ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Ah To Be In Ireland! (a short story) Part Four

Updated on December 1, 2016
juneaukid profile image

Richard F. Fleck is author of two dozen books, his latest being Desert Rims to Mountains High and Thoreau & Muir Among the Native Americans.


Ah To Be In Ireland! Part Four

Seamus had some good luck in getting an Aer Lingus agent on the phone.

"Hello, could I spaik wid Aer Lingus plaise."

Cathleen walked briskly up to her husband with a shocked expression.

"You're callin' to go back to Ireland??"

"Hello, Miss. This here is Seamus O'Neill--by chance do you have any vacancies for Shannon this week?"

"Ya mean, you'd leave your job and security in New York," Cathleen asked incredulously.

"Yes, we're Irish citizens. Yes, one way, what time..."

"Are you crazy, Seamus? The kids, think of the kids!"

Yes, flight 493 at half six Tuesday evenin.' Aye..."

"If we leave, Seamie, you'll lose yer job!"

" there an hour ahead...aye..."

"Ya fool ya--okay, listen, listen Seamie. Call up your boss and tell him there's been death in the family or something..."

"Right y'are. See you Tuesday..Yes, I'm payin in cash.....Now, me good womahn. What's yer problem?"

"Tell yer boss yer only leavin' temporary. We'll all go wid you just to see ya get this fool Irish notion out of yer head. The kids is out of school fer the summer--so maybe it would be a good idea fer us all ta go back ta see how good New York looks from afar across the foam."

Seamus chuckled to himself and called his boss right away to tell him he had to return to Ireland because of death in the family. Cathleen was too upset to go to bed. She just stared at her half-mad husband skipping around and taking down wall pictures and ornaments and searching for the suitcases. He coiled up the wires of the TV and scribbled a note that he taped to the tube reading, "For President Eisenhower--a gift from an immigrant."

"Seamie, fer heaven's sake, think of what yer doin.' Think of the shock to the children. They'll have no television over there, ya know."

"Thank God fer that! Ah, I can see Ireland now and taste them spuds."

"Yes, I can see us without no salary--it won't be long before you come back to old New York, sure it won't."

"Cathleen, yer a sport, a grand sport. We'll all love it back over there in them peaceful glens. We'll rent a nice wee farm. Wait and see."

Settling In Ireland

By early June the O'Neills were all settled in Country Antrim, though it took some coaxing to get Patty and Maeve to the airport back in New York. Their rented farm lay beneath bright green and rolling hills lined with darker hedgerows. A chilly mist hugged the upper bray where a medieval round tower rose up against the gray sky. Their farmhouse itself was a wee thatched cottage with a cowshed or "byer" attached and a pig house several yards away. Their kitchen radio (or "wireless") hummed with Irish jigs and reels all day long, while Seamus hopped and skipped about the fields planting spuds and feeling himself again after three long years in New York. Patty and Maeve had gone into town for the day in search of a televsion at some hotel or public place. But alas they had to settle for what the people had chosen to see--a horse jumping show.

Cathleen busily prepared stew in her little garret of a kitchen where a Chase Manhattan Bank calendar hung beneath the cross of Saint Bridid. Seamus ambled up to the door of his cottage whistling "The Rising of the Moon." Somehow he looked ten years younger.

"How many rows of bh'tatoes ya got planted today, Seamie?"

"I haven't counted, but me gorie, it musta been a few."

"Ya better damn well count--ya want us to die young? We're not in New York no more--you ain't earnin' no sixty dollars a week. Yer barely earnin' enough fer barley stew, mahn!"

"We're alive, aren't we? Have ya ever been happier? That's the point."

"Look at yer dirty hands--clean them will ya? And why haven't ya shaved in three days?"

"Awh, yer a terror, that's what y'arre. Yer a terror."

"It's no wonder I'm a terror. This mornin' I'm after seein' the ten year old graves of me parents in the cemetary. This land ain't filled wid nothin' but sorrow and memories, Seamie."

"Did ya visit me mother's and fahther's old grave whoile you was there?"

Old-time Friend Comes

"Aye, why? Haven't ya gone yerself?...Oh, God, here comes Dermid O'Reilly, and he's half drunk outa his mind. How did he find our new place so quickly?"

A white haired wee wisp of a man staggered over the fields to the O'Neill farmhouse singing some melancholic air.

"Dermid," Seamus shouted. "It's a great auld mahn y'arre! How be ye on this shockin' foine day?"

"Oh, yer drunk, yer drunk, ya silly auld fool...Say, Seamus, me boy, ya know what I'm after doin'?"

"Gettin' drunk, indeed."

"Awh, that's not the half of it. I bought me a foine good three pound roast for dinner today, and I thought I'd sleep off me whisky ahfter I put the roast in me oven. We'll I'm after wakin' up with the smell of smoke all through me house, and I checked me oven to see nothin' but a wee black smokin' ball!"

"A pitty, Dermid, sure 'tis a pitty. So have a cup a tay and a spread wid us."

"Be delighted--be pefectly delighted me good mahn."

Dermid entered their kitchen to sit by the turf fire of an open-hearth fireplace.

A book of interest for readers is Ronald H. Bayor's The New York Irish, 1997.


© 2011 Richard Francis Fleck


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • juneaukid profile imageAUTHOR

      Richard Francis Fleck 

      7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      At least temporarily. Thanks Dolores.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      I'm certainly enjoying this read and looking forward to reading the rest. How many of us dream of the simple life, out in the country, surrounded by nature. But it's a tough row to hoe. Still, sounds better than an apartment in the city.

    • juneaukid profile imageAUTHOR

      Richard Francis Fleck 

      7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      The Irish language and its impact on the English language is indeed lyrical.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      7 years ago from London, UK

      Oh, I loved reading every line of it, especially the Irish language. I love it.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)