Friday, 25 January 2013

The Island Road

I came across this picture on the internet.
It's a picture of the Island Road, many years ago.
A picture of a road walked many times by a wee lad with short trews and cheap shoes.
A picture of a road in the distant past, of a road in a time when your favourite wee singing fella was just that. A very wee singing fella.
But this is a road I remember well  as you see it pictured here.
This is my Island Road.
This is the road to the start of my life.
(That's 'Maggies House' nearest to you, she had an orchard at the back and kept pigs. We stole too many of her apples!)

Today this road, the Island Road, has changed beyond belief to the road it was when  the wee Map was actually the wee Map!
And what a road.
It was a road of joy, the road that took me to my first school, the start of learning, the start of my joy of curiosity.
It was a road to a different world, a road to independence, yes, for even at the age of four I remember walking this road, with other children my own age, without parents, to school. Innocent times.
And later, to the school for older kids, just further along the road, past the 'Tinker Camp' as we called it then.
A community of travellers who had pitched camp in a field between 'Maggies Orchard' and the new school.
Some of the kids from the camp would come to school every now & then. I can still recall the smell of campfire to this day. I thought it was such an adventure to be living in gypsy caravans and makeshift tents! And these were the original gypsy wagons, not too unlike the covered wagons of the wild west. I was at the same time afraid of, and envious of these kids.
It was also a road of sadness.
When I got older and realised the stigma attached to all who lived there.
Being from the Island was not a good thing.
Putting an address from the Island on a job application meant you might as well put said job application on a paper boat, set fire to it and sail it on down the mighty Shannon.
I like to think things have changed by now.
But then, I like to think my hair will grow back and Madonna will adopt me!
(Maybe not the Madonna thing eh?)
It's been a long, long time since I've walked down the Island Road, though I do drive up & down it many times every week when I visit Ma & Sis.
Maybe this week I'll just park the van and walk down this road of many memories, see what happens, eh?


  1. That's a nice bit you wrote and a fantastic pic. How about posting a pic of the same road taken from the same angle as it looks today? Might be an interesting juxtaposition.

  2. lovely piece, bubba! i like UB's idea of doing a "now" pic. xoxoxo

  3. Reminds me of parts of Scotland.
    A lovely post Map.

  4. Yes, before and after photos are interesting.

    But our memories are usually more colorful and fun.