A Freak Happening

This Story is: True Story

A Freak Happening

Does anyone remember the time in Castleconnell in the mid- fifties when the Mall field, that is the field between Lee’s field (now Scanlan Park) and the river, produced such a bumper crop of mushrooms that one would think, at a casual glance, that there had been a heavy snowfall overnight ?

It was a similar story at the World’s End in Mary Enright’s field, that is the field on the right as one rounds the last corner and heads for the Stone Quay. The mushrooms were so thick on the ground in that field too that it looked like they had been planted in drills. We were impatient in school all day long, having seen the amazing sight in the morning. We couldn’t wait for the day to end.

The bell rang at 3 pm and we dashed home to get some buckets which we filled to the brim with pink- gilled mushrooms and we even became choosey as to what we would take and what we would discard! We carried the full buckets back to the house where Daddy fed them to the ever-hungry turkeys in the yard.

I don’ t recall any such phenomenon occurring before that or since. Mulling over it now and with the benefit of hindsight, maybe Castleconnell was not alone…perhaps the same thing had happened all over the country and we didn’t know. Our world was very small then…we didn’t leave our area, generally speaking. We walked to school, to the church, to the shops in The Spa and in the village, to the World’s End and to St. Senan’s Well in Clonlara Once a year (in August I think ) and ,at most, we roamed within a radius of a couple of miles.

If such a thing happened now, news of it would be broadcast far and wide. Pictures showing every detail would be criss- crossing the country and everyone would be well informed as to the extent of the mushroom phenomenon.

Elizabeth Hayden( Meskell)

This story is True Story