Those were the days....


As Liam O'Maonlaoi once put it "there's the smell of cut grass and it's filling up my senses". There I was this morning, passing the Army pitches in the Park when that beautiful sweet smell hit me for the first time this year. "Jaysus" I think to myself, "what am I doing living in this concrete jungle" Suddenly I am eighteen again, strolling up the road to "the field" with my boots and hurley over my shoulder eager for the first puck about of the new season to begin.
I imagine the banter and craic, the hope for the new season, the smell of "Deep Heat" and the ribbin' of full back Petie Ahearne who always "winters well" and is bursting out of his shorts.
Jimmy is sitting next to me and whispers "Move over there for crissakes!!! the smell off Paddy Joe is killin'. I'd swear he hasn't washed since last season".
Hickey strolls in late as usual, "Anyone got a spare top?". "Here Hickey" says I, "you can have your sister's one back from last Sunday night."
"Ok smart ass" says he, "I'm marking you tonight and you'll get as much off me as you got off her"

Then the radio intrudes on my meanderings. "Aston Villa 4 Middlesboro 0" - and just as quickly I am back in reality, in a WestBrit town inhabited by folks who still think hurling is a "boggers" game played by big thick culchies from the "arsehole of nowhere"
Ah!!! God be with the days. All thats left for me now is the weekly puck about in the Park with the other few lost souls who like me, wonder why they spent the best years of their hurling lives stuck in a garrison town listening to gobshites apeing after overpaid "ballet dancers" on 50,000 a week.