I am greatly indebted to Mrs Norris and her husband, teachers of
I have never had any other teachers and needed none other! When I came of age and went to seek work in town I was very well prepared for life in the town as I was for life in the country.
It was a mixed two-room school, Mr Norris, the headmaster taking a class of boys and girls of fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh graders in the larger room, while Mrs Norris took the infants, and the first to third graders in the small room.
There was an open fire and we were expected to take some turf or coals to feed it. One of the boys arrived early to clean out and set the fire.
They taught us almost everything. I bet I can recite more soliloquies from Shakespeare (King Lear, Macbeth etc) and more lines of poetry than most people can! And that’s from seventy years ago.
I think I am the only survivor from my class at school. How I wish I had had the chance to express my gratitude to those two wonderful people before they passed away.
We learned Irish (especially prayers in Irish). We learned the geography of the world – my favourite subject – and I can recall that great wall map still. We sat, not on the bench of the rowed-seats but up on the body, where our books usually rested.