After some rather questionable directions from our Youth Outing host, our protracted journey across the Southern Seaboard came to an eventual end as we pulled into the Budds' residence. As this was an excursion organised by someone else other than the McKeowns, people feared for their immediate future.
All seemed well as the evening of the 23rd terminated with a dinner provided by the generous charity of Sarah Farrell. For many, fears became realised when the sleeping arrangements were explained. It soon became apparent that there were to be some serious breaches of health and safety regulations (table-top sleeping, overcrowding and general discomfort to name but a few).
After an interesting night of constant pain, cricked necks and insomnia, most awoke to disturbing, curious sounds akin to that of Tarzan call, however this soon transpired to be a Joe Budds wake up reminder. Folks then congregated in the beautiful chapel downstairs for an unsuspectingly long Ember Saturday mass said by Fr Ockerse which was to be appreciated by all in attendance. After mass the kitchen table was thoroughly disinfected, breakfast and lunch were arranged and the motley looking crew of Comhaltas Chríost Rí members were on the road.
A public rosary was held in Cork City and included the distribution of several hundred flyers. It was great display of Catholicism and definitely a winner with the young and old alike. With lunch completed the group then made their way to Ardmore, Co. Waterford. Known to be bad losers the Bergins (Oh'Haverligans)at this point made a paltry excuse for their departure, of course the real reason was that they feared for their loss in karting the next day.
At Ardmore we endured the beautiful scenery and listened to remarkable stories of the wonderful St Declan. Back in the Budds house that evening, the group enjoyed a riveting conference from Fr. Kimball and the talk ended with some rather dramatic theatrics from a one Mr Farrell.
The evening of the 24th was only kicking off at that stage as we were then subjected to a fantastic musical session from the incredibly talented Jamie Nagle and Charlie Quinn. The session was slightly interrupted midway with the awful smell of burning protein. This vile odour turned out to be a woolen jumper placed on a candle by some genius. The air cleared of the disgusting smoke, the night quenched to a close.
The Sunday began with a desperate attempt to clean the Budds' residence before the proprietors arrived home. The group attended mass at Sunday's Well in Cork and then on to the highly anticipated Watergrasshill karting track. Everyone found their inner Schumachers as the hit the track. The McKeown's infamous need for speed was yet again displayed on the asphalt and the perilous driving of the girls led to our engines being slowed down on numerous occasions. The action packed weekend came to a peaceful conclusion with the Corrin Hill Stations of the Cross.
The Cork Youth Outing was a resounding success, thoroughly enjoyed by all, and shan't be forgotten for a long time to come. As it turns out, the lads can apparently run a bath...sometimes.
On behalf of the Comhaltas Chríost Rí, I would like to thank Joe Budds and his family for hosting and organising the Cork Youth Outing. We pray that his studies in the seminary are both enjoyable and beneficial. We say 'go raibh maith agut' for his eternal friendship, kindness and infectious laugh. We also wish the very best to Mr Bergin and Mr Farrell who are spending time with Benedictine monks in New Mexico.
Slán agus beannacht.
Colm Ó Begléighinn