The old monk Friar Francis, as he was affectionately known in his Franciscan Priory in New York, was returning to Thurles, Tipperary, flying Ryanair to Shannon airport. Unable to obtain his preferred window seat due to his late booking, he found himself seated beside the isle, on one side and a very attractive but rather glum faced, young woman with whom he had not yet become acquainted, seated next to the window.
Friar Francis missed not having his normal window seat, but the unexpected and sudden death of his brother had provoked this hurried reason to return to his native Tipperary. Speed was of the essence, as his brother’s funeral Mass in Thurles Cathedral was being delayed, awaiting his arrival.
Friar Francis closed his tired eyes, welcoming the silence emanating from his female co-passenger. His thoughts drifted back to his early youth. He remembered the one and only chastisement he had ever received from his long dead mother. It was for telling lies and he could still almost feel the painful sting from that unexpected wet dishcloth, which had made contact with his right ear. His mother, as she tucked him into bed later that night, had explained that her sudden wet dishcloth assault was meant to act as a future painful reminder and a deterrent. “Lying is unacceptable,” she had explained, after all “What a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive,” she had continued.
The subject of his then deceit had been formulated around some stolen apples removed from Mrs Ryan’s orchard next door, which he remembered were of the hard green cooker variety and uneatable anyway, but the good Friar had been careful to never lie in the true sense, after that fateful date.
As he explored this now long past memory, behind his closed eyelids, the Friar was aware of the Central Remedial Clinic’s (CRC) scandal back in Ireland, sure the world knew about it, but lies come under several category headings, there are fraudulent greedy lies like CRC, slanderous lies and there are even truthful lies, the latter to which in two hours time he would knowingly now become a participant.
About two hours into the journey his thoughts of those happier times, now gone forever, had continued to flow. He was remembering his last meeting with his now deceased brother, when suddenly his meanderings were interrupted by the here-to-fore silent attractive female, who now, out of the blue, turned to him and asked in a whisper; “Father, may I ask a very great personal favour?”
Somewhat amused by the young lady addressing him as ‘Father, Friar Francis smiled and then stated “Of course child. What may I do for you?” “Well, Father, I bought my mother a very expensive GHD hair straighteners, while shopping yesterday in New York. It’s for her 60th birthday next week actually.” she whispered.
“Really, that’s great,” said Friar Francis yawning. “Remember child; always be nice to your mother. We should never ignore our parents, time passes so quickly and then they are gone, nothing but guilty memories tend to exist.” he continued.
“Oh I do Father, I do, but this GHD is unopened, still in the original box and well-over my limits for imported goods and I’m afraid Father that Customs will confiscate it. Is there any way maybe you could carry it through customs for me?” enquired the young lady in pleading tones. “Sure you could hide it easily under your habit maybe?”
Friar Francis thought for a moment or two in silence. Could this package contain illegal drugs? Images of a trained drugs sniffer dog identifying him at the ‘Arrivals Gate,’ flashed upon his inward eye. Yet this young lady looked innocent enough and after all she had remembered her mother’s birthday. Hardly the kind of action one would expect from a girl operating as a professional ‘Drug Mule’ for some as yet unrecognised Columbian drugs cartel.
“I would love to help you child, but however I must warn you, if your gift is identified on my person, I will not lie to Customs Officers on your behalf, to save your skin.” replied the kindly old Monk. “There exists already, too much dishonesty abounding in this rotten world of ours.”
“Thanks Father, God bless you, sure with your honest face, no one will hardly question you,” replied the young lady, releasing a sigh of relief.
Taking the rectangular box slipped to him by his new acquaintance, from her hand luggage and checking that the Stewardess was otherwise occupied, Friar Francis now slid the article up the long sleeve of his habit and adjourned to the toilet, where he then placed it securely into the elastic band of his underpants, before returning to his seat.
When they both arrived at Customs in Shannon, the young lady agreed to let the priest go ahead of her. The beady eyed Customs Official halted the Friar and asked, “Sir, do you have anything to declare?”
“From the top of my head down to my waist I have nothing to declare.” smiled the Monk, looking somewhat deviously, yet directly into the eyes of the questioning Customs man.
Thinking this a rather strange answer, the vigilant now smiling Customs Official, tongue in cheek, asked the Monk, “And Sir do you have anything to declare from your waist down to the floor?”
“I do, I have a marvellous instrument designed to be used only on women, but which to date remains unused.” replied the grinning Friar.
Roaring with laughter and with a wave of his hand the Customs Official replied, “You are good, go ahead Sir, – Next customer please.”
Carraig Donn, latter one of Ireland’s well known and premier retailers of Gift-ware, Knitwear, Ladies fashion, Jewellery etc has plans to establish a new branch store at the Thurles Shopping Centre later next month (November 2013). This move could create up to 15 jobs over the coming Christmas period the company reports.
They Are Hiring
Carraig Donn will now hold a recruitment day seeking new employees for this new Thurles store at the Horse and Jockey Hotel, on Thursday October 31st next, between the hours of 10:00am - 3:00pm, inc. and all prospective new employees are asked to call and bring along their CV and expressions of expertises. Carraig Donn are always searching for talented, passionate people who may have previous retail experience and thrive on working in a fast paced environment for our network of retail stores or their Head Office.
Carraig Donn is a truly unique Irish brand and has prospered since its conception as a craft industry retailer back in1965, growing into one of Ireland’s largest retailing outlets.
Carraig Donn still remain today a family owned and managed business concern and through its knitwear manufacturing plant in Westport, Co Mayo and retail outlets, now employ some 400 people nationwide.
When established this new Thurles branch will increase the Carraig Donn nationwide chain to some 33 premises in total and is seen as suggestive of the company’s strong continued growing strength in the retail market over recent years.
Commenting on the store opening in Thurles, the companies Managing Director Mr Pat Hughes has stated; “We are delighted to announce the opening of our Thurles store, and the creation of 15 jobs in the local area. We are in no doubt that there is a strong affinity and loyalty to our brand in the area, with Tipperary customer’s visiting our stores in Carlow, Kilkenny and beyond. We hope to bring our own unique offering to the shopping scene here in Thurles, through our fashion, jewellery and gift-ware departments.”
Le Château ‘Choos’ and Le Château Clothing Boutique showcased their annual Autumn/Winter 2013 Clothing, Shoes and Jewellery Collection on Thursday 26th September last in The Anner Hotel, Thurles, Co Tipperary.
The event which began at 7:30pm, offered the large attendance complementary wine together with a host of other light refreshments before being seated. Some fabulous prizes were also on offer for those in attendance at what turned out to be a thoroughly enjoyable Gala evening.
Tickets for this glamorous annual event were just €15 each, with total proceeds being donated to St Vincent de Paul, latter the largest, voluntary, charitable organisation here in Ireland, committed to working for social justice and the creation of a more just and caring national community.
Exclusive fashion labels in Shoes, Bags, Jewellery, Gloves, Wraps, Scarves and Hats included Beverly Feldman, Chie Mihara, Alex Gold, Satryani, Tracey Neuls, Papucei, Otazu, Maria Calderara, Totoborello, Ganteb’s, Amati Chic, Airfield, Lanzetti, Luisa Cerano and Ganteb.
Europe’s leading and exclusive Fashion House clothing labels were also on show, e.g. Luisa Cerano, Bleu Blanc Rouge, Beate Heymann, Annas Dress Affair, A-Z, Isabel de Pedro, Ischiko, Creenstone, Jota+Ge, Leo Guy, Nougat, Gustav, M.C. Planet, Legatte, Brax, and Fred Sabatier.
The “Le Château,” boutiques here in Thurles, carry a wide range of designs in footwear clothing and jewellery to suit both casual and formal occasions.
For further information please contact Marion O’Shea (Tel: 0504-26535) or Noreen Ryan (Tel: 0504-58587) directly.
Lighting Rig and Sound Equipment for this event were supplied by lighting and audio specialists Star Systems Thurles.
Picture shows (Left Right) Natasha Doyle (proprietor Boutique Salon, Parnell Street, Thurles, Co Tipperary) who recently presented a cheque to Ger Fewer, Mary McDonagh and Mary Daly all voluntary members of Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVP) here in Thurles, with salon staff member Chloe Holohan.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVP) needs no introduction being the largest, voluntary, charitable organisation here in Ireland. Its membership of some 10,500 volunteers throughout Ireland are supported by a professional staff, all working for social justice and the creation of a more just, caring nation. This unique network of social concern also gives practical support to those experiencing poverty and social exclusion, by providing a wide range of services to people in need.
The presentation represented the proceeds of Boutique Salon’s most enjoyable evening event entitled “Style Me Wonderful,” held at “The Watermill ,” Thurles town’s newest & most impressive licensed hostelry.
Three individual ladies from north Co Tipperary have all been short listed for the Network Ireland Awards expected to be held in Cork next month.
They include a Cookery School Proprietor, a Fashion Designer and the General Manager of a Car Dealership.
Sarah Baker: Nominated in the ‘Emerging Business‘ category, Sarah set up the Cloughjordan House Cookery School & Events Venue back in 2009 and today employs seven full-time staff together with some part-time staff. Sarah Baker has also expanded into the Wedding business and is offering Cooking Classes to Transition Year students.
Marion Murphy Cooney: Nominated in the ‘Established Business‘ category, Marion operates as a fashion designer producing ‘made to measure’ pieces. Based in Friar Street, Nenagh, Marion, trading as MMC, has also introduced a ‘ready to wear’ collection, currently on sale through a number of other fashion boutique outlets.
Fiona Connolly: Nominated in the ‘Employee’ category, Fiona is currently General Manager of the car dealership Lyons of Nenagh and is head of marketing for the Lyons Group in Limerick taking care of the brands; Landrover, Ford, Volvo and Jaguar in the Mid-West region.
Earlier this year these three businesswomen won their respective categories at the Network North Tipperary Business Women of the Year Awards, sponsored and promoted this year by AIB and the North Tipperary County Enterprise Board.