Miriam’s Musings

Don’t stand so close to me…


I think we can all agree that facing lockdown was pretty scary. However, for many people, coming back out again can prove to be even more worrying. I mention this because it seems there’s a certain section of society that appears to think that now many of our restrictions have been lifted it’s a free for all, giving them a licence to totally disregard the social distancing rules.

I mean, how annoying is it when you’re waiting in a queue inside a coffee shop, you place your order, stand back – because you respect the rules – and a couple of eejits walk in and sandwich you to such an extent you can smell their bad breath? Yeah, happened to me during the week!

Look, I get it, this is the first real bit of freedom we’ve had since lockdown began, and while thankfully life is beginning to return to normal, and it’s great to get back into the office and visit the shops/pubs/restaurants, etc., there’s still the need to remain cautious. There’s still the necessity to shield ourselves from a killer virus that’s likely set to stay with us for a long time.

It’s my opinion that what Roscommon really needs right now is for its people to adopt a common sense approach. As our local businesses face what are clearly reopening uncertainties – with management and staff trying hard to adhere to the government’s and the HSE’s public health advice and guidelines – it’s up to us to behave ourselves.

It’s up to us to ensure that when we enter a business owner’s premises that we help them and their staff to apply these regulations as best we can. Remember, they’ve been working hard in the background, carrying out readiness assessments, identifying risks and training staff; their explicit goal being to make sure customers/clients are as safe as is reasonably possible. We need to help them by respecting their efforts… not hindering them!

To be honest with you readers, at this stage of our national health crisis, I’d have thought I wouldn’t feel the need to have to police other people’s behaviour along with policing my own. I’d have reckoned on the majority of individuals having a bit of cop on. Clearly I was wrong! Clearly it’s the biological destiny of some morons to play Russian roulette with others’ lives. Wouldn’t it be great if supermarkets stocked cop on in a can? You could buy it in bulk, open it up, heat it in the microwave, garnish it with manners and drink it once a day!

I’m not backward about coming forward. However, I admit I’ve gone from my puckering-up-my-eyes-into-squints look, to smiling and politely asking offenders to please stand back a tad, to doing what I did this week and, despite having paid for my coffee, I walked out of that café so fast I had G-Force cheeks! Why did I give in so easily? Well, because it appears empathy’s in short supply these days and reacting can run the risk of you being verbally abused by the ignoramus who broke the rules, thus taking the chance of an argument escalating; something which won’t make a stressful situation any more bearable. Simples!


Sending my best to the Holohan family


His voice provided a steadying, calming influence in almost every home across the country during the height of our coronavirus health scare…except mine! I cannot and I will not forget that, (despite his terribly sad personal situation), the State’s most senior health advisor once gave a directive against a review of the CervicalCheck screening programme the day after Vicky Phelan called for an investigation into the process.

I will not forget that CervicalCheck – although I believe it saved me – failed Vicky Phelan and Emma Mhic Mhathúna, (37) who was affected by the controversy and who passed away nearly two years ago, leaving behind five children. I will not forget the women of the 221 Plus CervicalCheck Support Group and the fact that Dr. Holohan ‘strongly’ advised then Health Minister Simon Harris to ‘not commit to a review of CervicalCheck arising from the recent court case,’ adding the ‘appropriate way forward’ was to ‘state that you have asked me to provide a report on the matter, including whether further actions or steps are required’.

This direction was delivered following the revelation that others had smears incorrectly read, and hadn’t been told of an audit which discovered the errors. Thankfully, Simon Harris ignored Tony Holohan’s advice and ordered a review.

That said, I do sincerely send my prayers and very best wishes to the Holohan family during this extremely sad and stressful time, and most especially to his wife Emer Feely, as she bravely battles a terminal illness.


My disgust at

Cowen’s cop-out


When someone gets behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming alcohol, receives a drink-driving ban, then fobs off the incident as being a “terribly stupid, stupid mistake” my reaction will always be…what a load of bull!

I’m talking about Agriculture Minister Barry Cowen, an individual whose pathetic excuse for his actions leads me to believe he’s possibly in danger of drowning in a puddle of his own selfishness!

As the granddaughter of a darling beloved man killed by a drink-driver, I find Mr. Cowen’s declaration of “shame” to be an insult. Indeed, given An Taoiseach’s “I am disappointed that I learned about it in this way and have made that clear to him,” statement, it appears Michéal Martin’s more perturbed at being in the dark regarding this incident, than he is about the fact he’s promoted an egocentric man to ministerial level! But that’s just my opinion.


Who’s sweating

now Andrew?


Anyone remember Prince Andrew’s “I have a peculiar medical condition…I didn’t sweat at the time because I had suffered what I would describe as an overdose of adrenaline in the Falklands War when I was shot at, and I simply…it was impossible for me to sweat,” comment?

He made it during a BBC interview while dismissing allegations levelled at him by Virginia Giuffre relating to his friendship with alleged serial sex offender/trafficker Jeffrey Epstein. However, on foot of the recent arrest of his close pal Ghislaine Maxwell, who’s accused of grooming underage victims for sexual abuse by Epstein, I have to ask…who’s sweating now Andrew?