170 pages; paperback; ISBN 978-0-898332-15-0
When the author was asked by An Aimsir Óg to provide some work to celebrate the Irish Language in the year 2000, and to do that, if possible, in the form of a diary, he discovered a tool with which, not only could he carry out an investigation of the fortunes of his language and his country, but an investigation also of his own thoughts and emotions.
The diary form is used masterfully to get to grips with some of the most pressing problems of the 21st Century. From the poetry of O'Carolan to the Street Parade in Zurich, from the Tribunals to the mowing of the lawn in the back garden, his private life and the great public issues come together to provide food for the mind and the soul.
"This diary succeeds, because Mac Cóil provides material that is interesting without being confessional. Rather than an act of contrition, this is an act of hope. — The Irish Times.
The editors of An Chonair Chaoch examine the language specifically in the context of the Gaeltacht and bilingualism. Unsurprisingly, the view of parents, legal issues, language planning, education, and their effect on a very fragile linguistic region, are studied in great detail here.... Many of the conclusions make for stark reading and give the lie to the oft-repeated slur that Irish speakers live in cloud cuckoo land when it comes to Irish.