Excitement Gathers

Good Morning on a bright sunny cold and frosty morning in Ireland.

Today is the second part of a time when I take over the TV controls. This happens every two and four years. Yes The Olympics and Paralympics Games.

The closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics in South Korea was the 25th February and now it is only hours away to the opening ceremony of the Winter Paralympics 2018 in Pyeongchang , South Korea. I am so excited.

Let me introduce you to Bandabi. He is the Mascot of the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games.  He is part of Korean culture and folklore.




Ireland has never competed in the Winter Paralympic Games and it will be sad not to have any Irish athlete taking part.  It is different watching without an Irish interest but it also means that I can enjoy the games in a different way.

I have always been amazed how sportspeople strive and push themselves to do better, to keep trying to achieve the next standard irrespective of sport.

However, I just love to watch winter sports.  Biathlon would be my favourite sport to watch, followed by cross-country skiing.  And before anyone asks..No I cannot ski.  I have tried it, but having no balance it was a total disaster.  I suppose knowing how difficult it is just leaves me in awe of all these winter athletes.

And so for a little bit of history.

In 1944 a spinal injuries centre was opened in Stoke Mandeville hospital in Great Britain for service men and women injured in World War Two.  Sport was used in rehabilitation there. In 1948 on the same day as the opening of the London Olympics Dr. Guttmann organised the first Stoke Mandeville Games for wheelchair athletes.

Four years later ex -service men and women from The Netherland took part.  These games later became the Paralympic games.

The first Paralympic Games took place in Italy in 1960 with 400 athletes taking part.  1976 saw the first Winter Paralympics taking place in Sweden and 198 athletes took part.  Since the Summer Olympics of Seoul in 1988 and the Winter Olympics of Albertville in 1992, The Paralympic Games have been hosted in the same cities and venues.

The International Paralympic Committee was founded in September 1989  to act as the global governing body of the paralympic movement.

The name Paralympics comes from the Greek prepositionPara” meaning alongside and “lympics” referring to the Olympic movement.  It means the Paralympics are the parallel games to the Olympics.

So If I don’t answer those emails quickly enough,  those texts replies are delayed or whatsapp isn’t answered you now know why. Apologies now.

Roll on the Games and good luck to all competing.





Education Ongoing


My knowledge of animals could be written on the back of a postage stamp.  I am not an animal person, never was and I don’t think I ever will be.  (Never say never though.)

I know cats are curious creatures by nature but I was always under the impression that cats hated water in all its forms.  Today I have been educated.

May I introduce to you Maggie, Ezra, Buttons and Bambi.  As you can see from these images these cats have proven me wrong. I was totally amazed while laughing at their antics.


My imagination went into overdrive………



“What is this white mass?” thought Maggie as she disdainfully surveyed her domain.  “She was the white goddess. Who had allowed her domain to be covered by this magical, white, soft slightly damp covering?  Where had it come from? Who dared to change her world?”, she fumed.  “Those humans were interfering again but, perhaps for once they have actually got it right.  But I will not let them know that,” as she smiled to herself.

Her thoughts were interrupted by Ezra.  “That stupid tabby” Maggie thought as she watched him trying to catch the snowflakes.  She wanted to try and catch snowflakes herself but there was no way she would allow anyone see her trying.  “A lady must have her standards” she mused.

Ezra meanwhile was having the time of his life.  He would get in some practise then invite the lads over for a game of Snowflake.  Some more time here on the steps then he would show them all tonight.  Ryecroft Rovers would trounce Hollybrook United and not before time.  Must round up the lads but first sustenance then a snooze.

Buttons stirred, whiskers twitched, something was just not right.  “Wake up Bambi something is definitely not right around here” as he prodded his sister.  Instantly alert Bambi looked around.  An eerie light was coming into the hallway.  “He’s right” she thought.  “It’s still night time” as she noticed the snores were still coming from the humans.  Stealthily the pair made their way down the stairs, through the kitchen and out into……

“What is this stuff” mewed Buttons while taking a sample.  “Not bad as he sampled a snowflake.  With just a look passing between the two cats they decided to make their way across the garden and up onto the food table where they would be able to survey their world. 

They took a step and suddenly the ground gave way. The two cats were covered by a cold wet soft ticklish something.  Bambi started to sneeze while Buttons butted at it, but to no avail.  They caught each other’s eye and started to laugh.  Trying to hit this white stuff was fun and rolling in it was making their coats turn white.  A fresh flurry of snow tired these two out. So, they crept back to the kitchen step shook their coats clear and silently made their way back into the warmth of the house: unaware that a little boy had been laughing at their antics and hoping that he could play with them tomorrow.