The next big shock was the septic tank. The whole concept of it was really horrible to me. Especially as it had gone for so long unused to sudden heavy use and it couldn't cope. The house was built over 200 years ago and I am not sure of the age of the septic tank- but it is old. The local farmer arrived with his slurry spreader and emptied it and then sprayed it over the rest of our fields. Thank goodness we weren't growing anything!
Local knowledge was another shock and by local knowledge I mean the locals all knowing you and you not having a clue who they are. I regularly arrived back to my car parked in the village and found my post left on the passenger seat as it saved the postman a trip out our road. When I went to order coal in the village another time I payed for it and the shop assistant walked off down the shop so I stood waiting for her to come back and get the delivery address. When eventually she came back she asked me did I want anything else. So I said "do you not want my address"? She immediately said my married surname and then "yes we know where you are". Another time I went to collect my kids from school and there was a funeral. The graveyard is beside the school. The place was black with cars and there was no way of driving down to the school. My kids were small at the time and I did not want to leave them waiting so I jumped out of the car, leaving it in the traffic jam and ran down to the school. When I got back the traffic jam had cleared and my car had been "lifted" out of the way and was neatly parked at the side of the road!
Our address caused more trouble. We have no house number or name, no street address just the name of our townland. I am not sure how many townlands there are around the village but some of the names are lovely, Carrickspringan, Rathbawn and Feagh in particular. Some townlands would have a larger number of houses than others. It is impossible trying to explain this to Dubliners never mind anyone outside the country and trying to order anything on line where they insist you enter a postcode is a huge problem. I usually get away with NONE in capitals or XXXX.
Now when the kids have left home people ask me would I not be better off to move back to the city. But when I sit in traffic in Dublin at any time of the day fuming and wondering how long it can take to move a couple of miles; I think not. At least I know when I have to be in the local town at a particular time that it will take me 10 minutes - unless I get stuck behind a tractor. I know that I can open my patio doors and lie naked in my garden and not be overlooked by anyone. I have acres around the house that can't be built on and is available for my use if I so wish. And I have a lovely garden where I can grow my own vegetables. So why change all this for a suburban house with a postage stamp garden?
|A typical village house|
|View of the village a good few years ago judging by the cars!|