This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at email@example.com
You’ve heard the song Follow me Down to Carlow. Well, you’ll have to follow me now to Kanturk and Kildare on my holidays.
Before I could head off myself I had to return my canine visitor to her family. Molly and I had a bit of an adventure. About 5 miles from my brother’s house in Kanturk, where we had made a pit stop, an ominous yellow light started to flash on the dash.
I did the sensible thing. I stopped and consulted the car’s manual. It was about as helpful as an inflatable anchor. It told me that I had an engine malfunction. I made 2 phonecalls. I rang Motor Rescue and I rang my sister in law. Breeda had me sorted in no time.
The kindly Mr. Duggan lived very nearby and he towed me to Paul Buckley’s garage. Paul is a good friend of my Kanturk family. As soon as he got back from holiday (Oh, did I say it was a bank holiday Monday?) he had my car fixed in no time. An injector had gone. The good news was that this is such a common fault in my type of car that the garage actually had the part. The bad news is that the car has three more injectors!
Id like to say that Molly was a model of calm and composure during all this. She wasn’t. Here she is having climbed into the child’s carseat in the car that was driving us back to my brother’s.
This is the staff of Listowel Vocational School 1981/82. Maria Stack shared it online. Past pupils have had great fun remembering their old teachers and their time in “the tech.”
Not many recognise the lady second from left in front. She was Miss O’Sullivan, later Mrs. O’Connor and she and I lived together and soldiered together in UCC. She only spent a year or two in Listowel before being transferred to Killorglin. Sadly, Noreen passed away in 2018. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.
It is sad to see so many of her then colleagues have also passed away. R.I.P.
Out and About in Listowel on August 9 2022
Lesley and Theresa were hoping for an ice cream from The Square Cone but they were too early.
The MacElligott/ Mulcahy family were enjoying breakfast in Lynch’s in The Small Square. John, John, Gillian and the newest Mulcahy, Robert were enjoying the sunshine.
At Lynchs I met Mary and friends out for a morning coffee.
This area will be beautiful when the flowers and climbers grow a bit.
Meeting a Former Pupil in Ballylongford
On my visit to the traditional crafts farina Ballylongford I ran into my friend, Bridget O’Connor and then together we ran into a former pupil, Dora Mulvihill. Dora and I are in a framed picture in Presentation Secondary School Listowel, celebrating Dora’s gold medal for achieving the highest marks in Irish at her Leaving Cert.
Dora’s lovely son took the picture for me.
When browsing through Boards recently I came across a link to these old photos.
Bet you Didn’t know this
Fourteen years before the Titanic sank, a novelist Morgan Robertson published a novel called Futility. The story was about an ocean liner that struck an iceberg on an April night.
This old photo was shared recently on Listowel Memories. There is one correcti0n. That is not Batt O’Keeffe but John Broderick.
Camden Street, Dublin in 1975
The Fairy was Laughing too
I was revisiting Boards.ie recently and someone had put up the lyrics of this old song. It is like an ear worm now resounding in my head. I think the voice I hear is Brendan O’Dowda’s.
In a shady nook one moonlight night,
A leprachaun I spied;
With scarlet cap and coat of green;
A cruiskeen by his side.
‘Twas tick tack tick, his hammer went,
Upon a weeny shoe;
And I laughed to think of a purse of gold:
But the fairy was laughing too.
With tip-toe step and beating heart,
Quite softly I drew nigh:
There was mischief in his merry face;-
A twinkle in his eye.
He hammered and sang with tiny voice,
And drank his mountain dew:
And I laughed to think he was caught at last:-
But the fairy was laughing too.
As quick as thought I seized the elf;
‘Your fairy purse!’ I cried;
‘The purse!’ he said – ’tis in her hand –
‘That lady at your side!’
I turned to look: the elf was off!
Then what was I to do?
O, I laughed to think what a fool I’d been;
And the fairy was laughing too.
Scoil Realta na Maidine in Summer 2022
First Communion Class of 1956
A Pig Fair
This is Kanturk but it could be any town in rural Ireland in the 1950s. The building is now the AIB bank, recently among the branches earmarked to become cashless.
One seller, standing by the signpost, has obviously reached town early on Pig Market day as he has a prime location. It’s early in the morning as farmers are coming and going from the creamery with their milk churns.
Just over the bridge you can see the BP sign. This is Fitzpatricks petrol pumps on O’Brien Street. There were no diesel cars in the 1950s.