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Spanish land at Kinsale

KINSALE is a town that has figured prominently in two major events in Irish history. James II landed there in 1689 during the Williamite War. Since the Siege of Derry had already started and the opposition to him was concentrated in Ulster, it did not make a lot of sense for him to land at the opposite end of the country. After the Battle of the Boyne, he returned to Kinsale and fled from there to France.

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Making the long walk to guide dog

By the time you read this, Flossie will be gone. Just like thousands of families across the country, we have prepared ourselves for the day our youngest family member would leave our home and head off to higher education. For us though, the departure is final, there will be no weekends at home and no long semester breaks to look forward to. Because Flossie is a trainee guide dog and, after a year of wheedling her way into our hearts, she is ready for the final stage of her training before she is assigned to a blind person or a child with autism. Flossie is one of over a hundred pups around Ireland that has spent a year living with, and being socialised by, a volunteer family. There are three families currently volunteering as ‘puppy walkers’ where we live in the twin towns of Ballina and Killaloe; an unusually high figure considering the population of the towns. Barry Finegan, who …

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