Friday, December 31

2010 El Zarpe

Friday Sunset, December 31, 2010

'El Zarpe' means the last one and this is the last sunset of the year. Hope you are reflecting on a great year in 2010 and looking forward to an even better year in 2011.

Sunday, December 26

Santa Gringos in Jaco

I saw this video and wanted to share it here with you. What a great thing these guys went out and did on their own AND made a video!! I publish it here to inspire me and others .......what just a couple of guys can do to make a difference!!

Saturday, December 18

Take it to Heart

"Sunrise Sunday" 2008 post link

I have to stop and wonder, why does some news hit me so hard? I came to the conclusion that although it is terrible about the bicycle accident that happened recently in Jaco, it is not uncommon. Many people are killed in this country on bicycles, motocycles, and just walking down the road. For so many people, they have only bicycles for transportation and given the road conditions in some areas AND the way some people drive, it's surprising not more are killed.

I figured out the reason his death struck me so hard were issues I had not faced when my father was killed in a car accident. My dad's car was t-boned after a driver motioned for him to cross over a busy highway. He died in the hospital due to blood loss and a severed aorta. I won't go into all the details but it was tragic and a huge shock. I was his only daughter/kid. Twenty years later, I realize I never really accepted his death or was at peace with it. He was my hero.

This time last year, a friend of mine's son was killed while riding his bicycle in front of his house. He was only eight years old. I grieved for weeks for his mother and his family. I realized later, it was my sister losing her eight year old boy in a 4-wheel accident nearly 20 years ago which was the real source of most of my grieving. Unhealed heart.

Life is mysterious.
Things we choose to deny at the time,
have a way of repeating somewhere down the road.

It is a magical time of the day, early morning.

"The Wave - Digital to Canvas" post link

Monday, December 13

His name is Matt

Sometimes, there is something so tragic that happens,,, it takes your breath away and the weight on your chest is so heavy from your heart that you have to think to take a breath. That is how I have felt since I opened up an email on Sunday morning and read Tom's letter to me about his friend being struck by a car while he was riding a bicycle in Jaco. It was their last day here and they were returning their rental bikes. Both were here vacationing and were to return to Connecticut the next day when this happened. Matt would have been back to work today at the firehouse.

Lt. Martin "Matt" Dirrane was a firefighter for 16 years at the West End Station on Sisson Ave in Hartford. I had breakfast with him and his friend Tom eariler that morning. I cannot believe something so tragic happened and I mourn for his mother, his family, his friends, and his fellow firefighters.,0,576205.story?track=rss-topicgallery

December 20th, 2010:

Martin K. "Matt" DIRRANE

DIRRANE, Martin K. "Matt" Martin K. "Matt" Dirrane, 50, of Waterford, passed away tragically as a result of an accident in Costa Rica, Saturday (December 11, 2010). Matt was born in Hartford, and was raised in East Hartford. He graduated from George J. Penny High School and attended Daniel Webster College of Aviation prior to going on to Indiana State University. Matt was an Ironworker for Local 15, Hartford, for 13 years before becoming a Hartford Firefighter. He was proud to have served on the busiest Tactical Rescue Unit in the United States. He was promoted to Lieutenant and served at Ladder Company 5. Matt was a proud member of the following organizations, the Hartford Firefighters Emerald Society, the International Association of Firefighters, the Patrol and Firemans Association, the Police and Fireman's Association, the Fireman's Benevolent Society, the Firefighters Local 760, and the Firefighters Protective Association. He was also a past member of the Irish American Home Society, Glastonbury. Matt leaves behind his adoring family, to include his mother, Theresa (Faherty) Derrane, a sister, Pauline (Derrane) Wyatt and her husband Tom; his cherished nieces and nephews, Summer, Mary Grace, Megan, and Joseph Wyatt. In addition, Matt is also survived by a son, Kevin, in California, a large extended Irish family, and many close, dear friends. He was predeceased by his father, Joseph Derrane, and his two brothers, Joseph and Robert Derrane. Matt was known for his adventurous spirit, love for life, had a great passion for fitness and sports, along with a tremendous sense of humor and being a skillful practical joker. No one, from the very young to the very old, was safe; he played jokes on us all. Matt had a gift of making everyone feel great. At the very least, you smiled around Matt, but typically you left laughing. Matt was larger than life, and was loved by all who knew him. He was a strong hard worker, who was proud of his Irish heritage. Above all, Matt was a guardian, extremely loyal and loving to his friends and family. He was our rock, who will be missed forever. Now, he is our guardian angel. A Mass of Christian Burial, celebrating Matt's life, will be held, Tuesday (December 21, 2010) at 10 a.m. in the Church of the Incarnation, 544 Prospect Street, Wethersfield, with Rev. Fr. Michael Galasso officiating. Friends are asked to go directly to the church. Interment will be Wednesday (December 22, 2010) 11 a.m. at Jordan Cemetery, 240 Boston Post Road, Waterford. All are welcome to attend. Friends and relatives may call on the family at the Farley-Sullivan Funeral Home, 34 Beaver Road, Wethersfield, Monday, December 20, 2010, from 3-7 p.m. Memorial donations in Matt's name, may be made to the Hartford Firefighters 20 Club, 778 Maple Avenue, Hartford, CT 06114. The Derrane family wishes to express our heartfelt thanks and appreciation, for the overwhelming love and support we have received and given to Matt from so many of you. We would also like to extend a special thank you to the Hartford Fire Department, the Hartford Police Department, Dan Nolan, Neville Brooks, and Greg Kelley. To extend online condolences or for further information, please visit

Published in The Hartford Courant