Glandore at night

18 07 2012

Quick snap I took at Glandore last time I was driving back from the pub. Sober I might add, I was playing taxi. 😉





Hiding

17 07 2012

This little chap was hiding in the bushes at Future Forest in Keakil, County Cork





Aftermath

1 07 2012

Well things have started to settle down a bit after the surprise events of last Thursday.

The flood waters have subsided, the cleanup has begun and in a lot of ways Clonakilty is back to normal.  A lot of shops have bounced back surprising quickly, there are more than a few premises with stacks of debris outside showing the red and green Clon flag and displaying signs saying flooded but still open.

There are however more than a few scars showing. The number of houses with piles of ruined furniture and personal belongings  sat outside on the side of the road is staggering. What is really saddening though is when you realise just how many of these families aren’t insured or have insurance which won’t cover them.

More than 125 cars have been destroyed and will have to be written off, in the majority of cases the payout received will fall far short of the cost of finding a safe, reliable, roadworthy replacement.
To give you an example, in the case of my mother she has been told she will be lucky to get €700 after the €250 excess has been taken into account.

Now whilst I am sure there are some bargains out there for a €700 car most vehicles in such a price bracket will be an absolute turd on wheels.

Moving away from Clonakilty itself and the more obvious costs of the flooding a lot of rural roads have been absolutely destroyed. We aren’t just talking damaged we are talking decimated.

These pictures are of the back road from Rossmore to the Clonakilty technology park which I use for work each day, it looks less like flood damage and more like the after effect of carpet bombing- apologies for the quality of the pics it was lashing down with rain so I took them from the car.

Fun hey? Let’s seem them fix this with a bucket of tar and a shovel!

 





Clonakilty floods – update

28 06 2012

Just popped down into Clonakilty town to check on the house now that the water has finally subsided.

Well it is officially a mess. Seems that the flood water came  about 1.25 metres up the wall and went in the front door and out the back.

Early to try and work it all out but on the face of it we have lost a laptop, xbox 360 elite, LCD TV, DVD player,  2 x leather couches, 1 leather lazy boy, about 4 packing cases of boxes, a hoover(random I know) Fridge Freezer, tumble dryer,electic oven, dishwasher and washing machine from the house.

From the garage we have seen the last of two beds plus mattresses, another fridge freezer, some assorted soft furnishings and all our Christmas decorations.

Oh and as if that isn’t bad enough, Mum’s car is completely trashed. The water went all the way to the headrests s all of the interior is quite frankly fucked. There is thick, smelly silt everywhere, especially in the engine bay.
I popped the air intake open and the inlet manifold is just clogged with the stuff…good times.

Here is another piccy of the town this morning as taken from by the Texaco

 





Clonakilty Flooding 2012

28 06 2012

I woke up at 5 this morning to a text from my Mum, she was sat in her bedroom with our dog looking out the window and crying.

The reason for her early morning tears, our house had flooded.

View from our house this am

She woke up to the dog making an odd sound and found it swimming around in the hallway with dirty water halfway up the stairs, what a way to start a Thursday.

It isn’t just the house that is ruined, her car which was parked outside is also a write off.

Still at least she can take consolation in the fact that she isn’t alone. Over 70mm of rain fell on parts of Cork last night and there is no access in or out of Clonakilty or Douglas due to over 4ft of flooding. According to an ESB spokesman there are 13,000 homes without electricity at the moment.





Euro 2012 – Top players so far

15 06 2012

Ok, now before anyone points out the obvious yes we are only partway through the group phase but this is my blog and I make the rules!

With the second round of matches more or less out of the way now I have decided to have a quick look at some of the standout individual performances in the tournament so far.

 Mario Gomez

In my view Bayern striker Mario Gomez went  into the tournament with a little bit of a point to prove after a disappointing night in the Champions League final against Chelsea.

Well, with 3 goals so far he has more than delivered. Whilst he was the scorer of the only goal against Portugal was important it is two strikes against Holland which really impressed.
In particular his first where he timed his run to perfection and scored a goal that Dennis Bergkamp would have been proud of.

I would be surprised if an in form Gomez couldn’t fire German on to at least a Semi Final place.

Adrei Arshavin

  If I had to pick three words to sum up Arshavin’s time at Arsenal they would be frustrating, lazy and mercurial.

After the initial promise Arshavin has pretty much failed to deliver. Yes people can point to his assist rate but it is more his work rate or lack of that bugged me. He just doesn’t seem to care.

Well if for Arsenal Arshavin has been found wanting it has been a completely different story for the Russian national side.
This is the Arshavin that Arsenal fans have been crying out to see, making runs, picking out passes and just generally pulling the strings in the way we know he can.

Russia have been one of the standout teams for me and I credit Arshavin with being a big part of that success.

Mario Mandzukic

If it hadn’t been for injury to first choice striker Ivica Olic then Wolfsburg striker Mandzukic would likely have found himself consigned to the bench.

Well couldn’t that have proved to be a mistake? With 2 well taken goals against Ireland and the all important equaliser against Italy last night. Mandzukic is proving to be a more than capable replacement.

Here is hoping Croatia can manage to make it out of the group stage so we can see more of this promising forward.

Alan Dzagoev

With 3 goals to his name so far 21 year old Dzagoev is really starting to live up to Russia’s expectation.

The CSKA Moscow striker has been a revelation so far and if not quite the dark horse that some people are making him out to be he has certainly raised more than a few eyebrows as Russia have looked more than good value for a tilt at the title.

Niklas Bendtner

 If you have ever had the pleasure of listening Niklas Bendtner then you will be well aware that he is a supremely confident young man,some might even say arrogant.

Well Sunderland’s top scorer last year, a mighty 8 goals, has started to live up to a little bit of his own hype after netting two well taken goals against Portugal.

Of course the controversial 24 had to go his own way by flaunting tournament rules against and flashing his Paddy Power sponsored boxer shorts.

 

Andriy Shevchenko

At 35 there are some people who thought that this might prove to be a tournament too far for Shevchenko.

Well two goals against Sweden from the talismanic striker will have gone someway to proving them wrong.

Shevchenko has always been a player for the biggest of stages and an excellent start to the tournament so far coupled with his resurgence for Dynamo Kyiv is just going to show why he is still top dog for the Ukraine.

Yohan Cabaye

Cabaye was the best midfielder on show in the France v England match by some distance, especially when compared with Scott Parker….

The Newcastle player dictated the tempo of the entire game and showed levels of class that may yet earn him a move away from St. James Park.

He controlled and patrolled the middle of the park with ease and it was on this foundation that France dominated the entire game.

 

 

 

 

 

 Bastian Schweinsteiger

Gomez might be getting the plaudits for scoring 3 very good goals but if he is pulling the trigger than it is Bayern Munich midfielder Schweinsteiger who is providing the ammo.

In fact I would go so far as to say that Germany’s chance of winning the tournament revolves heavily around Schweinsteiger’s ability to set the tempo of the game more or less single handed.

Approaching his prime at 27, Schweinsteiger’s influence was evident again on Wednesday when he set up both goals as Germany beat the Dutch 2-1 with a lesson in fast, powerful and clinically effective football.

“Schweinsteiger is getting better and better, he’s developing more of a presence and when it gets tough he can keep the ball,” coach Joachim Loew said after Germany moved to the brink of the quarter-finals. “He’s physically strong and wins the one-on-ones.”





Spicy shrimp pasta salad

14 06 2012

 In honour of last weekends double birthday and our recent engagement we decided to throw a bit of a party last Saturday.

Now even though the weather seems to have decided otherwise it is actually Summer here in Ireland and as such that means it is time for me to break out the BBQ.

If there is one thing that every good BBQ needs to really tip it over the edge it is pasta salad…

Yeah, yeah I know what you are thinking how old school and boring can you get but I love pasta salads.

As for being boring my spicy shrimp pasta salad is anything but!

 

Ingredients:

500g fusilli or farfalle pasta

200g shrimp (shells and heads removed)

2 red bell peppers

1 piri piri chilli (you can use a jalapeno if you like)

1 large dill pickle

Good quality full fat mayonnaise (I make my own but you don’t have to)

Heinz tomato ketchup

Juice of 1 lime

1 tbsp cognac/brandy

2tsp Smokey Paprika powder

1tsp Cayenne pepper

Salt and Pepper to taste

Method:

Cook the pasta, drain and set aside to cool

Cook your shrimp and leave to cool (if you are tight for time this is one of the only times I would advocate those bags of frozen shrimp)

Deseed and chop your bell peppers into 1/4 inch cubes

Finely chop the dill pickle

Combine together equal amounts of ketchup and mayonnaise with the cayenne pepper, paprika, lime juice, chopped chilli and brandy and mix until you have a light pink coloured sauce with a nice smooth consistency.

Add the pickle, bell pepper and shrimp to the pasta and mix together well, then pour over the sauce and make sure everything is well coated.

 





The Rocky Road to Poland….

13 06 2012

If you have been watching the European Championships as avidly as I have you will be well aware that Ireland are not only in a very tough group, Spain, Italy and Croatia, but that in their opener they had a shocker.

As such they will need to play out of their skins in order to even stand a chance of going through.

Luckily for the boys in green they have a lot of support and not just from within the Emerald Isles as the below video proves

The children singing are the Thai Tims and are all pupils at a school run by the Good Child Foundation in Thailand which offers equal oppurtunity education to all children.

The Good Child Foundation is a great cause that does a lot of good in rural Thailand, please support them if you can 🙂





The new house

9 05 2012

So in one of the crazier things  I have done recently I convinced herself to move house last week.

Now just to set the scene and lessen how weird I sound I should mention that moving had sort of been up for discussion for a while…..just not really in this fashion.

We had just been going through the motions really, you know how it is. A few minutes day dreaming on Daft.ie, a couple of visits to completely random houses. Nothing concrete.

Then boom! I saw my dream house.

I really, really didn’t think that C would be interested in it. Our tastes in property are normally wildly different, she likes trendy new houses and I like rambling country estates where you could set a remake of an Austin novel.

Still I decided to send her a link to it anyway just for a laugh. Next thing I know my mobile is ringing, “I’M IN LOVE! I have called the letting agents and we are going to look round it tonight at 5”

That was Tuesday 1st May…. somehow between then and Saturday we found ourselves handing over a stupidly large deposit and moving in, how is that for hasty!

So here in all it’s ridiculous Georgian glory is the house that has made two normally sane, rational adults go more than a little bit ga ga… Underhill House

Oh and yes, the nerd in me is stupidly pleased at the silly little reference to the Lord of the Rings in the house name 😀

 





Dog sex man charged with buggery

29 07 2011

 

The house where the act took place (right)

A Limerick man has  appeared before Limerick District Court charged with ordering his Alsatian dog to have sex with a 43-year-old mother of four, who died from an adverse allergic reaction to dog semen.

The Irish Sun reports that Sean McDonnell, 57, is charged with buggery contrary to Section 61 of the Offences against the Person Act of 1861 – and is believed to be the first person in Ireland to be charged under the legislation.

Should Mr. McDonnell be found guilty he could well face the maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The Irish Daily Star adds that McDonnell and the deceased woman had discussed the arrangement at some length on a bestiality chat room, and that Gardaí are satisfied that the intercourse was consensual.

Well that is a relief what would the World be coming to if dogs ran around raping people willy nilly?








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