Excerpt: Goldenbridge Secret Rosary Bead Factory

Excerpt Goldenbridge secret rosary bead factory. Photo: Irish moon taken by me on 27/8/12


Bray sea waves

I couldn’t let the day go by in Bray without getting close up to the sea and listening to the waves.

I really like this photo for the frothiness of the foamy water and colour mixture of pebbles.  I wanted to explore the stones and bring home some marbley-looking ones.

I opted for this one instead. I do like the striped colours going through the stone. It’ll come in handy as a paper weight.

More Bray Head

Published on Aug 23, 2012 by 

I spent an afternoon in Bray on the 21st August 2012. It was a very pleasant experience. If I’d known beforehand that I could have taken a direct bus (145) from Donnybrook, D4 I would have gone there much earlier in the year.

The weather is typically interchangeable in Ireland and a sea-side resort such as Bray expresses that changeability so much because it has the sea and the mountainy type head that juts out to sea. It was really nice at the time of taking the above video and photo here. Then suddenly the whole environment changed….

Here one sees the mist rolling on to the sea and the Head became all smokey and dusty, as the skies all merged together to form a smokey misty horizon. The water turned foamy then green with purple shadow reflections.

The intermittent black skies turned the whole area into night-time. It looked haunting – particularly over the mini mountainy head that created a black shape that jutted out to sea. The atmosphere was gothic like, then it changed just as quickly into brightness and cheerfulness.

There were a lot of people relaxing themselves on the rocks. See: Anthea and family and friend, one of whom was reading a book.

It was an exciting time for some young people exploring the sea for seaweed.

Due to the inclement weather, there were not a lot of sea-side resorters to be had, but those who were there were thoroughly enjoying the peaceful beautiful atmosphere.

That included the dogs who were in their element in the wide open spaces where they could run free. One came up behind at me as I was near the waters edge. It startled me for  a moment. Bray is a dog’s walking paradise.

Bray Head Co Wicklow Ireland Anthea with family and friends

Published on Aug 22, 2012 by 

Anthea with family and friends at Bray Head, Co. Wicklow, Ireland. 21st August 2012

I captured two families in the video, so thought it only proper to tell them what was happening, that I was creating an amateur youtube film and would they mind if they were in it. So I beckoned to one of them who came over to me. I discovered that they were German. I explained to Anthea – who spoke excellent English – as she is a teacher of English in the rural part of Hamburg from whence she derives, that I did this sort of thing as a hobby, that I go to different scenic places and capture the atmosphere and then try to write about it. I didn’t tell her though that I too was doing it to help with writing skills. I subsequently had a long fantastic chat with Anthea. Her son of sixteen eventually came over and he shook hands with me and told me that he was learning English.

Anthea with family and friends at Bray Head, Co. Wicklow, Ireland. 21st August 2012

I suggested to them both that they should all try to speak English with each other on their last day in Ireland – which was to be the next day. The boy thought it was an excellent idea. I told them to go to Dún Laoghaire if they had any spare time. I explained that they would see a lot of yachts and even ferries going off to England. Anthea then told me that there is a harbour in Hamburg that sees masses of ships and boats and everything nautical there is to feast ones eyes on – so with that information to hand what I would have been describing to her about what lies in Dún Laoghaire would have been only minuscule in comparison. I forget that people are coming from far bigger countries than Ireland.

Anthea/family teased each other with seaweed sticks. :-)! Bray Head, Co. Wicklow Ireland 21st August 2012

Anthea / family teased each other with seaweed sticks. 🙂

So -if you are all looking on… I bid Hallo to Anthea und Familie. Ich hoffe, Sie alle genossen Ihren Aufenthalt in Irland. Haben Sie alle Dun Laoghaire gehen? Ich hätte dich gewarnt, dass es sehr teuer ist, zu essen gibt. Ich denke, das YouTube-Video von Ihrer Familie und Freunden ist sehr gut. Ich hoffe, Ihre Familie und Freunde genießen das Video? Ich glaube, Sie sehen alle so herrlich auf Film. Es war ein momentanes Ding, nicht vorgeplant und das ist, was ich besonders daran mag. Ich hoffe, Sie alle wieder sicher nach Deutschland. Ich genoss das Gespräch mit Ihnen. Ich wünsche Ihnen alles Gute. Auf Wiedersehen.

Guess what…Anthea said that whenever I go to Hamburg that I was to look her family up. I felt all lachrymose, as I so often feel so left out of this world and with people I know for years. Here was someone, who for the first time in a long time had made me feel welcome.

Bray Head Co Wicklow Ireland

I took a trip to Bray, Co Wicklow on the 21st August 2012. I live in Donnybrook. Bray is only a half an hour away by 145 bus. It goes via N11 Dublin / Wexford route. It was raining cats and dog all the way to Bray. However it thankfully stopped upon arrival there. I headed straight to the beach in order to get some video coverage. I had forgotten anything about Bray, as I’d not been there since I was a young teenager (many moons ago) when I climbed Bray Head – which can be seen in the distance. Young Irish couples love climbing Bray Head. Considering it had been pouring out of the heavens and the clouds were black everywhere not too long before the footage here. I think I didn’t too badly.

I had to take rescue in a type of bus shelter on the promenade at first as the sky became as black as coal and the rain lashed down. I’ve not noticed very black skies right overhead in Dún Laoghaire as much as I did nearby Bray Head. I wonder whether it has anything to do with the mountainy area right by the sea. The blackness blanketed the whole whole of the sea area, it was a strange sight. Bray Head is very scenic.

It reminded me of the haunting gothic views one sees in films such as ‘Rebecca’ by Daphne Du Maurier, especially the way it juts out to sea and the extreme interchangeable lightness and darkness. Very moody. I spotted a train right where the tip points out to sea. There is a train that does the coastal route, I would have used it when taking train to / from Enniscorthy, Co Wexford in the past.

I sat on the rocks filming and reading, and it was so relaxing. Children kept walking barefooted on the rocks and lapped up the daringness of the activity. There was a friendly peaceful atmosphere.

I took this photo and it instantly brought me back in time. I know that children from Goldenbridge went to Brittas bay – which is a beautiful beach not terribly far from here. However, I think we sometimes went to Bray. The sense of jà vuj I got was uncanny. One would think too I was after asking everyone to clear the decks to take this photo, with not a solitary being in sight. Perhaps they ran for cover when they saw the black clouds descending for the umpteenth time. I really like this photo. The beach is similar to St. Leonard’s, East Sussex, England where I resided for a year as a young person. There is a mixture of sand, pebbles; seaweed sticks; rocks and mountainy bits. Bray, it appeared to me to have a concoction of everything. It’s a dog’s paradise too. Very bohemian and earthy. I liked it very much. It would suit my temperament.

Bray Co Wicklow Ireland

I went to Bray today. The 145 bus that took me there was only a half an hour away from Donnybrook. It teemed down buckets as I walked the short distance to the bus-stop. So I was prepared for the worst on arrival. Thankfully it stopped just as I got off the bus. I have a penchant for charity shops, so I meandered into three of them, as they were so close by each other in the heart of Bray shopping area. I browsed at some books and tapes. I then purchased a Fawlty Towers series and 8 piece audio book cassettes We’ll Meet Again – by Mary Higgins Clark, and a CD of The Best of all Women. Singers comprising of Carly Simon, Your So VainKate Bush  –The man with the child in his eyes. (I love her Wuthering Heights)Nanci Griffith, whom I saw in concert in Cavan going back I think to the late eighties. It was at the height of From a Distance fame. She had this amazing quirky American accent and the Irish loved listening to her. (Bette Midler also did a rendition of FAD.) Emma Craven – I remember trying to learn the lines of: promise me, you wait for me – I’ll be home soon on the guitar it wasn’t easy at all. I haven’t as yet listened to casette, tapes. Aretha Franklin – I say a little Prayer; Mary Black also covered that song. Annie Lennox – Why. Mary Black with Emmy-Lou Harris, Only a Woman’s Heart. Mary Coughlan – I can’t make you love me. Sinead O’Connor – My special child. There are endless more singers on the 2 piece cassette, which only cost me a euro. I got the whole lot for a mere six euro. I like vintage cassettes and old vinyl records and love going to little markets to browse. I don’t buy vinyl’s anymore, as I have far too many old records. I would need a big house to keep them.

As I stepped out of one charity shop to go into another I saw a pub called Dicey Reilly’s across the main narrow street. I adore taking photos of nice quirky pub fronts. So when I was on the verge of taking a photo, two chaps suddenly stepped outside to have their fags. This was in the middle of the day. I abhor the culture of Irish people who frequent pubs during day time. It’s just not conducive with healthy living. The pubs are laughing all the way to the bank while some of those who are hardened to drink during the day time are damaging the only life they’ll ever have. I also dislike the fact that pedestrians on streets have to be subjected to viewing fag-ends that adorn the frontages of premises, because the law does not allow them to smoke inside same. I believe local county council authorities have searing costs because of continual removal of dog-ends from the streets. One of the stupefied chaps hollered some kind of incoherent mutterings, so I disappeared without further ado into Oxfam minus a photo. I guess it was his prerogative to say something, because I was the one wanting to take a photo and impinging on his space. After all, he was the one who was spending his money in the pub. He was probably only trying to be friendly, but I didn’t give him the chance. I could have humoured him, instead of being too intent on taking the photo. Think confirmation bias on my part. Well, it serves me right for liking pub fronts, but not the fall out of some stupefied behaviour because of effects of contents sold in pubs. The pubs are the ruination of generations of Irish people. I should be the last one to say this given that a uncle of mine had a pub-lounge in his motel. I think living in England helped me not to become a pub drinker. I avoid drunken behaviour like the plague.

I get e-mail

I just got this via e-mail

Dear Marie-Therese
I have just read your account of life at Goldenbridge. I am so sorry for what the state and the Roman Catholic empire has done to you and other children there. as soon as I finished it I went straight to hug my children.
This only happened via a system of silence and complacency, and brave ladies like you are preventing it from happening today by telling your story and speaking out against this sort of perverse cruelty.
I have no words of inspiration for you, I am feeling quite numb to be honest. I have always hated the Catholic church and although nothing they do surprises me, this has brought tears to my eyes. I am admin of a facebook group called “We Hate the Catholic Church” and that is my main platform on which to speak out about them. your account of Golden bridge is there on the group page. I was raised in Crumlin not far from Goldenbridge and have heard mention of it over the years, yet this is the most detailed account I have ever read. I simply cant thank you enough for this!
I hope you now have peace in your life, although I know you will never see real justice for the crimes against you.
one thing i can promise you is that I will not be silent nor complacent about such things ever.
Sending you best wishes with all my heart,
Tony Halpin.

Thanks, Tony for your kind words. Yeah, the Catholic church has a lot to answer for the way it treated children in the past in Ireland. 165,000 children went through the tortuous system. The religious were trained not to get too attached to children, hence never being hugged as a child in all the years I spent in that despicable hellhole. I love to see children getting hugged, even if I still don’t know the meaning of what it’s liked to be hugged. The dogs in the street knew that children in industrial *schools* were not being treated properly, because if they did, they would not have terrorised the boldest of children by threatening them with industrial *schools* if their bad conduct didn’t cease.

The judiciary and the government colluded with the religious in this conspiracy of silence. Once children were convicted of wandering; having no proper guardian; and other trumped charges, some, even at the mere age of three years old were convicted till they reached the ripe old age of sixteen. The religious owned their bodies; minds and souls and would shape them into their ways. They were the products of fallen women and their offspring had to repent for the sins of their unwashed, unholy mothers.

Your kind e-mail is inspiration enough. Thanks for your empathy.

I do read Facebook accounts. I don’t have a personal account. I personally couldn’t cope with being defriended, so hence not going down that route. I don’t have to deal with rejection. I saw too much of it during my childhood to do me for a lifetime.

Yeah, a lot of kind people from Crumlin would have taken children out for weekends and holidays. The freedom they would have had playing with skipping ropes on the street and the openness would have given some little bit of sanity to their otherwise hemmed in lives in the industrial *school*. All they had to play for very short periods was a built up prison walled yard, with not a flower in sight. Children were deprived of basic aesthetic needs, their aestheticism was to gained by kneeling and praying at the religious statues and paintings in the chapel. the chapel that caused them to faint in because of being starved of proper nutrition.

I’m aware that if we speak about it, we are also cast aside by people who do not belong to the church. For years I was stepped over by people who called themselves educated