People make places …

Well into the “holidays” now and enjoying the days very much.  That said, I’ve been very connected with home too, as I remember Ger Regan, R.I.P., whose Funeral takes place today.  I had Mass here around the same time and remembered Ger, his family and friends there.

Over the past few days I’ve had the chance to do what I really like doing when I come here, connecting with old friends (and meeting some new ones too!). Last Sunday evening I went to New York to meet Joe, Liz and Keenan who have been friends of mine for many years.  With them were some people from Kiltimagh, two of whom I’d met before.  We had a lovely time and it was good to catch up.  The other visitors were going to see “WICKED” on Monday evening and asked if I’d like to join them as they had an extra ticket.  Needless to say I said yes, though I knew nothing about the show.

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It’s one I need to think about but there’s a very positive message running through the show.  Leave it with me!!  This seems to be the central song in the show – “Defying Gravity”.  I think it’s a message about not being kept down but finding and reaching your potential.

The Cathedral here has gone through quite a face lift since my last visit.  It is covered in scaffolding just now but the work on the interior has been completed.  Very impressive.

On Wednesday evening I went back into NY and met an old friend from Maynooth days.  We had a lovely meal, walked around for a while.  He took me to a Roof Top bar where there’s an excellent (and free!!) view of NY and NJ.  I just took one photo there.

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I stayed in NY that night and the next day wandered around for a while.  It was gloriously hot (though people were complaining about the heat – I was happy enough to be in it – great weather for the bog!!) I enjoy walking and noticing bits and pieces as I go.  I spotted one of “New York’s Finest” doing his duty and couldn’t help but notice his Patrol Car.  I can’t see Bruce Willis saving New York in one of these … only saying!!

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Later in the day I met a good friend, Seán, whom I’ve missed out on meeting in recent years.  We went for a bite of lunch and chatted away as if we’d met the day before.  That’s always a good sign of friendship for me.  From there I went to Crestwood and met the McEnerney family.  I’ve met them every time I’ve visited here and had the privilege of baptizing their children.  The older of the two is about to go to College this year and is so excited about that.  Hard to believe how quickly the years pass.  His younger sister will be making the same trip next year.  My memories of her go a bit further back to a young girl playing the piano for me and suggesting I stop “filming” when a few stray notes wander into her performance!!

At Mass this morning, here in the Cathedral at Rockville Centre, I noticed two people at Mass that I get the chance to meet each year. – Mary and Caroline Hunt – they are among the most faithful visitors to these pages and I was happy to see them.  Mary’s husband, Martin (RI.P.) was from Ballaghaderreen parish and that’t the link.

What I like to think is running through these days is “connection” with people.  At day’s end, I see that as one of the greatest gifts we have and I am blessed to be able to avail of it.