Tuesday, September 23, 2008


'Tá tonn mhaith aoise aige'.

Nó, 'tá sé ag dul anonn sna blianta'. Chuir mé cuairt inné leis mo h-athair inné. Tá sé sna déaga is ceithre fichid anois. Tá sé a dhá agus nócha blian ach is beag nach bhfuil.

Tá aoibh bhreá air. Tá sé somheanmnach. Tá sé faoi luisne na sláinte. Tá grioisghruanna aige. Mar sin féin, bíonn sé níos lag. Caitheann sé ag siúl timpeall leis cána.

D'inis sé orm na scéalaí céanna uair amháin eile. Dúirt sé agam faoi a chol ceathrar Roy. Chuala mé faoi Na Cleasaí. D'fhoglaim mé aríst faoi an bean go raibh teifeach Gearmeanách an té atá ar thaobh mo láimhe clé.

Thit sé ar a dhroim an seachtain seo caite ar feadh mean-oiche. Bhíodh sé ina seomhra folctha. Bhuail sé an balla leis a chána dhá uair. Go críochnúil, bhí a chomharsa go raibh ag cloiste an callán. Dhial an creatur bocht 911.

Níl sé obair shaoráideach a feiceáil sé féin chomh seo. Tháinig mo dheirfiúr agus mé an deireadh seachtaine roimh sin ag dúisithe ár h-athair faoi fadbh seo. Níl sé ag eisteacht againn ansin. B'fhéidir, tosóidh sé ag deisiú seisean féin anois.

Tá sé chomh ceanndána le muc. Is mian cabhair aigesan. Is feidir aige ní bheadh sé aonaránach. Tá sé ina chónaí leis féin ró-fháda. Gheobaidhimis síor aire aige as seo.

"There's a good depth of age on him."

Or, "He's getting on in years." I paid a visit to my father yesterday. He's in his nineties now. He is nearly ninety-two years old.

He's in good spirits. He's cheerful. He has the flush of health. He has glowing cheeks. All the same, he's (usually) weaker. He must walk about with a cane.

He told me the same stories another time. He talked to me about his first cousin Roy. I heard about the Dodgers. I learned again about the woman who was a German refugee who is his neighbor on the left side.

He fell down last week during the middle of the night. He had been in the bathroom. He struck the wall with his cane two hours. Finally, his neighbor had heard the racket. The poor thing dialled 911.

It's not easy to see him like this. My sister and I went the weekend before that to alert our father about this problem. He did not want to listen to us then. Perhaps, he will start to fix himself up now.

He is a headstrong as a "pig" (=mule in English!). He needs help for himself. It's better that he not be alone. He has been too long living by himself. We'll get constant care for him from now on.

Iómhá /Illustration: Sir Stanley Spencer (1891-1959). Tate Gallery, 1911. `Man Goeth to his Long Home'

2 comments:

Bo said...

sorry to hear this. I hope he wasn't injured.

Fionnchú said...

Thanks for your kindness; he's been falling down lately by himself, and it's finally time that he realizes his stubbornness interferes with his safety. We're in the process of getting him into "assisted living" despite his objections.