and Black Diamond Band, 6:30pm-10:30pm. American Legion Hall, 211 North 21 Avenue, Hollywood For details, Call Patrick @ 954-522-4948 / Maureen @ 954-432-8292 or visit:
Thomas More College, Crestview Hill KY -December 8 & 9
THE IRISH -.and How They Got That Way!!Written by Pulitzer Prize winning author Frank McCourt and performed by the Irish American Theater Company, this is a moving, uplifting, eye-opening musical celebration of all things Irish.
Tickets and information: 513-225-6915 IrishAmericanTheaterCo@fuse.net
LEAVE 'EM LAUGHING
A religious teacher asked the class to write out the Ten Commandments. For the Fifth Commandment, one little boy put down: "Humour thy father and thy mother."