It was the best of times. Of that, she had no doubt. Westmeath had finally reached an All-Ireland final. Only Kerry stood in the way. It wasn’t that Westmeath had experienced a famine, there was never food there in the first place. No glory, no swagger save a lone Leinster title. Now, Aoife would finally see that all change. She just knew it.
“Don’t get your hopes up too much girls, this is Westmeath after all.”
That was her father just over an hour ago, thinking he was being funny. Unfortunately, he was from Offaly and loved to get the digs in when he could.
Now, she could see the stadium in the distance. The drama, the passion. Adrenaline was pumping through her body. She was with her sister Yvonne. Not the biggest of GAA fans, but more of a recent convert, and Westmeath would need every bit of help it could get.
It was a warm day, not a cloud in the sky and they had just parked up on a field at Clonliffe College. They were now walking on the pathway out of the grounds.
“Come on Yvonne, not much further.”
“Relax Aoife, it doesn’t start for an hour.”
Then Aoife noticed that there was an eldely man pushing a guy in a wheelchair a few meters in front of them. But they are struggling over the gravel surface.
“Sorry, need a hand? Can I be of assistance?”
The old man looked at her forlornly. The guy looked somewhat embarrassed. They were both wearing Kerry colors.
“It’s just so hard to push.”
“Here, let me have a go,”
It was tough but she knew she could do it.
“My name is Aoife by the way.”
The older man spoke first.
“I’m James and this is my nephew Stephen.