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Village Life, Ulster style

Up here in my Cavan bolt hole, my current local paper of choice is the 175 year old Northern Standard. The name itself tells you all you need to know about the paper - solid, no nonsense and serving 'Counties Monaghan, Cavan, Armagh, Louth and Fermanagh' - five northern counties, although only Armagh and Fermanagh are in the North and Louth, which is Ireland's smallest county, was once in Ulster and is now in Leinster.

The Around the Villages page is incredibly enlightening; in Tydavent you can go and watch the premiere of 'Land is God', a new film. I have no idea what it's about but I like the title. On the downside, the Tydavent website is banjaxed, specifically the function that allows pictures to be uploaded to the site. There is an emergency stakeholder meeting later this week. A local man is taking part in the World Ironman Championships on the lava fields of Kona in Hawaii. presumably this is the athletic Ironman and not a Robert Downey Jr homage. As an aside, a few weeks ago I met a woman from Hawaii in Doolin. She was a police officer or 'the real 5-O' as she described herself and knows Dog the Bounty Hunter. If you haven't seen the tv series, check it out.

Moving to Inniskeen, birthplace and burial site of Paddy Kavanagh, a new book has been published Inniskeen - Past and Present, a photographic trip down Inniskeen's memory lane 'from olden days upto the present'. In Corcaghan, there will be an evening devoted to Aloe Vera 'Something for everyone, shampoo, toothpastes, nutritional drinks and a great beauty range'. Smithboro, which sounds like it should be a suburb of NYC, sends its congratulations to Old School boxers Aaron McKenna and Terry McEntee, who have been selected for the upcoming European Championships in Russia.

Litter remains a problem in Shercock, which is only 4km or so from my Cavan bolthole. In fact The scourge of litter is still alive and thriving. The cutting of the hedges and grass margins on the Cootehill Rd to Lough Sillan revealed a large amount of litter.' If you are weary of litter picking, there is a knitting morning with the finished articles going to Malawi Third World Aid. I should also add at this point that you would have to travel a long way to find more neatly trimmed hedges in Ireland.

The most controversial political hot potato in Ireland at the moment is the introduction of water charges. In Knockatallon, the Aughnashalvey Water Group reminds people they have to return the relevant forms to Irish Water within the next couple of weeks. Good luck with that, as the way things are going, it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if Irish Water is abolished and replaced with something else. It's shaping up to this government's poll tax moment.

Tullcorbett is providing Defibrilator Refresher Training, something Irish Water is in desperate need of, and also sends its best wishes to to Lucia and Declan, who have recently become engaged, If you're interested in hearing from John Lonergan, a former governor of Mountjoy Prison, he is speaking in Ardaghey. The talk is entitled Ardaghy - A Community at Heart although I misread it as A community on Heat!

In Scotshouse there is a harvest festival, a floral arrangement class and a table quiz in the sid of the children of Gaza and also a request for spare apartments/rooms to help out the organisers of the Clones Film Festival. Finally, in Drumhowan, I came across this:

Due to circumstances which should have been controlled bit weren't, the Drama Workshops due to start tonight...have had to be postponed...and a number of people have been sacked...A special treat at the Halloween Party will be a group of Lithuanian Dancers. They're not coming all the way from Lithuania (though the organisers are pretending they're driving all the way by tank from Vilnius).

So, there you have it - everything from harvest festivals, to raising funds for the children of Gaza, the needy of Malawi and all you need to know about Aloe Vera - a small town Ireland survival kit.

Posted by johnward 04:50 Archived in Ireland

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