Thursday, 10 January 2008


Well we made it to and through Christmas and without boring anyone who actually reads this too much I’ll try and give the highlights

The ferry! We missed the cruise sailing due to car troubles and ended up on the dreaded swift (also known as the vomit commet!). the ship had to take a substantial dogleg north to combat the prevailing winds and then turn south to Dublin once under some shelter from the irish coastline. It was comic! Like some sort of scene from an early Monthy Pythons film. The Scene looked something like this…. Imaging you’re sitting in an old cinema seat. The screen is a large plasma only 10 feet infront and there are about 30 similar seats arranged around you. Behind you is the café stroke bar thingey and the side walls are windows looking out to see and it’s dark outside. The background noise is a low mechanical hum or whirr…. Either way it’s completely surrounding you and dampening every noise. Santa Claus 3 is on the screen but the volume is not loud enough to hear it clearly so you have to concentrate on engaging your hearing to make it out. It’s the evening before Christmas eve and the ferry is nicely busy. Now then, the rocking and swaying begins to build and before long the ship is listing and bouncing around like a good thing. People take the hint and before long everyone is seated and pensive… then the puking begins… only a little at first, the odd muffled barff into a well positioned sick bag … but just like the rocking, this builds too… before long outrageously loud hurling can be heard coming from children and hardened, well-fed truckers alike! The occasional splash as someone cant be bothered to find another bag and just involuntarily purges themselves all over their table or across the floor. The crew go round passing out tonnes of bags as the captain announces the shops and bar areas are closed. The puking continues as does the sound of crockery and merchandise clattering in their storage. Eventually the circus subsided into some sort of exhausted normality but just when you think it’s over, the ship changes direction to make the southward leg to Dublin and with that it erupts again with extra gusto – the change in the ships motion obviously having dire consequences for the suffering punters! It was interesting…. And no – me no heave!

Christmas was great, I love Christmas – I now realise how fortunate I’ve been to make it to 25 and still really, really look forward to meeting up with my family and friends. I read somewhere that in order to truly appreciate and understand your own culture you have to be extracted from it and submersed into another. Well I feel that now when I come home. I feel familiar and comfortable enough in my surroundings but also critical enough to really take in the changes both for the better and worse that are happening around my hometown in my absence. Mostly I find I just really appreciate what can be found on my doorstep at home in Dublin! The places, the parks, the people, views… the atmosphere. I loved the morning runs down to the coast and back before the city began to wake up. The TV and radio. The only thing I wasn’t happy with was my lack of time to meet up with people I really wanted to. I barely made contact with anyone outside my immediate family all trip but I suppose that’s alright every once in a while. There are some people that I’ve seen Far to little of and I really do need to sort that out!

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