By Kathleen Mullane

“Back to School” 

Can you believe it ‘back to school’ next week with some schools re-opening the end of this week – where have the summer holidays gone one wonders? Since early in the new year, the weather has been the focus of everyone’s attention and irrespective of what it brought it was seldom enough to satisfy us, the long evenings outside where one could have a barbecue or eat out and the joy of one fine day following another – unfortunately it never became a reality. Now as the children return to school and the holidays come to an end there is still the hope of something better to come! We live in anticipation of an “Indian Summer” at this stage but if it doesn’t come there will be no time for regrets. Once the clocks go back it wont’ be long until Christmas but quite some time before robin songs melt the last of winter. But we will look on the bright side and be thankful for our health and all we’ve got considering the many sad things that are happening all over the world.

Congrats and well done to the Pierse family of Gortnagross who represented  Athea and our parish so very well recently in Athlone at the Community Games finals. Emily did very well in the 7k and 50m backstroke as did Anne-Marie also in the swimming with Dermot taking part in the 1200m cross country. Indeed an achievement for them, all doing themselves, their family and parish proud.

Who needs the Oxford dictionary when you come across all these brilliant Irish slang words. One wonders what other nationalities think of our ‘lingo’ – to mention a few – if you said someone had “an awful puss” they might think you were talking about a cat – whereas we here in Ireland know it means “a sulky face”

Then you have “he’s a gas man” – meaning he’s a funny man, not a man do with gas!

The word “blackguard” – doesn’t mean a guard who is black but in Ireland means ‘a chancer’ or a con artist.

Then you have the extraordinary sayings like – “fit to be tied” or “stop the lights” – “off me trolley” – “how’s she cutting” – “isn’t it not” – or “do you fancy a few scoops” – then again another one – “traipsing along”, “As sick as a small hospital”, “the job is Oxo”, “Janey Mac”, “how’s the talent”, “Mother of sweet incarnations”, “Amadán”, “effin an blindin”, “dressed to the nines”, “there’ll be wigs on the green”, “fluthered” and there’s many more.