Radio silence from me is due to a peaceful week in Dublin. Arrived into Dublin on Good Friday, on the boat. I like getting the boat. Unlike the airplane which is the opposite of restful, the boat is from a leisurely age – train from Euston at 12.30, change at Crewe, Crewe to Holyhead, look out at the coast, sheep, castles, bays, to Holyhead, onto boat, and so to Dublin by 19.30. I did very little but arrived back in London rested and with some memorable snippets to ponder.
– Good Friday is traditionally a day when pubs close, but because of some important match, some pubs in Limerick (I think) had been given a special license to open. I always thought the Good Friday closing was a traditional thing only, but no, it’s enshrined in the 1962 Intoxicating Liquor Act.
– On page 2 of Friday’s Irish Times I encouter a photo of two children called Eve and Phoenix Williams. Phoenix? Opposite was a snippet about a newborn giraffe at Fota Zoo in Cork. The giraffe’s name is Aoife and its mother is called Roisin. It’s a strange day when giraffes have more normal names than humans.
– Much discussion of the financial disasters currently engulfing Ireland. The banks are being bailed out, to a much more punishing tune than here in the UK, as our government was if possible even more reckless than the UK banks. There is a growing feeling that the government of the 90s was the worst we have ever had; yet this same government, which is still in power, is refusing to apologise and in fact in classic ‘blame the victim’ style are attempting to pin the blame back on the public. As one commentator in the Irish Times said, ‘We are the nation that walked into doors’.
– Wednesday saw my first ever outing with my dad and brother’s hill running association. I finished a 3k run up and down Killiney Hill only a minute behind my 67-year-old father. Yes, I am proud of this; no, don’t laugh.
-A new musical discovery: Crystal Swing. I’m not sure words can adequately describe this musical phenomenon sweeping Ireland, but they are kind of adorable. Combine country and western, the Big Band tradition, a sweet Cork family and YouTube, and this is what you get. Make sure you watch the interview. Enjoy!