I cant leave off going on about Ireland without telling
you about Dublin and I dont just mean the Grafton Street of my drunken youth
(well, one weekend of it when I was about nineteen, actually).
one area called Temple Bar where theyve transformed a maze of little streets
into a bemusing fantasy of bars and restaurants. Does this sound familiar?
people in garish tee shirts throng everywhere like a rash. They all talk at the
same time without listening to each other and the music is all Greatest Hits of
I suppose whats so reminiscent of Ibiza
is the way they all have money to spend and are determined they are having a good
A few hours after the football, all you could see
were people clinging to walls and trying to hold themselves up. I didnt
see many people making pavement pizzas, though.
Dublin oozed quality. I went to watch the Saddleworth Morris Men cavorting in
OConnell Street, which they managed for roughly eight minutes before Irish
policemen moved them on. They were stopping the shoppers outside the famous old
post office where bullets once riddled the front.
went to the pub.
Dublin is like that. I got the feeling
it was one large village and you would find it hard to get separated from each
other for long.
The joyous underdog mood was everywhere
as they - unlike England yesterday - awaited their inevitable departure from the
World Cup. I told you my money was on Brazil about three weeks ago, the only trouble
being that I never actually placed the bet. Thats the trouble with being
sober - you forget things that would have been a priority if only youd had
I also visited Limerick and finished up in some
place in County Westmeath where there was a slip of paper in the hotel bedroom
warning that the tap water might be poisonous. Perhaps it was just an excuse to
promote the red lemonade that was everywhere rather than the Seven-Up, so highly
favoured by Roy Keane.
Travellers note: I was
provided with a very smart silver Primera from Murrays Europcar at Dublin
Airport, courtesy of Bord Failte Eirann. To discover the island of Ireland, contact:
Tourism Ireland, Ireland Desk, Britain Visitor Centre, 1 Regent Street, London
SW1Y 4XT. Freephone: 0800 0397000. www.TourismIreland.com
You can contact them in Spain, too: Paseo de la Castellana, 46-3, 28046 Madrid.
Tel: 91 57754 58.
P.S. Ive started it, so Ill
attempt to finish. But can anyone remind me of the author of this Dublin ditty,
the rest of which goes (I think):
no need to hurry
Theres no need to worry
Youre a king and
your ladys a queen
Grafton Streets a
Theres magic in the air
Theres diamonds in your
And gold dust in her hair
if you dont believe me
Come and meet me there
In Dublin on a sunny