The motorway allows easy access to the kids' grandparents and your polling station
I’ve rarely seen a bandwagon I didn’t want to jump on too late. My colleague Robert Mulhern has made hay with lists that prove you are old Naas and proper old Naas but what about something for the blow-ins? Here is my, admittedly less rich, contribution to the cannon. 25 signs you are new Naas:
1. Your kid's first GAA shirt was not white — it was likely blue.
2. You venture south of the Post Office rarely.
3. You think that the motorway is one of the great things about Naas as it allows easy weekend access Dublin/Cork/Tipperary.
4. Your kids winning Feile medals with Naas means a lot to you; the relative lack of success for the adult teams does not really register.
5. Horse racing is not an important part of your life.
6. You are baffled that some pubs will screen a meeting from Ludlow over Everton v Chelsea.
7. Rugby is not an important part of your life.
8. You cannot get your head around the fact that the Leinster game is on the big screen while soccer is relegated to the little telly in the corner. This is not the natural order!
9. You were amazed to learn there was a nice canal in Naas, about eight-and-a-half months after moving to the town.
10. You wonder why there is no Dunnes Stores here, until you learn what those three cranes were put there for in the first place.
11. You find it outrageous that you can be clamped in car parks.
12. You wonder why anybody would ever go to the small Tesco when there is a huge one out the road — and they’re threatening to clamp you in the small one.
13. You were never really sure what a Kildare accent sounded like until your kids started talking.
14. You wonder how they have a Kildare accent seeing as they’re not yet in school and both their parents are blow-ins.
15. You are surprised to learn that instead of parks and trails to walks the dog there are race courses which double as that purpose. And very nice they are too.
16. You are amazed by the size of the houses in the countryside that surrounds Naas — from Osberstown to Forenaughts to Eadestown to Two Mile House and back to Osberstown — and no longer wonder how all the boutiques can stay going.
17. There are certain bars you find yourself in (Hayden’s, Kavanagh’s, Grace’s, Fletcher’s) and certain pubs you regard, rightly or wrongly, as the preserve of the longer established natives (O’Connor’s, Swan Dowling's). With McCormack’s it depends on whether you go to the front or the back.
18. You wonder what locals do on a nice day because there’s no beach.
19. You went "home" to vote even though "home" has not been home for more than a decade.
20. What?! The kids are allowed off school for Punchestown Friday? That's outrageous!
21. Some workplaces allow their employees off for a "Punchestown day". What a nice idea, how do I sign up?
22. If you’re from way down the country, your parents think you live in a western suburb of Dublin despite repeated explanations to the contrary.
23. You are struck by how every sporting conversation manages to come around to odds quickly enough. Then it moves onto the gamble that landed yesterday. Always yesterday. Some day you'll be here long enough to be told about these sure things that "everyone was on" before they happen.
24. You form the opinion that the most idolized man in the world of sport is not Messi or Bolt or even Ruby Walsh, but Barney Curley.
25. You wonder how a train station disappeared, to be replaced eventually by a Tesco. And now there are two Tescos, and no Dunnes, and no train station either. But there's a feeder bus to the station in Sallins, only you haven't quite figured out the perfect walk-feeder bus-train-Luas-walk route to work yet. Some day you'll figure it all out.