Back to Dublin

July 18, 2010 | 4 Comments

Miriam and Roisin
here for recent pictures !
I was hardly back in NY from my last trip when I mentioned to Jenn that my sister Mary was off to France on holidays. Well, says Jenn, why don’t you go and stay in her house ? You can work on your writing there without any distractions. That was on a Wednesday morning, and Friday night saw me flying back to Dublin.

This trip was the first one in a long time that I flew on Aer Lingus, and I was reminded why I’m not too crazy about them. On a late-night flight to Dublin, when you’re trying to grab 40 winks, the last thing you need in a stewardess telling you to put your seat up because they’re serving their lousy food. This is after they tell you that won’t be serving wine with dinner, so if you want any you better order it in advance – for a price. They’re happy to nickel-and-dime you, even after charging you $1,200 for a ticket…Then, just as you’re finally starting to doze off, they wake you up to let you know that they’re about to start peddling their duty-free. Now I just stick to Continental and Delta, even though they’re annoying in their own way. Of course, when flying business Aer Lingus is okay, but then you get what you pay for…

Dublin is great when there’s not much traffic – really, the city couldn’t cope with the level of traffic that we saw in 2006 and 2007, but now, thanks in part to a new tunnel but largely due to the recession, it’s easy to get around again. The trip to my sister Ann’s for lunch was very quick, and I had a nice afternoon there catching up in advance of her trip to France with Caitriona and Tim.
For most of the week I didn’t do any socialising, and focused on getting some work done, when not watering Mary’s flowers. I did manage to meet up with David Quinn for a pint at Clontarf Castle, where Donal joined us, and I had dinner and Ann and Tom one night, and Niall and Maria and the kids another night. I was able to drop in on Maureen, who I was glad to see has picked up since March and is looking much better. I also got to meet up with Anthony and Leanne on Friday, and went back on Sat for dinner followed by a sing-song in their courtyard until all hours, fueled by some Bushmills…

We met up again on Tuesday at the opening night of a new production of The Quare Fellow at The New Theatre. I hadn’t seen it on stage before, so it was nice to have the opportunity to see it in such an intimate venue – and quite an apposite one, for a Behan production, being behind the Communist Party bookshop. As is customary, we went for a celebratory drink across the road where Donal joined us.

On the way home from dinner at Kinara on Thursday night, I heard about the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Lavery exhibition on at the Hugh Lane gallery, so I decided to head in on Friday. The exhibition was quite interesting, given that Lavery had made the acquaintance of many of the signatories of the Anglo-Irish Treaty and had painted their portraits. I must confess that, on the evidence of her solitary painting on show, I thought that his wife Hazel – she of the Irish Pound Note fame – was the better painter.

Friday night saw me catch up with Miriam and Roisin, who was delightful. After a drink at the yacht club, we went to an Indian restaurant in Malahide, where it was great to catch up at our first dinner in Dublin in years, and to see how Roisin is growing up. We’ll definitely have to introduce our kids and see how they get on. The night was all too short and it was back home for a few hours sleep before heading out to the airport for the return to NY. Two weeks sure does go fast !


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4 Comments so far

  1. Brian OHagan on July 29, 2010 6:30 am

    Great Trip!!! Hope Maureen is well…..(I stayed at that castle..thanks to you)…..

  2. Brian on July 29, 2010 8:01 am

    Brian, she’s doing well, and looks much better than she did in March. Her short-term memory is starting to deteriorate, though, although she is 87…
    Yes, the castle is great, isn’t it ? They did a fantastic job of melding the old and the new…

  3. Brian OHagan on July 29, 2010 8:27 am

    Boy its tough to get old…..we almost lost my mom last thursday but she seems to beok now..she is in the hospital but gettingout soon..Thomas and I wee just with her on Saturday…..she was so happy to spend time with him..we were talking about Dad and how he barely mad eit to your housein Rhinebeck to see your father and the good father cousin!! My mom said that was prety much the last trip my dad took in his car by himself…that’s is great picture!!!

  4. Brian on August 4, 2010 9:13 pm

    I’ll definitely have to come down to see her when she gets out. Please give me a buzz later this month and we can plan a meeting…