Reading My Way Around the World

Friday 15 July 2016

Five on Friday - St Swithin's Day

I want to start by saying how my heart breaks for the people in France today - where is all this terrible hatred coming from!  From Dallas to Baghdad and now Nice ... not to mention those poor souls in Syria.  After all the years of bombings and shootings that we endured in our little corner of the world I know that there is only fear in people's hearts at the moment.  All I can hope for is that we who are far enough away from danger, for the moment at least, can keep trying to spread joy and love and light into the world whenever we can or else the bad guys have won.

So on that note, I'm going to remember the good times this week and join with Amy at Love Made My Home for Five on Friday.  I'm keeping the bright side out.

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1. No Rain Today (or not yet anyway)
Today is St Swithin's Day - the story goes that if it rains today, we'll have rain for 40 days.   Old and not so old folks will be keeping fingers crossed here that we can get through another couple of hours dry - this must be the first day in nearly a month when it hasn't rained and I really don't have a lot of faith that we'll get to tonight without it.   What is it about July?  Nominally it's summer; everyone's ready for summer; the shops are selling shorts, sleeveless tops and things to barbecue .... and we have the fire lit!!
Ah well, nothing else for it - I went out and bought a jumper today.

2. Work in Progress

Reuniting a jumper that I thought was lovely when I started it and when I completed it first time around, is not such a pleasure anymore.   But I can't let myself away with not finishing it.   What happened was that I lost a lot of weight between starting and completing it and it never occurred to me to take a few measurements!!   That would have been too simple.   And I also never considered just giving as a present to someone.   so I have the back redone and this is the first of the fronts - the sleeves will also need to be shortened!  I have a feeling it won't be finished this winter.  Have you ever had ago totally restart a piece of crafting?  
This is what it will look like

 3. Wednesday Session
I told you last week about all the session here during the week.  It's building up to Festival time so visitors are starting to appear and it was the perfect time for a young historian here to launch his booklet Introducing people to Rostrevor.  It turned in to a fabulous night of songs and stories, tunes and yarns... Here's a few images from it...  I wish Peter every success with his first book - and if you're ever in the area he'll take you on a walking tour of the vicinity with lots of information.  

Peter McGrath Jnr introducing his new book
"An Introduction to Rostrevor"

 After lots of soloists sang with great order in the room, the evening turned into a session with instruments appearing from nowhere.

And ending up with the best rendition of that good old traditional song (not) of Paul Simon's - You Can Call Me Al - delivered by John and the entire pub doing the African Male Voice Choir backing up bits ....Very funny.   

4. Listowel, Co. Kerry

Tom and I headed down to Kerry for a couple of nights over the weekend - I've always wanted to visit Listowel, and to have a night in John B Keane's pub - probably the most famous pub in Ireland.
Listowel is famous for its writers' festival which takes place at the start of June each year and happens here mainly because of John B, who wrote The Field among other great stories of Irish life.   All his novels, plays, short stories and poems were written here behind the counter in his bar - watching the comings and goings and antics of the locals.
John B Keane's pub, Listowel

Nectar lined up on the counter in various stages of settling.  
Oh I wish I still could drink Guinness.

Richard Harris won the Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of "The Bull" McCabe
in Jim Sheridan's 1990 film of  "The Field"

5. Great Band Names

I love funny names for bands - I used to play keyboards once in a band called Dickie Ticker and the Palpitations!  Then there was the Ceilidh Band who once won the best band competition at some Scottish Festival in the 90s - they were called Ceilidh (pronounced Kayly) Minogue :)   Love it.

This one caught my eye in Listowel - pity the poster was curling up on itself ...  

Playing Sunday - Phil 'n The Blanks 
Thanks once again Amy for running this lovely blog hop and for giving me an excuse to find the things in life to be joyous about.

Linking to


  1. Love the cardigan you are working on, I did the same with a cotton crochet top, the first one was too big, so I pulled it back. The second was too small and now is in a bag and will probably stay there. With this constant rain I will probably have no need for it.

    1. Oh dear - I fear this one might end up in a similar place.

  2. Hi Fil - the cardigan does look a very pretty design - I couldn't imagine reworking anything ... I 'hate' wool - i.e. I can't wear it ... and have miserable memories of an emerald green unfinished jumper from when I was about 11 ...

    Lots going on for you now .. and thus glad you were able to take off to Kerry and Listowel - fascinating area ... Ireland is so beautiful. I don't think I've seen the film "The Field" - I must look out for it ...

    Funny names are just funny aren't they - bringing a smile to our faces ... love them - cheers Hilary

    1. Oh Hilary - I always hated the woolly things we had to wear as children - they itched like mad and I wouldn't wear it for years when I grew up. But now there's such beautiful wools around that make you want to cuddle them

  3. Great variety of photos to share today. I enjoy punny names, too, and that one is just hysterical!

  4. Fil, I love the look of your cardigan, I think it's well worth giving it another go! If my ideas don't work I have to walk away for a bit, eventually it makes click and all falls into place. So don't give up! Sad.... very very sad what one human is capable of doing to another, I couldn't agree with you more we need to spread LoVe, happiness & hope every day to defeat the haters !!
    Have a lovely weekend!
    Anna xx

  5. The cardigan looks wonderful and I'm sure it will be worth the remake. Looks like it was a great session on Wednesday night and I love the band names. I agree with your first paragraph completely, so sad but we must try and bring love, peace and happiness to our own small corner of the world.

  6. I only ever knitted one sweater (jumper) and sewed one skirt. That was the extent of my crafting. Kudos to you for having the patience to take it apart and redo. Thanks for your happy news, we do need things to make us look on the brighter side.

    1. I have to say I didn't do much crafting for years either Jo - I couldn't see the point when I could buy lovey jumpers for a quarter of the money. I only ever managed one skirt too :)

  7. The jumper looks just lovely, total wool envy over here :)

  8. The jumper looks just lovely, total wool envy over here :)

  9. Definitely five lots of lovely! Such a shame that you have to make so many adjustments to the cardigan, but for good reasons, so try and hold on to those and it will be very beautiful when it is finished!!! Thank you for joining Five On Friday, I hope you are having a great weekend! xx

  10. I'm not sure I would have been able to rework the cardigan but I must say it will be worth it. Gorgeous pattern

    1. The patience is running thin with it I have to say lol

  11. I always love your posts, dear Fil! I hope it didn;t rain, I didn't know about the saint and the "myth", well, maybe not a myth! I loved all here - the book about Rostrevor, getting to "know" Listowel, poems written behind the pub counter, the pub itself... the Richard Harris' Oscar... so many amazing things I have learned now! I liked the funny names for bands :) The Ceilidh Minogue is really funny! And yes, let's think of the attacks in Nice and so many other places... and remember that quote " hate will only stop when people get to love their own children more". Sad, but true. Hope you have a great week, dear Fil!

  12. Your introduction to your five is what I am committed to as well...the lyrics "let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me" comes to my mind. It is fun to learn about St. Swithin's Day and the different events you have attended recently. I have only done very simple knitting so am very impressed with your beautiful pattern and your cleverness in adjusting it! I am cheering you on to a happy finish! xx

    1. That's a lovely lyric Gracie. Thank you for the cheer on for the knitting - to be truthful I've already started something else -- so it might take a while getting this thing finished.

  13. I'm glad I can crochet a little bit, knitting is way beyond me. I'm late visiting you, thanks for stopping by.


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