Can you believe it on this extremely gusty and windy night as I write these few lines, that, thankfully, we will be into Spring this Friday, February 1st. Most people hate the months of November and January, the darkness, long evenings and inclement weather. However, good things are on the horizon! Next week we have ‘Pancake’ Tuesday – no doubt the pancakes will be tossed and turned in all households! Then the following day is Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent for 6 weeks and 4 days!

Many in recent years instead of “giving up something” have taken on “doing something” -like visiting the old and lonely – helping them with their shopping, calling to see neighbours and friends that they might not have met in a while. So I suppose we could all see what “we could take on”. My daughter tells me that in America they still have to keep the rule of ‘fish on Fridays’. Easter will be on our doorstep before we know it. I’ve heard that Easter Eggs are on the shelves already!

It should be a good year hopefully with it being the year of “The Gathering”. Some think it’s a money-making idea to bring visitors in to spend money, however, if it gathers families, relatives and friends together isn’t it a great thing, hopefully it will be one big party.

Everyone I’m sure was shocked by the news this week of the murder of Detective Garda Adrian Donoghue in Dundalk. What a callous and brutal murder. A wife and two children now bereft of a husband and father.

The previous week we had the case of the father who initially had got off with raping his daughter over 10 years. Thankfully the judge had second thoughts and eventually he got 3 years.

Maybe we here in Ireland should copy America’s “Bounty Hunters”, who come after anyone who has done the slightest thing wrong – like “not paying their rent” or an underage person driving with alcohol – even a little – they are banged into jail without warning – pulled and handcuffed straight out of their homes.

Maybe we need to take a much tougher attitude “to the little wrongs – which sometimes lead to the big wrongs”.