Mothers of Modern Ireland

Sucking diesel

4th July 2008

There comes certain moments where even a hardened cynic has to concede that something went right and I think today was for the first of those in the week we've been in production. Firstly, the good people at the Sneem Hotel put us up for the night after the wonderful drive-in the night before. I got myself up at 3 in the morning to start a time-lapse shot of the sunrise over the mountains right out of my window and went back to bed. We were then treated to a lovely breakfast that didn't centre itself around the Grinder staple. After that we made our way into the little village of Sneem to find our Kerry lady: Rosemary Bradshaw. Everyone in the quaint village seemed to know her name and we quickly found her studio. I hope Rosemary doesn't mind me calling her an eccentric, but I do believe that if I'm ever able to use that title in my life, it should be reserved for a woman such as this. Rosemary hand paints pottery, tiles and various other artwork and is a bit of a local celebrity as her work has travelled the world, even into Charles de Gaulle's collection (Who visited Sneem way back). We had a fun time in Rosemary's studio listening to stories of her growing up in a poor country yet not having to worry about money. It was definitely in stark contrast to all the other ladies we'd met, but obviously no less important in terms of the social fabric of the isle. However, there was one tiny thing that was niggling all three of ua as we listened to Rosemary: She wasn't actually from Kerry. She was born and raised as a Plymouth Brethren in Dublin. Although we're not absolutely anal about where the ladies must have spent all their time etc; the rhetoric, dialect and accent of the regions was something we couldn't play down in a project like this so we were a little worried. Luckily after we bid a fond farewell to Rosemary and she gave a lovely cup of hers to Hannah, we made our way back to Sneem Hotel via the D O'Sheas pub, where we were told by Louis Moriarty, the owner of the hotel, that the oldest lady in the village might be able to talk to us. Little did we know...

- Tom