Saturday, August 09, 2008

Happy 60th

The city lying below, from Sutton graveyard

Well the last headline could be put up again.
Monsoon weather.

I went to Belfast to a cousins 60th birthday,a great occasion.
Its nice to meet your relations at a time when it is not a funeral or a wedding.

I didn't get a chance to get photos of Belfast, but I tell you that things are much better now that the civil unrest is over.
When I travel to Belfast or anywhere in Ulster the memories of every bomb and killing still comes back to me.
One side strikes then the other, 2 little boys in Warrington get blown up, in Omagh a market town on a busy afternoon a car bomb is set off while people look for school books and school uniforms. 2 men talking at a street corner, a car pulls up.
Bang Bang.

For the people who were there, they tell their stories over and over again.
"I was in the crowd when there was a flash and I woke up covered in blood, from head to foot, people were running around, I thought I must be dead as I didn't have any pain.
Then I found I could move, when I stood up I realized that the woman who had been standing in front of me had taken the full force of the blast,she was dead in an instant all the blood was hers .I was unharmed".

Their stories are repeated in Iraq, Palestine, Delhi and Indonesia today tomorrow and it seems forever.
Today it happens again in Georgia!
As time passes the media become numb to the stories.
Paris Hiltons lack of knickers become headline news again!

I hope our war is over forever and I say a prayer that your war will be over soon too. George Mitchell,Bill Clinton and John Hume will be remembered forever.
Fact is that Ian Paisley did sit down with Gerry Adams too.

Here is a piece sent to me by Mike the native American Indian.

War is complicated. It is like a well cut diamond,if you look at it from a slightly different angle you see a another picture.
Again and now you see war the from another perspective.

Just outside Armagh a monument to the hunger strikers.

Its hard for a soldier on a wage packet to defeat people who have a cause to die for.
There was only losers in the Northern Ireland conflict, as in many conflicts the war is not won its just over.

Anyhow while I was away they had monsoon rains in Dublin(76 mm at Dublin airport a new record) and there was flooding all over. The M1 was closed but the big signs which flash up warnings along the motorway said nothing about what was going to happen ahead.
Some signs just said port tunnel closed use alternative routes.
This kind of thing happens all the time,nothing unusual.

Next thing the traffic is stopped.

As we got closer the signs said port tunnel open get in lane, so I decided to go through the tunnel. When we got closer we met cars coming back up the motorway on the hard shoulder. the road was flooded!
So I crossed the grass and up the ramp for Santry village, edging our way along I saw that the road outside the Swiss chalet was flooded....Well muggins decided to go through the water,so I tucked myself behind a 4X4 an off we went 2 inches deep 4 inches 1 foot.
Then I saw a bollard on my left about a 18 inches deep in water and the next one on was 2 foot under. No turning back.
The jeep paused for a second and I saw the wash of water come back but then he sprang forward with me in hot pursuit.
It was a bit like Moses passing through the Red Sea.
We made it! More by luck than anything else.

A few years ago there was a flash flood near my house and someone drove a brand new top of the range Merc into it and stalled. The car still had the plastic on the seats. I asked the garage Ballsbridge motors how much the car had cost. The sales guy told me the price which I forget and he said that it was sold by them and It had to have a new engine and new carpets plus lots more. She was lucky the seats did not get wet as white leather seats would never be the same again.

Anyhoo when we made it back on the Swords road there was a Garda standing at the crossroads, there he was,leaning over the railings on the traffic island, traffic blocked to his left, blocked on his right and blocked straight on.
He leaned over the barrier with his hat at a jaunty angle like something out of the movie "the quiet man".
No bother to him!

You say he had the expression of "A goat looking at thunder"

We were OK but some cars ran out of petrol,some drivers ran for a pee in the bushes, others had babies on board crying.
There was no planning at all.

We had no show to go to or flights to catch.
We were stuck for over 2 hours.
John another taxi driver told me he saw a big punch up between 2 drivers.
Very Italian!
Fact is, if someone steals a bicycle they put up the Garda helicopter,thousands of cars were stopped and no master plan sprang into operation.

I did see the emergency response unit coming but any emergency vehicles I saw were fighting their way through the stopped traffic instead of coming back on the empty motorway on the closed section of road. There was no one in charge or so it seemed.
On the way into Santry village there was a river of water coming down the hill. All the shores were blocked!!!!
I was in Vichy France years ago the thunder and rain came but the shores were 2 meters long and nothing was blocked. 2 people were killed by lightning in the area that day though.
Guess you can't cater for everything.
Then doing nothing is not a solution either.
As I write the M1 and M50 remain closed in places.

Have a good one.


Ask driver for details.

1 comment:

  1. Gotta love your little ending piece John, make love not war, ask driver LOL