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Wednesday May 21st


TomGlassey

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8.35 a.m. I am just back from morning walk. We have a stiff South-easterly breeze this morning, probably about force 4/5. The smell of the hawthorn in the lane as you enter Poulson Park does put you in a good frame of mind at the start of your walk. I also noticed the strong smell of hawthorn at Ronaldsway Halt yesterday evening.

 

I didn’t wake until 6 this morning, which is rather late for me. The radio and TV are full of nothing else but tonight’s European cup final between Manu and Chelsea. As a Liverpool supporter, I wish it was possible for both to lose. Well that is not very charitable of me is it? OK, but surely a draw would also be a very unfair result, as Manu would be sure to win the penalty shoot out. Ronaldo has had so much more practice at taking penalties than anyone else in the world!

 

As a kid at the blind school in Liverpool I played a lot of football. We played with a standard ball. However, about 20 tiny ball bearings were shoved inside the ball to make a noise. I was always the goalkeeper and the goal, of which there was only one, was the gable end of the school assembly hall. I was also the only totally blind child that took part, as the rest of the kids did have a little sight. However, we did have one totally blind teacher, who used to join in. The good thing about MR McDermott was that because he was totally blind like me, whenever he took a shot at the goal, and the ball went whistling passed me and slammed against the gable wall, as it bounced back I would shout “great save Sir. That one almost got passed me”. The rest of the kids used to threaten that if I ever stepped out of line, they would tell Mr McDermott how many goals he had really scored against me. I do believe he had some idea though, as he would say from time to time. “Glassey, if you are as good as you say you are out in that playground, one day you will be the first blind goalkeeper to play for England, and you will be the best ever.”

 

It was Bill Shankly who once said. Football is more important than life or death. Well Bill is dead himself now, and has probably changed his mind.

 

Last February when I was first diagnosed with cancer, I did wonder if I would be around for tonight’s cup final. Unless I get mowed down by the Port St Mary bus today, I will be. So, joking aside, I will enjoy tonight’s final, no matter who wins it. I also now harbour hopes of being around for next years and who knows how many more after that. Cancer teaches you to be grateful for every day, and then maybe the years will take care of themselves. Just like the old saying, ‘Look after the pennies, and the pounds will look after themselves’.

 

So, until tomorrow people, but make sure you enjoy and make full use of today.

 

This is Tom with News at 9 a.m., on the banks of the Silverburn River.

 

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