The National Ploughing Championships 2016 in Screggan, Tullamore, Co Offaly
Frilly Keane writes:
Ya see, it was all going grand ‘till last Sunday morning, when I was walking the doggie, and lapping up all the colours and buntings and flags along the route.
Now, where I live, there has always been a single Mayhoo flag, a proper one, with a wall mounted fitting en’all. It always came out for the Connaught Final (if), likewise for the AI. It’s the same in my house; the flags come out for the weekend of. Whatever one it is.
But this year we wondered where our Mayhoo neighbour was, then on Saturday the Mayhoo supporter walked past the house, so. That was that. He wasn’t dead or anything. Anyone in the Crumlin Village area will know of this lone Mayhoo flag flyer.
So anyway back to Sunday morning, with the dog; met some of the regulars in the park, lads getting the dogs out early before the match stuff. All dolled up themselves. All set. It went like this; The Hooch’s daddy btw:
“a few scoops in the club first … so wha d’ya think “x”
“Great day for football, no winds, soft and boggy, Mayhoo ‘ll like that”
“Ah yeah, bleedin’ muckers, ahh it’ll be bad t’watch…. D’dubs ‘ll will win by 15 points …handy…”
“have ye seen Mayhoo play this year” “nah”
“Well I tink it’ll be a lot tighter than handy now”
“D’ya ting…. Ah’nah… D’Dubs ‘ll cream ‘em, Mayo’ll be in a jock in de’ final 10 minutes”
… Come on you bhoys in Blue… Ye know the rest
Now, if it was Cork playing, I’d be in a jock meself with the funny tummy, and too nervous and jumpy for walking the dog, so I thought, fair play t’them and kinda wished t’was me heading off to Jones Road; sur’ there’s always next year.
Anyway, where am I going with all this? Well.
Ye; Dubs/ Big City types are very reluctant to look beyond the M50 other than to sneer. That’s no secret I suppose. But all this needs t’be said again. So here it goes.
When it comes to Football the only side Dubs mention or care to get to know are the Kerry crowd. When it comes to hurling, ye re well able t’look beyond the M50 for players, mentors and managers, funny that.
What happened by half three on Sunday shut ye up, kinda, but t’was more like a wtf happened daze. It didn’t last since ye broke out’ve it by Tuesday, and the opening day of the Ploughing Championships.
Ye couldn’t help yereselves. And a quick “ploughing” search here will show ye what I mean, and it goes back, as far as 2010 and the very start of the gaff. But what ye didn’t do was wonder ‘how the fuck do they do it?’
I’m told that this year Anna May filled 1580 exhibition stands indoor and outdoor. Anyone care to guess what Anna May charges for a sqm of field?
Whatever it was this year I betcha t’would make your gob smack, and I betcha’ tis healthier, far healthier, than what Dublin Event Planners and their Skinny Pants get for the RDS.
But of course there’s going to be difference, loike it’s Dublin 4, with the Starbucks and Noodles and Penthouse Suites, and Transport and Roads with Tarmac. NotZoned for Agri use fields in rural Ireland.
So 283,000 wellie wearers stumped up and stumped through the muck in Screggan this year, that’s 283,000 that travelled by car, van, trailer and shuttle buses to the fields of midland Ireland.
Not Ballsbridge or Spencer Dock. Rural Ireland. With its funny accents, grubby clothes, pot holes, flooding, silly hats, muckie boots, and their Hang Sangwichs.
So here I’m thinking of the other Paddy, the one who likes to tell us about his life on the farm whenever he gets a chance, the one who throws a tantrum about Wiffy and Hotels and Transport. Yet; all he was prepared to learn from Anna May and the NPA was that Hay bales make good seating.
You’d be hard pressed to find Wiffy in Screggan lemme tell ye; but it didn’t stop the biggest Ag gig in Europe.
“Ireland doesn’t stop at d’Rid Cow Roudybout” those Healy Raes provide comedy fodder for this gaff like no other pair of TDs.
So, ya know, keep laughing.
Cause its stopping ye looking too close.
Frilly keane’s column appears here every Friday morning. Follow Frilly on Twitter: @frillykeane