When I was 7

Well, now the memories are coming thick and fast. If I was a believer in theosophy or anthroposophy this would be the end of the first stage of my life.

That’s the end of the big words as well.

In 1977 I went from senior infants into first class. This was serious learning. we learned all about adding and subtraction and how to read in english and as gaeilge.

I also got another lesson in multiculturalism. We had a Japanese boy in our class in school. He showed us how they ate with chop sticks and wrote vertically. I was stunned.

I still am.

First class was also the start of the communion year. That didn’t take place until 1978 so I’ll spare you the details until tomorrow but it was less about God and more about starting the circle of Catholic guilt that was the backbone of Irish society in the kids.  As a kid it was less about the circle of Catholic guilt and more about how much money you could make.

1977 saw a move to a different caravan park in Lahinch and the first international event I can remember  – the death of The King.

I don’t remember punk. I don’t remember the silver jubilee, I don’t remember any local or international events but I do remember the death of The King.

Strange memory for a 6 1/2 year old to have.

I also started my short career as a rugby player. These days kids rugby is a fun event supported by middle class dads who shout encouragement from the side lines. The game is all about giving everyone a chance and making sure that the score doesn’t count.

Back then it was standing on a cold muddy pitch shivering on the wing as the big fat kid runs over you. There wasn’t a dad to be seen.

think the PE teacher from ‘Kes’. I’m Casper

Rugby still does nothing for me.

I also have a distinct memory of standing in a working forge in a small town in Co. Clare called Ennistymon. Something that seemed normal back then but would seem like a scene from the 19th Cent. now.

1977 –

The King



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