• Michael Noctor

A Crumlin Memory

Updated: Sep 21, 2020

As a child I spent a lot of time in my granny's house on Captain's Road. I remember wondering who the captain might be, but never asking. I was a quiet, shy little fella and besides my sister and I were always warned by my mother that little children should be seen and not heard, which was idle advice because it wasn't easy to be heard in the mad chaos of my granny's. The house no longer belongs to the family; it's the end of an era.

I have so many childhood memories of my time in Crumlin and this one involves one of the old double-decker C.I.E. buses. Are you old enough to remember them?

My mother had left an eight-year-old me in the charge of my uncle Michael and his mate Paddy. Paddy's nickname was 'H' - a lovely guy, sadly long passed. I idolised Michael and was excited when he said he'd take me to see Fist of Fury.

H wanted to see something else, so we went to see The fastest boy in the jungle, or something like that.

We got the 83 bus home. The terminus was at the end of Captain's Road. I didn't know that, so as the bus rounded the corner to its final stop, Michael and H waved at me - laughing - and hopped off the moving bus. I was in a state of panic. I didn't know what to do, so, I jumped too. I'd never jumped from a moving bus. I jumped the wrong way and when my little feet - I was only 8, remember - hit a pavement that was like a fast-moving treadmill I really panicked. In two or three seconds it was over and by some miracle and some seriously speedy shoe shifting - speedier than the fastest boy in the jungle, even - I had avoided being sucked under the back wheel of the no. 83 bus.

My uncle Michael continued to be my idol. I had a case of Stockholm Syndrome, and it was severe.