I wrote this when my grandmother died and read it out at the Mass. I still miss her.


Most grandchildren get to see their grandparents only on visits, but Lorraine, John and I had our very own live-in granny. From St Dominick’s Terrace to the Lough Road and finally Glasheen, Sarah was the bonus prize for us.

In a way she was like a second mother, kind, generous, a great friend, full of love, always smiling and joking, thoughtful, and with time on her hands because of her early widowhood, she pampered us rotten.

She worked in mysterious places like the Cork School of Art and Lennox’s Launderette, and I have the happiest memories of dropping in on her whenever the mood took me. No matter how busy she was she’d make a cup of tea, and from somewhere or other she’d produce a slice of cake or biscuits. For me these were heavenly moments.

I was always thrilled when Sarah and I met some of her friends. They’d call her Mrs Mul (for Mulcahy) and obviously loved her as much as I did. For a young boy fearful of what the future had in store for him, I always knew that to be a part of Sarah’s world was to feel loved. She was my protector. I remember when John Bohane (RIP) was sitting on top of my stomach down in Sciggy’s lane. She hauled him off me and gave him such a scolding I never had a problem with him again.

She loved life, going shopping in town, and spending her wages or pension on treats for us. When Lorraine married and John was working abroad I had drawersful of Jaffa cakes, Mars bars and heaps of chocolates. When she started one of her regular diets she’d buy me some cakes, and as she sipped her tea and I dived into the chocolate eclairs or donuts she’d forget about the calories and grab a cake herself.

I’ve lost not just a granny, but a friend, a very dear one. I will never stop loving her, or thinking about her. And if I’m lucky enough to get to Heaven I just know Sarah is waiting for me, with the greatest collection of chocolates and sweets you’ve ever seen.