Where do I think I live? You know something? I’m not entirely sure. That may sound rather dumb but listen to this: my address, as far as the authorities are concerned, is 5 Coote’s Lane, Kilkenny. At least that’s the address on the Polling Card that I receive come election time. And there’s no fooling around with that officious document, as you know. Slight problem, however; there are six houses on Coote’s Lane – well, five houses and one business premises (a relatively new addition to the lane). If you were to count the buildings on the lane - my house is number 6. Indeed, if someone rings up wanting to know where to deliver the life-time supply of bin liners that I won in some raffle or other I tell them to count down till they get to the sixth building, the last house on the lane. That more or less makes my house number 6. So, I am unofficially number 6. I mean logic, common sense and simple arithmetic dictate that my address is 6 Coote’s Lane. But it’s not. It’s 5.
And as if that’s not confusing enough – wait for this – there’s someone else, an entirely different family, living in 5 Coote’s Lane also. With us? The Morans? Don’t think so. Not that I’ve noticed. Perhaps there’s a mother and father and five kids slipping in and out our front door and sleeping in the empty bedrooms vacated by our children without me noticing. Not impossible, to be honest. But I doubt it. What I don’t doubt, however, is that there is another 5 Coote’s Lane. It genuinely exists. I’ve seen it with my own two eyes! It’s located at the other end of Coote’s Lane! Sounds confusing. And it is. And this duplication of addresses i.e my 5 Coote’s Lane and the other 5 Coote’s Lane has already caused confusion. My real concern, however, is that this duplication of addresses may possibly lead to tragedy as in an emergency when someone rings for an ambulance and gives their perfectly correct address as 5 Coote’s Lane. They’ll be asked for their post code but who the hell knows their post code? And who can rattle it off in an emergency, when panic strikes, and you’re doing well to remember your telephone number let alone your post code.
In the meantime, post codes aside, isn’t it rather strange, risible actually, that in this day and age, two families should have the exact same address! (actually numbers 1,2,3 and 4, Coote’s Lane, have duplicate addresses also in Coote’s Lane) I wouldn’t mind if they made it Upper Coote’s Lane and Lower Coote’s Lane or ‘rechristened’ us 5a and 5b - that might help, but no, we’re all living at the very same address in the very same lane but at opposite ends. We’re twinned for Godsake. By the way, hello to all of you living in 5 Coote’s Lane from all of us living in 5 Coote’s Lane! We should get together – do a house swap even just to see how the other 5 lives! Maybe we could get a TV reality show out of it; let’s call it ‘Gimme Five’ or ‘Take Five’ or ‘At Fives & Sixes’ (as opposed to ‘at sixes & sevens’) In the meantime I’m at ‘sixes & sevens’ over living in number 5. Or is it number 6? I’ll keep you posted.
Culture in Church!
Culture Night is upon us and there’s a lot to choose from but yours truly recommends an interesting evening of poetry, prose, music & song in the beautiful Heritage Centre at 8 p.m. this Friday night (22nd Sep) Readers include: Brendan Corcoran, Mary O’Brien-Buggy, Gerry Cody, Nuala Roche, Nicola Keating and Gerry Moran (i.e. moi) while music will be provided by Ann Moylan & Alexander Rafter (poetry, song, guitar) Emma Bergin (piano) a string quarter comprising: Beatrice Kelly, Kate Powell, Anna Distell & Jacqueline Burke and some trad with Eimear Barrett and Noise Kettle. All in all, a stellar line up to quote the blurb! What blurb? The blurb I’ve just written! Oh, and where precisely is the Heritage Centre? It’s in Church Lane (down by the old Loreto school, behind St. Canice’s Cathedral) not to be confused with Coote’s Lane. where confusion reigns supreme.
P.S. Admission is free but phone Paula: 056-7770777 to reserve a seat.