A Mosaic of Social Bridges ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 220

I didn’t call this blog ‘Social Bridge’ for fun. However, I think I may have been too serious about the name way back then. I have to laugh now at the extent to which Google has shown me that people think the blog may relate to bridge, the card game, played more for fun and meeting partners than anything else!

Apples in Mount Congreve Gardens, Co. Waterford
Apples in Mount Congreve Gardens, Co. Waterford

Well, I’d like to have another go at explaining what Social Bridges mean to me and I would give anything to hear about the social bridges ~ either personal or public ~ that spring to your mind.

For me, Social Bridges are people, places, ideas, events that connect people to each other or that connect aspects of  an individual’s own life.

From the very outset, the personified  and public ‘Social Bridge’ that stood out for me was Senator George Mitchell who played such a role in bringing about peace in Northern Ireland. That peace means the world to me and thousands and thousands of other people.

Senator George Mitchell Source: Wikipedia
Senator George Mitchell
Source: Wikipedia

I suppose it’s fair to say that I never stop thinking ‘social bridges’ in terms of my own life.  There are just so many that have huge significance ~ poetry, tennis, daffodils, The Bridges of Ross in Co. Clare, and tiles, yes, tiles!

I was just about to wash the tiles on our kitchen floor when I found myself thinking of the tiles I saw just last weekend in historic St. Carthage’s Cathedral in Lismore here in Co. Waterford.

St. Carthage's Cathedral, Lismore, Co. Waterford.
St. Carthage’s Cathedral, Lismore, Co. Waterford.

As I looked at the tiles in the Cathedral, I couldn’t but think of the visit I paid to my late father’s home in Kilrush, Co. Clare around this time last year.

I had long been hearing about the tiles in the house and as I sat there talking to the lovely woman who had bought the house from the family, I felt as if my feet were walking across a bridge of generations that spanned nine decades or far, far more.

The Bridges of Ross, Co. Clare.
The Bridges of Ross, Co. Clare.

Social Bridges are where people meet, be it in person, online or through the paths of time.

What, who are where are the Social Bridges that mean most to you?

Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and sense of place.

5 thoughts on “A Mosaic of Social Bridges ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 220”

    1. Thanks for this fascinating response ~ we don’t have ‘diners’ here in Ireland or at least we don’t call them that. Is it a ‘table or booth’ place? I love booths BUT I can’t really imagine getting too much news in one unless there was a gathering of locals in it. Pray tell me more!!

      1. tables seat ten.. but you can have a booth or seat at the counter if you wish…all the news you care to indulge in…it’s the local gathering place… breakfast usually turns in to a 2 hour story telling marathon… 🙂

  1. Thanks for this elaboration! May I ask it is more or less the same people at the breakfast gathering and what time all this happens at? Also, I suppose there’s the matter of how mixed the group is in terms of age, especially?

  2. Great pictures of the cathedral and the Bridges of Ross – I thought I ‘knew’ Ireland but I realise I only know a fraction.

    I suppose what interests me most is bridges from the past to the present. On Saturday my running group plodded up and down a couple of hilly tracks on the west coast, presumably they’ve been there for centuries. ‘And did those feet in ancient times…’ and all that.

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