halloween, halloween traditions, Ireland, irish halloween

BLOGTOBER POST 2: IRISH HALLOWEEN TRADITIONS

Unless your already aware I’m Irish and whilst Halloween is more typically mainstream here with all the usual Halloween things like Witches, Vampires and Ghosts, it used to be a lot more different years and years ago. For something different for Blogtober I thought I would list some Old Irish Halloween traditions, some of these the older generation may remember from thier own childhood.

1: TURNIP JACK O LANTERNS

Believed to be a Celtic tradition where people could walk home from the bonfire with an ember from that bonfire in a Hallowed out Turnip so the fire was still burning. There is of course another more frightening story about a blacksmith named Jack who worked with the Devil. This of course meant upon his death he was denied entry into Heaven so he was doomed to wander the earth alone. He asked the Devil for something to light his way so he was given a burning coal that he placed into a turnip he hollowed out. Irish People placed a Turnip outside thier house to keep Jack away

Don’t do deals with devil kids!

2: COLCANNON

Once the traditional dinner to have on Halloween Night before going out to enjoy the night, it is a dish consisting of boiled potatoes curly kale cabbage and raw onions (Gross). Traditionally either coins or a ring were placed in the dish. The coins were placed in the children’s portion which they could keep if they found them. The ring was for the adults portion and whoever found it would be married within the year.

3: PICKING CABBAGES BLINDFOLDED

Local girls blindfolded would go out and pick the first cabbage they found, if it came up with plenty of soil/clay then it meant thier future husband would have lots of money. When eating the cabbage the flavor would tell them thier future husbands nature either bitter or sweet.

Who needs Tinder when you can just pick a Cabbage.

4: FAIRY PROTECTION

People once thought that fairies and goblins would steal souls on Halloween Night so if you threw dust under your feet then if a fairy was there they would have to release all the souls they had collected. Another updated version is that on farms animals were anointed with Holy Water to protect them at Halloween but if they took ill then they were spat at to chase away evil spirits.

5: COSTUMES

Before we started dressing up as Vampires, Witches and other spooky things, people years ago would gather around a Bonfire wearing animal skins and heads. The idea behind this was that any evil spirits would be scared away by the fires. If one of these spirits was wandering the earth and encountered these dressed up Celts then they would perceive them to be spirits too and wouldn’t harm them.

Well we Irish certainly had some Fascinating Halloween Traditions back then however it is unlikely any of these could make a comeback, I couldn’t see myself trying to hollow out a Turnip and the PETA and Animal rights groups would go ballistic if we went around in animal skins. Hopefully this post has maybe inspired you to find out any old Halloween Traditions in your own country, certainly it could make for fascinating reading

HAPPY HALLOWEEN.

halloween, horror, horror films

BLOGTOBER POST 1: HALLOWEEN KILLS REVIEW

Picking up from where Halloween (2018) left off Halloween Kills continues the next chapter in this new Halloween trilogy. Originally meant to have been released last year but like many other movies that was postponed due to the COVID19 Pandemic. Finally it was released this year just in time for Halloween and the end result is a film with some good scares, strong characters but a plot that isn’t sure where it’s going. One of the big highlights however is the nods to the original 1978 Halloween and a well crafted flashback with a short but sweet reappearance from an Iconic Halloween Character (Sorry No Spoilers)

In terms of plot the movie feels like it does know where it is going or if it is building up to anything unlike the previous installment which built up to the showdown between Micheal and Laurie after 40 years. With the stage now set for what will come in the final Installment of this trilogy this movie feels like an in-between adventure to keep things going. However the whole aspect of the town of Haddonfield uniting to destroy Micheal forever added some great action to the proceedings. One pointless aspect was the escaped Mental Patient being mistaken for Micheal and the ensuing chaos that followed as we know it was not Micheal and just felt like it was adding nothing to the story.

In terms of throwbacks we saw the return of Lindsay Wallace (Kyle Richards) and Tommy Doyle (Anthony Micheal Hall) now aware of Micheal’s return and ready to fight back and make sure evil dies tonight. Anthony Micheal Hall gives a strong performance as Tommy determined to end Micheal forever but like so many others begins to descend into almost madness as Micheal’s “Masterpiece” has almost half the town losing control through fear. Kyle Richards also is there to join the fight and gives a great performance to rally everyone together and also fight against Micheal. I do feel however she could have been given a bit more screen time as she after a confrontation with Micheal enters the hospital then disappears from the story.

Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) seems to take a backseat in this film as she recovers from the previous film and is not given a lot to do which is a shame. It would have been great to see her partake in the action rather than act as observer but there is one more film to go so evidently she and Micheal will once again face off again in Halloween Ends. Of course Judy Greer returns as Karen and Andi Matichak as Allyson, these two are kept in the thick of the action. Judy tries to withstand the chaos at the hospital whilst Andi joins the hunt for Micheal, I like how she is being set up to be the next generation Strode Final Girl. I’m looking forward to seeing her and Laurie take on Micheal.

In terms of scares this film does deliver some pretty good scares to keep you on the edge of your seat however I felt the there’s someone in the house scare routine was a tad overused. There were also some very creative kills and without giving away any spoilers let’s just say I’ll never look at a LED Light Tube the same way again. Overall Halloween Kills is a very appropriate title as the body count is quite high, a few plot issues but still delivers an enjoyable spectacle of Horror that pays tribute to it’s 1978 predecessor.

cancer, cancer awareness, chemotherapy, surgery

CANCER DIARIES: PART 12 – UPCOMING SURGERY

As the old saying goes in Show Business “Here We Go Again” but it is appropriate in this case too. This is more of an update post just to give you all the heads up on what is coming not next but very, very soon, this next week to be precise. As the medical saying goes I will be going “Under The Knife” and as someone who loves Horror Films You could say the phrase doesent scare me, as long as the surgery is done by the Doctor and not an Axe Wielding Maniac. Anyway, here is what is to come.

This week wraps up my Chemotherapy and the plan for after that was for the Thermal Ablation to start up soon afterwards. However plans have now changed and the surgery which had been scheduled for the later stage of the pipeline has now been brought forward for next week. The surgery is scheduled for this coming Tuesday, the time has to be confirmed but it’s Tuesday and whilst it feels scary i’m glad everything is moving forward so quickly. The Surgeon himself came to speak with me yesterday and Mum and Dad were able to come too so it was nice to have them both there and not worry about forgetting any important details.

The Surgeon started and talked about recovery and how there could be more of this surgery but that is about tackling any future lesions on the lungs as there some that dont appear on a scan until they have grown more. But anyway focusing on those that are visible the plan is get out what he can and if needed remove any others in the future. To give an idea of the surgery I will be brought down to Theater and given the anesthetic then under the knife I go. The plan for the Surgeon is to focus on the right lung and I think the other one will be deflated or hooked up to something for my breathing. I should be able to give you all a better idea after the event even if I am asleep during it. I always seem to sleep through these things. The Ablation will then take over but I’m not sure at what point but I’m guessing they will want me to have a few weeks to recover from the surgery. In all fairness a small recovery period at home would be great and maybe if I play my cards right Kylo will make me a Cup of Tea.

Anyway, with Chemo now finishing, as a matter of fact I have to ring the Bell before I leave the ward this evening which will be an emotional but strange moment. As they say one Chapter ends and another begins, I had hoped for a week or two at home after Chemo but I’m delighted everything is moving quickly rather than slowing down and waiting for what’s next.

I hope you all enjoyed this update and I will keep you all posted on how things progress, and again Thank You for all your Love, Support and Prayers, it all means so much.

THANKS.

cancer, cancer awareness, hospital, passing the time

CANCER DIARIES: PART 11 – HOW TO PASS THE TIME

This post is more of an advice blog than an update as there is currently nothing new to report other than I am in to the last two weeks of Chemo and then that’s it finished and then onto the next part of the process. Anyway as I said this post is about advice for people like myself who have to spend time in Hospital and suggestions as to how they can pass the time as sitting around waiting to go home can a tad boring. Keeping yourself occupied is a great way to help the time go by much faster so here are my suggestions to keep yourself occupied.

1: WATCH TV SHOWS AND MOVIES

No doubt you’ll have been suggested before but it’s also a great time to start checking out new Movies and TV Shows or even revisit some old favorites like Friends or Murder She Wrote. Indeed a really good show can keep you hooked and really pass the time especially if it one of those shows you just cant stop watching even when you aim to watch just one more episode. Films can help pass the time too, if you like me love a Horror Movie then turn out the lights and create those cinematic spooky vibes.

There are Plenty of Great Streaming Platforms to check out Movies and TV Shows but here are the top ones to watch whatever you want

Netflix

Disney+

Amazon Prime

Britbox

2: BOOKS.

If you want to take a break from screens and of course we all spend plenty of time on then a good book is the way to. A really good Page Turner will keep you engaged for hours but if you area fast reader then it would be a really great idea to bring in a few books if you crave another book after finishing one. Whatever your favorite Book genre I’m sure you’ll find something to your taste. Me I always enjoy a good crime novel which is a really good and engaging genre as you try to figure out everything before the detective.

3: PUZZLES AND QUIZZES.

If you want to challenge your knowledge then maybe a quiz or a few puzzles would a great way to pass the time. Throughout the lock-downs Zoom Quizzes have been a regular thing however whilst Hospital Internet can be reliable I dont think it could work for a long Zoom Quiz. There are plenty of good quizzes online to challenge yourself. In terms of puzzles, there are plenty of those online but another good resource are Crossword and Word-Search Puzzle books you can buy in a shop or the Hospital shop. Always good to keep the Brain active or you could end up like one of those dump people who watch Love Island (Sorry not Sorry)

4: HAVE A REST.

Your in Hospital to rest and recover and whilst you get a good sleep during the night you can feel tired during the day. That’s perfectly normal as your treatment can lead to plenty of fatigue and it’s always nice to have a little catnap during the day. Whilst you might not view this one as a way to kill time think of it more as a wellness tip, always nice and relaxing to have a little rest during the day. However trying to get a rest during the day can be a little tricky in a Hospital as you will have Doctors popping in for a check up or the nurses doing your blood pressure so try to the right moment for a small rest.

5: CALL FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

Aside from passing the time it’s great to catch up with Family and Friends. Don’t ever worry if your catching them at a bad time or they are too busy, they will be delighted to hear from you and want to know how you are getting on. Also a chance to hear all the gossip, not that I ever gossip (maybe now and again) It also feels really good to chat with friends and family as thier support and encouragement can really help you on your way.

Anyway If like me you have to spend a few days in Hospital I hope you have found this post helpful and given you a few ideas on how to pass the time in Hospital.

THANKS FOR READING