I traveled a bit today, while staying in the comfort of the cottage; that said, it wasn’t that far either. I rang my friend Gráinne, a girl from Connemara; some call it Furbo, I call it Na Forbacha as it should be, and I don’t say Connemara either, just Conamara, the folks of the sea… Rebel from a battered land, a beacon of love when all you have left is a phone number you can call at anytime, when all is lost, when all seems dark. She would give everything to you, before herself; I felt ashamed to share or even compare my hardship and problems to hers, but it was good; good to hear that western accent, the humour smiling at the face of destiny. I feel quite blessed to know her and having shared those precious moments that makes our special selves “philanthropists” … This one is for you mo chara…
Ok, ok, I know it’s a bit of a mouthful as far as titles go, but I couldn’t figure out a better way to put it. It was last Sunday, I was tidying the house you see, cleaning the windows, defrosting the freezer, you know the kind of stuff men are known to never undertake… uh? Well not me, every so often, a miracle happens and for some reason, I go nuts. As I was almost finished, I stumbled upon a bunch of bananas that was over ripe for my morning enjoyment, yet, not black enough for a banana cake… Dilemma!
My boss is sending me on a Special Mission; it happens once in a while, either dropped discreetly around a cup of coffee between a “well, how are you?” and “how would you feel about going on a road trip?”, or an email, extrapolated by my over active imagination which can clearly read: ” Your mission, should you choose to accept it, involves extracting some of our newest staff from Dublin, bring them to West Cork to see some of the original producers and actors of the Irish cheese and food revival, bring them back with plenty of stories and dreams to share. This message will self-destruct in five seconds”. I swear, that is what I get, this is what I hear, this is what I read.
As a child, growing up on the south coast of Brittany, I remember how rare the winters with snow were. Like the native Inuit or Yupik around and within the polar circle, we have several words referring to rain but only one describing snow. It’s a native people thing I guess. Saying that, I get overwhelmed every time a heavy wintry shower makes landfall on the midlands of the isle of Ireland; finding an uncontrollable need to get out there. Geared up with my camera and fitted with recently purchased removable spiked snow boots (yes, I owe a pair), I got out there, taking it all in; “the heavy salted peanuts knowing a cool beer is waiting for you” syndrome, exposure to the elements knowing that some comfort food is waiting for you.