My sister was chatting to me about my grandmother just the other night. I live far away from my family and I haven’t found a good way to keep in touch with people who don’t use computers. I can easily chat to my sisters on Facebook, or my dad on Skype, but my grandmother doesn’t use a computer. Using a phone also hasn’t worked as conversations usually consist of repeated phrases like, “Is that you Karen…”, “What are you saying…”. We say words, but we aren’t communicating.
My sister Christine and I spent hours walking with my grandmother when we were children. We also used to sing silly songs about rainbows, dragons, and puffymelons. It was only when my mum sang similar songs to my baby sister that I discovered that “puffymelons” are not the gnome-like little men my childhood self imagined should work at a train station but were really a mispronunciation of “pufferbellies”.
Not all the songs were childish as my grandmother also taught me to sing “Acushla Mine”. I used to think that was a place in Ireland but I now know it’s term of endearment so I recorded it for my grandmother.