Chinese UFOs over Ireland

It’s been quite a while since we had a good UFO story and, last week, those who yearn for ‘a close encounter of the third kind’ were sent into dizzy heights of ecstasy only to be cruelly let down within a matter of days.

The story began on the evening of August 3rd when a man, described as ‘a senior member of the Garda detective force in Portlaoise’ was driving from Dunboyne to Portlaoise at 10.45pm. To his amazement, he observed four triangular objects moving across the sky. He jumped out of his car and began filming the incident with his camera phone. He saw one of the UFOs break out of formation before shooting a beam of light downwards and it was then seen following the other three objects that flew away in a north-west direction.


The co-founder of UFO and Paranormal Research Ireland is Carl Nally and he described the detective garda’s UFO footage as ‘the best ever captured in this country’ and went further to say it ranked with ‘the best ever filmed anywhere in the world’. He said the garda had joined other credible witnesses, including a town councillor and an airline pilot, who had also reported UFO activity in the skies around North Dublin and County Meath. The new footage was due to be the main feature at a UFO conference being held last weekend in Clontarf Castle.


Unfortunately, for the UFO fans, their bubble was burst before the conference got underway when an explanation for the ‘UFOs’ materialized. The bright objects in the sky turned out to be Chinese sky lanterns that were released into the night as part of the wedding reception celebrations of Andrea Mulligan and Lyndon James who were married on August 3rd. and held their reception in Dunboyne Castle Hotel.

Apparently, Chinese sky lanterns can climb to an altitude of over 1000 metres and will fly on the wind for over 20 minutes before the flames go out. Because of Dunboyne Castle’s proximity to Dublin Airport, the couple had applied to the Aviation Authority and were granted permission to launch the lanterns that very quickly became UFOs.

An amusing twist to the story is that it was started by a senior detective who believed he was seeing UFOs while the groom, who helped launch the lanterns, is a senior detective in England!


Irish music on radio


Last week, I lent my support to the national campaign to have more Irish music of all kind played on local and national radio but I was unaware that, in fact, local radio stations do play a quota of Irish music every day.

Under the terms of their licence agreements with the Broadcasting Commission of Ireland, all commercial radio stations, such as WLRfm and Beat 102-103, are obliged to play a strict quota of Irish music daily. Their contracts state that Irish music is defined as music written, composed, recorded or performed by Irish artists.

In WLRfm’s case, the station is contractually obliged to ensure that 25% to 30% of all music played between 7am and 7pm is Irish. Likewise, Monday to Friday in the time period 7.30pm to 12midnight, WLRfm must play 30% Irish Music and Monday to Sunday, 30% of the music broadcast overnight must be Irish too. A station spokesperson pointed out that those quotas were implemented in their playlists and the presenters were told to strictly adhere to them.

The BCI monitors all commercial radio stations on a regular basis to ensure that they are adhering to all elements of their contracts. Breaches are noted and are then taken in to account when radio stations reapply for renewal of their licences to broadcast.

However, as of now, RTE Radio does not have to adhere to quotas in this area although that may change when the BCI becomes The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland in the near future because, then, RTE will come under its jurisdiction.

Flahavan’s is still the original and the best


There has been a lot of controversy recently about the high sugar content in certain breakfast cereals but, on our own doorstep here in Waterford, is a local company producing world class breakfast foods that are not only delicious to eat but are extremely health conscious.

Flahavan’s of Kilmacthomas has now launched a new range of real fruit porridge that will set everybody up for the day. Sunrise Fruits is a combination of raisins, sultanas, pineapple, cranberries and papaya, all mixed together with the unmistakable taste of Flahavan’s oats while Apple and Raisin mixes crunchy red apple pieces with raisins and a hint of cinnamon. In the old days, we were told that ‘porridge would put hair on our chests’ but it is not politically correct to suggest that now!

Porridge is a naturally low-calorie, good-mood food that is high in fibre and low in salt. It is 100 per cent wholegrain and one bowl provides two thirds of our recommended daily wholegrain intake.

Starting your day with a bowl of Flahavan’s porridge can help boast energy levels, lower cholesterol, help control blood sugar levels, help with weight management, aid digestion and, as a wholegrain food, may help prevent heart disease. It’s even been claimed that oats can improve the libido, as they are good source of zinc!

The old people knew what was good for them and, surely, porridge has never been so tempting, especially for children.


Difficult address


Sadly, a decent poor man was very ill one night last week in his home in one of the city’s newer, upmarket estates. His concerned partner was extremely worried and called the Caredoc urging them to come as quickly as possible.

“Where do you live”, said the person on the other end of the line. “No 15, Eucalyptus Drive”, answered the worried partner. “How do you spell that”, enquired the doctor’s surgery. There was a long pause before the reply came forth. “I’ll tell you what, I’ll meet you on the corner of Oak Drive and show you the way myself.”


Tit for tat!


Two pals popped into their local for a quick drink after work and were surprised to find, Jack, one of the regular customers behind the bar. “That’ll be 20 cent”, said the new barman as he plopped down two pints on the bar. The lads looked at each other but said nothing and, just as they were finishing their cheap drinks, Jack arrived with a bottle of 20-year-old whiskey and two glasses filled with crushed ice. “Have a sip on those before your takeaway arrives”, he said cheerfully.


Everybody else in the bar also received free drinks and, within a short time, a huge order of spicy sliced beef with all the trimmings arrived from the Chinese Restaurant. Jack handed out portions to everybody in the bar telling them to enjoy their meal. “The bill comes to €175”, said the delivery-man. “No problem”, said Jack as he took €200 out of the till and told the man to keep the change as a tip.


The lads couldn’t hide their curiosity any longer. “What’s going on Jack, why are you behind the bar and, anyway, where’s your girlfriend, she’s usually with you any time you come in here”, they asked.


“She arrived before me and I was told she’d gone upstairs with the owner”, replied Jack grimly. The penny still didn’t drop for the lads. “What’s she doing upstairs with him”, they chorused. “Same thing as I’m doing down here with his business”, came the reply.