With the advent of Easter, and my parents impending arrival (they come on April 4th), I have been reflecting on how we really have become part of the Maynooth culture. We now readily participate in things that we would have previously found to be odd. It's been a long time since someone didn't understand what I was saying. And Brad was even asked by an old Irish Grandma if he was part Irish given that his accent was so mild!
Here's some advice on how to talk with a Hiberno-English accent. First of all, most vowels are softened, and are hardly pronounced. There is a lyrical style of talking with your tone raising at the beginning of a sentence and falling at the end. And much of what is said, is in fact not said, but "ummn"-ed in a meaningful way. If Nikolai is picking up an Irish accent, it is this unsaid intonation that he has readily adopted.
The "ummn"-ing in a meaningful way is likely related to the fact that Irish (Gaeltacht) doesn't actually have words for "yes" and "no". This was very problematic for us when we were arranging our move and after we'd first arrived as it was impossible to get an absolute "yes or no" answer regarding anything and everything. Coming from a land of strong affirmatives and negations we were flummoxed by our inability to receive confirmations regarding... the cab picking us, renting an apartment, etc. In fact this may be something else that Nikolai has picked up as he has recently stopped saying "yes" in favor of "it is".
Today, is a bright and sunny day. Diapers are hanging out on our clothesline drying and "freshening" in the sun. (This morning's weather was described by RTE as a warm sunny morning with a freshening north-east wind). Brad is hitching a ride out to the Orchard and B&Q with Pat to pick up gardening supplies. The sun is motivational, we want to get some lettuces and herbs into pots. We're going to scale back our gardening efforts while in Ireland and instead try our hand at some chickens. If all goes well, we will have 3 hens running about our yard in two weeks time.
And for something completely different... this is fabulous... there is a Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef on display at the Science Gallery at Trinity College. I'm not sure if it's going to tour the world, but well worth keeping an eye out for.
So if this little piece of a sunny day appeals, you're welcome visit, if it suits.
--"If it suits" means if you would like... but it's used a lot to pacify language in a way that is polite among women.--