I received two emails in the past few days that I thought I might share here. One was from a cousin and her husband who are living in Canada. I celebrated their wedding with them there just over two years ago and met them recently in Dublin. They were, at that stage and still, proud parents of their recently born daughter. In any case they sent me two photos taken that day and I think they’re lovely so wanted to share!!
The other email was text – no photo but full of vivid imagery. It was from Ed Molloy, you might remember me meeting him when I was in New York. He lives in Los Angeles and is a native of Mullaghroe and a daily visitor to my blog. I was so pleased when he told me that and glad that he sees here, from time to time, things that are important to him and bring him home, albeit in memory. Anyway, he sent me an email and I hope he won’t mind my sharing some of it here. I told him I might so now he knows I DID!!
Dear Father Vincent,
It was great meeting you in New York in Sept. Thanks for the blog. It was an accurate accessment despite the fact you did not take any written notes. I loved the photos of Alf enjoying the heat of the fire. He is a powerful looking animal. I would like to share some memories of the Sherlock Family in the 1940’s. Some of them sad.
Your Aunt Mary Ellen fell off a Bicycle coming from a mission in Gurteen and was fatally injured. Your Grandmother “Baby” Sherlock was not in good health and and was unable to attend the funeral. As the Funeral passed by the home place on its way to Monasteraden Cemetery. Mrs Sherlock sat on a hill beside the house and waved a white handkerchief.
A few times I observed Bill sitting in front of his Mother and flapping a towel to help her breath better. There were Apricot trees in the garden and Mrs Sherlock used to make delicious Apricot Jam. The door to the work area was a half door to discourage people from entering the work area. If you grabbed the knob you would get a shock. One Sunday evening a truck from Dublin bound for Ballina came under the bridge back firing and belching smoke and came to a stop at the Green Gates. It was using Coke as a substitute for petrol. The driver and 2 helpers tried to fix the problem but to no avail and had to stay in Kellys Hotel in Gurteen that night. Next morning Bill was contacted and arrived on his bicycle with a slip sleeved pliers and after a few minutes adjusting the carburetor the truck was on its way to Ballina. Sherlocks had an orange and blue donkey cart with rubber tires. The donkeys name was “Blossom”. Jimmy was the driver and I often went with him to Mahanagh Bog for turf and to Kilfree Junction to pick-up new bicycles “B.S.A. and Raleigh” bicycles from Birmingham.
Beside being an expert at the slow-bicycle race Jimmy could do another feat none of us other teenagers could do. He could dis-mount from a bicycle by jumping out over the handle-bars turning around quickly and grabbing the bicycle before it fell to the ground.
Bill McDonald, Bernards older brother was returning to Wolverhampton and his father, John “Corbett” McDonald took him to Kilfree Junction in a Pony & Trap. Bill boarded the train and as the train pulled away he leaned out a window and started waving a white handkerchief. The father standing on the platform did the same and both kept waving white handkerchiefs until the train moved out of sight.
So thanks to both emailers for pictures of different times and generations – for all that is in the past and in the future, may God bless and guide them.