WITH most of life’s big decisions, something’s got to give. 

In Deirdre O’Kane’s case it was leaving behind a leafy suburb with a school walk through the park. 

But it was a price the comedian and actor was prepared to pay when she upped sticks and returned recently to live in Dublin after 10 years in London.

It didn’t take her long to readjust. 

“It just feels like home,” she says. 

“You’re a fit. I feel like I’m back with my tribe.”

Now living in Dun Laoighre, the sea is only minutes away and is a constant, uplifting presence. 

“When I walk to the top of my road and turn the corner I can see the sea. 

"Without fail — it wouldn’t matter what kind of a day it was — I find the sea is incredibly healing. I feel absolutely thrilled to be back near it again.”

Married to writer and director Stephen Bradley, their children, Holly, 11, and Daniel, 7, have also settled in quickly. 

“We’ve had a few moments but nothing major. They’ve got on great, new schools and all the rest of it. Fair play to them.”

* Deirdre O’Kane performs at The Everyman Theatre, Cork, on Saturday, April 23 at 8pm. For details see: www.everymancork.ie 

What shape are you in?

Average. I try to eat well. That would be my number one thing. I try to do a couple of Pilates or yoga classes a week. That’s it, after that I’m running around.

What are your healthiest eating habits?

I don’t eat pasta or rice or potatoes in the evening. I’d have them for lunch though, no bother. I suppose having a light evening meal is probably my healthiest eating habit. 

I’m avocado mad and I always have a very full fruit bowl in the kitchen. 

I’ve been taking Revive Active, If I’m run ragged and take a sachet in the morning, I’m covered.

What are your guiltiest pleasures?

Chips and dips. I could live on hummus, guacamole and salsas.

The downside to all that is the chips, like Dorritos — I’m addicted to them and they have far too much salt.

They are are an absolute treat. That and a glass of wine — usually a white.

What would keep you awake at night?

Too much adrenaline. It’s a problem if I’ve been on stage.

I’m on tour at the moment, and after my Dundalk show I drove back to my parents’ house. I got home at midnight but I couldn’t switch off. 

I had a herbal tea and read a book, I can’t read anything that is too heavy, it has to be a a calming book. I still had to wait for the sleep to come two hours later.

What book are you currently reading?

One of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read, Not Yet Dark, by filmaker Simon Fitzmaurice. He has motor neurone disease and is in a wheel chair. He is so unbelieveably talented. The story is just unbelievable.

How do you relax?

Chips and dips, glass of wine and TV — heaven on earth. And now that it’s coming into summer, a gin and tonic — it takes the little edge of you. 

I swear by a bath — it’s as good as a massage. I always invest in nice bath oils. And I do light the candles.

What’s your favourite smell?

Fresh coffee brewing. I also love flowers and the scent of the blossoms when they come out. Onions and garlic — the smell of food cooking. 

I’m quite hooked on scent and use a lot of scented candles and oils. I have a particular perfume, Aqua di Parma Iris Nobile

What would you like to change about your appearance?

I’d like to fix my nose, I’d like it to be straighter, I’d like to lose a little fat from my chin and I’d like to slice a couple of inches from my waist. That would probably do me.

When is the last time you cried?

I am a good crier. I let the tears happen. Get everything out, I’m a believer in that.

What traits do you least like in others?

I’m not fond of gossip for the sake of it. I don’t like dissing other people, it makes me very uncomforatble. 

If you haven’t got a positive thing to say don’t bother. You have to be older to get this — it comes with age.

What traits do you least like about yourself?

My impatience is a huge issue. I fully appreciate the saying patience is a virute. I have to work hard at that. 

I feel for the children. I wish they had a more patient parent — they pay the price, God love them. 

I often have to apologise, that’s the vital part

Do you pray?

Not specific traditional prayers. I don’t break into a Hail Mary or an Our Father very often but I certainly talk to the universe.

What would cheer up your day?

The minute I see the sun my heart is lifted. It’s probably the greatest mood enhancer. 

Also, I love people who have big, positive energy.


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