Well its the Sunday of the final Bank Holiday weekend of the Summer, the August Weekend as its known. Its usually a manic weekend of holidaymakers of all shapes, sorts and sizes making the most of the last big holiday of the season. We get them all down here, families, tourists, stag nights, hen nights, groups of lads, young couples, old couples and they come from all over. Time was you'd walk down Main Street on such a Sunday morning to see young lads climbing out of cars bent double after having spent the night asleep in the back. Cheap accommodation meant more money for alcohol. The hill at the top of town used to be covered in tents, their strong colours standing out against the green of the gorse. They were the ones who were a bit more organised I suppose. But not anymore and its not just a recession thing either. The Celtic Tiger years meant youngsters had money to spend on accommodation AND partying. Houses were rented by the week and abandoned on the Monday, the loss of the prepaid rental money wasn't a problem. The Irish, especially the young Irish, had more money than they knew what to do with. Now it has all changed. The numbers have certainly decreased and the demographics have too. I was out for dinner last night with a friend. We were the only two in the restaurant at 7.30. Not many more had come by the time we left at 9pm. In town this morning I saw a lot of foreign tourists and Irish families. Not many groups of lads. Certainly no more fellows straightening themselves as they crawled out of steamed up cars. No the boom years have certainly gone and with them the Irish youth. Gone to New York, London, Melbourne anywhere they can get work. Will they be back? The August Bank Holiday crowds in the future may serve as a barometer for Ireland's economy so lets wait and see.
We've been watching Mildred Pierce on Sky Atlantic. The first couple of episodes were excellent, its a five-part miniseries but it probably could have been done in three. Some bits are a bit forced like her relationship with her daughter. I might read the book as it was published in 1942 it comes from that time and may be more accurate. The acting is excellent as it should be from such a cast. The sets are beautiful and you really believe you're watching something shot in the 1930's. Maybe the final episode will paper over the thinness of the middle two, I'll have to see! Offical Mildred Pierce Website for more info.
At the moment I'm reading The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski. A first novel from this author and some debut it is too. I picked it up at the Dingle Bookshop and I'm really enjoying it. The story of a boy who was born without the ability to talk and the relationship he forms with the working dogs his family breed. At 562 pages its quite the read but well worth the effort.