Saturday, March 20, 2010

St. Patrick's Day in Cleveland--A Grand Time

We (my brothers Kevin and Jimmy, Jimmy's 3 kids, Dillon, Darby, and Quinn, and my daughter Emily and I) had a wonderful St. Patrick's Day in Cleveland, Ohio. We began the day by attending mass at St. Patrick's Church, on Bridge Avenue in the Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland. St. Patrick's is one of the historic churches of the Irish community in Cleveland. The parish and church are about 150 years old, and the story goes that parts of the immigrants' ship masts are built into the pillars of the old church (we choose to believe that story). Bishop James Quinn was the celebrant, and the mass featured wonderful music, including a stunning performance by pipers and drummers surrounding the altar as mass ended.

Following mass we processed to the old school building, where the parishioners of St. Patrick's provided hundreds of people with a free breakfast. After breakfast, Kev, Em, and I went to the Harp Restaurant in the Edgewater neighborhood of Cleveland, overlooking Lake Erie (still full of floating ice). There I ran into a former student, a Cleveland diocese seminarian, drinking a Guinness with his 2 buddies (also seminarians!). I run into students everywhere, including places I'm not supposed to be at.

After the Harp, we headed downtown, stopping first in the Arcade, a world-class building . . .[more soon!]

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Penny Whistle Tune: An Ghaoith Aneas, "The South Wind"

For the celebration of St. Patrick's Day, I've decided to make a little video of me playing my Susato whistle (high D)--an Irish tune called An Ghaoth Aneas, "The South Wind."

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

St. Patrick' Day Greeting in Irish-Gaelic

Dia Dhuit. Is mise Bob Coughlin. Tá mé i mo chonaí i gCleveland, Ohio.
Lá Fhéile Pádraig Shona Duit!
Beannachtaí! Slán!

Hello [God to you]. I am Bob Coughlin. I live in Cleveland, Ohio.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you!
Blessings! Goodbye!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Poem for My Daughter Julia, Her Husband Ed, and the New Baby

Listening to the Heart Beat

Now, at the end of the first trimester,
You and your doc listen to the beautiful heartbeat,
The thrum, thrum, thrum,
The rush, rush, rush,
The busy pitter-patter of 140 beats per minute.

This kid sounds already like a sprinter,
A girl or boy in a hurry.

It is a beautiful music,
Makes my heart sing—

A chorus, along with you, with Ed,
With all the choir singing


Bob Coughlin
February 2, 2010

Monday, March 8, 2010

Six Days of Sunshine--A New Record!

We have had cloudless skies six straight days. Never in the history of the universe has this happened in Northeast Ohio! These past days the mornings have been very cold in Chardon (say 10-15 degrees), but by mid-day, the temperatures have risen to above freezing (ideal weather for maple sugaring). Yesterday it was in the mid 40's! The snow has melted slowly but surely (the way we like it). Still, there is between a foot and 18 inches of snow in my yard (and about 2 feet in the field and woods). And Lake Erie is frozen as far as you can see. Near the Lake, patches of grass are visible. And in some south-facing areas, the green shoots of daffodils, about 3 inches high, can be seen.

Spring is a-coming!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Snowy Winter in Chardon, Ohio!

Bottom: Snowblowing the drift on the front sidewalk, February 28th, 2010. Hambden Township, near Chardon, Ohio.
Second: Cross-country skiing in Chapin Forest, Kirtland, Ohio, mid February 2010. Linda and Carolan.
Third: St. Mary's School, Chardon, Ohio. March 4, 2010.
Top: Shoveling the sidewalk, February 28, 2010. Hambden, near Chardon, Ohio.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Coughlin's in Butte, Montana, 1928

Above is a page from the 1928 directory for Butte, Montana. I searched for my family name in Butte when I learned that lots of families from West County Cork, where the Coughlin's came from, emigrated to Montana and worked in the mines around Butte. These families included Coughlin's, Crowley's, and Lavin's, all family names. Recently I was looking at a Montana map (because one of my daughters just moved to Montana) and, to my amazement, found a place called "Coughlin, Montana." Coughlin is not actually a town, but what the government calls a "populated place." When you look at a Google map, you find Coughlin, Montana near the intersection of Route 200 and Route 141 in Powell County, just south of "The Bob," the Bob Marshall Wilderness, where one of my daughters will be working this summer. I am really amazed at the presence of so many Irish people and even so many Irish place names in Montana.

The 1928 Butte directory lists many familiar Coughlin names: James, Thomas, John, William, and Jerry--and 2 Julia Coughlin's, one of whom is a public school teacher like my own daughter Julia.

For a clearer view of the above image, try this link: