Most folk tend to write nice things about their parents after their death, I thought I’d write about my mother, Doris whilst she is still alive. For many many reasons Doris never married our biological father, Sam Keown, they went their separate ways when we were very young. However, over the years there were various suitors but no-one lit her fire, no-one made her feel like this was the one and as time passed, she settled into village life and the church became her world.
Then, at the glorious old age of 81, she went to church one Sunday and there were some strange men there. They were part of a group called The Mourne Men (the Mourne’s being the range of mountains in Ireland) and they were all retired but spent their time going around local churches helping out the members with jobs that they couldn’t manage themselves; cutting hedges, putting up shelves, fixing roofs, painting and decorating and generally improving the lives of the parishioners. So Doris was at church that day and she looked across the group of men standing at the front of the church offering their services when her eyes met Bob’s and it was thunderbolt city. She knew right away that this was the man for her and within six months they were married. (No, she wasn’t with child!)
Since then they have been to London twice and been to Scotland and they made the trip to Australia for a wedding and explore, it was massively hot there and folk were falling over and dying but not Doris (83) and Bob (79), they are made of sterner stuff and then they came back home to one of Ireland’s worse snow storms with the country closed down. They were nonplussed. They have a combined age of 162 and they didn’t care or fret, they just got on with things and I asked her about that, she said it didn’t matter as she had Bob and that’s all she needed, come rain or sunshine she didn’t care, she had Bob…
So, what lesson and qualities have I inherited from Doris? Well, the courage to give two fingers to any rules, the courage to tackle anything and the wonderful habit of pitching up at Heathrow airport going off on adventures when everyone else thinks you should be settling down to a quiet life. And unless you have a thing for Postwoman, love ain’t going to come knocking your door, you gotta get out there and kiss a few frogs..
P.S. Her last suitor had a big argument with her when she wouldn’t date him and stormed off shouting “you’ll never find someone as good as me”. She rang him up after getting married to Bob and told him he was wrong and literally cackled down the phone at him. And everyone wonders why I’m so mischievous..???