This is Home

Lashing rain. Blustering wind. Troubled skies. A soft day, to be
sure.

Driving back to Dublin after a weekend in Waterford. Its a narrow,
twisting road. Countryside punctuated regularily by small country
towns. You wouldn’t guess its the main road between two cities in a
first world country.

County Kilkenny makes up a good chunk of the journey. And Its a
special day for Kilkenny. In about thirty minutes we’ll know just how
special. Every town and village is deserted. The county colours,
black and amber, are everywhere.

Switch on the radio and Micheal O’Muircheartaigh, with his legendary
commentary in a guttural Kerry accent, brings life to this dull
scene. You suddenly realise that every living room and pub you pass is
crammed with excitement. All eyes are on Croke Park as Kilkenny battle
with Cork in the All Ireland Hurling Final.

“Henry Shefflin looks toward the goal. Only two in the goal. Shefflin
hits it hard … drives it hard … away way down the field … drives
it over the bar”

By the time I make it to Dublin, this battle will have finished. As I
pass by Croke Park the streets will be thronged with some very wet
people. Half of them won’t care, half of them will be utterly
miserable. Maybe I should just switch off the radio and guess from the
crowds who came out on top.

“8 points to Cork, 8 points to Kilkenny. Twenty Eight All Irelands a
piece … Its a hard game from start to finish.”

Nah, I may barely know the first thing about hurling, but I can’t miss
this.

In the end,
Cork came out well on top. Cork 0-17 Kilkenny 0-9.

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