Well we’re here. We have survived jet lag, some of the worst airline food it’s ever been my displeasure to encounter and successfully negotiated the supposedly byzantine ways of quarantine and immigration. I’ve just managed to get my first decent nights sleep in over a week. We have food, we have shelter. We have transport and fast Internet. We have COFFEE! (Good stuff too)
And it hasn’t been that hard so far. Of course there have been a couple of glitches. Money needs to be applied as a salve in a couple of cases, but on the whole Mrs S and I did like I said; moved purposefully with the right forms filled in and slipped through all the barriers like shit through a goose. In record time I might add. Even baggage claim was a snip. All you need to do is ask the right questions and keep a cool, polite manner.
So where are we? To announce the winner of the migration sweepstake; Glyn Palmer. Well done smartarse, the prize of absolutely naff all is heading your way because a sweepstake needs punters. No-one ponyed up any cash so, sorry, you’re SOL as they say in jolly old Interwebland.
For the rest of you that haven’t been following our little saga; Begorrah. We’re in rural Southern Ireland.
Bill, you bastard. Well yes, of course. I’m a bastard son of a bitch. Literally. An Irishman’s bastard son of a bitch to boot. Although you wouldn’t think it to hear me speak. I have an accent that contains elements of home counties England with a slight north midlands twang, overlaid with all sorts of other anglophone influences, from Australia to Canada. But not Ireland. However, I tend to adopt accents by osmosis, so this situation may well change.
Mrs S and I are currently finding our way around, despite my phones copy of Google maps getting infested with a dose of Leprechauns and sending us down tiny lanes through the back end of nowhere. We’ve successfully navigated our way out of Dublin past groups of up to ten Hi-Viz clad Gardai (Police) in the middle of O’Connell Street, looking for all the world like clumps of late daffodils. Been driven nuts by near constant electronic admonitions from our hire car all the two hour drive to our temporary home and then successfully stared down a bunch of farmyard cats.
From our bedroom window we can see a massive country house across the valley and the hilltop remains of a castle. There are trees other than endless conifers and then there’s Ireland’s boasted ‘forty shades of green’ bathing us in it’s munificent balm. The motorway network reminds me of Southern France. Similar construction methods and accessories. Switch sides of the road and you’d hardly notice the difference, short of the bilingual road signage and Celtic alphabet.
Out here the country folk have accents thicker than a doorstep Cheese butty with extra pickles. Their voices wrap themselves around you like creamy Irish butter, which is exceptionally good let me tell you. So far we have found them robust and easy going.
We will be ‘officially’ self isolating for twelve more days before being admitted to polite society. To be honest we’re not bothered. The dreaded lurgi has come and gone. All else is propaganda and scaremongering. No second spike or wave. No need to be afraid. And I have a bottle of Jamesons. There is bacon.
Despite the restrictions imposed by badly advised and panicking politicians, the panic is over. Which tells us this; we humans are robust, not fragile. We are descended from generations of survivors. The rest is bollocks. Modern humanity is stronger than the media and political pantywaisters aver. So I choose not to listen to their cultish canting. On that topic, our accommodation has two televisions. They will not be switched on for the duration of our stay. At least not by me.
Anyway. I look on the bright side; there are huge Irish beaches to explore which will be emptier than usual as the terrified classes won’t go anywhere near them. All the more for us (Snigger).