Dec 23 2016

‘You better watch out, you better not cry,,,’

Published by at 11:05 am under News



‘I well remember one Christmas Eve when the Ma’ sent us all off to the Cabra Grand to see the pictures. I think that she really wanted us out of the way so that she could get more done around the house before Santy arrived. I remember running across the compound on Drumcliffe Road and the wind trying it’s best to skin us all alive. Where was the snow we all wondered, isn’t it supposed to snow at Christmas? someone asked. Of course the older ones in the family had to stay behind to help with the cleaning and polishing of the house, sure even the skirting-boards had to be washed down as well as the bannisters and the stairs. Our turn for a cleaning would come later in the evening.
We were so excited at the whole idea of going to the Pictures that we couldn’’t be bothered going the long way around and down Quarry Road so we ducked across the railway line instead and came out at the side of the Homestead Pub. Running across the railway tracks was always a great thrill because we were always afraid that a train would come along and run us all down. And there we’d be screaming our heads off pretending to be frightened, we were really but none of us wanted to show it. Standing there in the queue for the Pictures and all the other kids talking about what they were going to get from Santy. One Young Fella wanted a pair of boxing gloves and a game of Snakes and Ladders. One Young One wanted knitting needles and a ball of red wool, her friend said that she wanted a Hoola Hoop and a Skipping Rope. All I wanted was a Gun and Holster so that I could be like the cowboys on the Pictures. Oh and I also wanted an orange in my stocking.
I can’t remember what the Picture was about but I was delighted when it was over so that we could all go home and get to bed early. I remember us all galloping up Swilly Road singing ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’ at the tops of our little voices. And suddenly I looked up at the sky, it was full of beautiful shining stars, they were everywhere and there was the Moon, bigger and brighter than I’d ever seen it before. I thought in my little head that it must be that bright so that Santy could find his way around in the dark.
Well we were no sooner in the door than we were all marched up the stairs and into the bath for a good scrub. I well remember myself, the brother and three of my sisters being in the bath at the one time. There was the poor Ma’ with her sleeves rolled up past her elbows and clutching a bar of LIfebouy soap in one hand and one of the kids in the other. When we were all half dried we were allowed to go down stairs to see the Christmas Tree that the Da’ had put up. Now I have to tell you at that very moment when we walked from the hall into the kitchen, Christmas really came alive at the sight of all the coloured lights and decorations on our Tree.
The Da’ let each of us put our little stockings with our names on them under the tree and told us that Santy would be coming soon and with that there was a great big dash made for the stairs and bed. I still have a very distinct memory of the Da’ saying ‘Now you can put the kettle on…’. We were all wrapped up in the blankets on the bed and the love of our parents as we each slipped off to Santy Land in our dreams…’


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