Friday, 28 August 2009

Dublin, a Cruise through the Streets, Part One

Here's a short video I made around Dublin as I rode my bike with a small camera mounted on the handlebar.

video

- Jimmy.

Chrissie


I would also like to add my thoughts about a sweet sister and pal who left us so suddenly 3 weeks ago tomorrow.

Thinking back to this time 3 weeks ago, it's hard to believe she was here in my home and we were laughing so much. Marie & Paul were here too. She came to stay with me the night before. Normally she would stay for a few weeks but this time she was adamant she was going home on Friday night. She was nervous being away from her home after the time she was rushed into hospital in June. We almost lost her then but God knows what a good person she is and he gave her extra time here with us.

I dropped her home on Friday night and 4 of her 7 sons were there and we had a laugh and a chat and a good slagging match, aimed at all of us. Her last words to me in person were "Drive carefully and text me when you get home to let me know you arrived home safely...and lock those doors!!" She always warned me to lock the car doors in case someone would jump in beside me and abduct me while I was doing 120 down the motorway. I sent her a text when I got home and I was texting her on Saturday morning. Then came the phone call that turned my whole life and the lives of all of my family upside down.

Looking back over the last couple of weeks, it's like God was moving Chrisie's loved ones into position like chess pieces on a board. She got to see her brother Tony and niece Emma, who came over from America in June to see her when she was in hospital. She loved seeing Tony and even though she couldn't speak, she indicated to him that he had put on weight and she thought this was funny!She got to see Jim and Sean and Antoinette and she loved that visit. She told me she really enjoyed that. Gary, her son, was home from his trip to Africa, her son Keith and his fiancee and her grand-daughter Chroi decided to travel from Cork to Dublin on a whim the day before she died.

As Jim already mentioned, she was glowing and I asked her on Friday night what the secret of her eternal youthful complexion was and we came to the conclusion that it was "Oil Of Oxygen".

My last impression of Chrissie is a happy mother surrounded by her family and loving it. I think about her every day. I miss her smile, what a smile!! I miss her wisdom, I miss everything about her. My world is a sadder place without her but I have no doubt that she is blessing the lives of others who were there to meet her as she passed over, especially our Mam & Dad and her baby Aisling.

"It has been said, 'time heals all wounds.' I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, (protecting its sanity), covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But, it is never gone. "---Rose Kennedy---

This is nice and applies to Our Chris's passing.....

Parable of Immortality ( A ship leaves . . . ) by Henry Van Dyke - 1852 - 1933
I am standing by the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength, and I stand and watch until at last she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sun and sky come down to mingle with each other.
Then someone at my side says,
'There she is gone!
Gone where? Gone from my sight - that is all.
She is just as large in mast and hull and spar as she was when she left my side and just as able to bear her load of living freight to the place of destination.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
And just at the moment when someone at my side says,
'There! She is gone! ' ,
there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices ready to take up the glad shout:
'Here She comes!!'
.
Goodbye buddy, God be with you till we meet again.
.
Ellen.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Our precious sister ~ our Chris ~

As Marie says below our sister Chris left us... left us broken hearted. People talk about bereavement, but that to me is just a word right now....my 'bereavement' is to be broken hearted at the loss of my little sister.

Yep I'm the 'big brother' of the bunch, and Chris was my little sister.

The day after she passed on I was sitting here feeling a whole mixture of emotions.... unspeakably sad, lost, angry, not believing that my little sis had passed on.

Thinking of our childhood in particular I remembered all of the family as we were before we went our separate ways as the kids of all families do eventually. And I remembered Chris and her place in the family as a daughter to our parents, and a sister to the rest of us. And my thoughts were in the main filled with happy memories. One I remembered was when we sat playing cards at home and when Chris lost she kicked up holy murder... oh she hated to lose at playing cards. I remembered the chicken I brought home after the crate it was in with it's brothers and sisters fell off a truck and I helped the driver round them up -- all except one which I brought home. Okay so I'm a chicken thief! But this is not about me so lets move on a bit. That fluffy little chicken grew up to be a big cockerel which seemed to take a dislike to poor Chris. One day Chris went out to the back garden and the fowl committed a foul deed... it attacked Chris. If Ma and Da hadn't been there Chris might have been injured.... though knowing Chris perhaps the cockerel might have came off worse in that contest. The cockerel disappeared next day and I never saw Dad looking so innocent... could he have committed a foul deed? Nah, not Dad.

I remember how Ma used to make sure the girls didn't go out unless they were spick and span.... and Chris took a lot of pride in the huge ribbons Ma used to put in her hair.

And I remember other times too.... times when I thought my sisters were going to slaughter each other over a cardigan or something that one had accused of swiping from the other.... and as a mere male I took the obvious steps in such situations -- I got out as fast as I could... only returning after peace had been restored.

Moving on I come to a few short days before Chris passed on. My daughter Antoinette and I had picked up my grandson Sean from the creche near Chris's house. Sean and Chris took to each other immediately. I don't think I've ever seen Chris look so good. Her skin seemed to glow and there was that old twinkle in her eye, and Antoinette and Chris were soon laughing while exchanging memories that I wasn't invited into.... girl stuff I suppose. After leaving with a promise to be back soon Sean said he loved Chris and wanted to go back again to visit her and her doggie. Sadly that was a promise that couldn't be kept...

The night before Chris passed on she and my other sisters, Ellen and Marie, as well as one of my brothers Paul had a great time together.... for which I am so grateful.... that her last full day was such a happy one. The last picture in the slide show below shows Chris on that day. Marie and Paul are also in the photo.

Chris, I was looking through my photos and found some of you as a little girl... and as a woman.... but always as my little sister.

I miss you so badly no words can describe.... but this little slide show, of all of us that I put together helps.... but just a little.

Now, the slide show dedicated to the little girl with the pageboy haircut.... I love you little sister.... I always have and wish I had told you.... wish so much I had hugged you that last day we met and parted saying I'd see you in a few days..... but I hope you can see into my heart.

video

Death is nothing at all
I have only slipped away into the next room
I am I and you are you
Whatever we were to each other
That we are still
Call me by my old familiar name
Speak to me in the easy way you always used
Put no difference into your tone
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
Laugh as we always laughed
At the little jokes we always enjoyed together
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was
Let it be spoken without effort
Without the ghost of a shadow in it
Life means all that it ever meant
It is the same as it ever was
There is absolute unbroken continuity
What is death but a negligible accident?
Why should I be out of mind
Because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you for an interval
Somewhere very near
Just around the corner
All is well.
Nothing is past; nothing is lost
One brief moment and all will be as it was before
How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

- Jim.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

CHRIS

AS I SIT HERE THINKING ABOUT OUR WONDERFULL SISTER WE LOST LAST SATURDAY 8/8/09....THERE IS SO MANY WONDREFUL THING'S I WANT TO SAY ABOUT OUR CHRIS BUT I FIND IT HARD TO TYPE THE WORD'S.....I DID'NT JUST LOSE A SISTER LAST WEEK I LOST MY BEST FRIEND NOTHING OR NO ONE CAN REPLACE HER EVEN DO SHE WAS SO SICK SHE WAS ALWAY'S THERE FOR ME TO LISTEN...WE LAUGH A LOT I MISS CALLING HER EVERY DAY AND ASKING HER WHAT SHE THOUGHT OF THE SOAP THAT WAS ON TV THE NIGHT BEFORE...CHRIS HAD 7 BOYS GREAT BOYS THEY ARE THEY NEVER GOT INTO TRUBLE WITH DRUGS OR THE LAW CHRIS ALWAYS WANTED A GIRL AND SHE GOT HER WISH BUT HER WISH WAS TO COME TO TEARS HER BABY ASHLING DIED JUST BEFORE BIRTH AND WE ALSO NEARLY LOST CHRIS BUT SHE GOT THROUGH THAT SAD TIME THEN HER HUSBAND DROWNED ON HIS 46TH BIRTHDAY BRINGING MORE SADNESS INTO HER LIFE BUT SHE CARRIED ON AND RAISED HER BOYS WHO ARE LOVELY YOUNG MEN NOW ALL DOWN TO CHRIS HARD WORK....ALL I CAN SAY AT THIS TIME IS I LOVE YOU CHRIS AND YOU WILL NEVER BE FORGOTEN......YOUR LOVEN SISTER MARIE XXXX

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Seán, the safest driver in town.

And he's only 3. :-)

This is Seán 'driving' his dad's truck in Melville.

video

- Jim

Sunday, 5 July 2009

We are now a Family Blog

Hello to all of our visitors.

From now this will be a family blog, in that all of my sisters and brothers will have access to the blog to post, add elements or do anything.

I hope also our children will agree to become co-authors as well.

We will continue to keep this blog going with our memories, photos etc.

In time we hope that this will be a blog that our grandchildren... and their children will be able to look on and enjoy... learning about their family in the process.

However, the blog will continue to have posts which will be of interest to our usual visitor from the older blog (click HERE) as well as our new visitors here on this blog.

We thank you for visiting and hope you enjoy what you read.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Replica Post

The following is a replica of a post that appears HERE.

Just a note to say that if anyone is experiencing unwanted popups (never heard of a wanted one) there's a replica of this blog. If you'd like to go there clicking HERE will bring you to it.

I'll keep both blogs going until such time as I find out where the popups in this one are coming from and removing the cause.

Meanwhile here's a little slideshow showing Seán my grandson as well as some photos taken locally.



Seán's poor face? I thought you'd be wondering about that. Some weeks ago he fell heavily against the sharp edge of a corner. We thought he was very badly injured but thanks in no small part to being treated quickly and efficiently by my son Jimmy who's a paramedic the injury was kept to an absolute minimum. Seán has a scar as you can see, but it's fading quickly as my daughter, his mother Antoinette, treats it daily.

And this post started as a short one about popups on my other blog site? :-)

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Hello again :-)

Hello again!

Where have you been eh? It's been awhile, but at last I feel more up to continuing my blog.

Before continuing with my stories I thought I'd introduce a video clip made at Summerhill, the place where I was born and where much of my old memories are based. The video clip begins at the junction of Summerhill and the North Circular Road.

But this is a Summerhill much changed from the Summerhill of my childhood. It'll be obvious which are the newer parts when you compare the obviously older parts which have hardly changed.

Summerhill in Wintertime....

video

Liz me cuz in Oz.. see if you can spot where you were born. That part of the street is wider now, but the bus stop is still in the same place, or very close to it's original spot. I can see my old school... the house where the old dinner house was is still there too. A close look will show the new houses going down in a slope where the old 27 Steps used to be. And how the junction of Summerhill and Gardiner Street has changed.

Back soon with a yarn or two......