|Last of the cake|
|Chestnuts for the sprouts tonight.|
|Our surprisingly good, well ripened|
and now stored onions
|Ooops. Despite my care the tractor cuts up |
ruts in the soft ground
Finally, I was in this morning to visit our lovely old neighbour, Una, who is still struggling with a finger injured on and infected by a rose thorn in her own garden. I nip round every couple of days to bring turf and logs in to the house from the sheds and today took her round some eggs, leeks, sprouts, parsnip and a beetroot as a mini food parcel. She sits me down in her beautifully old traditional Irish kitchen (range, painted wooden furniture) for 'tay' and home made scones and jam and today she was telling me all about the 'Wren Boys'
|Naughty or Nice? Lego from Santa|
They would also call round the pubs and 'perform' for the clientele.
More recently no actual wren is used and it is more likely to be the kids going round rather as do Carol Singers in the UK, but at lunchtime in daylight, rather then in the evening. Our friend Charlotte of the mini-horses has done this as a teenager in a group and apparently done quite well out of it. Una tells us she can remember when great gangs of children would go, quite often driven round in cars by parents, but recently the kids have come to enjoy the pub-side of things less. They were, says Una, all quite sweet kiddies and sang and played their penny whistles and other instruments beautifully, but the local 'Herberts' in the pubs of particularly Balla-D, presumably 'with drink taken' would start heckling them and making rude and tasteless comments. The groups Una knows don't go there any more and, in fact, have now dwindled to a few pairs or singles of children being taken to pre-arranged 'friendly' houses to do their thing and get a €5 or so. What ever the story is, none came to see us, so we still have this only at 2nd hand.
Happy New Year! Bliain Nua Sásta Dhaiobh!