Posted by: admin | September 8, 2009


Hello to all our friends and interested parties in Cyber land, receive greetings from the 300 year old cottage in Donoughmore, Co. Cork, Ireland!

God willing, on the first Thursday in August Shannon Challenge 2010 will commence when we hook Zafor’s van up to Omar’s River Bird, which is currently “moored” at the site of what was the highest boat building company in Ireland, until my son, Omar, (RIP) stepped into truth in AD 1995. From there we will voyage overland to Carrick-On-Shannon where the official launch will take place. As always my partner in high-jinx, Jack Donovan, will be riding “shotgun” on the journey “up the country”.  The vessel will then be towed to the marker at the top of Lough Allen which is the beginning of Shannon Navigation. In both the 2007 and 2008 efforts Omar’s River Bird came close to disaster when launching on the rocky beach at Cromungan. Not wanting to tempt fate a third time it was decided to tow the boat to the top of the Shannon. This also eliminates the unnecessary row from the bottom of Lough Allen to the marker at its top which is the official beginning of the Shannon Navigation.

The little live aboard cruiser, Omar’s River Bird, has racked up over 1,000 kilometers of engine-less transit from 2007 through 2009, establishing many international benchmark records in both adventure and endurance challenge. Hence this effort is beyond a thousand kilometers.  As always we are trying to highlight our fundraising for our very special boy, Tony, and the project in India. And showing that the best part of life starts at retirement. I entered my 75th year of life on February 2 this year and never had it so good!

At the end of it all I hope to have some photos and comments to add to the site.

Please keep the effort and the fundraising in prayer. The photo above was taken by the Enniskillen Impartial Reporter Newspaper as I was rowing through that town while making the first engine-less transit of the Erne Navigation in a live-aboard boat.

Thanks and God bless,        Donnacha Attig

It’s been a while since I could do a posting.  No electricity on a boat without an engine! And no Internet cafes in the middle of the lakes or at the Jetties scattered around the Erne Loughs. 

Our quest ended in success at 7:45 P.M., Sunday August 30, AD 2009 when I rowed into the Beleek public harbor.

Rowing into Beleek

Rowing into Beleek Harbor.                                         Mission Accomplished!!!

While I was rowing away Tonyhad his first day at his new school in Chennai. He and Maureen moved there to facilitate the passport process.


The photo of him shows the real Tony. A wonderful little boy of loves life, doesn’t worry about what he can’t do and concentrates on enjoying what he can do to the fullest! God willing, we will be able to see him soon here in Ireland and the UK. 

God bless, Donnacha Attig



  1. Tony is getting on well at school, although their teacher came in two weeks ago to tell the Sisters that she was leaving and ….left!. SO, now they have three different ‘years’ being taught in the same class which means that a lot of the time the kids are all doing first grade work – or doing what they enjoy the most – messing about!!! Lets hope they get a replacement soon.

    Tony has an exam on Monday so we’ll have to do a fair bit of revising on Sunday as well as going to see his biological parents. He has a huge bag of toys to give to them for the children. We’ll supply a load of batteries too, but most will happily roll along even when the batteries are long gone.

    Soon (about ten days) half term starts – I tell ya something, these kids have at least one day’s holiday every week for something or other! I well remember when I had 6 kids in the house and had seen them all off to school and was getting ready to go out shopping – suddenly faces appeared at the front door, and then some more….they’d gone to school only to be sent home because of a feast day or something that they had forgotten about! I often wondered what happened to the kiddies whose parents were not in when they came home on those days – and couldn’t get into their houses or anything!

    Though it’s supposed to be well into the monsoon season here, it’s still stifling and humid and uncomfortable. Do wish the rains would come properly – but that said, Chennai was under water for weeks last year and many many suffered because of it – lets hope we just get rain that we need and not an excess.

    Blessings to all.

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