Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Old hand

Whenever you pull up, someone gets in, tells you their destination and then,sometimes something else happens!

Seldom it is really special, like the time I met Chuck Feeney.

Sometimes it is really thought provoking as in this case.
I come in the Clontarf rd. most days, If I have not picked up a fare I park up at Connolly station.

A gent in his late 60's got in and asked for the Charlemont clinic. The banter began and I told him about the book on old Dublin I was reading called Dublin tennement life by Kevin C Kearns.
It tells about old Dublin and features people like Bang Bang and Johnny fortycoats and Lugs brannagan.
He had been a Garda serving under "Lugs Brannagan" and spoke of the annamal gangs of the 60's and how the Garda had fought a pitched battle with them at the Harolds cross greyhound stadium, he was there that day.
The Animal gang got a long time in prison and then the conversation turned.

Drug dealers sell drugs openly on the streets and It may have been a remark that they should be stopped which started him off.

I had 4 daughters I really wanted to have a son.

Did you ever hear the saying "Be careful for what you wish?"

Well my son arrived and my life was complete, he was a great kid, Everyone loved him,he was the center of our lives.

Then at 14 something happened..He became unhappy, disruptive and a rebel.

I was working progressing throght the ranks.

Then one day things had gotten out of hand, we needed help.
We went to shrinks, took all the help that was on offer.
Things then really took a turn for the worse.

He found, no he embraced drugs!
He went from being my most loved person in my life to becoming this robbing lying fiend.

People told me to lock him out until he regained his senses! He stole from the house until I had to throw him out.
The logic was that he would see the error of his ways.
He broke into the house twice until we had a security system installed. Can you think how bad things had become when we had to protect ourselves from our own son.

The time passed. Things moved from bad to worse.
The lads from the station kept a lookout for him and time passed, then one day my wife is on the upper deck of the bus home and she saw three down and outs on the street.
One of them was gaunt and skeleton like and she recognised our Tommy
She ran downstairs.
But by the time the bus stopped and she got off Tommy had gone away.

Her shopping and handbag were on the bus.

We looked for Tommy for the next 3 weeks, Marys health got really bad.
Did anyone ever tell you about the Camels in Africa, when they decide to die?
Well Mary just died, she died of a broken heart.

He turned up a month or so after the funeral, I wanted to talk to him, our time for talking had passed.
The girls tried to get through as well .So I gave him money and he went away again.

It was the guts of a year later when I had a knock at the door..

2 Garda, "Bad news, we have found your sons body in a squat"

Thank God I said. "No more worry no more pain for him and for us."
He had put us through hell, but the hell he put himself through was 10 times worse.

I laid him out to rest a month ago and now he is beside his mother, they have both found peace.

I am off to the Charlemont clinic now, I have cancer.

I have sons myself I told him, what happened to his family was awful.

Did you ever think of talking against drugs to kids in schools ?

Well no, perhaps that might do more to encourage them rather help them.

He got out and I wished him well.
I said that a holiday on a cruise ship might give him a rest from the heartbreak he was suffering..

We would all die sometime, but he deserved a break.


  1. Very nice story. Just goes to show how drugs affect everyone. That guard probably lived in Meath or somewhere outside of Dublin and it caught up with him.

    Where was the first pic taken? It's nice but I can't figure out if they're real people or not!!

  2. isadub. you must have never staggered out of the 4 seasons hotel in Ballsbridge. You will also see this guys work in the park opposite the casino in Monaco.I like them. the other is ice on the pond at East point.

  3. I'm a Northsider and I don't have a visa to visit the southside, let alone the 4 Seasons in Ballsbridge!!

    Heard a good joke on the radio today that I hadn't heard before.

    Why do Northsiders keep pigeons?
    So they can teach their children to walk.

    Thanks for the info :-)