Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Update 30th October

1.   An important meeting re. Termon Lands and the Community initiative to develop a range of sporting facilities there takes place on Friday evening next, November 1st in St. Joseph’s Hall at 8.30. While there are a number of ‘other things on’ it is important that those who can attend do attend on Friday night. 
2.       Boyle Junior team reached the Final of the County Junior ‘B’ competition on Saturday in Strokestown at 5.15. This is very interesting for me with two teams I have followed for large tranches of my life contesting a final for the first time in 69 years. The last time was a junior final in 1950.Boyle were impressive in the second half of the replay v Strokestown last Saturday in Boyle. One fisted point by Boyle, always a pleasant score for me.
3.       British Election Thursday December 12th. The first British Winter Election in around 100years. Westminster term ends on Wednesday Nov. 6th Guy Fawkes Night!
4.       What are the odds on an Irish General Election…December??? 

Super Saturday 19th Not So Super.
I read over my last blog of Friday October 18 there now. It anticipated the following day as being ‘Super Saturday’ inclusive of sport and politics. The two main events of the day were Ireland v New Zealand and Boris Johnson getting his Brexit Deal passed by the narrowest number of votes in The House of Commons. Well Super Saturday turned into a damp squib. First up was the rugby game and from the off Ireland were in deep trouble and were slaughtered on the score of New Zealand 46 Ireland 14. It was a tad embarrassing. However it was not embarrassing apparently to the Irish support present at the game. They celebrated like it was a win and the Irish coach Joe Schmidt was clapped on the back for services rendered as he walked down from his viewing nest at the close of the game. He at least showed his shock and ashen faced he must have been embarrassed by the Irish fans reaction to him in the loss. If this had been an Irish soccer manager there would be little dancing with Sake or back clapping. It would also be the lot of a GAA inter-county manager after a big loss…Roscommon 0.09 v Mayo 4.19 replay in Croke Park 2018.
Personally I was not surprised though I did not pin the score I anticipated to the mast in that blog. A New Zealand banner was unfurled as the match ended and it read ‘Never in Doubt’ which was true for…a week at least.
The reality is that while rugby supporters for the most part enjoy their teams winning it is just part of a package. The package includes the pre-match drinks (maybe even a meal) in good hotels and bars around Lansdowne Road; meeting old boarding school chums, a night on the town following the game and so on. Defeat …no big deal. The disappointment soon melts. It is certainly not an occasion of life or death. On an occasion at rugby international in Lansdowne road in the 70s’ there was a small group of supporters in front of me with their backs to the game all through. Irish scores hardly made an impression. They were there for the occasion.
Another thing was the inflated expectations from nearly all the pundits print, radio, television, former players. The team/organisation and the rugby fraternity milk this. This creates the product.
Almost immediately after the game former international now RTE pundit Stephen Ferris was talking about France and the next Word Rugby Cup 2023! The golden duo of Murray and Sexton will be no more and as Schmidt announced around a year ago (!) he will be back in his home country.  
Ewan McKenna of the Independent really railed into the Irish performance and the apologists.
I was going to list the day’s newspaper predictions prior to the game but it is all water under the bridge now.
Just to add a little salt to the wound last Saturday England 19 comprehensively defeated New Zealand 7. England had two tries disallowed while they ‘gifted N.Z. their try. That will go down very badly in Kiwi country where rugby is their religion. Eddie Jones the Australian manager of England had a real put down of Steve Hansen the manager of N.Z. who suggested that England had peaked a game too early; ‘I send him my best wishes for their  third place play-off’.
On Sunday morning South Africa narrowly defeated Wales in a poor game. They go on to meet England in the final next Saturday at 9. England would be slight favourites. A picture of the South African team in their dressing room is doing the rounds and what beasts they all look. Amazing what strength and conditioning can do… weights etc. though Paul Kimmage might not be totally convinced as he chips away Jamie Heaslip.   

The Death of a Boyle Institution…Paddy Daly R.I.P.
There are people who you feel were and will always be …around. Paddy Daly was one of those Boyle icons. There are but a few of them left now. Age should be regarded and respected, as in that long life there is a lot of living and activity, of successes and failures and a reservoir of accumulated wisdom.
Paddy came from Ballycroy in North Mayo and spent some early years in England in the forties a fact few people knew. He came to Boyle in the latter forties and worked in Lowes hardware shop on Bridge Street with another icon named Bill Corcoran from Corrigeenroe. Both are pictured on Boyle GAA teams of the late forties.
He started his own business and expanded it in various ways. Paddy was obviously a very progressive business man and put a very firm stamp on the way he carried on that business. He married Monica and they became a loyal and highly regarded couple by all who came in contact with them. Their family too followed into sport and Sean, Paraic and Seamus were prominent Boyle GAA and soccer players. Sean helped establish Boyle ladies GAA Club and Paddy and Monica were very visible at many of their games. Sean’s death in 2011, still a young man, was a great blow to the family and community.
I remember a particular great afternoon in Daly’s bar. It was after the re-opening of the Abbey Park in May 2005 when a number of people retired to their bar. Amongst them were Danny Burke and his driver Christy Glynn, Mickie Menton, David O’Connor , Damien Killoran and many more talented individuals. It was a great evening of song and merriment. Paddy too participated and displayed a particular trick he had. It was a winning entry as it did not go exactly to plan and was the more enjoyable for that.
Daly’s was the great Fianna Fáil meeting house on Sunday afternoons. Paddy’s adherence to time regulations was legendary and I quote Paraic from his tribute on that; “You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here” Paddy would announce as the clock ticked towards closing time. 
Paddy’s sport- of- passion were his greyhounds and I was often in the Abbey Park to witness them getting a practise run. He must also have been into golf as I was hardly a wet week in Boyle until he tried to recruit me-unsuccessfully- to the game.   
In my time in time in Boyle I got to know two people very well who held Paddy in the highest esteem. One was Canon Dodd and the second was Kathleen Dwyer Morris.
As a quotation collector of sorts I remember a popular one from a man called Grantland Rice which goes; “It's not whether you win or lose, it's how you play the game.” Paddy Daly played his life with a straight bat. May he rest in peace.

Jarlath Michael Campbell R.I.P.
It is a coincidence that I was at a funeral in Castlebar last week of a fellow Mayo man like Paddy Daly. His name was Jarlath Campbell. Both of them worked in Lowes in Boyle in the early fifties. Jarlath was born in 1932 and was younger than Paddy. Both played for Boyle. Jarlath also went on to play for Roscommon in 1952 the year that Roscommon shocked All-Ireland champions Mayo in Connacht. After Boyle Jarlath went to Ballina and won a Mayo senior title with them. Then he immigrated to Canada, got married there and returned to Castlebar in the mid-sixties. He established an express phot-printing business there. Jarlath became very involved in Castlebar Athletic Club which was very successful in the 60s’ and the 70s’. Once when passing through Castlebar I decided to seek him out as I knew he lived in a town area called Kilkenny. I stopped and asked a walker where it was and the person asked me who I was looking for there and when I said Jarlath Campbell he replied; “You’ve found him. I’m he.” A long conversation followed as he enquired about his pals from Boyle, Bill Corcoran and Paddy Daly and he telling me of being in Lough Key Forest Park at numerous Cross Country Meets with members of his family and remembering happy times in Boyle and the Abbey Park. This was again referenced by his daughter in her tribute to her dad at his funeral mass. The family was pleased to see that Jarlath was not forgotten in Boyle. Sometimes we do not follow our instincts in those things and regret it a little afterwards. I was glad also that I was there.

Dáil Voting
Perhaps I am wrong but is there not too much hoopla and crocodile tears in the debate about some voting irregularities in the Dáil? Surely this should not come as a shock horror to most of those present and especially to the Ceann Comhairle whose job it is to have oversight in this respect. Could it not be sorted and the yellow card given without  making a mountain out of molehill and pronouncing the death of democracy because a couple of buttons were pushed?

Insurance Campaign
Now here is a real issue.
I see, from a large sign on the Sligo Road below the GAA grounds, that the two Sinn Féin T.D. s Martin Kenny and Pearse Doherty are having a seminar in King House on this coming Thursday at 8 pm on this hugely important issue.
The subject is also reflected in this week’s Roscommon Herald page 13 where Eugene Murphy T.D. is hosting a seminar called “Time for Insurance Reform” Monday Nov. 4th in The Abbey Hotel, Roscommon at 8 pm.  His keynote speakers amongst others are Pat McDonagh CEO of Supermacs and Robert Troy T.D. F.F. Spokesperson on Enterprise and Jobs.
Nearly all of us know issues with all kinds of insurance, car, house, public liability, health insurance if that is not breaking into a different area. People in business especially those in crèches, any kind of adventure facility.  People are very conscious of their exposure to insurance claims. This is leading to business closures or threat thereof and of reluctance to get involved in x, y, and z because it might lead to insurance claim with the consequent spiralling of their already high premiums. There are reasons being widely broadcast such as exorbitant settlements by insurance companies in Court. Fraudulent claims are also an issue. I read/heard on radio about 4/5 weeks ago that around 90% of patients attending whiplash treatment clinics do not return after their claims come through.
Attending one of those meetings above might be beneficial and also demonstrate that people generally are agitated about it.
P.S. It is something to see that the car of Martin Kenny T. D. and a Garda Station have both been the subjects of arson attacks in recent days. 
P.P.S. When watching Brexit on BBC last night I saw an M.P. Paul Maskey I had never heard of. Paul is apparently a Sinn Féin M.P. I decided to Google to see how many like Paul exist there and who the other Sinn Fein M.P. s’ are. It turned out that there are seven Sinn Féin M.Ps’ returned from Northern Ireland. They do not take part in proceedings at Westminster of course…a long-standing tradition. In their absence my friend Sammy Wilson dominates N.I. interests there!   

Local People in Limelight…a little.

Owen O’Donohoe
It was nice to see that my neighbour and good friend Owen O’Donohoe (correct spelling) featured in  Brian Farrell’s popular series of profiles in The Roscommon Herald page three. Owen had also been nominated in the ‘Roscommon People of the Year’ listing for his contribution, for quite a number of years, to The Brothers of Charity.

Conor Mc Phearson, a grandson of another long-time friend and ‘comrade’of mine, John McPhearson, is playing in goals for Roscommon U 16 team in the Fr. Manning Cup now. So, good luck with that Conor. Boyle down the years has had a number of fine goalkeepers. Young Carney at the moment. A few years ago we had a fine long-time keeper in Jonathan Conroy who got a number of runs with the county. In the seventies we had the county goalkeeper in Gerry O’Dowd. In the fifties there was Bill Corcoran who succeeded Paddy Leonard.

James McDermott Cork Co. Final Winner;
James McDermott a doctor from Roscommon town and a stalwart for Ros. Gaels for years collected a Cork County Senior medal with Nemo Rangers on Sunday last. The last Roscommon person to do similar was Niall Daly with U.C.C. There were two other winners in the fifties both Roscommon greats named Eamon Boland and Eamon Donoghue. Boland had won a number of County finals with Tarmon; Castlerea in the 40s’and Eamon Donoghue won with St. Patrick’s Knockcroghery also in the forties.  The Cork club they both won their final with was called ‘Lees’ in 1955. Does anyone know anything about ‘Lees’?
It would be interesting to gather the names of other Roscommon footballers who have won county medals with other counties. 
‘Dark Lies the Island’ film.
Last night I went – out of curiosity- to see the above in Carrick. A lot of the production was filmed, obviously late at night or very early in the morning, in Boyle and around Lough Key.
My curiosity was misguided on this occasion.  

‘And so to bed’   S.P.

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