It’s week 86 and with talk of the new Delta Plus strain in the country, our current reality looks far, far scarier than any Hallowe’en horrors
• WELL we didn’t have to look too far for our Hallowe’en spooks this week, that’s for sure. Tuning into any news bulletin delivered a proper scare at bedtime, and just about any other time of day too. What with rising numbers (then falling, then rising), the new Delta Plus variant (yes you guessed, it’s the deadliest yet) and ICU beds filling up, this week was a bit of an all-round horror show. We were repeatedly warned (not in so many words obviously), that if we’re lucky enough to give Covid a swerve during this latest wave (the fourth? We’ve lost count), there’s a lot of that scary Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) lurking around that can floor you and yours. Fabulous. Bottom line: hearing your child (or anyone in your vicinity) cough or sneeze is currently scarier than anything Stephen King dreamed up (with the exception maybe of that clown in It). Just remember though that if the lights go out without warning, there’s nothing creepy going on, that’ll just be the well flagged power outages getting underway. Most likely the only thing going bump in the night will be ourselves – bashing into things.
• Speaking of Stephen King, I’ve a real love-hate relationship with horror movies. I love them while I’m watching them (with my eyes closed, asking my husband what’s happening, and being even more scared to see he’s doing the exact same thing), and then will exist in a state of blind terror for weeks after. I remember going to see The Ring (Japanese horror, the worst kind, released back in 1998) with a boyfriend I was thinking of calling it a day with. He must have been on to me, because I was so terrified I literally couldn’t be on my own for months. I was also completely traumatised by an Australian film made in the mid-70s called Picnic at Hanging Rock. I remember it was on RTÉ2’s Cineclub (I’m really showing my age now), and for some unknown reason my sister and I were allowed to stay up to watch it. Granted it sounded fairly harmless and set in an all girls’ private boarding school, there were strong Enid Blyton overtones to be fair. Not so much when a few of them went missing at a picnic, you guessed it, at hanging rock. Between the eerie music, the sinister silences and the arty shots my sister and I didn’t sleep for weeks. It was a rare parenting fail by our mother which we still remind her of. RTÉ actually showed it a few years back. I decided I’d give it another try, and only lasted 15 minutes. Still scary.
• Anyway, do you know what’s really getting on my goat this week? Hallowe’en wreaths. Like, when did they even become a thing and more importantly why? Can we not just let Christmas have the wreaths in fairness? I kid you not, but I actually also saw a Hallowe’en tree (only on social media but give it time) and it was every bit as ridiculous as it sounds – a fir tree adorned with mini pumpkins, bats and the like. The world has gone mad, but sure we already knew that.
• Speaking of Christmas we were all out of the blocks pretty lively last Friday, when bookings opened for The Polar Express at Clonakilty’s Railway Village weren’t we? There was such a rush the website crashed. Ed Sheeran had nothing on it. (Santa) hats off though to the great staff at the amenity. When I got through to them on the phone (along with the rest of West Cork), they were incredibly polite, calm and good humoured despite the challenging situation. Most impressive and a sign of what looks set to be a great event
• Finally, all the talk too this week of night clubs got me feeling a bit nostalgic. Cleo’s in Bandon was (a little) before my time, but I certainly remember Wilburys, which is where you graduated to when you’d done your time in Tramps (funny, no one thought it a strange choice of name) in the town hall (the precursor of the Boiler Room in Clon). There was Gatsby’s of course in Dunmanway; and rugby clubs all over. I’m old enough to remember when you could smoke in night clubs, but young enough not to have been subjected to the plate of chicken and chips at the end of the night. Right now though I’m not even sure if you’re allowed drink in them, and what about dancing? Definitely no slow sets I’m guessing? Not even if you’ve a ticket? #confused