I went to Dublin for a meeting of the World Gathering of Young Friends. I might add an entry about WGYF at some point because it’s a very exciting event. I took a train to Stranrar, which is a bonny town but not that well signposted, and boarded the high speed catamaran. The polis gave me a hard time boarding, who was I, where was I going, what for, had I been before, give me your bags so we can search them. Maybe I looked suspicious or maybe they just had too much time on their hands. Stena’s high-speed catamaran is a lovely ferry but you can’t get out of deck which spoils the fun of going on a ferry. They show second rate Disney films on all the TV screens which is surprisingly enjoyable if you’re in the mood. I stayed with my Great Aunt in Belfast which was nice since I’ve hardly ever seen her.
The train to Dublin takes two hours and costs 33 quid, the trip to Belfast also cost 33 quid so the total is about the same as a trip to London. Dublin is a very nice city but seriously overloaded. It’s full. More full than London. The traffic is in gridlock, also the River Liffy is often called the River Whiffy because it smells. Dublin also has a large pointy structure called the Millenium Spike or something similar.
The WGYF meeting went well enough, I think I’m now incharge of pre and post events which is a bit scary. I couldn’t find any open wireless internet in Dublin but I’m sure it’s there. They have a National Gallery which looks suspiciously like the Museum of Scotland. They also have a groovy new tram line which everyone seems very proud of.
The train back to Belfast turned into a bus because the Irish are just as bad at railways as the British (which as fast as I’m concerned isn’t as bad as everyone complains about). Then I got the most dodgy taxi ride to Belfast Harbour, the guy didn’t have a metre, shoved four of us in the same taxi all going different places, took me through an area of town with a lot of “No Surrender” graffiti and Union Flags to stop and fill the cab up at his company’s pump without turning his engine off. I’ll take a private hire cab next time.by