Making Memories - Shawn Loughlin editorial
So goes the famous song by The Dubliners, named for the woman in it, “In Dublin’s fair city, where the girls are so pretty, I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone.” Great song, to be sure, but recently it served as a reminder to me about the passage of time and working to fulfil your goals.
Thanks to the wonder of Facebook Memories, my wife Jess recently reminded me of my obsession with the song back when we were first dating and my subsequent discovery that, in Dublin, on Suffolk Street, there is an oft-visited statue of the song’s titular (and fictional) subject, Molly Malone. Imagined as a rather buxom young woman pushing a fish cart, as she is said to do in the song, the statue was created in the late 1980s and has since become a destination for many looking to catch a glimpse of “The Tart with the Cart” as the statue is colloquially known.
Furthermore, a glimpse or a picture just isn’t enough for some. In a country known for its lucky charms (not the cereal - think of the Blarney Stone or shamrocks), legend has it that a rub of the statue’s bosom will bring good luck to the person who has done the rubbing.
Not exactly your typical aquarium, museum or art gallery, and yet, just as much of a tourist attraction as any of those things in a city chock full of history and things to see.
Alright - enough of that. I suppose I’ve done enough to earn my cheque from Tourism Ireland now, so Liam Neeson and I can run on down to the bank and cash in those Euros.
Anyway, back to my story. So, in 2010, when Jess and I were dating - young and in love - she said that one of these days we would visit that statue. Sure enough, in 2018, on our honeymoon after a day of pints of Guinness at the Stag’s Head, the Long Hall and O’Donoghue’s (ironically the pub in which The Dubliners were often known to play) we visited sweet Molly Malone and attempted to earn ourselves some good luck from her.
Little did we know, back in 2010, when Jess and I were casually chatting about an obscure tourism attraction in Ireland that eight years later we’d be married and visiting it on our honeymoon, fulfilling that promise made so many years earlier.
I often think of this kind of thing, randomly, when we give Tallulah a bath. She has a few toys for the tub, but really what she loves to do is play with plastic cups in there. She scoops up water and pours it back out or pours from cup to cup and it seems - if water temperature wasn’t an issue - that she could sit there for hours. And those cups she uses were smuggled back to Canada by her parents from Chicago over a decade ago.
Jess and I - again, young and in love - went to Wrigley Field for the first time to see the Cubs play the Cincinnati Reds. (This was back before the Cubs were good - they lost 101 games that year - although now they’re back to being pretty bad.) We dined and drank at what was then the Captain Morgan Club, a patio in front of the stadium and every double came in one of those cups, so we bagged them up and hauled them back to Canada with us.
Who would have known that a decade later, our beautiful daughter would be playing with them in the bath, in a house we own together in Blyth?
As the time of change is upon us and the calendar is due to turn from 2022 to 2023, think about the plans you’ve made and the ones you will make and where you’ll end up years down the road. It’s always sure to surprise us and the path is always a mystery, but I suppose that’s the beauty of life.