Saturday, November 17, 2007

Hello Dublin? It's Blair from America.

Your City has changed. Last time I was here the streets were quieter, the languages less volatile and more poetic. The sounds are now ones of speed and sharp, razor sharp, exclamations. Sneers passed my way a few times. I didn’t feel comfortable going the ten blocks back to my hotel like I did eight years ago. Eight years ago the Bouncers were Irish. The Bouncers were these stocky men with fresh smiling faces, very helpful. They took care of me while I was inside their Night Clubs by myself. I always felt safe then. Well, now it is much different. People are falling all over each other on the street. They were making rude comments to my face about my wheelchair. They were so wasted a couple of times they almost slammed into me. A couple of young men jumped in front of me not letting me pass while I was trying to get back to my hotel. The only man who helped me on this particular night was an Irishman. He was standing by his cab, smoking a cigarette and I looked at his face and he smiled. The first smile I had seen a smile the whole night. He told me how to get back to my hotel.

When I returned to my hotel I never wanted to leave again. I was tired. The Dublin Cobbles had worn down my back and my arms. My hands were filthy, my knit gloves I bought in Brussels did not last a day here.
What has changed here?
Who has changed the energy of this wonderful city?
I feel that something might boil over very soon in Dublin. There are too many people in one small place who don’t speak the same slang. But their physical presence is well-noted.

Is it the drugs that are around?
Is it The Drink?

Why is Dublin 2007 so hostile?
I miss Dublin 1999.

My last night there I wasn’t able to leave my room, I was beaten. I was exhausted. I wanted out. I wanted to go back home.

While waiting for the Ferry the next morning two women in uniform approached me as I watched the boat dock. I was looking also at this bus that was taking some of the passengers across the Yard. I looked at the two women standing next to me. One was young, attractive, dark hair, severe face, the other older woman was cute, kind, friendly eyes. I asked the younger women if there was another bus coming to pick up passengers for the boat that was docking. She gave me a quick, slight, nasty -yeah- in an Eastern European dialect and waved me off with her hand. I looked at her dumbfounded trying to get her eye contact again so I could tell her what I felt about her Customer Service Skills when the older woman with an Irish dialect explained to me about the buses and that there was a second one and not to worry it was for the boat that just docked. The older woman smiled and I thanked her very much for her help and she winked at me. They both walked away.
So that’s the deal. It’s not the Irish that are the culprits of this odd energy it’s those who have chosen to enter Ireland for work because of the great economy. I guess no one gave them the memo that you have to be respectful of those who let you enter their house ‘cause you could easily be put out on the street.

Trinity Capital Hotel
Pearse Street
Dublin 2
T: +353 1 648 1000
F: +353 1 648 1010
Rates Vary. No Shower Chair. Building Wheelchair Accessible. Great Design.


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