Thursday, March 1, 2012

August 28

Sunday, August 28, 2011
After another late night we had a late-rising morning.  We headed to Balinasloe to meet up with the O’Connor family. Patricia and John are the parents, Pat’s mom is Kathleen (great grandma Mary Niehouse’s sister who came to the US also).  Grandma Bowen and Pat spent a lot of time together while they were young.  Pat came to Denver each summer because her mom was a widow and had to work in the factory.  Pat was telling grandma that Mary (grandma’s mom) had met her husband (George, who was a doctor) while she was in nurses training. That was something that grandma didn’t know about! Pat was also telling grandma about when she visited and her dad would go on house calls. Grandma would go in to see the patients and Pat would stay in the car because she was sure the people didn’t want to see her!  Grandma would bring her bags of cookies from the patients. Pat and John’s children were there Sheila (and her husband Charlie), Sean (and his wife Mindy) and Sharon (with her husband Joe and daughter Daley).  It was nice to be able to meet up with them. The all live in Illinois (although Charlie and Sheila are getting ready to move to Dallas, TX) so they are actually pretty close to where I live.  Pat and John live in Gallina, which is just across the river from Debuque, IA. Back to Banagher and to pick up Dee and Bonnie and off to Ballymana for the family BBQ.  Once again Padraic and Honor are hosting for all of us!  Gerry and Aoife’s (his girlfiend) sister’s fiancé were doing the grilling. We had another nice time visiting with everybody….this time it was a little less noisy so we could actually hear everybody!!! A family friend brought out an accordion and started to play, Orla sang a few Irish songs and then a few people danced as well.  Time for the mass at the old Clontuskert abbey.  It was the St. Agustine’s feast day so each year on that day they hold mass at the old abbey ruins. It was a very neat place and the weather was great, too! It was a little windy, but the sun was actually shining all afternoon! At the abbey there are lots of the old Keating relatives buried. I took pictures of many of the headstones. Then we grabbed a quick bite to eat with the O’Connors and off to Craughwell to listen to some music and dancing at Cheeters. Rae, Sean’s cousin, even made me dance!  Luckily, he was a good leader and taught me how to waltz, the “rock and roll” and attempted the quick step. I think the waltz was the only one I actually got, but it was a lot of fun!!!

At the family BBQ:
Padriac, Honor, Rusty and her family
Orla singing
John and Pat and their family
Jon and Pat inside the old Colohan home
Inside the old house
The Abbey
Uncle Jack (James Keating)
Sean's father (Peter Keating
 Views from around the Abbey

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