Sunday, 29 June 2014

Ireland 1

Saturday, 7th June

The first thing I feel after arriving in Dublin is relief; a much delayed first flight and hurried change of aircraft mean I’m glad just to be where I expected to be. The worries of an alternate universe of expensive last minute hotel nights and rebookings fading and finally vanishing as my suitcase appears on the luggage carousel.

On the bus from the airport a small group of Swiss men complain earnestly, in a barely intelligible dialect of German, about the difficulty of understanding the bus driver's heavily Irish accent. I worry this will set the scene for my short visit to Ireland, mis-conceptions about how similar it is to the UK, the results being hundreds of years of trying to integrate Ireland, much of the time forcibly. From the bus it does look very similar to the UK, the pavements and roads are the same dirty collections of concrete slabs, tarmac patches and filled potholes. The mix of Victorian and new buildings, driving on the left and even similar street furniture.