DANCE AT YOUR WEDDING

My niece got married the other day. It was a relatively small wedding by todays standards with about 120 guests in attendance. The church ceremony went well – except for that one occasion when the priest got the grooms name wrong…oops!- and even the weather turned back into a glorious […]


POCKET EUROPE

I reckon everyone has a little personal ritual when it comes to emptying their pockets, especilly if you’re doing it just before you go to bed. I usually put my battered wallet on the bedside locker first and then my mobile phone and then scoop any change from my pocket […]


THE WRITER’S BLOCK

Way back in 2001 my Ban Chéile gave me a present of a little book by Joan Rekulak called The Writer’s Block. The blurb on the cover announced ” 786 Ideas to Jump-start Your Imagination”. Now I wasn’t sure if she was dropping a hint or lending me a helping […]


GETTING AROUND TO PROCRASTINATION

Now there’s procrastination and then there’s my brand of procrastination. Here’s what I mean: my Dad died almost two years ago and shortly after the funeral my two siblings and I spent a brief and miserable evening sorting out his ‘things’. He was monklike in his approach to possessions and […]


MOVIE REVIEW: THE HOST

DIRECTOR: Andrew Niccol STARRING: Saoirse Ronan, Max Irons, Jake Abel BLURB: When an unseen enemy threatens mankind by taking over their bodies and erasing their memories, Melanie will risk everything to protect the people she cares most about, proving that love can conquer all in a dangerous new world. RATING: […]


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THROWING DOWN THE GAUNTLET

Little did I know when I suggested a Blogging Challenge from September to December that returning to work after the summer break would mean my brain would work to rule and refuse to let a single thought solidify enough to write a meme never mind a blog post. My “Things […]


ESCAPE TO THE COUNTRY

We are very lucky to be working in education and therefore able to take quite a few weeks off during the summer months. All of our annual leave is greedily stored up and we divide our holiday (vacation) time between a trip abroad for a few weeks and a few […]


JUST A THOUGHT

I witnessed something today that was both humbling and thought provoking. Sitting in Burger King with The Ban Cheile I noticed two men arrive into the restaurant and recognised one of them from earlier in the day, when I saw him panhandling in a doorway on Patrick’s Street. Both were […]


Copyright (C) www.mytinymind.com 2013

ALBUM UPDATES

Cork 2013 and People Watching Albums have been updated.


SEEKER: COMMUNITY R.I.P.

I’m a self-confessed life-long lone wolf; always have been and always will be. Being one of those people who are quite comfortable in their own company has many advantages – not least of which is the lack of a need for an ever increasing cadre of ‘friends’ and therefore not feeling […]


ABSENCE MAKES THE HEART GROW FONDER…..REALLY?

  The idiom goes “absence makes the heart grow fonder” and according to my late mother the next line is” but presence makes the love grow stronger”. Another nugget of received wisdom that appears to contradict itself, but does it? To begin with is fondness and love on equal footing? […]


A LITTLE BIT OF HEAVEN

Sure, a little bit o’ Heaven fell from out the sky one day And nestled on the ocean in a spot so far away And when the angels found it sure it looked so sweet and fair They said suppose we leave it for it looks so peaceful there! So […]

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SEEKER: RELIGION vs. PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY

“In a world beset by fundamentalists of both believing and secular varieties, it must be possible to balance a rejection of religious faith with a selective reverence for religious rituals and concepts.” Alain de Botton All of my adult life I have been what I would call a “Seeker”. By that […]

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DOODLES

I’m a Doodler. That’s it I’ve admitted it. It’s out there. I can’t say I like to draw because it’s not drawing – they aren’t good enough to be called drawings – and they’re rarely finished, but they do qualify as doodles. I’ll post them in a Doodles Album in […]


LE CHATEAU…DE JA VU?

Having just recently returned from France I had a stop-in-your-tracks-and-do-a-double-take moment last Saturday when strolling through Cork city. I looked up and spotted a bar called Le Chateau. My tiny mind took a minute or two to register the coincidence and make the dislocation disappear. Le Chateau had a plaque […]


MOVIE REVIEW: THE HOBBIT

DIRECTOR: Peter Jackson STARRING: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage BLURB: A reluctant hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, sets out to the Lonely Mountain with a spirited group of dwarves to reclaim their mountain home – and the gold within it – from the dragon Smaug. RATING:  7 out of 10   As […]


BOOK REVIEW: ALIF THE UNSEEN

TITLE:  Alif the Unseen AUTHOR: G. Willow Wilson BLURB: In an unnamed Middle Eastern security state, a young Arab-Indian hacker shields his clients—dissidents, outlaws, Islamists, and other watched groups—from surveillance and tries to stay out of trouble. He goes by Alif—the first letter of the Arabic alphabet, and a convenient handle to […]


THIS IS THE WEEK THAT WAS…

Ever think “darn it but my life is boring”! Or words to that effect. Well here’s the précis version of my week and I present it as my evidence that mine is of mild interest but only to me and possibly chronic insomniacs. Sunday We arrived home to Ireland from […]


LISTENING TO THUNDER

On Thursday evening I sat in a French garden listening to huge peals of thunder rolling across the fields and vineyards and watching the rain clouds slowly head on collision courses through the heavens and I thought of two people and two lessons they taught me. The first was my […]


ALBUM UPDATES

       The FRANCE 2013 and PEOPLE-WATCHING albums have been updated.


FRANCE 2013: BEDENAC

At the end of news broadcasts there’s usually a lighter item preceded with the words “and finally..” and I suppose this is it for our holiday in France 2013 (although we still have the 8 hour drive to Roscoff tomorrow and the sailing). We rented a gite in Bedénac in […]


FRANCE 2013: ARCACHON

In my mind there are Beach People and for the record I’m not one of them. Beach People thrive on finding a spot amongst hordes of other sun, sea and sand worshippers and laying out between swims like seals basking in the sunshine. They have mastered the knack of dressing […]


FISH & CHIPS – FRENCH STYLE

Fish and chips are, well, fish and chips, but if you’re in France and cooking an evening meal why not put a spin on the traditional and try them with La Difference. We used Ray for the fish, bought frozen and quite inexpensive in the local Auchan supermarket. The chips […]


BASTILLE DAY 2013 (BORDEAUX, FRANCE)

Just in case you weren’t already aware Bastille Day is the French national holiday when the storming of the Bastille in Paris in 1789, which resulted in the French Revolution and the birth of the Republic, is celebrated across France and in French communities across the world. For The Ban […]


BOOK REVIEW: HOUSE ON AN IRISH HILLSIDE

TITLE:  The House on an Irish Hillside AUTHOR: Felicity Hayes McCoy BLURB: ‘From the moment I crossed the mountain I fell in love. With the place, which was more beautiful than any place I’d ever seen. With the people I met there. And with a way of looking at life that was […]


THE BLARNEY STONE – BORDEAUX!

Something we don’t do on holiday is frequent Irish Pubs, mostly because we can do that at home and frankly the “Irish Pubs” abroad are often dark and scruffy places that don’t reflect actual pubs in Ireland (not since the early 20th century anyway). However, we were on a short […]


THE LAURALYNN HOSPICE FOR CHILDREN

LauraLynn Ireland’s First Children’s Hospice opened in September 2011 and that was a significant milestone in the life of not only Jane McKenna the founder of the LauraLynn Foundation, a brave woman I had the great pleasure to work with for a short time, but in the lives of many […]


FRANCE 2013: LA ROCHELLE

I have to admit I have a soft spot for La Rochelle despite its typical touristy feel and constant throng of people. We have stopped off in La Rochelle on almost everyone of our 5 trips to France, sometimes just for a few hours and on one occasion staying for […]


FRANCE 2013: ROCHEFORT

I have to admit Rochefort on the west coast of France had little to show for the two hour drive from our rented gite in Bedenac just north of Bordeaux. The main attraction is an exhibition based around what appears to be a very slow restoration of an old fashioned […]


SPEED OF THE SOUND OF LONELINESS

Let me tell you this: if you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you, it’s not because they enjoy solitude. It’s because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people continue to disappoint them.” ― Jodi Picoult, My Sister’s Keeper


ALBUM UPDATES

     The FRANCE 2013 and PEOPLE-WATCHING albums have been updated.     


BOOK REVIEW: WRATH OF ANGELS

TITLE:  The Wrath of Angels AUTHOR: John Connolly BLURB: In the depths of the Maine woods, the wreckage of an aeroplane is discovered. There are no bodies. No such plane has ever been reported missing, but men both good and evil have been seeking it for a long, long time. Hidden in […]


FRANCE 2013: BLAYE MARKET DAY

  Wednesday and Saturday are the big market days in France – although there are various types of market held on other days during the summer months but they’re specific to certain towns and villages. We decided it was time to have that market experience once again and so The Ban […]


BOOK REVIEW: HEAVEN’S SHADOW

TITLE:  Heaven’s Shadow AUTHOR: David S. Goyer & Michael Cassult BLURB: In 2016 a pair of amateur astronomers spot an unidentified object – an object one hundred kilometres across and heading towards Earth. As it approaches, NASA and the Russian-Indian-Brazilian Coalition race to land vehicles on the unexplored surface. With power, money […]


FRANCE 2013 – COGNAC BLUES

My Ban-Cheile* and I took a trip into Cognac to catch some of the ambiance of the Blues Festival. The festival runs from July 2nd -July 7th and attracts people from all over the world and not just France. The one hour drive north from Bédenac took us through undulating […]


BOOK REVIEW: THE ANGEL’S GAME

TITLE:  The Angel’s Game AUTHOR: Carlos Ruiz Zafón BLURB: In 2016 a pair of amateur astronomers spot an unidentified object – an object one hundred kilometres across and heading towards Earth. As it approaches, NASA and the Russian-Indian-Brazilian Coalition race to land vehicles on the unexplored surface. With power, money and politics […]


FRANCE 2013 – ANGOULEME

Captain Haddock: I thought you were an optimist. Tintin: You were wrong, weren’t you? I’m a realist. Captain Haddock: Ah, it’s just another name for a quitter. Tintin: You can call me what you like. Don’t you get it? We failed. Captain Haddock: Failed. There are plenty of others willing […]


9 THINGS I LIKE ABOUT FERRIES

 I must admit I was never particularly enamoured with flying and only ever saw it as a means to an end, so making a list of things I like about ferry crossings could easily be renamed “why I prefer a boat to a plane”. After an almost 10 year hiatus […]


COUNTRY ROADS

My old pal Denver is 12 years of age (84 in dog years) and despite the down at heel  look on his face – it’ll stop soon if you ignore it – he’s actually over the moon about going on his road trip today.   Unlike other migrating species he heads […]


ON STREET EATING

I was in Cork last weekend and I took a trip into the city to Waterstones to buy some books for my upcoming holiday in France. Waterstones, like Hodges & Figgis in Dublin, is one of the last bastions of serious bookshops in Ireland. The selection was good enough for […]


RETAIL THERAPY

A public holiday in Ireland can leave a lot to be desired (at least during the day). When my daughter suggested some retail therapy in one of our biggest and best shopping centres I didn’t need much persuasion. Much to my chagrin I discovered many of the shops weren’t open […]


COFFEE IS MY FRIEND

Isn’t it funny how over time your needs, wants and preferences change? I used to think it strange when people would say they couldn’t get their day started until they had a cup of coffee or tea (and back in the day – a cigarette). Breakfast was always, and continues […]


AND THEN THERE WAS……….BLOG?

Okay not the snappiest title anyone has ever given to an opening blog, but I was trying to give the impression that this was an event of biblical proportions.  I realise all things are subjective and maybe I’m a little biased, but I have a feeling this journey we’re about […]


MOVIE REVIEW: RED LIGHTS

DIRECTOR: Rodrigo Cortés STARRING: Sigourney Weaver, Robert De Niro, Cillian Murphy BLURB: Psychologist Margaret Matheson and her assistant study paranormal activity, which leads them to investigate a world-renowned psychic who has resurfaced years after his toughest critic mysteriously passed away. RATING:  6 out of 10 Pro: Cillian Murphy’s performance was at […]


MOVIE REVIEW: THE DARKEST HOUR

DIRECTOR: Chris Gorak STARRING: Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghella BLURB: In Moscow, five young people lead the charge against an alien race who have attacked Earth via our power supply. RATING:  5 out of 10 I lost my Apple TV movie rental virginity on this one and after the usual […]


MOVIE REVIEW: UNDERWORLD-AWAKENING

TITLE:  Underworld- Awakening DIRECTOR: Len Wiseman STARRING: Kate Beckinsale, Scott Speedman, Shane Brolly BLURB: Selene, a beautiful vampire warrior, entrenched in a war between the vampire and werewolf races. Although she is aligned with the vampires, she falls in love with Michael, a human who is sought by werewolves for unknown […]


MOVIE REVIEW: STOLEN LIVES

TITLE:  Stolen DIRECTOR: Anders Anderson STARRING: Jon Hamm, Josh Lucas, Rhona Mitra BLURB: A detective deals with the loss of his own son while trying to uncover the identity of a boy whose mummified remains are found in a box buried for fifty years. RATING:  4 out of 10   Stolen Lives […]


MOVIE REVIEW: THE HUNGER GAMES

TITLE:  The Hunger Games DIRECTOR: Gary Ross STARRING: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth BLURB: Katniss Everdeen voluntarily takes her younger sister’s place in the Hunger Games, a televised competition in which two teenagers from each of the twelve Districts of Panem are chosen at random to fight to the death. […]


MOVIE REVIEW: AVATAR

TITLE:  Hidden DIRECTOR: James Cameron STARRING: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver BLURB: A paraplegic marine dispatched to the moon Pandora on a unique mission becomes torn between following his orders and protecting the world he feels is his home. RATING:  7 out of 10   Well have you been to see  […]