Last bluebells. High banking. Knockmealdowns.
12 May Friday
Two women were discussing a man. I did not know the women and I did not know the man they were speaking about. One of the women said, “He’s been single for a while now so he has. There is no reason for it, as he’s good enough to look at.”
11 May Thursday
I am fond of the place names made of three complete words squished together with no spaces in between the words. No doubt they are a form of translation from the Irish, but when I look them up I can never tell if the translation is literal or if it is something else altogether. There is one place with the name Twomilebridge and another called Two Mile Bridge. I do not know why one is crammed together into one word while the other is three separate words. Twopothouse. Fourmilewater. Fivemiletown. Sixmilebridge. Ninemilehouse.
We used to drive through Watergrasshill as we traveled home from Cork. After the motorway was built, we no longer drove through it. Watergrasshill is now just an exit. Watergrasshill is a village I have no reason to visit. It is not a special place. It is just a place. I love the name Watergrasshill. It feels more and more utopian with each visit I do not make. It has become a place to hope for, never a place to visit.
10 May Wednesday
The cows were in Joe’s field all night. I could hear them tearing grass and moaning softly from my bed. I did not hear the tractor coming this morning to lead them away. They were just gone when I woke up. I thought they might return after milking but they must have gone to graze another field. All day dozens of crows have been swarming over the ground. The very dry earth is completely churned up from where the cows moved about all day yesterday. The crows are taking advantage of the disturbed soil to feast on worms.
9 May Tuesday
The man in the waiting room pulled his chair out from the row of seats which were lined up against the wall. He sat himself right in the middle of the waiting room beside the elderly woman he had rolled into the room in a wheelchair. There was no room for her chair to go against a wall so he moved himself out to be next to her. He spoke in a loud and clear voice so that she could hear him. He spoke almost without taking a breath. She nodded sometimes but mostly she just listened or perhaps she did not listen. Her head was bent down well into her chest. It was impossible to know if she was paying attention. He never stopped talking. None of us could read whatever we had been reading because his central spot and his loud delivery took over the room. He told her about a group coupon project on the internet and about a three bedroom holiday house she could rent in Sligo for two nights for a song. He asked her about some family photographs and he told her she could get them framed. He said he had seen some nice wooden frames in Aldi’s. They were real wood not just some plastic that looked like wood and he said there was a good dark wood available or some nice light wood too and if she were to decide to frame the photographs he would go and get the frames she needed. He said he had gone there to buy a picnic basket but once in the store he decided that he did not need a picnic basket. He decided that all he really needed was two lunch boxes. He said A picnic is a different thing today. He said You no longer need to replicate the dinner table at home. He said, Indeed you can just buy a box of salad and call it a picnic.
8 May Monday
John the Post has been in hospital. We have been worried about him. We are glad to hear that he is back at home now but he is not yet ready to return to work. A new substitute postman came this morning. We know the three other postmen who have been substitutes but this was a new man. He brought a package to the door and he said that it was registered and that it must be signed for. He asked Simon if he was Simon. Simon said yes, so the postman said Okay. Good. I will sign your name for you. He signed Simon’s name for him with a signature that looked nothing like Simon’s signature while Simon stood there and watched him do it.