Friday, June 11, 2010

Time and West Cork Time

One of the advantages of rural life in Ireland (as I suspect is true of non-city life almost anywhere) is the way time is treated.  Country time is not the hard slave master that city time can be; everyone in a hurry to be somewhere to do something to meet someone etc.  In West Cork, time is not a precise phenomenon, it is merely an advisory instrument that may or may not be relevant for the conduct of any given day or occasion.  Things will happen when they will, people will arrive when they mean to and not a moment sooner or later.

What got me thinking about time?  Well if you're still reading then you must be vaguely interested so I'll tell you - The Innishannon Steam Rally.


This grand occasion happens over the June Bank Holiday weekend every year. It's a great family day out, but what really caught my interest was (wait for it) ... the "Slow Tractor Race".  It's complicated, but basically the winner is the person to drive their tractor the slowest without stopping, so the person who comes last is the winner.  Ingenious!


Can you imagine such a thing happening in New York, Tokyo or London, where millions of people race around as if their lives depended upon it all day every day?  After witnessing this race - there were two heats and a final and it took a long time (but nobody was in a hurry), I know where the better quality of life can be found...

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.
(2 Peter 3:8)

4 comments:

Gary said...

That's a clever idea - I take it no photo finish was required? More a watercolour finish?

Daniel Owen said...

Ha ha! At one point I wondered if it would finish before it got dark but actually the final was quite tense towards the end ;~)

INSIDE THE SHRINK said...

I love it. I came from a small village in southern Illinois USA. That village had 800 people in it. We never had a slow tractor race, but we were a slow moving society. Nobody hurried to do anything. There were no places of entertainment so we gathered with neighbors, chatted, and entertained ourselves. I love that lifestyle. Thanks for taking me back there. Great post, God bless, Dr. Bobbi

Daniel Owen said...

Thank you Dr. Bobbi - southern Illinois has more in common with West Cork than I realised!