Miriam’s Musings

Crush Covid – stay local, shop local!


Apart from my husband and our dogs, I personally haven’t had physical contact with another soul since March 17th…St. Patrick’s Day! I speak with my parents every day on the phone, I chat with my girls and granddaughter via video-chat apps, and I keep in touch with my siblings and with the office using other social media technology. In addition, I stay abreast of my new neighbours’ lives thanks to our spontaneous (socially distant) greetings as we pass each other on our daily walks. However, due to the accelerated lifting of lockdown restrictions currently being phased out across Ireland, I’m confident that even if we’re still experiencing a series of major lifestyle changes, fingers crossed, families will be able to hug each other before the month is out!

Mind you, in order to contain and control this horrible virus, every single one of us has a civic duty to make every concerted effort to do what we can to keep both ourselves and each other safe. To be specific, respect and obey the enforced social distancing and reduced capacity guidelines when we’re out and about visiting shops, parks, and other facilities, etc. While Roscommon’s on the road to recovery, we are still enmeshed in a very serious health crisis, one that stretches right across society.

For that reason, in order to contain and control this horrible virus, and curb its flow, can I ask you all to please support each other when and where you can; this includes showing solidarity with, and loyalty towards, local businesses. As you know, since last Monday, retail outlets across Roscommon lucky enough to have their own on-street entrances were able to open their doors again (many showcasing their summer sales)! However, shopping centres can’t re-open until next Monday.

With this in mind readers, in order to try and kick-start the economy again in Roscommon, can I please ask you to make sure to shop local and support that small business which remained open when you needed them most. That local family-run supermarket where they bent over backwards to keep shelves stocked, and pivoted this way and that in an effort to serve you without making any human contact. That local pharmacy that transitioned, often with great difficulty, in order to make sure you had your essential medical supplies. That takeaway/restaurant/coffee shop which diversified in order to offer you contactless goodies, delivered to your door. We’ve all been hit hard by these uncertain times; some of us have lost jobs, some of us have lost our businesses and our livelihoods; and tragically and heartbreakingly, some of us have lost beloved family members and friends. Let’s show each other solidarity by coming together and showing our commitment to our communities. I’m not asking you to stand on your doorsteps or balconies to take part in a spontaneous flash mob performance, (you can if you wish), I’m simply asking you to pop into your local hardware/supermarket/chemist/takeaway/farmers’ market etc., in an effort to keep our communities, our families and our businesses safe and sustainable. May all who lost their lives during Covid rest in peace.


Ooops! I think he did it again!


Olé, olé, olé! Anyone else burst into our (unofficial) national anthem when they heard Leo was ready to unlock the country? Mind you, I did stop mid-song when, squaring his shoulders and graduating to full martyr mode, our acting Taoiseach delivered his closing words of ‘hope’ which, strangely enough, didn’t dramatically shift my mindset or make me feel in any way reassured. Rather, I heard myself releasing one of my melodramatic sighs.

And why? Because, instead of creating, developing and delivering something original – something inspirational from his own head – our Leo once again used a reference borrowed from a popular book/movie…or both! This time, he purloined a line from a Lord of the Rings fantasy novel, saying ‘In the end, it’s only a passing thing this shadow, even darkness must pass. A new day will come, and when the sun shines, it’ll shine out the clearer’.

I mean folks, I was still getting over his use of the movie Terminator 2, Judgement Day line delivered by character Kyle Reese to Sarah Connor when he said, ‘There is no fate but what we make for ourselves’. And don’t get me started on his Churchill quote, (pitched in March), when he said ‘Never has so much been asked by so many of so few…’ Seriously, what’s next Leo…‘nobody puts baby in a corner’?

Ah sure look at it this way, if we could harness Leo’s ingenuity, his originality, that brilliant mind of his, (and I suppose his speechwriter’s), and turn it all into money, the country’s financial problems would be over for the rest of eternity…not!


Josepha’s hypocrisy


What happened to George Floyd in the US was horrendous. However, what happened to that poor child in Carrigaline, Cork last weekend was also horrendous. Both were victims of (alleged) racially motivated attacks.

Now while there’s nothing wrong with Minister for Culture and Heritage Josepha Madigan wanting to show “our abhorrence and rejection of (racism),” by holding a ‘minute’s silence’ in the Dáil in memory of George Floyd, I wonder if she’ll show similar outrage regarding the incident in Cork? I hope the victim makes a full recovery.

I find there’s something strangely hypocritical about a woman who pushed through a campaign to block authorities in her upmarket Mount Merrion neighbourhood from purchasing a bit of land to build housing for Irish Travellers. Close to her home. Yet she shows a steely unrepentant rejection of serious aspects of racism in the US. Far from home! Then again, perhaps Josepha’s just doing what I think she does best…attention-seeking! That’s right Josepha, fix the halo, bow the head, and stand in silence, publicity goal photo op box ticked, objective achieved!