Keeping tradition of ‘summer on the door' alive

May 7th, 2017 6:25 PM

By Jackie Keogh

Michael and Nancy Minihane putting ‘summer on the door' of their home on Bridge Street, Skibbereen. (Photo: Anne Minihane)

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THE May Day traditions are still being observed in Skibbereen, thanks to the efforts of some of its oldest residents, 95-year old Mick Minihane and his 84-year old wife, Nancy.

Anne, their daughter, a photographer in the same tradition as her dad, captured the May Day moment on Monday, May 1st as the couple adorned their front door, and the door of their neighbours, with seasonal flowers and bushes.

‘They have always done it,’ said Anne of the tradition known as ‘putting summer on the door’. 

‘In the past, they would have got up at 5am and gone out into the country to collect a whole load of greenery, and when they came back with a car full of bushes and bits of trees, they’d do all the houses on Bridge Street. It’s a real summer tradition, a country custom, of bringing the summer into the house,’ said Anne, who got involved this year as the fresh green shoots were put in the letter box of their neighbours.

Some years, Mona Best, across the road, does the honours, but this year Mick and Nancy wanted to observe the old tradition.

‘They love doing it,’ Anne said of her parents, both of whom had a health setback recently, but are now much improved.

‘If they were still fit and well, they would be doing the whole street but, this year, my husband, Mark, and I helped out. We had a bit of craic. There was lots of laughing and joking. They enjoyed it. It brought back lots of good memories and cheered everyone up.’

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