Posts Tagged ‘Chapel’

“The ‘Blow In’ Sod”

Posted: January 5, 2013 in Comment
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Today, this Saturday,January 5th of 2013, I attended my second funeral in three days….

Thankfully, these funerals, were of elderly folk, people that had lived an age, reared a family, survived all changes that every decade presented them. I am certain, that I may never know the hardships that they endured, and often think, my hardships are just wee hiccups compared to theirs, alas, we perceive as we do…..

You see for me, the first funeral, was of a man I had never met, but of a man whose sons I have been fortunate enough to know well. There was never any reason for me to meet their Father, nor he me, that is the way rural life in Ireland is,when you are a ‘blow in’ , ye shall meet,when ye do…..

Yes, it is in the vales and rises of rural Ireland that I dwell, a small village, that used to boast a corner shop/post office, a church, and a two pubs, and proudly held a population of approximately 300 people.

Today, it has, no corner shop/post office, one pub, and of course the Chapel is still the most prominent structure in the village, although, perhaps, not the most frequented……and the population? Well, it has been gifted the wheels of emigration…..

Nonetheless, there I was today, attending, nay, singing, at a funeral mass of an eighty year old woman, from the village. A woman, that whenever I saw her over the sixteen years of being a ‘blown in’ , always had time for me. She was one of the first ladies that I met when I arrived to this corner of Ireland, and boy, she was simply, the Lady, of the Village.

The priest today, paid her a most beautiful tribute, when he said,    ‘She was in the church as often as the altar itself…’

And here she was, encased in a pine box, with her family near by, and a congregation that had only been seen in the same numbers two days before, and on Christmas Eve before that…

The funeral mass came and went, her sons carried her with pride, to her rest, and the many, gathered in the local hall, for tea and ‘sangwiches’….

It was only when I went out for air, that I saw one man, down by the grave, shovelling clay, back into the grave, a local chap, a mate, near the same age, that I realised, hang on……this is done by us…..

So I walked down, in my Sunday best, took off my coat, and picked up the spare shovel…….One became two, became three, became six…….in no time, ‘Kitty’ was laid to rest……

It was in this sharing, that I remarked to the other lads….”I think this knocks the ‘Blow in’ off me………”

Either way, It was a pleasure to lay clay upon a Lady

 

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