By Kathleen Mullane

As I start to write a few lines at 9am on yet another glorious Sunday morning here in Portugal where we’ve just spent a week with family – we note still no rain in Ireland! We’ve seen pictures of Ballybunion Golf course on our phones – it more resembles the “Sahara Desert”. And of course the River Feale in Listowel, under the bridge, bone dry! Then here in Portugal water is more than plentiful despite having so many swimming pools and restaurants to supply. Maybe we at home will have to – in the future – contend with extreme drier temperatures and get some way of conserving more water to deal with the drought that’s being experienced at present.

In a week away a lot can happen and the death of Mary Kirby of Parkanna, Athea occurred last week, with many paying their last respects at Lyon’s funeral home on Friday evening. Burial took place after requiem mass in Athea the following day to Templeathea cemetery. Sincere sympathy to her husband Jim and family. ‘May the light of heaven be hers’.

The death also took place over the weekend of Jerry Carey (a former Gárda here in Athea and a member of the 1968 team who won the County Final against Treaty Sarsfields). A guard of honour with some of his team-mates and Athea GAA Club were present at his removal on Saturday evening in Newcastle West from Reidy’s funeral parlour. Burial followed requiem mass on Sunday to Calvary cemetery. Sympathy to his daughter and son, relatives and friends. May the light of heaven be his.

Congrats to Jason Kelly of Clash, Athea who recently celebrated his 21st birthday at The Horseshoe Bar in Listowel along with his parents Timmy and Betty, brother Jamie and friends. All had a lovely night.

Sad to hear of the death of yet another member of the Dunlop family, motorbike racing enthusiasts and visitors to Athea during the Athea bike races. This being the 3rd death involving a motorbike accident. No doubt Sean Batt will have a good chat “in the heavens above” with him.  William was killed in Skerries in Dublin at the weekend. ‘May he rest in peace’.

Best wishes to Paddy Lynch who, after 35 years of serving the communities of West Limerick and North Kerry, delivering milk, has now retired. He is wished many happy years to enjoy his retirement, with his wife Máiréad and daughter Patricia.

On reading an excerpt from one of the Irish Sunday papers here I just to write a few lines from it – it goes as follows – we are all foreigners now in Ireland, we don’t need to go on holidays. The weather is having all kinds of knock-on effects. The Irish beaches are looking like ones in any part of the world. Women are in bikinis – not fleeces. There are talks now of a “crisp shortage” – the ground is so dry for potato growth. If we don’t get consistent rain in the next two weeks – the water is going to be SHUT OFF at night intervals! And isn’t it great to see men also having their “man bags”. No doubt when the rain comes we will get plenty of it.

Must finish now to get our flight home from sunny Portugal to sunny Ireland.