Irony, thy name is IrishRail.
I planned last Friday with military precision. I was heading home for the weekend so I wanted to get the earliest train possible. I got into work 15 minutes early and only took 30 minutes for lunch when I was entitled to 60. With 45 minutes in hand I left work early and rushed back to the apartment, discarded my blasted suit and got the Dart-Luas combo that would bring me to Heuston.
Success!! I managed to get there in plenty of time for the 1840 hours train to Thurles. There was another train 20 minutes later, at 1900 hours, but I took great satisfaction in having slickly executed my meticulous escape plan.
You can imagine my disgust when my 1840 hours train pulled over in Ballybrophy for 25 minutes to let the 1900 hours train past. This meant that by rushing to get the earlier train I was, in fact, 15 minutes later getting to Thurles.
That’s public transport for you.
I watched the match at home, in the comfort of my own sofa. I generally dislike going to pubs for matches. Sure the atmosphere is sometimes better but is it really worth having an invariably crappy view and all the mobility of the M50 at rush hour? I think not. Far better to get a few cans and head to a mates house where you can get the thoughts of Hook, Popey and Sheasy or switch to BBC to hear what they’re saying.
That said, I suspect I’ll make an effort next weekend alright. Good on you England…Swing Low and so forth.
As for the Ireland-Scotland match itself, well that’s Ireland as overwhelming favourites for you. Way too close for comfort. The only thing worse than the prospect of defeat is the prospect of an embarrassing defeat . Not defeat by a huge margin but a defeat at the hands of second rate incompetent opponents who should be swatted aside with the minimum of fuss.
After Saturday, the entire country now knows how Bertie Ahern must be feeling.
Lately I’ve faltered in terms of seeing movies I want to see. So, having returned to Dublin on Sunday evening, I made sure to stop in to the nearest cinema on my walk back to the apartment. I had the good fortune of seeing Venus, a delight of a movie boasting a seismic performance from Peter the Great.
The closest cinema to where I live is Screen Cinema on D’Olier St. It’s a charming little cinema that screens charming little movies and, most importantly, provides ample leg room for my 6’3” frame. Furthermore, having now seen a good half dozen movies there I can happily report that its patrons do not include the chatterboxes and gigglers who have the annoying habit of sitting directly behind me.
The only negative is the curious pre-show routine. If you take your seat a little early you’ll be greeted with some soothing music. Lately this has been Norah Jones’ debut album, Come Away With Me. The adverts and trailers start at the advertised time just like everywhere else. However once the trailers are over Norah is resurrected and the audience sits there for 10 minutes with nothing on screen before the movie actually starts.
The 10 minute wait is as irritating as you would expect and doesn't half kill the mood. Following testosterone in celluloid form, A.K.A the trailer for 300, with Ms. Jones is like having the under 10 exhibition game follow Amhran na bhFiann on All Ireland Final day in Croke Park.
The truth about Rum
Thanks to Disney and Captain Jack Sparrow, rum is now a world famous drink. Typical of Disney though, it’s all fun and games when it comes to the characters drinking the stuff. All sing songs, with ‘Yo Ho Ho’ this and ‘A pirates life for me’ that. Where’s the realism? Where are the consequences of Jack losing his sobriety in a bottle of rum?
As we all know, things work a little differently in the real world. In reality, Capt’n Jack would have taken out his Nokia at random intervals during the night and sent nonsensical text-jibberish to a mate of his at home in bed. His groggy friend, haven been woken from his slumber, would have been able to establish that Ol’ Jack was drinking rum, lots of it, and having fun somewhere, but not much else.
That little fact of life ‘came’ to me as I lay in bed over the course of Saturday night/Sunday morning.
You’ll be happy to hear my rum guzzling, text happy friend suffered all day Sunday with a monster hangover. So I guess, like all good Disney movies, my story this week has a happy ending.