He may be from Co Monaghan but he’s of Donegal stock! Michael Coll of The Tax Clinic is well known to many for helping people with their tax returns as well as his amateur dramatic efforts. This is his Donegal.
What is your favourite place in Donegal and why?
Portnablagh – I spent many a summer as a child staying with my granny and grandad who used to spoil me rotten and take me down to the beach everyday to fish for crabs. It’s such a special place that I even proposed to my wife on that very same beach.
If you could change one thing about Donegal what would it be?
Better public transport. A train service to Dublin at minimum.
Who is the one person that you look up to and why?
My parents – and in particularly my mother. She reared 6 boys and our house was crazy growing up. I have only 2 and can’t imagine having 6 to look after.
What’s your happiest Christmas memory in Donegal?
For me it was 2015. We had our first child (Jenny) in March of that year and going out to see Santa with her made me feel like a child all over again. We now have 2 kids – another little boy Ben and I cant wait for the excitement on Christmas morning.
What has been Donegal’s proudest moment in recent years?
There have been some great moments – but my father gave me his All – Ireland ticket to go and see Sam being lifted in 2012. But let’s not mention football – once a Monaghan man always a Monaghan man.
If you found a magic wand that allowed you to grant one wish, what
would it be?
To spend a little more time with my nana. She was a quirky interesting woman and we named our first born “Jenny” after her.
What is your favourite Donegal-made product?
Football Special – we couldn’t buy it in Monaghan growing up so it was the first purchase as soon I landed at my granny’s house every summer.
Who is Donegal’s greatest ambassador around the world and why?
He has been mentioned a few times before on here but there is no denying that Daniel O Donnell has been great at promoting the county.
What has been the biggest compliment you’ve ever received?
I just turned 40 at the end of September and was told by a lovely old lady that I still looked about 20 – my wife says she probably didn’t have her glasses on!
Who is your favourite Donegal sportsperson of all time?
I must say I really admire Jason Black. He is competing at the highest level as an endurance athlete and this takes a huge commitment to train probably 6 to 7 days per week. I have never met him so if he is reading this maybe he could contact me to go for a pint or even a water!
What is your favourite Donegal restaurant?
Cafe Davitt on the High Road – very close to our office. Fantastic food and friendly service.
What is your favourite Donegal saying or expression?
Waynes! I am originally from Emyvale in Co.Monaghan. My mother comes from Portnablagh and father comes from Carrigart. My parents moved to Monaghan over 50 years ago as my father was a member of the Gardai. I moved up here permanently in 2005 and to this day my 5 brothers and their wifes laugh ever time they hear my wife talking about the “Waynes”.
What is the biggest challenge facing the people of Donegal today?
Youth unemployment. We have taken in a few college students for work experience and they are unfortunately leaving the county to find work.
What is your favourite food that you associate with Donegal?
Gallaghers Bakery Ardara make some fantastic breads.
Is there anything that really annoys you about Donegal or its people?
To be honest – No. The people are friendly and sure the weather is great!
Do you have a favourite local band?
I still love seeing the Goats Don’t Shave when they do the odd gig. I have their current album Turf Man Blues playing in the car at the minute.
If you had a million euro to improve something in Donegal what would it be?
Many people would probably say the roads – but a million euro wouldn’t go far. I would put every penny towards improving our mental health services and making sure that it is available 24/7 to anybody that needs access. People suffering with mental health issues just don’t have them 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday – so proper access to adequately trained people is vital.
From a personal point of view I suffered myself with low moods for a period of time and found that the best medicine for me was to change my diet and get exercise – so now I go to the gym at least 3 times per week at 6am and try to eat healthy 70% of the time but would never miss the takeaway at the weekend.
Where’s the most unusual place you’ve logged on to Donegal Daily?
Montreal in Canada.
Is there anything about Donegal that you are very proud of?
(example: our culture/language)
The people – my parents both moved away 50 years ago but keep coming back every few weeks to stay in their house in Portnablagh. They have never lost their love for the county.
What is the most rewarding thing about what you do?
Helping people out when they are starting a new business. Starting a new business is a brave thing to do and comes with lots of advantages and disadvantages and as accountants and chartered tax consultants we can at least take one worry of their mind when it comes to the tax side of things. We had a young 16 year old man in a few weeks back who has just started his own little business so the country is in safe hands when we have entrepreneurs as young as this with great ideas.Tags: