My late mother was born in Ballyvaheen and I lived there for a short while. We moved to a house in Currymount for a while. I remember when we moved to Lynch’s house in Cregane. My mother got that house for being a milk woman for Michael Lynch. That was the arrangement then. My mother and father remained there until they died.
My sister Nora used to give haircuts to the people all around the area. She began on a man that was going around. The name of this man was Ned Moloney. He was a very scruffy type of man. He was very honest and children were very fond of him. He came in one day and Nora said to him: ‘Will I tidy you up?’ Well, he said ‘That’s a job for you and not for me’. She got handy with the scissors from there on.
When Nora was about ten years old she was very friendly with Peggie O’Brien of Bal-lygrace who later became a nun. Peggie at that time was learning music. Old Mrs
O’ Brien said one day to my mother that Nora should be given a violin to learn music. It was difficult to get the price of the violin back in those days. Nora learned the music from looking and listening to Peggy. She played with Pakie Murphy and Johnny Pat Murphy. She played at concerts and all the local Halls.
She was a great fundraiser for parish affairs. She sold tickets all over the place in years gone by. On the roadside around Sheehan’s Forge in years gone by, there would always be ‘travellers’ around. During Cahiramee in Farrissey’s kitchen they would often come in and sit around the floor. They would be talking and telling the yarns of the road. We loved listening to them and it was very interesting. In turn we would go up the road and go up to their wagons and spend time with them. We were very fond of our parents in those times and we looked after them in their homes. There were no such places as nursing homes. The old people died in their homes.