Generation Next

“So, what secondary school is she gonna go to then?”


“Will it be The Royal?”

“How d’you mean?”

“Well, she goes to a Protestant school so she’ll have to go there then, won’t she?”

“Eh. No, it’s not a Protestant school, it’s for everyone. Protestants, Catholics, Muslims. Have you heard of Muslims?”

She shakes her head to indicate no.

“OK. Well, it’s for children from all different sorts of religious backgrounds, and those with none at all”

“No it’s not, it’s Protestant”

“No it’s not. It’s got play dough”, a voice chips in from the other end of the see-saw to settle the matter.

In conversation with eight-year old and three-year old cousins.


5 thoughts on “Generation Next

  1. The play dough obviously says it all.
    My grandmother was a Catholic from Derry. She never left her past behind even having moved to Donegal. She came to live with us when I was young and these are a few things I remember.
    1. Who is that wee boy?
    Craig who?
    Craig Thompson.
    She then roared to my mum and questioned why I was playing with one of them.
    My mum got really mad and told her she was far from the North now.

    2. My sister brought home a Robert Dixon.
    ‘What is his name?’
    Robert Dixon
    ‘He definitely kicks with the left foot’ (I hadn’t a clue what that meant)
    Again she was ignored.

    Down here thankfully times have changed and my own children would not know what religion their friends are.
    Perhaps Muslim are the new Catholic/protestants?

    • Haha. I wish I could say Donegal folk were blinded by tolerance but that practice wasn’t uncommon. In saying that, the Thompson boy would’ve had a question mark over him, but the poor Dixon lad would’ve been unequivocally labelled on the spot. Yeah, Muslim and ‘furreners’ now the new receptacle for suspicion and intolerance. At least they’re united on something.

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