Tomhas na Teanga Eanáir 2013

Mar is eol do chách, bhí stoirm mhór againn in oirthuaisceart na tíre, san fhómhar. As everybody knows, we had a big storm in the northeast, in the fall.  Tháinig hairicín agus stoirm eile le chéile. A hurricane and another storm came together.  Agus tharla sin nuair a bhí lán mara ann agus gealach lán leis. And that happened when it was high tide and also a full moon. Mar sin, bhí na tonnta ag teacht i dtír, agus bhí tuilte uafásacha ann.  So the waves were coming ashore, and there were terrible floods.  Agus murab é sin olc go leor, cúpla lá ina dhiaidh sin thit sneachta trom.  And if that wasn’t bad enough, a few days later a heavy snow fell.  Is iomaí crann a thit mar gheall ar an drochaimsir go léir seo.  It’s many the tree that fell on account of all this bad weather.  Agus thit roinnt daoibh ar dhaoine, dá marú. And some of them fell on people, killing them.  Bádh daoine eile, agus tharla timpistí le gineadóirí agus timpistíbóthair agus mar sin de. Other people were drowned, and accidents happened with generators and there were traffic accidents and so on.

Chaill daoine a lán dá gcuid, agus rinneadh mórán damáiste. People lost a lot of property, and a lot of damage was done.  Buíochas le Dia, ní raibh cúrsaí chomh dona sin againne. Thank God, things weren’t so bad for us. Bhíomar gan leictreachas ar feadh dhá lá déag (ach amháin dhá uair an chloig sular thit an sneachta…saghas céasta ab ea é an leictreachas a chailliúint ar athuair mar sin!).  We were without electricity for 12 days (except for 2 hours before the snow fell…it was a kind of torture to lose electricity a second time like that!)  Agus leis sin, ní raibh teocht ná uisce te ná fón (ach fóin phóca) againn ach oiread.  And along with that, we had no heat or hot water or phone (except cell phones) either.

Tá umar iasc teochreasa againn.  We have a tropical fish tank.  Rinneamar ár seacht ndícheall iad a choimeád te go leor, agus a gcuid uisce glan, agus ocsaigin a chuir isteach san uisce dóibh.  We did our very best to keep them warm enough, and their water clean, and to put oxygen into the water for them.  Ach theip orainn iad go léir a choimeád beo.  But we couldn’t keep them all alive.  Cailleadh breis isleath díobh, de réir a chéile.  We lost more than half of them, a few at a time.  Ba bhocht an scéal é.  It was a badbusiness.  Cailleadh cúpla acu tamaill maith ina dhiaidh freisin, mar bhí an strus ró-mhór dóibh.  A few of them died a good while afterwards, too, because the stress was too much for them.  Ach ba bheag an rud seo, i gcodarsnacht leis na rudaí níos measa a tharla do dhaoine eile.  But this was a little thing, in comparison with the worse things that happened to other people.

Maraon leis na rudaí olca a tharla, bhí an t-ádh ag a lán daoine eile.  Together with the bad things that happened, other people were lucky.  Nó bhí aingil dá gcosaint.  Or angels were protecting them.  Mar shampla, thit crann rí-mhór a bhíodh ina sheasamh taobh le teach mo dheirféar céile.  For example, a really big tree fell, which used to stand next to my sister in law’s house.  Bhí baill dá teaghlach amuigh ag féachaint air tamaill beag sular thit sé, agus bhí siad ábalta éalú uaidh nuair a thit.  Members of here household were outside looking at it a little while before it fell.  Thit sé go díreach idir an teach agus an garáiste.  It fell exactly between the house and the garage. Scrios sé crann beag eile agus crann luascán, ach b’fhéidir leis an gcrann sin mórán damáiste a dhéanamh nach ndearna, agus táimid buíoch do Dhia faoi sin, cinnte.  It destroyed another small tree and a swing set, but that tree could have done a lot of damage that it didn’t do, and we thank God for that, for sure.

Gach lá, nuair a bhíomar gan leictreachas, bhímis ag fanacht leis na leoraithe a thiocfadh chun sinne a shábháil.  Every day, when we were without electricity, we would be waiting for the trucks that would come to save us.  Agus ag fanacht.  And waiting.  Is iomaí rabhadh bréige a bhí ann. There were a lot of false alarms.  Tháinig siad i ndeireadh na dála, is dheisigh siad na sreangacha srl.  They finally came, and they fixed the wires, etc.  Ansin, thit an sneachta, agus bhíomar ar bun an liosta arís.  Then, the snow fell, and we were at the bottom of the list again. Cúpla lá eile, agus faoi dheireadh, bhíomar slán compordach teolaí – agus glan – arís.  A few more days, and finally, we were safe, comfortable, warm – and clean – again.

Dóbair go raibh sé normálta againn, inár suí sa dorchadas san oíche, gan teilifís, gan ríomhaire.  It almost became normal for us, sitting in the darkness at night, with no television, no computer.  D’éisteamar leis an raidió.  We listened to the radio.  D’imríomar cluiche.  We played a game. Rinneamar caint lena chéile.  We talked to each other. Agus chuamar a chodladh go luath.  And we went to bed early.  Tagtar i dtaithí ar chúinsí ar bith, ar ball.  You get used to anything, eventually.  Ach táimid lán sásta ár saol mar a bhíodh a fháil ar ais, geallaim duit!  But we’re very happy to get back the life we used to have, I promise you!Tá léirthuiscint nua againn dá bhfuil againn anois, gan amhras.  We have a new appreciation for all we have now, without a doubt.

Rinne mórán daoine obair iontach ag cabhrú lena gcomharsana, agus cé nach rabhamar sásta go raibh an méid sin ama de dhíth, níl aon dabht ach go raibh na leictreoirí agus na hoibreoirí eile ag obair go dian chun gach rud a chur ina cheart.  A lot of people did wonderful work helping their neighbors, and although we weren’t happy with the amount of time needed, there’s no doubt that the electricians and the other workers worked very hard to make everything right again.  Bhí na póilíní agus na fir dóiteáin thar barr, freisin.  The police and fireman were terrific, too.  Go raibh maith agaibh uile, má tá sibh ag léamh!  Thanks to all, if you are reading!

 

Tomhas na Teanga

Táim i mo eagarthóir ar an leagan nua den tseaniris cháiliúil An Gael. I am the editor of the new version of the famous old publication An Gael. Ag deireadh an naoíú aois déag, bhí a bunaitheoir, Mícheál Ó Lócháin, fós ina eagarthóir uirthi.  At the end of the 19th century, its founder, Michael Logan, was still the editor. Duine an-suimiúil ab ea é, agus an-díograiseach i leith na teanga agus i leith saoirse d’Éirinn.  He was a very interesting person, and very enthusiastic about the language and about freedom for Ireland. Radacach ab ea é, le fírinne.  In truth, he was a radical. Agus ní raibh sé sásta ná foighneach le daoine nach n-aontaigh leis maidir le cúrsaí polaitiúla nó cúrsaí teangan.  And he was not happy about or patient with people who didn’t agree with him concerning politics or the language.

Rinne mé taighde ar an tseaniris le déanaí, agus fuair mé an tagairt seo, a scríobh MÓL in 1891, d’Ord Ársa seo na nGael:  A while ago, I did research on the old magazine, and I found this reference, which MÓL wrote in 1891, to this Ancient Order of Hibernians:

“In last Gael we asked our Hibernian and other Irish-society friends what they had done during their existence to preserve Irish nationality.  We have received no answer yet—nor never shall!”

Bhuel, a Mhícheáil, seo duit do fhreagra.  Well, Michael, here’s your answer.

Cheap Ó Lócháin nach rabhamar ar a thaobh maidir leis an teanga.  Logan thought we were not on the language’s side. Pé tuairim ia bhí aige agus pé dearcadh a bhíodh ag an ord san aois sin, is léir nach amhlaidh an scéal sa lá atá inniu ann (buíochas le Dia).  Whatever opinion he had and whatever outlook the order had at that time, it’s clear that that’s not the case nowadays (thank God). Ní mise an chéad cholúnaí Gaeilge ar an nuachtán seo, agus tá colún rialta agamsa ó Bhealtaine 2002.  I’m not the first Irish language columninst in this paper, and I’ve had a regular column since May of 2002. Tá a fhios agam go mbíonn ranganna Gaeilge ag an AOH in áiteanna éagsúla, agus tá taithí pearsanta agam ar Scoil Ghaeilge Ghearóid Tóibín, atá lonnaithe ag rannóg a dó sa Bhablóin ar Inis Fada, i Nua-Eabhrac.  I know that the AOH has Irish language classes in various places, and I’m personally familiar with the Gerry Tobin Irish Language School, which is located at division 2 in Babylon on Long Island. Tá SGGT ar an bhfód le breis is fiche bliain, le tacaíocht ón AOH.  The GTILS has been around for more than 20 years, with the support of the AOH. Agus roimh an scoil, bhíodh Gearóid Tóibin féin (ar dheis Dé go raibh sé) ag múineadh sa halla céanna.  And before the school, Gerry Tobin himself (may he be at God’s right hand) teaching in the same hall.

Bhí agus tá ranganna ag rannáin eile ar Inis Fada, r.8 in Selden agus r.7 in Islip Thoir, mar shampla.  There were and are classes at other divisions on Long Island, i.e. div.8 in Selden and div. 7 in East Islip. Nuair a bhí Vic Vogel (ag a bhfuil teastas gur chríochnaigh sé féin cúrsa sa Ghaeilge) ina uachtarán ar Bhord Chontae Suffolk, chruthaigh sé post Oifigeach na Gaeilge, agus tá an post sin ag Cathal Gaoidh.  When VV (who has a diploma saying he himself finished an Irish language course) was president of the Suffolk County Board, he created the position of Irish Language Officer, and Charlie Gee has that job. Insíonn sé don bhord faoin a mbíonn ar siúl a bhaineann leis an teanga, agus foghlaimíonn an bord roinnt paidreacha as Gaeilge, freisin. He tells the board about all that is going on with the language and the board learns some prayers in Irish, too.

Bhí Gaeilge ag an bhFeis Nassau le blianta fada, le Seosamh Ó hAllagáin á heagrú, ar dheis Dé go raibh sé. There was Irish at the Nassau Feis for years, organized by Joe Halligan (God bless him). Tá fós ag an bhFeis Suffolk le Bernard De Brún á eagrú.  Bernard Bruen still does this at the Suffolk Feis. Sa chomórtas amhránaíochta ar an sean nós a bhíonn ag an bhFeis Nassau, is iomaí duine a chanann as Gaeilge.  In the traditional singing contest at the Nassau Feis, lots of people sing in Irish.

Níl mórán eolais agam faoin nGaeilge ag rannáin ar fud na tíre, ach rinne mé scagadh ar an idirlíon, agus feicim go bhfuil cúpla focal agus cúpla nasc ar a suímh idirlín.  I don’t have a lot of information about Irish at divisions throughout the country, but I did a little checking on the internet, and see a few words and a few links on their websites. Tá daoine ag foghlaim na cúpla focal.  People are learning a few words. Molaim go dtabharfar níos mó aire don litriú agus do na hacmhainn nua atá ar fáil, fiú don colún seo, atá sa chartlann anseo:  I recommend that more attention be paid to spelling, to the new resources that are available, even this column, here is in this archive: http://www.scoilgaeilge.org/t_na_t/

Is iomaí ball den AOH ag a bhfuil Gaeilge. Lots of AOH members speak Irish. Ní bhfuair mé riamh, agus mé i mo bhall, go raibh aon duine diúltach maidir leis an nGaeilge. I’ve never found, since I’ve been a member, that anyone was negative about the language. Ceapaim go raibh Mícheál glan mícheart in 1891.  I think that Michael was totally wrong  in 1891. Gabhaim leithscéal don AOH ar son An Gael as an rud a dúirt ár n-eagarthóir fadó.  On behalf of An Gael, I apologize to the AOH for what our editor said so long ago.

Má tá eolas agat faoi stair na Gaeilge san AOH, scríobh chugam, le do thoil, ag JamusN@aol.com.  If you have information about the history of the language in the AOH, please write to me, at JamusN@aol.com