Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Little Red Hen.

I went shopping today and bought a fabulous new…….dishwasher!  Of course the first problem was how to transport it home. There was no way it was fitting into the back of Roxy!
I can just about get a weekend case into Roxy’s boot.

My sister came to my rescue with her bigger vehicle. Then problem #2 arose. How would we get it out of her car and into my house?
I rang my sister-in-law to see if my brother Finian would be around to help.
“We are heading out for a while but we’ll be back in the afternoon.”
“This is the problem with being single,” I moaned. “I don’t need a man for sex but I need one for situations such as this.”
There was a slight pause at the other end of the line and then Marese sighed.
“I’m sorry to disillusion you Noeleen, but even if you have a man, you’re still like The Little Red Hen and you end up having to do this things for yourself anyway!”
That burst my bubble!
A Happy Ending……..
My sister and I got a small trolley and succeeded in getting the dishwasher out of the car and into my kitchen ourselves. Yipee!
See, I don’t need a man…..oh wait a minute. It’s not installed yet.
Where did I leave Michael (the plumber)’s number?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Sharing milestones in someone's life.

Many (many) years ago I was having my 30th birthday party in Harry's hotel in Kinnegad. A bus load of Leixlip Musical and Variety Group  (LMVG'ers) made the arduous bus trip out of The Pale into Redneck country. Aboard that bus was a young 15 year old called Karl Harpur. He remembers it with very fond memories as it was the first time that he had a drink.
Don't blame me. I didn't buy it for him.
In fact, it was such a rite-of-passage, that when Harry's was knocked down several years later, Karl went into a mild state of depression!

A year or two after that fateful night, a planeload of  LMVG'ers went to Rotterdam for a weekend to see Karl's brother Gary who was singing in Riverdance. Emer, Karl and I were wandering down the street in Rotterdam, when Karl opened his wallet. Something fell out and landed before us on the pavement. Karl's face went puce and he tried to scoop it up before our eagle eyes could spot it.
Too late! It was a condom!
Poor little Karl nearly died as us "auld ones" saw what it was. Of course, being the mature, responsible teachers that we were, we slagged the arse off him!

Much later that night we had all retired to our rooms. Suddenly we heard a scraping at our door and a pitiful voice whispered
"Can I stay with ye tonight? My room mate has scored and I can't get into my room. I've no where to sleep."
"Ok Karl.....but just be aware. You'll have no use for that condom here!!!"
"I promise I'll keep my clothes on!"
He was just happy to have a place for the night!

That was then and this is now.
Yesterday was another milestone in his life, his wedding to the beautiful Jen.

I was very happy to share in their day.

All I can say is
"Karl, I hope you know, that condom is WAY out of date by now!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

I'm easy to find!

You would think in this day of Google Earth and sat-navs that giving directions would be very high tech. Obviously not!
I ordered a Christmas present from Amazon and was a little worried that it wouldn't arrive on time. On Friday I was at home, just after getting my holidays. There was a knock on the door. When I opened it, there was the courier with my parcel! Happy days.
It was only when I brought it in and looked at the envelope I saw that he had obviously stopped in Raharney to ask for directions to my house.
I love the fact that my house is located by the phrase
Go past Shay Murtagh's. It's the middle house with the Red Beetle parked outside!

Friday, December 20, 2013

I had a "Wicked" birthday.

My favourite musical of all time is "Wicked". I first saw it on Broadway about five years ago. I didn't really know much about it, only that it had something to do with the wicked witch from "The Wizard of Oz". I was totally blown away by it. It's the only show I've ever been at that had a standing ovation....at the interval.
A few years later I was with Leixlip Musical crowd in London for a Musical binge. They were heading to Wicked on Saturday afternoon, but I wouldn't go. I was afraid that it wouldn't be as good as I remembered and the magic would have been ruined.
It arrived in Dublin this Christmas so I decided to risk it. What better way to spend my birthday.
Thank God it lived up to my expectations.
I love the song "For Good" which Elphaba and Glinda sing, as they are parting ways. It is all about how much they meant to each other and the fact that they will never meet again.
Anne turned to me and said
"You know that is the song that Jenny* has booked Maeve* to sing at her funeral? Now I can't have it at mine."
* Two of the women from our musical/drama group.
Coming out of the theatre, the songs were swirling around our heads.
Anne was humming the tune
"No one mourns the wicked."
Anne stared at me, her mouth hitting her chin. Then she managed to utter
I was blocking the way out as I was bent in two laughing.
Then Anne said
"You know. You're right. I want that at my funeral. And I'm going to state in my will that YOU have to stand up at the altar and sing it!"
That stopped my guffaws.
"But Anne, you know I can't sing."
"I know. So I know you'll be absolutely bricking it. SO I'LL HAVE THE LAST LAUGH FROM THE GRAVE!

Ah yes. Don't you just love the conversations that only best friends can have!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Two Turtle Doves

Today in class they had to illustrate one line of that old chestnut
Twelve Days of Christmas.

This made me laugh.....

Monday, December 16, 2013

Glass half-empty, half-full?

I have always considered myself to be a fairly up beat sort of person. I try to look on the bright side of things. I'm not  prone to major panic attacks. I'm basically happy-go-luck........or so I thought.
These mornings have been particularly dark and dismal as I have been driving to school. As I haven't been shopping recently
Correction. I have been shopping but not for silly things like groceries!
I popped into Centra in Ballivor to get a sandwich for lunch.
As I was standing at the checkout, the woman beside me said.
"Oh, is that your car parked at the door?"
My heart lunged in my chest, I could barely breath and all the following scenarios flashed through my head.
Scenario 1:
I had forgotten to put on the handbrake. Roxy had taken off down the incline, crossed the road and caused a pile up in downtown Ballivor.
Scenario 2:
The drive across the bumpy bog road had caused Roxy to overheat and her engine had spontaneously combusted and she was now engulfed in flames at the door.
Scenario 3:
A group of teenagers waiting for the secondary school bus had gotten bored, taken a penknife to Roxy's soft top, which was now in tatters.

Obviously the woman saw these horror stories flash across my face and quickly added.
"Oh its just that it a really cute car and I'd love one!"
Phew. The waves of relief rushed through my veins.
That's all? Thank God.
I mumbled a few words of thanks and raced out to see for myself.
There was Roxy, waiting patiently for me.
I was still in a bit of a state when I got to school.
I guess I need a bit of work on my zen-like persona!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Ghost of Christmas past?

Christmas shopping time!
I was perusing the aisles of the chemist looking at various smelly things in glittery boxes. There was a very respectable suited gentleman standing in front of the items I wanted to examine. He was oblivious to me as he was talking animatedly on his mobile phone.
Not wanting to be rude I stood for a moment to try to catch his attention. Then he uttered the immortal words to his friend on the other end of the line.
"The sight of you in that mankini will stay with me forever."
I, of course, burst out laughing.
He glanced up and suddenly realised that he wasn't having a private conversation. His voice was booming all over the shop. He turned puce, twirled on his toes and raced out the door.
I must say, I couldn't get this image out of my head for the rest of the day either!

Monday, December 9, 2013

My first brush with Show Business

Someone asked me the other day when did I first become interested in Drama and all things jazz hands. I cast my mind back as far as I could.
The problem I had then which I still have now is that....I can't sing! So I learned at a very early age the art of miming. I also had my first crush when I fell in love with Little Jimmy Osmond!
Donny was far too old for me.
So I do remember being hauled out in front of a crowd in Granny Keena's kitchen. I stood in front of them and with a hairbrush in my hand I mimed along to this song.

The sound of their tumultuous applause rang in my ears and from that moment on I was hooked.

I haven't heard this song in decades but do you know what?
 I still remember every single word.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Dark Night Rises.

For the second time this week my house was plunged into darkness because of a power cut. Luckily I had a few matches left from the last time. Have you any idea how many it takes to light a lorryload of tea-lights?
Once I had a bit of illumination, I was at a loose end as to what to do.
"I'll listen to some music. No wait I can't.
"Xposé has started..... Nope. Can't do that either."
"I'll make myself a nice cup of tea. Feck, can't."

After many attempts I decided on seeing what all the settings on my new camera can do.
Here is my fireplace in the sitting room.
Anyone who has been in my house knows that there is no way it is that big in real life!
Whoever said the camera never lies, was lying!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Thinking outside the box.

I'm NOT a Christmas person!
There is only one thing I hate more than putting up decorations, and that's taking them down.
Bah, humbug!
This morning as I was crossing the schoolyard I saw a group of my kids waiting around.
"Will ye go into the classroom and take the Christmas Tree out of the puppet theatre and decorate it with whatever is there?"
Only too delighted they sped in, and I went to the staffroom for my morning cuppa!

When the bell went I returned to my classroom to be met with this sight.
They could not find the angel to put at the top of the tree so they were extremely creative. They decided to use props from our props box to turn the entire tree into an angel.
From the back it looks lovely....
Lots of tinsel, check.
Curley hair, even if it is illuminous green, check.
Wings, check.

However, it is a different story from the front!
Specky specs check
Beard, check.
Vampire teeth, check.

Definitely my favourite tree ever. It's staying!

Monday, December 2, 2013


I was wandering through the aisles of the newsagents, perusing the women's magazines. Every single cover had a picture of Kim Kardashian.
What is she actually famous for?

Yesterday I sent off my column for Hello Alanya.
Then I called into the local shop to pick up a few groceries. And there I was again on the front page of.......The Meath Chronicle!

I'm definitely Keeping up with the Kardashians.
Did ya see what I did there, did ya? Huh? Huh?