Friday, December 28, 2018

Christmas 2018

So, my attempt at blogging again in 2018 failed....miserably. BUT, (the but of all buts), I am starting all my New Years Resolutions early, and try get the blogging mojo back.

First up, its Christmas!! Or it just was, its 3 days after Christmas. I had a few disasters, which were stressful but not life threatening. They included washing machine breaking down, car breaking down, and other petty annoyances, which I was determined, would not ruin my plan to have the most chilled out Christmas ever

It started mid-December with painting the front door... by special request, pokemon style, as you can see from the pic above.

Then it involved going drinking and playing the tin whistle with the Goat Street Wren, in preparation for Lá an Dreoilín (The Day of the Wren), a mighty session of a day here in Dingle on St. Stephan's Day. I also dabbled in a bit of straw skirt making...

Christmas Day was perfect. With a young teen in the house the days of fussing are over. The effort was minimal. This was the note left for Santa....

We got up, opened presents, and then went back to bed. Got up, cooked dinner. I went back to bed with a book, the teen to whatever virtual world his friends were hanging out in. Job done -  a simple, stress free Christmas.

Santa was very eco minded this year, and presents were wrapped in brown paper, but nicely decorated with drawings of hearts and stars. He also brought me these handy items. A guppy bag for washing synthetic clothes (stops the micro fibres from going down the drain), and Hanna's Bee Wraps ( super usful and Irish made honey coated fabric squares. A great alternative to plastic). I'm on a mission to go as plastic free as possible. I've personally declared 2019 to be 'International Year of Cop the Feck On'. (Wont go into it but we seriously need to cop the feck on, with regard to the current ecocide crisis!)

Christmas Day done and dusted its time for the Wren (pronounced the 'ran'). A day of debauchery, Irish shtyle, with ceol, craic and pints. Historically, it was a day of mischief, for men to dress like their granny, mixed with straw rigs, and drink their way around the village, calling to the houses to play music, and try get a few pennies towards the pints. In some parts of Ireland this is still going on, but in Dingle, they have turned it into a full on street party. 

There are 4 main Wren groups in Dingle, Goat Street (red and white), Sráid Eoin (blue and white), The Green and Gold and The Quays (green and white), with splinter groups including the 'New Road' for the blow ins of the town. Membership to these exclusive Wren groups usually meant you were born into, or married into a family on that road. We signed up to the Goat Street Wren, purely because we know most of them, and I currently work on Goat Street. Once you have joined one, that's it for life! Wren practice starts at the beginning of December, where people meet weekly to practice the tunes on the tin whistle, fifes, and drums.

The Goat Street Wren started outside Barr na Sráide on Goat Street, we marched down Main Street, Strand Street, The Quays to The Wood at the edge of town. A pitstop for mulled wine, turn around, and its marching back into town with the first proper pit stop for a pint at Dannos Bar. Then march and a pint at Paddy Bawn Brosnans Bar, then over to the Dingle Hospital to sing a few songs with the residents. Back to Strand Street, to Hannies Pub. Up Green Street, down Main Street... continue for several hours with lots of pub stops. There were 2 pit stops for food in the Flannery and Kennedy houses, where the Bean an (woman of the house), provided soup and sandwiches. It was a long day! I started out knowing about 2 and a half tunes on the whistle, but finished up with several more.

It was great fun, and has to be seen to be believed. 

More about my New Years Resolutions in the next post, but there will be more crafting, research on crafting for sure. 2018 was a dry year, where I put down my tools in the the attempt of trying to get better quality work, get paid a decent wage for once in my life. Yes, I have earned slightly more, but the stress of the modern workplace just makes me want to scuttle back into my medieval hidey-hole again. We'll see what 2019 brings! (Hopefully a working car...)


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