Editorial – December ’23

Strangers? Or Friends you have not yet met? 

The following is inspired by a viral video advert for Charlie’s Bar in Enniskillen 

Who will you call on this festive season? We are all reminded that the Season of Goodwill can bring responsibilities: family may call and expect a return visit; gifts are to be sourced, wrapped, posted or delivered; cards – if you still write them- posted and popped through letter boxes; copious numbers of mince pies, cakes, sweets and goodies will broaden the waistline (again);and the music! I’m sure Santa has been coming to town since the end of September. I hope he finds my chimney (again).

For many of our readers the above is the norm – equally for many, loneliness can become the norm. The only responsibility is to ourselves, a potentially lonely self.

Loneliness, I read, is an epidemic. Our aging population will see some two million of us living alone without regular contact. People move on, divorce rates are increasing, families grow up, elderly parents and family pass and change comes to us all.

In this advert an elderly man visits the cemetery with his flowers, doffs his cap to youngsters (who don’t see him.) walks the pavement ignored by a busy young couple and enters the bar. Clearly on his own and potentially lonely he is joined by, firstly a dog, and then the young couple.

I read that the advert was a low budget attempt to advertise Charlie’s Bar in Eniskillen. Its success may have the viewer rethinking their priority this Christmas time. 

Who will you call on this festive season?

Do you know the name of the neighbour next door? Are you aware of the The Welcome Kitchen? The workings of The Well?