Oct 05 2015

‘Westward Ho the Wagons…’

Published by at 12:14 pm under News


The Ma’ was telling me one time about when they moved out of Summerhill to Cabra West. She said so many people were moving out there that it was like the Old Wild West. She said the men pulling the handcarts would sometimes race each other from one Lamp-Post to the next  and in that way the journey didn’t seem so long or they’d have a sing-song. When they moved out to Cabra West in early 1945 there was a great demand to hire the handcarts from a place in Granby Lane. Sometimes if two families didn’t have much stuff to move they would share a handcart between them. The Ma’ brought everything she had from her blue Kitchen Dresser to her enamel breadbin that she got as a wedding present. They only had one bed and that’s where they all slept on the first night. The Ma’ said there was great excitement altogether and the kids would chasing each other or the girls would be skipping with a rope. Some people had the use of a horse and cart and they’d let a gang of kids  hang out of it or let the little ones sit up on the furniture. When the Da’ had pushed the cart up as far as Phibsborough church he had to stop for a fag and the poor Ma’s feet were killing her. She sat up on the cart for a while until they got to the corner of Carnlough Road. She said that Cabra West was still a building site when they moved into our house and Dingle Road was only being built at the time. She said there were no shops or buses or anything like that, the nearest bus was the number 12. At first they were only allowed to have one bulb upstairs and one downstairs and there was no bath in the house. It was the War Years or the ‘Emergency’ as they called it and everything was being rationed out. The Ma’ said the first winter in Cabra was bitter cold and many families had to break up some of their furniture and burn it on the fire to keep them warm and to cook their dinner on. Sometimes when I’m watching a Cowboy film about wagon trains I think of things like that that the Ma’ once told me about…

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