Irish words learned to date: 'Croker'; GAA; craic; feckin eejit
05.09.2015 - 10.09.2015 20 °C
Since last entry, I have been to a Gaelic football final, consumed copious volumes of alcohol, and generally lounged about. I am still not sure which one of these pastimes is considered the national sport. Also the museums are great, especially at the moment, since there is a lot of emphasis on the history that has been fairly well ignored here till recently. There has been a long held saying here that 'Irish history started in 1916' after the Easter Rising, and a lot of other history was ignored. This has changed a fair bit now and they are making other stuff more widespread.
There is a huge blue going on in Northern Ireland at the moment as well; essentially, one of the cabinet ministers of the government has been arrested along with a couple of others for a recent murder of an Ulster unionist paramilitary. Basically it looks like an IRA hit that involves one of their politicians, and looks like derailing the stability of Northern Ireland - again. The equivalent would be if Malcolm Turnbull was arrested for killing a trade union leader. So huge news here anyway.
The weather has been great, which is both good and bad - you can get out to see heaps, but inevitably end up at a pub somewhere (see the pics) for a drink or several. I was actually warned by a bloke the other day to 'stay away from the blonde with the black skirt' - see the pics and you will get the meaning. The good thing (if there is one) about the drinking sessions at the pubs is that's where all the music is. The pubs are a huge focal point for the communities, and unlike back home don't tend to have the problems like we do, as the pub crowd is fairly sedate. The problems come from the nightclubs mostly.
Managed to catch up with the local coppers here. No surprise to find the job the same here as back home, with the same problems. Resources have been cut back, numbers and morale are low across the board, and the only smart ones seem to have all left Ireland and joined the WA police. There is even a show on TV about it over here called 'Gardai Down Under' about all the expat coppers who have relocated to WA. Very popular, too.
Everyone seems to have relatives in Australia somewhere, and you get asked often 'Do you know Paddy, he lives in Australia; perhaps you've met him...?' There is no concept of how big the country is compared to Ireland, and when I tell them how far I drive to work each day (basically from one side of Ireland to the other), they find it difficult to get their head around it. They are also disgusted by the price of a pint of Guinness in Australia.
Anyway, I will be getting out and about a bit more after this weekend (which is the wedding I am primarily supposed to be here for, and probably will be the least remembered due to the presence of alcohol (there is no Irish phrase for 'responsible serving of alcohol', unless it means 'Take care not to spill any'.) Next week will be time to head to Scotland as well, which may sound like a strange and unlikely place to sober up.
Jamesons - don't ask, there is a huge haze involving Jameson's Whiskey. Lots, I am told.
Rum - several
Cider - some
There may be other stuff as well, but the jury is still out...