Monday 23 October 2017

The Irish language and culture – where zealotry and indifference exist side by side

Roisin Waters
Roisin Waters

IN a supermarket in Indreabhán the other evening I listened to the elderly woman before me in the queue as she chatted with the check-out girl, thrilled to understand them. The customer was asking if she could leave her shopping for an hour or so, when someone would collect it. The check-out girl nodded. "Tá sé sin sound," she said.

At this eruption of the diabolical Béarlachas, I found myself silently revolting.

It was like a noxious contaminant had entered the flow of sounds I'd been enjoying. The women continued talking, effortlessly shifting from Irish to English as though the languages were fused in their left hemispheric cortexes.

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