Friday, July 19, 2013
The gambler and his minder
Another fantastic sunny day in Dublin.
As the song goes "In Dublin's fair city where the girls are so pretty"
Today they all look fantastic..
On the coast road into town this morning a lady waved me down.
All the way to Fitzwilliam Street.
She works in design. A very important thing.
Just as we were pulling up a man waved me down.
So I pulled over to the Fitzwilliam card club where a storage box and suitcase were waiting.
We loaded up and my passenger told me that there was someone else coming.
We waited and he knocked on the door twice then the dude arrived !
"The feckers didn't want to pay me.
Its my money I told them.
Here Charlie you hold it for me"
He handed the check over and he waited to decide where we would go next.
The merer ticked on and the dude thought about where they would go next.
A few telephone calls later and we were still none the wiser.
Then he wanted a bit of privacy to talk so he got out and walked out of earshot.
His partner from the back leaned forward and started talking, telling stupid jokes..He told me that the other guy was a gambler and had won a substantial amount of money and it was his job to mind and protect him.
Looking out he suddenly noticed that his charge had wandered out of sight.
"Fuck ! Where is he gone? If anything happens to him I won't get paid and I will never get another job with them again."
So he got out after him and they stood down wind of me out of earshot talking.
A lady had pulled in and was amused by the carry on.
So she asked me to explain, which I did.
"This must be very difficult for you, not knowing where you should be going or not even knowing if the people you are dealing with are OK?"
I assured her that the meter was running and their suitcase was in the boot.
Then they returned to say "Heuston station".
On the journey talks of racing days and lucky horses were told.
The journey began at 8.10 and ended at 9.18 the meter read €34.10
"how much should I give him?" said the minder.
"€34 on the meter, Give him €40"
The odyssey ended and they went off for the train.
What did I think of them?
They are kids that hadn't grown up.
When you decide to gamble you don't drink.
They will go on until the money is all gone.
I will probably see the dude at the races in one of those society magazines with a dizzy blonde on his arm.
One other sad part about gambling is that people loose their homes and their businesses.
I know of a taxi driver who lived off the Malahide Rd., when the Fitzwilliam club opened up I would see his Fiat Scudo parked there from around 1 am and it would still be there at 6 am.
Then I noticed that his house was up for sale.
Later on the taxi vanished from the scene as well.
One friend of mine has a daughter with a great job, she is very good looking and clever.
Her partner and herself bought a house.
Out of the blue one day the bank arrived to evict them.
Her partner had gambled away all of their money and their house as well.
My pal had to bail them out using up all his reserves and more.
His statement to me summed it up so well.
"He is a treacherous bastard, thousands of euro stolen and nothing to show for it at all.
The big problem is that she is still mad about him and he will never change"
Then years ago there was a race horse trainer who owned a yard near Castleknock, I knew his widow and she told me that her husband had died suddenly. Within days the bank had them thrown out on the roadside as her husband had run up massive debts using the business as collateral.
Her whole world did a somersault.
Friends shunned her and others stuck by her.
She survived thanks to her children and while I knew her she introduced me to many jockeys and horse trainers from Ireland and abroad who would come to visit her, her kids grew up to be very successful people in the end as well..
I still wait for the phone to ring sometimes and a shaky voice to say "John will you take me to the Curragh tomorrow?"
A strange thing to say is that after all that happened she was an optimist through and through.
She was a diamond of a person, tough as anything and very rare..So of great value.
So today this Saturday Riverdance is going to take over the city.
The worlds biggest line of dancers ever doing the Riverdance right up and down the other side of the Liffey.
It will be in the Guinness book of records.
Then an open air performance in Merrion Sq for €10
If you want to read the whole story click here.
But our president has just appointed a lady of French origin to write his speeches.
Like he has shunned the wonderful orators who populate out green land.
I hope he gets good value for his €65,000 a year.
A president is a thing we really could do without .
That is for sure.
Mr Obama is leader and president together and he is paid less than our figurehead.
No wonder we are where we are. Mon Dieu