Friday, December 30, 2016

Challenge #1: Run 155k

I have just signed up for my first challenge of the run 155k.

Now before you think I've lost the run of myself (pardon the pun) let me quickly explain that I don't run it all in the one day!!!
It's all to do with Bressie's R.H.Y,T,H,M
Running Helping You To Healthy Mind.
You can walk/jog/run 5k a day during the month of January for which you donate E1 for every 5k. Then there is a group run on Jan 29th In Lilliput along with Bressie.
For those of you not in the know, there is a place called Lilliput just outside Mullingar. Jonathon Swift spent a lot of time there on his holliers, so when it came to writing his classic novel, Gulliver's Travels, he used its name. And NO, it is not populated by little people!!!
The total of E30 goes towards promoting mental health among young people, a very worthy cause.
And that is the reason I am packing my sports gear along with my glad rags as I head to Killarney for the New Year's weekend.
I will be running/crawling around Muckross gardens on New Year's Day if it kills me.
Now if only Bressie would be at the finishing line it might make it a bit easier to do!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

What makes a successful woman?

I was delighted and surprised to be asked by Midlands Radio 3 to take part in an interview about Successful Women in 2016. I met up with the other women, all very inspiring and motivating. We had a great auld laugh.

Afterwards, seeing as I was in Tullamore, I met up with my cousin Janette. We have over a century of shared experiences between us. As the saying goes
Cousins are your first friends.

 It was only as we were talking, it dawned on me that it was really Janette that they should have interviewed. It's just over a year since her 19 year old son was killed in a tragic farming accident. In January she set up and ran an Operation Transformation group in her local GAA club which had over 80 followers. She said today that she has very little memory of that time as she was running on autopilot. However, being involved in something like that gave her a reason for getting up in the morning.

It's a year down the line and things are still very raw and difficult. But Janette has kept going through good days and bad days,
She said today that she admires me for what I have done this year, but in all honesty it is nothing compared to what she has done.
All I can say is
We definitely have a touch of Granny Keena's spirit in us!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme

This time last year my cupboards were almost as bare as Old Mother Hubbard's. You would have found salt and pepper and maybe a bit of paprika.
Fast forward to this year and I have a fully stocked larder full of herbs and spices,

Jaynie, I even have Japanese Rice Vinegar in there!
And if you look very carefully you will even notice that they are in alphabetical order!

Hey, don't knock it, it makes it sooooo much easier to put your hand straight onto the one you need!
However I am getting a flashback to that scene from Sleeping with the Enemy! Maybe there is a touch of OCD!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Running on empty.

I had done a bit more driving that I had expected and so the fuel tank was blinking at me. I didn't panic as I am an expert at knowing how far I can drive on fumes! It was 6 o'clock in the evening but I decided to go to Ballivor to get diesel rather than wait til the morning.
I was driving into Ballivor, admiring the lights when suddenly.....perplunk! My car cut out and I thankfully managed to maneuver her to safety on the kerb outside the church. I knew what the problem was...out of fuel, and the ironic thing was I could see the lights of the petrol station blinking at me from just down the street.
Okay Noeleen, you can deal with this, you're an independent woman.
I set off down the footpath and entered the shop. I explained my predicament and I was soon walking back up the street with my little petrol can full of E6 worth of diesel. I poured it into the tank, turned the key and it roared into life....and promptly cut out again. I retried but to no avail.
I can manage this.
I contacted that fount of knowledge, Suri.
It didn't auger well. The first piece of information I got was that it was much harder to deal with a car that had run out of diesel, rather than petrol.
Bloody brilliant.
There were articles on how you should have used an air plunger before inserting the fuel.
Now you tell me!
But then I got the good news. All newer diesel cars were self priming and so didn't need all that palaver.
Granted, the only primer I know about is the stuff you put under your foundation to stop your make up from running!
The next bit of information got my hopes up. Let the engine turn over for a few times to get the fuel running through and then it'll start.
No problem!
Wait!The next website said
"Don't under any circumstances turn the engine over as you'll run down the battery. "
At that I gave up this whole independent woman thing and I rang the second fount of brother Finian!
In a short time he appeared. He told me to turn the engine over and after a few attempts it roared into life.
I should have risked it myself.
A few minutes later I found myself back in the petrol station. I filled up the tank and went into the shop to pay.
I was happily explaining to the cashiers what had happened when one of them said the immortal words that made my blood run cold.
"But you bought PETROL when you were here a few minutes ago!"
NOOOOOOO! I screamed inwardly, or it may have been out loud.
I had a flashback to two years ago when I was the victim of a dirty petrol scam that ruined the engine of Roxy, my Beatle convertible. Only this time it would be all my own fault.
"I'll check through the receipts", she said, not holding out much hope. It must have been my subconscious, maybe the fact that I had bought a PETROL can made me go to the wrong nozzle. As I looked out the window while I waited, I saw my brother filling up his 161 Audi from the same pump as I had used....and his car is diesel too!
Well if I'm in trouble, then he's in an even bigger mess!!!
Receipts were checked and it was confirmed...I had bought DIESEL!
The cashier was full of apologies and explained that she honestly thought I had bought petrol and didn't want me to use it before I did any damage.
That was very thoughtful of her but it would have been too late, it was in the engine already.
But I was so thankful that I hadn't wrecked the engine I would have forgiven her anything.
As I drove home I thanked my lucky stars that I wouldn't have to start the New Year travelling everywhere on a donkey!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

HOW old do you think I am???

During History we were talking about education through the ages. I was telling them about my teaching career in Baconstown and how things have changed since I started. Of course I was asked
"Miss, how long are you teaching here?"
I replied
"30 years."
I got a round of applause.

During the next history lesson I showed them the photos that were taken during our Living History Day three years ago. As our school was celebrating 175 years in existence we dressed up and spent the school day as if it was last century.
The first photo was the one of me arriving to school in full costume, on a High Nelly bike.

There was a moment's pause and then I was asked this genuine question
"Miss, is that you coming to school on your first day here?"
I am officially a dinosaur!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

The third cut is the deepest....

Why is Black Friday so called? I always think it sounds very sinister and threatening.
This year I bought a set of Prestige knives for half price.
And now I realise that it was a black day for my hand.
 After a third cut today my poor left thumb is in shreds.