Submitted by Anthony Waller
If you want to be philosophical everything is in a constant state of flux, changing from the familiar to the not so familiar. We are all affected by changes whether they are good or bad, funny or sad. Some of us just smile, get on with it and cope whilst others grimace a little and vent the odd emotion or two.
I met a lady in a park once who didn’t like change. She gave me, in no uncertain terms, her views on economic changes in Ireland! I’ll share them with you.
It was late one afternoon and we were in Dublin on a short break. It was our first time in that fair city and the weather was warm and sunny for the time of year. We had enjoyed a nice lunch and it was time to pursue a bit of retail therapy. Now being a typical bloke I said I was more than happy to sit in the local park, a busy thoroughfare just off Grafton Street, read a newspaper and watch the world go by. I eventually found a bench to share with a student and a couple eating their lunch adjacent to a raised water feature. A fountain with water shooting out of a statue’s mouth into a raised pool.
I settled down with the sound of the splashing waters tinkling in the background. After a while the tinkling waters became louder and a glance in that direction confirmed it. The waters were rising, flowing over the low wall and across the path. A park keeper with a long handled rake which he swished over the surface of the water was making the flood worse. He was scratching his head.
Just then a shadow fell across me. I glanced up at a tall, well-dressed lady wearing a long raincoat. A complete stranger. She smiled so I smiled back, as you do. Then she put her hands on her hips and in a very rich Irish accent she articulately let rip.
“Would you just look at the feckin’ state of that,” nodding towards the fountain and the park keeper. And the feckin’ eejit who calls himself a park-keeper. Now what’s that all about. I feckin’ ask you. Jesus, what is it about men and water that makes them go so gaga. They spend their time either playing with it or pouring it down their feckin’ throats and rolling around steaming drunk. The eejits, the lot of them. And does n’t it just sum up the sad state of this country of ours. It’s always changing. They wont leave things alone. I ask you. If I had me feckin’ way I’d be on the next plane out o’ here and off to somewhere else. But I’m not. I can’t afford to. And that’s another thing …….”
She continued in this vein, hardly stopping to draw breath for a good five minutes or more. Wagging her finger and berating change. Suddenly she stopped and drew a breath.
“Well as nice as it’s been talking to you, I can’t stand here all afternoon discussing the changing face of Ireland.”
And with that she smiled, turned on her heels and stomped off across the park. I sat there watching her go, speechless. In all that time I had not managed to utter a single word.
Some things never change!