Irish language

Make the word “bored” disappear by using boxes of time

TRAINSPOTTING: The hobby hasn’t completely died out but the number of trains in Ireland is tiny compared to what it used to be
Robert McMillen

GO mbeannaí Dia daoibh agus bhur gcéad fáilte isteach chuig The Bluffer's Guide to Irish.

One of the saddest things the Bluffer hears is when people say tá mé dúdóite - I'm fed up. Now this is not the “I'm fed up” which is code for tá gruaim orm - I'm depressed or tá brón orm - I'm sad but the one that means “I'm bored.”

In this day and age, it is hard to imagine who people cannot find something wonderful to be up to. Gone are the days when ag bailiú stampaí - stamp collecting or ag aimsiú traenacha - trainspotting was all we had to keep us entertained. To the Bluffer, the world is full of wonder if only you would get off your Derry air and go look for it.

What floats your boat depends on what type of person you are, ar ndóigh - of course. Some people get a lot of personal satisfaction from carthanacht - charity and by helping others who have fallen on hard times but others aren't that naturally sociable and prefer more solitary pursuits.

The Bluffer, for example, likes going for walks on Beann Mhadagáin - Cave Hill or the Black Mountain and the more inclement the weather, the more enjoyable it is as, through his icy breath, he laughs at the people down below melting in their centrally-heated homes as they watch their omnibus soap operas.

Watching Corrie/Eastenders/Emmerdale is indeed a caitheamh aimsire - a hobby but one that will lead to inner tranquillity.

(And we are very partitionist about our soaps - have you ever, ever heard anyone talk about Fair City? Thought not!)

Exercise is what you need, for mind and for body.

The Bluffer likes to divide his time into boxes of different lengths and each box is for different gníomhachtaí - activities. The more boxes you open, the more enjoyable your life will be. One box might be for chatting with friends and/or family, so you need a box for love. Another might be tidying the house (you can tidy a room in 15 minutes, four in an hour).

Another box might be for léamh - reading and this could be anything from the Irish News to War and Peace or the latest Marian Keyes.

You could even use google to find out something interesting.

Another box could be for aclaíocht - exercise, like going for a walk or press-ups or stretching depending on your age and fitness.

Another box might be for doing absolutely nothing. We need to spend time just relaxing, not thinking about what's next.

And there are so many other ways of spending the time when you aren't earning a crust or sleeping.

Foghlaim teanga - learn a language. If you are going on a foreign holiday, learn the language of that country, even just a few phrases.

There are loads of rangannna oíche - night classes all over the country starting up at this time of the year so go get started.

Irish language

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